The painting above is titled Loki’s Brood, by Emil Doepler (1855-1922), a German artist, art nouveau illustrator and teacher. The young lady in the center is the Norse goddess, Hel, Loki’s daughter. She lives beneath one of the roots of the Yggdrasil tree, pictured below. The monstrous wolf is Fennir, son of Loki. Fennir is said to have bitten off the hand of the war god Týr, for whom the day Tuesday is named. Appropriately, we pen this piece on a Tuesday. The serpent is Jörmungandr, which means “huge monster.” She’s the World Serpent and middle sibling. Their mother, the giantess “who brings grief,” is Loki’s wife Angrboða, who is seen in the background.
Why this piece? It evolves from a lucid dream I had over a 3-night period last week. A lucid dream is one in which the dreamer remains conscious of the dream and is able to exercise some control over it. Everyone who has lucid dreams will experience them differently, although there are many commonalities, i.e. all are interpreted and informed by the Third Eye. Lucid dreams occur in what is known as liminal space, a threshold or portal between the world of the senses and the world beyond the senses. In Chrysalis Tarot, we refer to realms beyond the threshold as the Otherworld.
Piecing together a lucid dream isn’t as difficult as interpreting a more typical dream. In my case, it usually involves arranging the dream’s storyboards, or salient points i.e. recognizing patterns and connecting dots. No communication from the Otherworld can be repeated verbatim because it is filtered through the expectations and biases of the dreamer’s cultural conditioning. If a young Catholic girl, for example, has a vision of the Great Mother, she likely will interpret it as an apparition of the Virgin Mary. If a Jungian psychologist has the precise same vision, she or he will recognize the archetype as the Cosmic Woman, Shekinah or Divine Feminine. Both are valid interpretations.
Like virgin olive oil, no communication from the Otherworld can be 100% purely comprehended. It is always dirtied by the filter (seer). The best one might hope to attain is 99.9% on the virgin meter, and few prophets ever come anywhere near that mark. If they do, you can bet the prophecy was historicized after the fact.
Another reason or two for this blog in addition to my dream, and in addition to the fact that it’s Tuesday, have to do with the current state of affairs in the world. Also, I watched “The Avengers” last night. I had the dream last week but wondered if there were signs in the film of art imitating dreams. There were, although as mythologist and mystic Caroline Kenner told me, “I try to avoid Loki. I had a bad experience or three with Him. But His wife is lovely, I am close to Angrboða.”
Caroline, who developed the Chrysalis Tarot app for Fool’s Dog, went on to explain that Loki is not a run-of-the-mill trickster god. “I wish I could communicate this to people who think Loki is a sexy Tom Hiddleston. Loki frightens me.”
I read this morning in the Washington Post that women and children were tear gassed yesterday at a border crossing between Greece and Macedonia. These innocents are refugees fleeing Syria and other parts of the war-torn Middle East to seek asylum in northern Europe, home to the Asgard pantheon. Asgard is the realm ruled by Odin (Woden) and his wife Frigg, for whom Wednesday and Friday are named, respectively.
I mentioned these name correspondences because too many of us have neglected or entirely forgotten the Norse gods and goddesses. It is they who I believe are most active in today’s world, for it is they who are tasked to avenge the destruction of the Old Ways, which was done in order to clear a path for the monotheistic dream of humanity’s “Dominion over all the Earth.”
And then there’s Baba Vanga (1911-1996), another dot. Bearing in mind that prophets can only aspire to fully comprehend complex deities like Loki, “the blind Macedonian mystic predicted that Muslims will invade Europe in 2016, and there will be widespread destruction by extremists, which will go on for many years until the continent ceases to exist. She had also predicted that a Great Muslim War will begin in Syria.”
I believe now may be the ideal time to get to know the Norse gods and goddesses beyond simply citing the days of the week. (Sincere apologies to Thor – Thursday.)
How to Master Lucid Dreaming: Your Practical Guide to Unleashing the Power of Lucid Dreaming, (Kindle edition 99-cents for a limited time) by Sean Kelly.
The Love of Destiny: The Sacred and the Profane in Germanic Polytheism, (Kindle edition $5.99) by Dan McCoy.
“We’re all familiar with the pop culture depictions of Norse mythology that are shallow and trite at best, and often downright misleading. They owe far more to puerile fantasies of being a macho superhero than they do to the ways in which the pre-Christian peoples of northern Europe actually thought of themselves and their spirituality.”