As a Lokean working within a framework of an amalgamation of several practices (Wicca/chaos magick/Heathen-ish magick/chanting/you name it) I suppose I can simply claim to be an Eclectic Lokean Practitioner working closely with a small group of Norse Trad deities. All of that is assuming you include Loki’s family in the Norse Tradition framework, which some do and some don’t, but I firmly do because of Loki’s blood bond with Odin, if for no other reason, which I see as then passed on to His Children (at the very least) though I digress. In working with Loki and His Family my love has grown for Them, and I’ve grown increasingly fond of tending my altar. Daily, I give offerings. What I give varies depending on my mood, Theirs, and my funds, but often includes sacred smoke in the form of incense, candles, beverages, alcohol, and specific foods when the request is made. I do all of this willingly and with a deep joy in my mind and heart. My love for Them, Their love for Me, this is the energy surrounding my altar.
One day recently I didn’t get to my altar in the morning as usual because life decided to get in the way. That evening when I finally stole some time to tend my altar my husband made the peculiar comment that it had seemed “dead” all day. He’s grown used to the blossom of energy overflowing into our home even if he wasn’t aware of exactly what he was sensing.
Tending my altar for Loki puts a fierce bolt of satisfaction in my chest and lights me with part of his Divine Fire.
However, as much as We Both benefit from Our small daily rituals, I still need do ritual for myself as well. In the last year I’ve celebrated Them, Those God/desses I’ve become close to alongside Loki, daily, but haven’t been marking the seasons or doing much work for myself. I’ve started doing ritual for me again, and the difference in my internal balance is phenomenal. Often times I convince myself doing a ritual will take too much time or planning, make it seem like a burden in my mind, but with very little bits of planning I realized it doesn’t have to be that way. After the most recent ritual I’ve done in my home for myself and my family, a small blessing for fall, I felt like I’d spent a day chanting or doing something else deeply restful on a mental level.
Celebration is self care. Take care of yourself and you will be better able to live your life for you and Them.
Loki is constantly asking me to unwind and I’m finally, finally figuring out the pieces to the puzzle.
Much of my blog seems to focus on the never ending conundrum of balancing the spiritual with Mundania. Maybe because I have small children demanding most of my attention during downtime connecting with myself sometimes seems like a monumental effort, when simply tending my altar and connecting to Loki isn’t so much of a problem. Everyone has something pulling at them, demanding they stay stuck in Mundania. Sometimes obligations are good, grounding, and sometimes they are a distraction from our spiritual health. It all depends on which way you tip-too much into the spiritual or the other, into Mundania, and you find yourself unhappy and don’t know why.
Daily ritual, the million small things I do with Them in mind up to and including tending the altar, helps open my mind to the Gods each day. I’ve found I want the daily connection. Seasonal ritual, on the other hand, actually seems to be a blend of grounding in “reality”, since we are marking our physical time, and the spiritual because we are often invoking the Gods or inviting Them into our midst, especially for the Holidays. I plan to set a place for My Sweetest Friend, Loki, at our Harvest Home celebrations (Mabon-Thanksgiving) this year.
There is a reason our ancestors chose to celebrate so much. Maybe it was to relieve the stress of the day to day, but it was to give us a time to Love as well. Ritual is usually a time for love, even if the love is not hearts and flowers. I cannot think of a single type of ritual with the Gods that would not involve our love for the Gods, Theirs for us, or Both. Even something historically harsh like asking the Gods for victory in battle would require the love of the God being petitioned for the petitioner because you don’t usually smite enemies for people you don’t like. Even the simple act of making offerings to the land spirits where my home is situated is still love from me because I don’t offer for any other reason.
Ritual is self love.
Self Love: Taking care of you because you love your own insurmountable spirit and would like to see it happy. Can include:
Mundane~ eating healthfully, shower, shave, tooth brushing, exercise, good friends, good wine, great entertainment, fantastic sex, loving Others and allowing Them to Love You.
Spiritual~ psychic cleansing, ritual, exploration of the senses, adoring Our Beloveds, respecting Our Own Power and energies, acknowledging the inscrutably singular essence of the Self, allowing Ourselves to be afraid but use the fear as a tool, working with our Beloveds, examining Our life lessons with an open mind, being playful and not taking every aspect of the spiritual seriously because play is special and rewarding.