This is How I Rant

I’m incredibly angry, which is a typical reaction to coming across an article that insists that Loki doesn’t exist. The article I’m talking about can be found in the Vor Tru magazine, volume 97, on page 17, and was written by Kollr Logmather, the allsherjargothi of the Asatru Alliance.

Loki is called a “fabrication.” Now, I obviously have several issues with this, but the most important issue to address is the fact that there are people out there who say Loki was made up by Christians in order to make conversion easier.

Except if you think about that argument using even an iota of intelligence, it’s easy to see the flaws in it. I mean, Loki didn’t need to be “made up” in order to scare Pagans into converting to Christianity when they were being threatened with death if they failed to convert. There was no need to invent another nemesis when Satan is supposed to be the embodiment of pure evil. That theory is, in a word, ridiculous.

I’m not usually dismissive of other people’s views, but I can’t abide the disrespect directed towards Loki. I get irritated by the people who claim Loki is the equivalent of a Norse Satan, but at least I can understand where they are coming from. At least I can catch a glimpse of their perspective and understand that they are simply unable to understand Loki’s real nature. What I can’t understand – what I don’t want to try to understand, if I’m being honest – are those who try to claim that Loki doesn’t exist.

That’s like saying Odin doesn’t exist. Any real polytheist – and yes, I’m drawing lines in the sand here – will acknowledge the existence of all the Gods in all pantheons. That’s what it means to be a polytheist. If someone is going to follow a polytheistic faith, it’s kinda imperative that they are actually polytheists. Just because you don’t like a god doesn’t give you the right to claim that god doesn’t exist.

Especially when there are enough people in the “Loki cult” who have interacted with Loki to discredit the statement that Loki is a fabrication. If you can’t tell by now, I’m incredibly pissed off. I didn’t realize how anti-Loki the Asatru Alliance was before I ordered a one-year subscription to Vor Tru (luckily it’s only 4 issues). If I had know their stance on Loki before I ordered the subscription, I wouldn’t have ordered it – that’s the bare minimum of respect I feel is required for the Gods that I honor.

Once I came across that article, I was so disgusted that I couldn’t even finish reading the magazine. I was unimpressed with Vor Tru before I got to that article, so all the article did was piss me off and give me the material for this post. I can give you a list for why Vor Tru is a terrible publication: terrible grammar, no depth to any of the articles, no quoted research or references, all the articles highlight opinions rather than facts, and so on. That, to me, is the hallmark of an unprofessional publication. That it is supposed to be the reflection of the face of the Asatru Alliance pisses me off because reputation matters.

Most people will brush off the idea of reputation, but reputation is incredibly important. Your reputation is, to some degree, where your honor comes from. Your integrity is what builds your reputation, and the two of them together is what determines your honor. And, in my opinion, the Vor Tru magazine lacks integrity. If the magazine that is supposed to be the reflection of the Asatru Alliance lacks integrity, then it tells me the Asatru Alliance lacks integrity, and it makes me very, very glad that I never chose to join that organization.

In contrast, the Asatru Community, which I am a part of, immediately took action against those who offered insult to the Lokean group (and, by the way, in case anyone is unclear on this little tidbit, an insult offered to a God’s worshipers is an insult offered to the God being worshiped) in order to uphold the bylaws of the organization.

Let me reiterate – if the article in question had been professional, I wouldn’t be this irate. If there had been references to actual research and a professional presentation, I wouldn’t be completely pissed off. But when there are people writing for Vor Tru who make it a point to point out that they are “real” Heathens instead of “posers like the Facebook Heathens,” I can’t be silent. Actually, I refuse to be silent.

I don’t care what you believe, but I hate those people who are ignorant enough to think that it is okay to elevate themselves because they believe the “right way.” And that’s what it really comes down to, in the end. If you’re going around telling people that they should and shouldn’t worship certain Gods or that they aren’t “real Heathens,” what you are doing is proudly and arrogantly standing up on a podium and saying the equivalent of a, “Nyah nyah nyah nyah nyah, I’m right and you’re wrong, and that makes me the best.” And, to all those people out there doing that, this is me saying fuck off.

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7 comments on “This is How I Rant

  1. Some people are more “pantheist” than “polytheist”, which means they only believe in a set group of gods. As a polytheist who does believe in gods outside of the specific tribe who routinely interact with me, I generally view such people as being as closed minded as a monotheist. But this takes things a little farther, nit-picking from the “pantheon” to say which gods are real and which ones aren’t.

    One thing I wonder, is whether the view in the article you mentioned one that is endorsed by the publication or merely by the author of the article. There is a difference there. A publication can allow an article to be published (merely to have the content) that they don’t necessarily agree with. If that were the case, if their general run of publication didn’t have that sort of view, I might look into a subscription myself. If it is representative of their general view, then I would not.

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    • I know what you are trying to say, but pantheism is it’s own unique view and not selective polytheism. “Panthenoist” would be a better term, even though no such term exists. The publication is issued by the Asatru Alliance. The author of the article in question is one of the big names in the organization, and the article was specifically discussing a workshop that was held in order to prove “once and for all” that Loki was a “fabrication made up by Christians.” I think it is therefore safe to conclude that the majority of people within the organization holds the same type of views, especially since the comment made directed towards “posers like Facebook Heathens” was in a different article. I should have specified that in my original post, but I was pretty angry when I wrote it. Also, the particular article in question was an “overview” of the events of the Althing the organization had held, which is another reason I think it is safe to say that the organization as a whole holds similar viewpoints.

      Like I was trying to say in my post (which may not have come across well), I can handle articles that discuss Loki in a negative light as long as the author actually points to research. I don’t like that there are people who view Loki as a Satanesque type of figure, considering that isn’t how I experience Him, but I can understand where the viewpoint comes from because there is at least some support for that viewpoint within the lore itself. It’s my personal belief that those who don’t understand the importance Loki has within the Norse pantheon can never truly understand Odin or the other Gods who rely on Loki. But the reliance on Loki by the other Gods in the Norse pantheon can also be supported by the lore.

      While I’m not a huge stickler for going by the lore, I’m not one for completely dismissing it either. Going around making claims that Loki doesn’t exist is a huge dismissal of the lore, and it’s disrespectful towards one of the Gods who played a vital role in obtaining the technology the Gods use to defend the nine realms. Without Loki, there is no Mjollnir, no Gungnir, no Sleipnir, etc. The idea that Loki was “made up” when He features so prominently in nearly every story in the lore is completely unsubstantiated. Sorry, I am apparently still a little angry, so this response turned into a mini-rant (100% not directed at you!)

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  2. Son of an eight-legged horse, what jerks. I’ll fully admit to being an atheist before I found out about Loki, but he’s proven his existence to me–I was going to type “beyond all doubt”, but there is, occasionally, still a little doubt, but I think everyone has that. My point is I do fully believe Loki actually does exist, as does every other deity in every other pantheon, whether or not I’ve actually heard of them or follow them (right now I’m only following Norse deities, though). I mean, what am I supposed to think when I’ve received EVERY (specific!) sign I asked for (mostly at the beginning stages, I don’t really ask for signs much anymore) and EVERY time I’ve asked Loki for help, I’ve gotten it in some way (and if he couldn’t help, he directed me to another deity who could)? Am I supposed to just dismiss ALL of that as coincidence (and, really, there are only so many times in a row you can say to yourself “it’s just coincidence” before you start to wonder if something’s really going on)? (Dammit, now I’m starting to rant. This is, of course, at them, not you.)

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    • Yeah, I understand your pain. I really, really do. Of all the Gods I work with, Loki is the most present in my life, which is ironic since He technically isn’t my patron – Odin is. It’s one thing for someone to be all “Loki is the devil,” (because at least those people can rationalize their viewpoint with Baldr’s dragr, even though the logic there is twisted), and another thing entirely for someone to say that Loki doesn’t exist. The former annoys me, but I understand that Loki’s nature makes Him difficult to comprehend for many Heathens. The latter enrages me.

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  3. It pisses me off, too. But I can just see those folks, when their time comes to pass from this plane of existence, being met first by one very real Loki. As to how He “proves His existence” to them at that point, well, that’s up to Him. And we all know how creative He can be. 😉

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