Elves, Faeries, and More...
The Elves and the Shoemaker - Walter Crane
Seeing into the Faerie Realm
The "Otherworlds" are populated by all manner of beings, from tiny flower fairies, to taller-than-human elves, huge dragons, and massive mountain devas. In every culture on Earth, there are persistent tales of Elves, Genies, Gods, Goddesses, Gnomes, Brownies, Leprechauns, Sidhe, Trolls, and many more. There have been so many similar accounts, from so many different parts of the world, that one can hardly doubt the reality of these beings who exist beyond the edges of our ordinary perception.
Why is it then, that some people see these beings, while others have no clue that they exist at all? Perhaps our modern minds have been so well trained to focus on the concrete realities of the physical world, that most of us have lost our intuitive faculties. Or maybe we have become so cut off from nature that the nature spirits feel little connection with us, and therefore remain hidden.
Yet there have always been some people who could see beyond the veils between worlds. Are you one of them? I believe anyone can see these beings, but most people have been trained from early childhood to tune them out and dismiss them as "imaginary."
It is true that imagination plays a part in perceiving anything beyond the obvious physical world, but what an empty and boring world it would be without it! We would have no art, music, theater, play, stories, or even hope for a better future. Our world would hardly be worth living in.
Imagination is the very spark that gives reality its meaning. It's high time that we give imagination its rightful place and allow it to shape our perception of reality quite as much as our rational mind is encouraged to do. In so doing, we open doors to creativity, joy, and worlds beyond our wildest dreams. Elf Ring, by Kate Greenaway
My Faery World
In my personal experience, I have only seen the "little folk" (who are often quite LARGE) when I am very relaxed and operating in an intuitive, right-brain state of mind. Little winged fairies once flew in my bedroom window when I was ill and resting in bed... and no, I wasn't hallucinating. I soon fell asleep and woke up feeling great. I'm sure their visit was a healing one.
Other times I have seen various beings in my peripheral vision (where the mind doesn't filter out the unknown so quickly). When relaxing in nature without any particular intention, I often catch glimpses of eyes in the trees, dragons in the hills, or stone troll faces smiling or frowning at me. But I rarely see them when I actively look for them. They come of their own accord when the rational mind is off its guard.
Of course, it is possible to meet the fae intentionally in meditations, particularly guided meditations that take one into the otherworld realms represented by the Tree of Life. With practice, one can meet elves in the branches of old trees, and faery folk in the underworld passages of tree roots. Caves and springs can lead one to the haunts of the Sidhe, and who knows, you might even find a genie hiding in a bottle!
The image of elves that rings most true to me is the depiction Tolkien offers in his Lord of the Rings trilogy. This dovetails also with the description that Master Guide Kirael offers. Far from the cute little elves of Santa Claus stories and fairy tales, these beings are majestic and powerful faery folk of the trees and woodlands.
You can contact them by lying at the foot of an old tree in a grove away from human foot traffic. Allow your mind to relax and drift up into the branches. Don't be surprised if you see elvish faces smiling at you, and their beautiful homes among the branches. Elves are very friendly to those who love and respect nature, particularly trees, but you may have to earn their trust.
Unlike humans, they never lie or mislead anyone, and they can tell immediately if you are honest and true, or not, because they can see your energy. Speak your truth and they will be your trusted friends.
Oberon, Titania and Puck with Fairies Dancing - William Blake
One of the best known and most mysterious tales of the faery world is The Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Fauns and Fairies, by Robert Kirk (1691), available on line at http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/celt/sce/. This is a first-hand account of Reverend Kirk's personal encounters with the faeries, after which he appears to have disappeared into the faery realm! Fact or fiction? I leave it to you to decide.
The Sidhe (pronounced "Shee")
The Riders of the Sidhe - John Duncan
Traditionally, the faeries ride out on Midsummer's Eve. The image above depicts the Sidhe, the ancient faery race of Ireland who are descended from the Tuatha de Dannan (the goddess Danu), on their Midsummer ride. The Sidhe are a powerful and mysterious race who still dwell in the hollow hills of Ireland. Contact them only if you have an important purpose or question.
These delightful energies are a relatively recent addition to faery lore. Perhaps they were not considered important enough to mention in the ancient texts, because they are not as individuated as the more highly evolved elves and Sidhe. Never the less, they are essential to the flowering and fruiting of all plants.
Invite them into your garden by feeding the birds and planting flowers loved by bees and butterflies. You will be amazed at how much better your garden grows when you intentionally make these little fairies welcome. They also appreciate gifts of glittery objects, feathers, bread, cheese, wine, honey, and chocolate (but make sure you don't leave chocolate where animals can find it, because it can be very toxic to dogs, cats, birds, and other animals).
Everything in existence has a deva, from a tiny ant, to our planet Earth. The deva is the conscious energy form or spirit that enlivens the physical manifestation. In the famous Findhorn garden experiment in Scotland, working with the devas of plants brought an amazing level of growth and abundance to a barren patch of land. Modern Earth healers work with the devas of polluted areas to clear the damage caused by humans.
For more information on how to work with devas, visit
http://www.earthtransitions.com/ It's the real deal.
Gnomes are traditionally connected with the element of Earth and the roots of plants. I have not personally met any, though I have several little gnome figurines amongst my potted plants. Sometimes I sense that they are playfully looking out from the figures and laughing at me. They are friendly to gardeners and farmers who use natural methods of growing, and they seem to be particularly drawn to children.
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