(Photo by Selma Komisky)
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WARNING: THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS SPOILERS
Duality: Lessons Learned From Loki’s Two Natures
By Selma Komisky
“No one bad is ever truly bad and no one good is ever truly good.”
The latest Marvel mini-TV series on Disney Plus simply titled, “Loki,” is currently streaming. Opening with the playful and cunning, Loki Laufeyson, played by Tom Hiddleson (AKA the God of Mischief), fans find themselves reunited with the beloved villain. The last time we have seen Loki in the “Avengers Endgame,” he teleports himself after intercepting the Tesseract and ultimately, vanishes. This is where the series picks up. Only now, we know where Loki disappeared to. However, some may also get confused as to why Loki is alive after seeing him in the clutches of Thanos in “Infinity War.” Spoiler alert, he is in another timeline.
Loki’s character in the Marvel films oozes with charm. And despite being a bad boy, he is very likable and interesting – more so than Thor in my opinion. In the films, Loki enters the scene with a brazen assurance, dressed in his Asgardian armor, with long black lochs, and a piercing stare. He articulates words and draws people in with his smooth, hypnotic accent, and dashing mischievous smile. Although he parades his smug attitude, in reality, he is quite complex and broken. That’s why I think we all can relate to him in some way. We, can almost sense his pain and guilt.
Moving forward in the Disney Plus series, we discover Loki at the TVA, (Time Variance Authority) where he continues to evolve. In this series, we see a more subdued, human side of Loki, wearing a tan prisoner jumpsuit or a professional dress shirt and tie working alongside Mobius (Owen Wilson). This is quite contrary to his other persona that wreaks havoc across the realms.
Also, in this series, Loki is seen experiencing all the feels. He’s been found guilty and interrogated by Agent Mobius with endless questions that get under his skin. Thereafter, he surfs through a reel of secret files that remind him of all his evil deeds and destructive past. Thus, these experiences mentally open the door to overwhelming guilt, self-condemnation, frustration, regret, anger, shame, and depression.
Don’t get me wrong, Loki continues to be a manipulating, suave trickster and looks for every opportunity to use his magic to possess power. However, we interestingly also discover that Loki has a dual nature.
Dualism derives from the Latin word duo, meaning two. In turn, Loki isn’t the only one that has duality, so does every Christian. Every believer experiences the truth and the reality of the dual nature within. So, what exactly does that mean? Here’s a quick review what the Bible says on the subject.
Man was created in God’s image. Genesis 1:27 and Genesis 1:31 say that God saw all that He had created, and it was good. In Genesis 3, we can read about the fall of man and the sin that entered into the world. The Bible says in Romans 3:23, “For all have sinned and fallen short…”. 1 John 1:8 declares, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”
In Loki is illustrated the reality of this struggle between good and evil. Yet, what does the duality of good versus evil mean?
First of all, the Bible describes the unregenerate man as “The man without the Spirit.” This describes the non-believer. Every unbeliever has one nature only. Such as with this crafty villain. He thinks he is above being accountable to a higher power as he thinks he himself is a god. However, the spiritual truth is found in Romans 14:12 in the New Living Translation which says, “yes, each of us will give a personal account to God.” In 1 Corinthians 2:14 in the New Life Version, it says, “But the person who is not a Christian does not understand these words from the Holy Spirit. He thinks they are foolish. He cannot understand them because he does not have the Holy Spirit to help him understand.”
Secondly, when a person believes and is born again, he receives a completely new nature. It is important to note that as long as we reside in our bodies, we shall never lose the old self. There will always be two natures within us – the old self (carnal) and the new self (spirit). These two natures war within every believer. They are complete opposites of one another. One is good and the other is bad. So, just because we are Christians, we are not exempt from struggling with sin.
In closing, it is important to know that in light of all this truth, we are all still redeemable and come from all walks of life (both good and bad). Likewise, this character is a good example of this inner reality. This is what we see when he struggles with being good one minute (such as helping his brother Thor) then, betraying him in the next minute. All in all, we see Loki’s evil schemes. But, thank you mini-series for shedding light on Loki’s positive desires to change and take risks! These include becoming friends with Mobius and also becoming vulnerable enough to allow himself to experience a love interest. Way to go, Loki!
Overall, a spiritual takeaway from this villain that we can hold onto is this; God always gives us hope as well as the victory and the ability to transform. And despite our struggles, we, like Loki can all have glorious purpose.