Ok, so I’ve been sitting on a post about Loki for a couple of days now. Less than an hour ago I was woken up by a weird sound and I have no idea what the cause was even after inspection. I think I’ll take that as a nudge. Don’t have time to write, you say? Wake up at 3 am!
On the whole Odin and Loki blood oath thing:
While I was going through the Asatru side of things and the topic of the oath was broached there was a resounding derisive chuckle and the topic was ignored. What information I could get out of the kindred I was talking to was that they viewed Loki as the drunken uncle at a family reunion. No one really wanted him there, but hey, he’s family. They did not toast in his honor, and when they toasted Odin there wasn’t a drink poured for Loki too.
I take this view to heart from the other angle. The way things played out between the two was rather final. Odin broke the oath and then Loki was forced to endure his children being slain to make his bindings. When I pour a drink to Loki I do not pour one to Odin, he broke the oath, and I do not honor something that was willfully severed.
If you take a look at their relationship as a whole, it was basically Odin using Loki for his craftiness and the added bonus of deniability. Technically, anything Loki did wasn’t really attached to the Asir or Vanir because he wasn’t one of them, so Loki bending the rules and playing by the old laws was perfectly fine. Say we’ll give a prize to whoever builds a wall in a set amount of time? Oh, crap, they’re going to do it, send Loki in for interference. Odin doesn’t get his hands dirty, but he gets the wall built and doesn’t have to pay.
Now why would Odin willingly break the oath?
I can’t say exactly, but I can hypothesize.
- Loki was the power behind the throne and Odin didn’t like it anymore. How many times is Loki going to save the day before people start to question why it isn’t Odin?
- Loki was there to keep Odin honest. I remember reading that Ceasar had an aide who’s job it was to remind him he was still just a man. Now, we’re dealing with gods here so it was a little different, but in my understanding Loki isn’t so much the Lord of Lies and the one who happens to hold the harsh truth. Hearing the truth, day after day, can be rather hard when everyone else is stroking your ego.
- Odin no longer saw a use for Loki. They were celebrating, it was a time of peace and victory. Why would he need this problem solver when the problems were over?
That’s about all I’ve got. Enjoy, comment if you like, or if you really want, challenge it. Always question everything.