faeries

Interview with Author Ceri Norman: Faeries, Stones & Hope

November, 2018

Ceri Norman: Faeries, Stones & Hope

 

 

I was really drawn to Ceri Norman’s book on stones and their connection to magical beings, and you can read my review here. Ceri is a prolific writer on a number of fascinating subjects and makes beautiful nature inspired jewellery which she sells on Etsy. Despite being so busy, Ceri was kind enough to give up some of her time to speak to us here at PaganPagesOrg! Here’s what she had to say when I caught up with her this month.

 

Mabh Savage (MS): When did you first start writing and what drew you to it?

Ceri Norman (CN): I honestly cannot recall a time before I was writing, so I guess it started out with little articles, stories and bizarre recipes (for potions and lotions) as a small child and just carried on from there. I have always loved the magic and power of the written word, and the beauty of the many different forms of writing, that allow us communicate our ideas with each other.

MS: What inspires you most as a writer?

CN: Myths, legends and folklore, so I owe a great deal to the old stories and to those who created or recorded them.

MS: Do you prefer writing fiction or non-fiction, and why?

CN: Non-fiction. I am an obsessive writer; once I start writing I feel a strong compulsion to get the ‘section’ or ‘piece’ finished as soon as possible. With a non-fiction this can usually mean the article or chapter and I can take a breather but with a full fiction novel it means the entire book, which takes me months to write, and that can drive me (and those around me) a little nuts.

MS: What made you decide to write Faerie Stones?

CN: I have always loved stones and Faeries and there are many links between the two, yet wherever I looked there was not a coherent book or article that brought the wealth of information in so many different sources together for the readers. Once I realised that I kept feeling a strong sense from the Faeries to fill that gap for readers and to create something that would enable people to bring crystals into their work with Faerie and to bring Faerie into their work with crystals.

MS: Who would you say the book is aimed at?

CN: Anyone who is interested in crystals, Faeries, folklore, myths and legends.

MS: Do you have a favourite stone or one that resonates strongly with you?

CN: Though not technically a stone, I would have to say Amber. I love its cleansing, bright energy, which is an antidote to my sombre, serious personality. It has so much folklore, especially regarding its healing properties, attached to it and has been so beloved by so many cultures all over the planet. For resin to become Amber it has to endure, to endure being buried/submerged, to endure pressure and to endure the passage of time. I find that a valuable and inspiring lesson in life, that Amber can still be so beautiful, positive and magical even after all that it has been forced to endure.

MS: When did you begin working with stones and their energies and associated beings?

CN: Again, I cannot recall a time before I worked with stones. When I was a child my mother had a beautiful piece of Blue John from Derbyshire on display in our home and I would regularly sneak it out of the display case to work with it and learn from it. I began collecting stones and crystals very early on, from semi-precious stones right down to interesting stones from the garden, which all had their own energies and personalities.

MS: What was the most challenging thing about the writing process for this book?

CN: Some of the research proved challenging. Many modern books on crystals say ‘x is good for y’ and that has become accepted fact regurgitated over and over again, yet I wanted to go deeper and to older sources to really look at the older as well as more modern Faerielore and Folklore associated with stones. Sometimes finding those older sources and information proved a real challenge, but it was extremely rewarding.

MS: And what did you enjoy the most?

CN: It was utterly enchanting to work with the Faeries and the stones to create the book for readers. That magic will stay with me for a very long time.

MS: The book covers 26 fascinating stones plus a wide variety of quartz formations. Would you expand upon this at any point and perhaps do a second volume?

CN: If there was sufficient interest from readers, there is plenty of room to do another volume. There are many more stones out there to write about, from the very precious gems such as diamonds and rubies right down to the sandstone and slate that make up Mother Earth’s wonderful landscapes.

MS: What’s your top tip for anyone just starting to appreciate the magic of stones or crystals?

CN: Enjoy it and do what you need to in order to keep the magic alive! Celebrate that wonderful sense of awe, inspiration and enchantment that comes from working with Faeries and stones. Never let anyone else deter you or disenchant you. Remember it is a two-way relationship. Give back to the stones and Faeries to really forge a strong working relationship, so keep your stones happy by looking after them and do those little chores that the Faeries ask you to do for them.

MS: What other writing projects do you have on the horizon? Are you working on any more books?

CN: I am currently focusing more on articles for several publications, including FAE Magazine and am attempting (intermittently) to blog
(https://wysewitchuk.blogspot.com/) and to do the odd little video for YouTube.

MS: How do you relax or take a break from writing and researching?

CN: I love to get out into nature, to take walks along the beach or in the woods to remind myself that I am a part of nature and to reconnect with the energies of Mother Nature and the Faeries. I am also a big fan of films and TV shows that are based in or inspired by folklore, mythology and all things supernatural from around the world.

MS: Finally, as we move into winter, what’s your biggest hope for the year ahead?

CN: My perennial hope is that humankind (especially our political leaders) can finally please realise that all beings – human and otherwise – are equal and special inhabitants of this lovely planet and that as this is the only planet that we have we need to look after it and each other a whole lot better!

 

Well said Ceri, I think we can all agree with that final sentiment! Ceri’s books are available on Amazon and at all good book stores. Follow her channel on YouTube, visit her blog and view her beautiful jewellery on Etsy.

 

Faerie Stones: An Exploration of the Folklore and Faeries Associated with Stones & Crystals on Amazon

 

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About the Author:

Mabh Savage is a Pagan author, poet and musician, as well as a freelance journalist.

She is the author of A Modern Celt: Seeking the Ancestors and Pagan Portals – Celtic Witchcraft: Modern Witchcraft Meets Celtic Ways.

 

A Modern Celt: Seeking the Ancestors on Amazon

 

Pagan Portals – Celtic Witchcraft: Modern Witchcraft Meets Celtic Ways on Amazon

Book Review – Ceri Norman: Faerie Stones, An Explanation of the Folklore and Faeries Associated with Stones and Crystals

October, 2018

Book Review

Ceri Norman: Faerie Stones, An Explanation of the Folklore and Faeries Associated with Stones and Crystals

Ceri is a prolific writer, with several books under her belt and numerous magazine articles. This book, Faerie Stones, was mentioned by a friend and I was intrigued by the title and the concept. Faerie Stones takes a wide variety of stones and crystals and gives a great deal of information about each one, including but not limited to the deities and beings or spirits associated with them.

It’s worth noting that in this book the term faerie is used to cover a wide variety of beings including deities and spirits. I understand why Ceri has done this, as it makes it simpler to use one term to cover all the otherworldly beings. Normally I would be quite particular about the use of the term fairy or faerie due to my Celtic heritage, in which the fairies are less than friendly much of the time! However, in this volume Ceri makes it clear who and what she is talking about each time she mentions a specific deity or spirit, so it remains very clear what type of being is being discussed.

I love how each stone is brought to life and given a very organic feel. It’s as if each stone is a living part of the world, which greatly appeals to my druidic leanings. I also loved all the references to different types of ‘little people’, a fascination for me for many years.

Ceri covers stones from the tiniest crystal to huge standing circles, and her introduction and the first part of the book really show her enthusiasm and passion for her subject. Just reading her descriptions of standing stones and other places of power made me want to go out into the world and find these places for myself. You can’t help but be pulled along by the energy within the book, joyful and full of experience and knowledge.

The encyclopaedia section covers 26 stones and their correspondences and uses, and particularly the beings that are drawn to them. There’s a separate section on the different formations of quartz which I found particularly enlightening as it had not occurred to me that the different formations of quartz could have different effects on the world. Ceri also touches on the chakras and stones associated with them, auras, meditating with stones and crystals and a chakra balancing meditation with Morgan Le Fay. I appreciated very much that Ceri notes that beings such as Morgan have both light and dark sides.

This is one of those great books that can be read from cover to cover for sheer joy, and also kept as a point of reference. It will certainly be near the top of my kindle library for the foreseeable future.

Faerie Stones: An Exploration of the Folklore and Faeries Associated with Stones & Crystals

***

About the Author:

Mabh Savage is a Pagan author, poet and musician, as well as a freelance journalist.

She is the author of A Modern Celt: Seeking the Ancestors and Pagan Portals – Celtic Witchcraft: Modern Witchcraft Meets Celtic Ways.

A Modern Celt: Seeking the Ancestors

Pagan Portals – Celtic Witchcraft: Modern Witchcraft Meets Celtic Ways

Bringing Up the Next Generation of Witches

July, 2018

As a child, I led such a weird childhood. I was known for seeing things that weren’t there and knowing things before they happened. I felt like a sin in my parent’s household as I was being raised in a Christian church. As I aged, I found solace in Wicca. Life and the things going on finally made sense.

When I was pregnant with my son (Little Bear), I made the decision to raise him in a Pagan household and support him, no matter what religion he decided on. Little Bear is now 4 years old and this has proven to be the best decision. He has shown signs of experiencing the same things that I went through as a child. Little Bear is a natural born healer, empath, and animal lover. He has to sleep with a light on because the dark brings weird things with it. While I cannot confirm it yet, it sounds like he is seeing people that have crossed over.

One of the major things that Little Bear and I have started doing is celebrating the Sabbats. Any reason to celebrate, right?

June 21st was Litha or the Summer Solstice. This is the longest day of the year and Little Bear and I took full advantage.

Every Sabbat, we discuss the Wheel of the Year. This helps remind us where we are on the Wheel and where we are headed. Because this follows the seasons, it is easy for Little Bear to understand. We discussed how Litha falls in the summer and some of our favorite summer activities. Little Bear loves grilling out, riding his bike and playing in the water.

The day started before sunrise. I poured out orange juice and we headed to the porch to watch the sun. It was a warm, quiet morning. I explained to Little Bear that we should be grateful for everything we have. I asked him what he was happy to have. “My bike, my mom, my bed, my dog” and the list went on and on. I smiled at his innocence and gave my own thanks internally. As the sun rose above the horizon, the world started coming alive. The birds started singing, the neighborhood stray cat came to visit, and we watched a herd of deer in the field across the street. We ended the morning with a barefoot walk around the property. We stopped at the outside altar and poured orange juice into the fairy dish as an offering. This is one of Little Bear’s favorite parts. We actually had to make a fairy altar closer to the house so he could easily access it without supervision.

After work, I had Little Bear help with dinner. We were preparing Grilled Chicken Salads. As we pulled the vegetables out, we talked about each one. Where they came from, how they grow, what the health benefits are, and what kind of super powers the vegetables might give us (This was Little Bears idea). I feel that knowing the health benefits of each vegetable will help Little Bear develop his Kitchen Witch side as he grows.

While making the salad, I noticed Little Bear had made a pile that contained a piece of each vegetable that went into the salad. It was his offering for the fairies.

We ended the night with a bonfire and watching the sunset. The longest day of the year had officially ended.

It may seem like I do a LOT of talking with Little Bear and I do. Little Bear is at the age where he is like a little sponge. He is asking tons of questions and curious about everything.

The next Sabbat is Lammas and I’m excited about it. This has always been a personal favorite because I love to bake bread. Lammas is the start of the harvest season. So breads, wheats, grains, grapes, apples, corn and wild berries are great foods. While I don’t have recipes pulled together yet, corn dollies and bonfires are part of the ritual for sure!

Some ideas to do with children are:

-Corn Dollies

-Magical Picnics (Make sure to leave an offering!)

-Collect berries for jams or jellies

-Time to harvest the garden

-Create a Witches Bottle (smaller children will need help with this since you will be working with sharp objects!)

-Time to redecorate the altar

-Visit an apple orchard (bring some home if the apples are ready!)

-Collect rain or storm water

-Bake bread, cakes, or muffins (cookies could be substituted so the little ones can decorate)

The biggest thing to remember, “It’s not about the action you are doing but the intent you are putting into it”.

What are some fun ways you are celebrating the Sabbats with your child/ren?

Blessed Be!

Finding the Pagan Way

June, 2016

Finding

 

Elves, Pixies, Leprechauns and Faeries
How many readers truly believe in their existence?
Be honest with yourself. Have you ever seen one? Felt one around you? – Heard one? – Spoken to them and had you query or request answered?.
I have. I do not believe in the Faeries. – I am forced to accept their existence because of their interaction and influence on my life in this past 8 years.
I have been to many “Pagan” rituals and events. Some, – such as my Hand-Fasting ceremony, were so powerful that even family and friends were aware of the spiritual energies which were present.
My wife, Tina is a powerful medium and healer, who follows a shamanistic path.
I have witnessed many demonstrations which proved the existence of spirit and the continuation of life beyond that which we call death. Since childhood, I have been privileged to see the power of the Tarot in action and I no longer have the slightest doubt of the accuracy of my readings, – even when, sometimes, it takes many months for a client to receive verification of the advice/information given through me.

I am not in the least bit gullible. As a member of the “Society for Psychic and Spiritual Studies” I spent a lot of time in trying to ‘debunk’ mediums. I did not even accept Tina’s obvious talents very quickly or easily. However, when a spirit guide knocks the Tarot cards from your hands, or forces you to give a message in a supermarket, then you have to begin to accept the existence of the Supernatural in your life.
These past eight years have been an incredible journey for me, and Paganism has allowed me to meet and greet with many spiritual people who share my joy in the unknown,- despite some quite stark differences in our beliefs and outlooks.

It has been a journey that teased and puzzled me. It has challenged every presumption I ever had and forced me to change in many ways. It started with a simple prayer about 9 years ago.
The interesting thing about this was that I prayed to the Goddess, which I believe led to the writing of my poetry under her guidance. Then I was re-introduced to the Fae(ries) and my life spun into over-drive.
The Fae shattered many of the limiting factors in my life. I had much sorrow and grief holding me back. They came back into my life and awareness when I went to a drumming workshop which was being held by a local druid at Cabourne Parva in Caistor, Lincolnshire. On the same day, I was re-introduced to shamanism, mediumship and the faeries. The workshop was simply about drumming, but during that day, I met one of Tina’s guides, Lucy and I watched in fascination as she skipped about and played in the barn where we were working. I did not know who she was. Indeed, it was almost a year before I had confirmation of her name from a medium/reader at the Pagan pride festival. This was later confirmed by quite a few other mediums.

This was the day I was given the gift of laughter. I heard the Fae speaking to me. Well, – it was only one word, but as clear as a bell. “Laughter” For about six weeks, everything that happened to me just led to tears of laughter. All my anger and grief at the passing of my late wife, finally began the slow process of healing and dissolving. I had lived in a bubble of contentment for many years, until the universe has torn it all away from me to prepare me for a new life, and the work which I needed to do. Finally, my prayer was being answered…

Babes in the Wood

We never realised that we were merely babes lost in the woods;
Playing hide and seek, – while silently the world moved on.
We wished and dreamed, that always, was a faithful world;
But while we dreamed our dreams, forever slipped away
And I woke up to find my world was gone.

I love another now, but that will never change my love for you.
She healed my heart and brought back from summer’s open door.
I learned to live somehow, and carried on; – as lovers sometimes do.
And now we live a life that I had never dreamed of, when we wandered in the woods,
And I can never change back to that person, whom I was before.

Springtime aches, – where once it brought a joyfulness to every step.
And yet there is gratitude within my heart for all of Spirits gifts.
I know that you are watching over me; – I know that you still care.
I looked into your eyes the other week, and saw the love still there.
Although they graced another’s face, my heart still knew that it was truly you.

I want to tell you all about the love whom I have found,
But, I guess you know already, as you often hang around.
She has the bluest, deepest eyes that I have ever seen.
She’s pretty as a picture, – with the kindest heart that there has ever been.
Without her love and strength, – I do not know how life could possibly have been.

I’ll say goodbye, – although I know that you are never very far away.
I listened carefully to every word you said last week, – I promise I will cherish every day.
I know that life is much too short to waste in misery and in despair,
And I will try to wake up every day and look at life for all the blessings there.
I will go and live my life and leave regret behind,
But please forgive me if, I sometimes shed a tear,
When life’s lost blessings slip into my mind.

Patrick W Kavanagh
13/03/2016
It was a hard journey, but, both the Fae, and my lovely Tina, have guided and protected me on every step of the way. I do not know how much longer my journey will last, But I am determined to keep on with my development and writing. We are here for a purpose. I believe that this purpose is to help and heal each other, as we evolve into the divine beings which we truly are. For me, – my relationship with the faeries has been a very important part of the journey so far, as has my Goddess and my Muse.


Angels of the Forest

Angels of the forest and the fields,

Tiny wings that glow and shimmer underneath the moon.

Stay a little while and share your wisdom and your joy.

I beg you, please don’t fly away so soon.

For I have dreamed of meeting you again, since I was just a boy.

I have spent a lifetime searching underneath the star filled skies.

Hoping that I’d live to see you once again.

Just the very sight of you brings tears to these old eyes.

Please don’t go away and leave me all alone.

Ever since I saw you as a child, this world has never felt like home.

Would that I could fly away with you.

Oh what gladness, just to see the land of Fae once more.

If you would only let me go with you and stay a little while

I would happily forsake all that I have, and travel with you, to that other shore.

Then, when they find me cold and still, my parting speech will simply be a smile.

Patrick W Kavanagh

10/04/2014

SpellCrafting: Spells & Rituals

May, 2016

Welcoming the Fae

spellcrafting

Merry meet.

Those in some traditions celebrate the magical link between the Fae and humans. For many, Beltane is one of the times of year when the veil between their world and ours is the thinnest.

The Fae are faery folk, or nature spirits, thought to be an ancient race that have existed alongside humans for thousands of years. They tend to be shy and keep to themselves. It is polite not to intrude.

Its said the Fae will appear under a full moon in a grove if it is populated with oak, ash and hawthorn. Celtic legend associates the Fae with caverns and springs, making those magical places. I have sensed them in the center of a stand of lilacs and in undisturbed sections of old overgrown gardens.

Here are a few suggestions for ways you might welcome the Fae this Beltane:

  • Arrange a circle of stones in an unused area of your property. You might also try acorns.

  • Place a small wooden table and chairs in your garden, and allow vines such as morning glory and ivy to wrap themselves around and over them.

  • Construct small houses or grottos made of stones where they will remain hidden under bushes, in hollow tree trunks (especially oak), where mushrooms grow or in other secret places.

  • Hang tiny bells or wind chimes from tree branches; include a gazing globe or a garden statue. Avoid objects made of iron or steel.

  • While each flower has its own fairy that cares for it, I believe some plants attract other nature spirits as well, including bluebells, cowslip, lily of the valley, hollyhocks, foxglove, lavender, cosmos, roses, daisies, pansies, violets, honeysuckle, thyme and others. Plant some in your garden or near your door to encourage the Fae to draw near.

  • Consider adding a water source such as a birdbath.

Treat the space as a sanctuary for the Fae; refrain from disturbing it. While weeds should not be allowed to take over, an unkempt patch of indigenous wildflowers, however small, is fine.

A short ritual to formally invite them could include casting a circle around the area and dedicate that space to their use.

Work to earn their trust.

Common offerings are food and tiny treasures. Consider leaving gifts of cream, honey, bread with or without butter, wine and anything that sparkles.

A faery altar can also be established indoors, incorporating plants and fresh flowers, items that shine or sparkle such as crystals and coins.

Know that fairies are not all glitter and giggles. Yes, they are playful, but they are also powerful. They can easily be offended and are not to be trifled with. They wont stay where theyre not wanted. The Fae deserve respect. They can be mischief and do something such as hide your keys, but they can also help you find lost items, such as the keys you misplaced.

If you choose to welcome them into your home, you might try a little door. I have one in my living room and one in my bedroom closet.

Merry part.

And merry meet again.

Finding Avalon

May, 2016

Un-Seelie’s Playground

 

Finding

Photo by Vivienne Moss

The beauty of Faery and Avalon can be found in the most unlikely of places. What one may find disrespectful and horrid, another will find unexpected charm. When I discover places like the picture above, I always wonder what kind of Fae lives there. I imagine some of the Un-Seelie Court inhabit this wild habitat. Rebels and misfits will feel right at home here. Those who don’t fit in with typical society will find the uncanny nature of this place welcoming.

The Un-Seelie are those who make their own rules and break the ones they see as being ridiculously restricting. They are not all together bad, and most definitely not evil (in my interactions with them anyway), they just do what needs to be done to survive and thrive in the Seen and Unseen realms. The Un-Seelie are very protective of the lands they inhabit and fiercely combat those who do not respect their ways.

 

finding2

Photo by Vivienne Moss

The Un-Seelie, or Dark Fae, have been known to take on the form of dragons, gargoyles, and many other dreadful creatures. The photo above shows the Spirit of the Place fiercely guarding the land through a tree. Though the concrete fixture is covered in graffiti, I feel this is the way the Fae have “tagged” this patch of land as theirs. I can imagine the fun and mayhem the Dark Fae and rebel humans (children and young adults no doubt) have here. The chance to be free from the confinements of civilization, even for just a moment, in this untamed land must be delightfully uplifting for some. I know I enjoy the rare moments of freedom while out in nature, even when I stumble upon a place like this. I can appreciate the beauty of the radical artwork being displayed and can feel the intoxicating nature of the Un-Seelie as they roam about.

During this journey to discover Avalon, I have found many gateways and entrances to Faery. I love how some lead to the darker Shadow-Lands and others lead to the peaceful lands of Avalon. The adventure is spellbinding and eye-opening, and I hope it continues to surprise me. In the Finding of Avalon I am learning to find myself and the freedom to discover the hidden lands of Faery, both Seelie and Un-Seelie.

May I continue to be inspired by the raw beauty of nature and the unending gifts of Avalon and Faery, and may I learn to embrace my Fae-ness and relish the freedom of self-expression.

Finding the Pagan Way

November, 2015

We can not talk about paganism with mentioning Halloween at some stage. It is probably the most celebrated festival in the pagan calendar. It is certainly the most fun. Because of early attempts by Christian missionaries to absorb the festivals of the people they converted, this ancient Celtic feast is celebrated by many cultures around the world. Behind the masquerade and the carnival atmosphere, it is a time to work on our acceptance of the important role which death plays in the cycle of life. We prepare for winter’s barrenness and light the ritual bonfires to warm and protect us throughout the winter.

Even as a child, I can remember Halloween as being my favourite time of the year.

We would wander the neighbourhood in masks and costumes, knocking on doors with the call of “ Trick or Treat”, then sit around and tell ghost stories whist gorging ourselves on the fruit, nuts and sweets we collected. Somehow, in Dublin, it became confused with Guy Falkes night, which is traditionally celebrated on the 5th of November in the United Kingdom. So, often our “trick-or-treaters” would bring a pram around with them,- in which a dummy was arranged. Later that night it would be put on the bonfire. Sometimes a child would dress up in baggy clothes and a bonnet and be carried around instead. The childish fascination with all things ghoulish, was probably the inspiration for the poem that follows.

All Hallow’s Eve

Who is it hides behind the mask, each year at Halloween?

That special night when the ghouls and fiends can walk the night unseen.

Safe behind our festive costumes, tusks and tails and horns are safely hid.

While our imps are scouring every bin, and rattling all the lids.

Oh what fun to catch a drunken reveller,

Then tied and gagged, we stuff him in our carts and prams.

We shout, “A penny for the guy!”, and laugh and laugh until we cry

Then wandering door to door, we carefully conceal our furred or scaly arms.

Ah!, the warm and living smells as doors are opened and we peer inside.

Oh what fun to step inside invited, with no need to sneak or hide.

Entranced by beating hearts, and rich red blood that flows in soft white veins.

Oh! Sweet Halloween, another year must pass before you come again.

Patrick W Kavanagh 30/10/2014

Picture by: Boy So Blue Graphic s and photography.

I believe the most ancient association with Halloween or Samhain, is the thinning of the veil between the living and the dead. It is a night of divination and necromancy. It seems quite likely that mankind’s early cultures placed huge value on contacting those who had passed on, for wisdom and guidance. Those who had recently lost loved ones would be likely to try to contact them on this night, above all others. It was also widely believed that the dead could come back unbidden on this night and many people used spells and talismans to protect themselves from this eventuality. There are many folk tales based around the reappearance of the deceased on this night.

way

 

All Hallows Eve

The scratching on the kitchen door, the tapping on the window pane,
The sound of scuffling in the yard, The footsteps running down the lane,
It must be children at their pranks, you close your book and smile and shake your head,
It’s almost midnight , time to snuff the candle out and rest your weary head.

The creaking of the wooden stairs is almost deafening as you slowly climb,
You make a promise to repair them for the thousandth time,
But yet another of your many idle, ill-used days has passed,
This job could stay undone, for all you know, this night may be your very last.

The crumpled sheets feel cold and damp, the ancient mattress squeals and groans,
Its rusty springs can barely take the weight of your old creaky bones,
The grimy fireplace long unlit, A dusty mirror that reflects the gloom,
The little cobwebbed window scarcely lets, the light in from the moon.

No bed-time prayers, for prayers have long ceased to mumble from your lips,
Too many losses, to which, a broken heart could never get to grips,
Just one long sigh, perhaps a silent wish to die, you close your weary eyes,
And through the cracked and dusty window, the moon looks down in pity from the skies.

And did you sleep, and dream what happened next, the mortal world will never know,
You saw the spectre of your long lost love in shining robes as white as snow,
She takes your hand and leads you to a place with sunlit trees and flowers in bloom,
Your cast-off shell is left behind , a smiling face amongst the gloom.

Patrick W Kavanagh
04/10/12

The faeries are also associated with the spirits of the dead, so Samhain was also an excellent time to try to contact them, or perhaps even catch one and ransom them for wishes or faery gold. Usually these attempts ended badly, as the faeries are cunning and powerful beings with little patience for any mischief that is not of their own making. So if you wish to contact the Gentry on Halloween,- I would advise caution and politeness.

The King of the Faeries.

Sprite of foot and keen of eye,
With sombre beauty, I can scarce describe,
He never told the truth , but never really lied,
The music of his voice brought tears of longing to my eyes.

The labyrinth of his mind touched,mine and made me weep,
for all the wishes that my long lost childhood could not keep.
I stood amazed, entranced, but careful to maintain a steady glance,
My wishes were within my grasp, and yet, single blink might spoil my chance.

He bowed so low, he swept the ground,
his sparkling laughter echoed all around,
With promise of servitude, his smiling eyes belied,
he granted me my wishes with a gleaming, imp like look within his eyes.

A moments pause, I must remember karmic laws and wish with all my wiles.
“I wish for Health”.. and once again he gave that dreadful smile.
“Granted!, You shall die as healthy as you are today,-
Now two more wishes, and I shall be on my way!”

I shuddered as the icy chill ran down my spine, and silently I wished we had not met.
But still I had a chance to prosper here, for had I not still got two wishes left.
“I wish myself a long and happy life!”, again that awful smile that turned my heart to stone,
“ One hundred years I add unto your span, and you shall live it happily, though you may live it hungry and alone”.

I sighed, I cast my eyes down to the ground,- I knew I had but once last wish to turn my fate around.
“I wish, my Lord, that I had not been so bold, to try to draw upon your power,
I wish, my Lord, that I had not belaboured you at this late hour”.
“ I wish ,My lord, to leave you and this sacred place as it was found”.

He smiled again with warmth, My heart began to fill with joy.
“You had three wishes, but you added more and set me free,
Your kindly act has filled my ancient heart,once more, with childish glee.
I wish you well my friend, I wish you wealth and health and joy”,
And, as he faded back into the mist, he waved a last goodbye.

Patrick W Kavanagh
22/06/2013.

by Bill Oliver boysoblue.com

way2

Finding the Pagan Way

October, 2015

Many people are under the impression that faeries are largely a Victorian invention, but as most people with even a passing interest in them will tell you,- earth spirits have been encountered since the dawn of mankind. They are mentioned by various names in most, if not all, cultures. The faeries are a large part of my life, and are constant,- though usually invisible, companions. Yet I would not describe myself as a member of the “Faery Faith”

I dislike the term “Faery faith”,- for me it is not a matter of faith but of personal experience. For myself, and many others the existence of faeries is not a matter for dispute. We know they exist and we are not in the slightest bit concerned that some people might think that we are delusional. I have seen and experienced them in several forms. They are not necessarily the tiny winged creatures depicted in the “Cottingly Fairy” photographs,- although I have seen them in this form too! They are powerful earth spirits and often associated with the dead and with the ancestors. They are often helpful,- but also capricious. I have learned this to my cost,- and only ask for their help in the direst of needs. The results can be very unpredictable! These days I feel the needs to include such Proviso’s as: “…and without setting anyone’s trousers on fire” etc… etc…

A Trip to Richmond Park

I am sure my chaperone was sitting on a bench, when I last looked around.

She is such a troubled, worried soul and tires so easily from all her ague.

Her little book of poetry was nestled in her lap, and she was sleeping safe and sound.

Her childhood spent in India has left her rather poorly, and her mind’s a little vague.

A cousin of my mothers from the Dorset family line, I think they said.

Whose father went to India to manage a plantation or some such.

It’s whispered that the poor man got a fever and became a little bit unsettled in the head.

They had to bring him home and send his younger brother out to oversee, instead.

Neither, in the distance, can I see the coach and four that brought us here.

It’s sleek black panels and the burly servants, who assured a sense of safety and ease.

It seemed a lovely morning for a drive out to the park, to have a picnic and to see the deer.

But now I’m feeling very much alone, and everything around me seems so queer.

Tiny child-like figures seem to flit around. I see them from the corners of my eyes.

I sit and I pretend to read my book, for surely, when I next look up,- the park will be just as it was before.

But now I hear them singing,- all their tiny voices ringing out like pretty silver bells.

“Come play with us, sweet maiden. Come and dance with us around our faerie dell”.

Are they faeries?,- surely not! Perhaps the sunshine on my head has shone a little hot?

But peeking shyly round my book, I see, a pretty bunch of tiny creatures peering back at me!

Rainbow wings like oriental butterflies and cheeky faces with such marble skin and charming eyes.

They seemed to offer such delightful company, my feet began to dance!,- to my surprise.

Round and round we twirl until my head gets in a spin, and every time I try to stop my feet begin again.

I can no longer feel the ground, I’m spinning in the air. The fun has stopped and now I start to feel a little fear.

Opening my purse,- I throw my rosary upon the ground. The songs and laughter fade away like morning dew.

In the distance I can hear dreadful, moaning sound. I open up my eyes to find myself alone and lying on a faery mound.

Patrick W Kavanagh 26/03 2015

PaganWay

by Bill Oliver { boysoblue.com }

 

I have seen them in their deeper, and darker aspects and I fully understand the reluctance of previous generations to disturb faery forts and burial mounds. To me, they will always the Tuatha De Danaan,- The clan of the Goddess Danu. They were a powerful ancient Irish race with great magical skills. They were defeated in battle by the Milesians, and the great bard, Amergin White Knee, allotted to them, all of the island that was underneath the earth. As the centuries passed and their fame diminished they almost shrank into oblivion. They stayed close to their underground realms and only came up on certain occasions and on feast days. Even fifty years ago, there were many in the west of Ireland who have seen the Gentry as they are called.. but few have the openness of mind that would allow them to see the little people these days.

Do You Remember

Do you remember when, so long ago, we felt the flowers grow?

We watched them all awaken underneath the sunlit snow.

Snowdrops and daffodils, and violas of purple hue,

Spring would quickly follow with a host of things to do.

I remember flying underneath the red-streaked, summer skies,

Every flutter of our silken wings was spurred by endless joy.

Listening to the singing of the blackbird, at the dawning of the night.

The rising moon brought tears of longing, mixed with inexpressible delight.

There were feasts a plenty, with bread and cheese upon the hawthorn fair.

Hazelnuts and haws, with nettle soup, while marigolds and roses blessed the summer air.

Blackberries so sweet, that hung from every roadside hedge.

Elderberry wine to slake our thirst, went quickly to our heads.

We gentle folk were welcome in those days, with bread and milk at every cottage door.

And we would bless the farm to make the crops grow strong, where we found kindness for the poor.

Then we would ramble home, through portals scattered far and wide across the land.

Back to the Land of Sidhe, in cheerful song, with all the Faerie band.

Patrick W Kavanagh.

12/03/2014

paganway1

by Bill Oliver { boysoblue.com }

Witches Soul Work

March, 2015

Witches Soul Work Part 4: Faery

If that which thou seek thy find not within thee, thy will never find it without.” (1)

The Craft involves deep soul work leading to understanding the authentic self, the connection with the divine, and understanding the Mysteries. If you were Buddhist you might called this enlightenment. What is enlightenment for Witches? Many people new to the Craft read the beginner books and think that that is all there is. I would like to share with you some of the ways that Traditional Witches do soul work, the way they approach and understand the Mysteries and an exploration of what the Mysteries are. This idea was inspired by a course called Soul Work from Cherry Hill Seminary (www.cherryhillseminary.org) and from a comment by a woman on our local pagan internet site who said that she was quitting our group because we were not serious (i.e. we are fluffy) about our spiritual work. (Thank you dear!) The Craft is the most deeply spiritual path I know, but because it is hidden it is not so easy to find.

hobbie hole

by artists in Dorval, Quebec

When we work outside we often feel that someone is watching us. Strange things happen; the candles blow out when there is no wind, things go missing only to turn up again in odd places, offerings are taken mysteriously. Witches that work outside, and I hope you all do, eventually come to the notice of the Sidhe (pronounced shee) or Faery. I think it’s because practicing the Craft changes our energy body so that we light up in a way that they can see us. So who are they? What happens when we acknowledge them? How do we work with them? Is it a part of the Craft? Working with the Sidhe is a kind of Shamanic practice although the Faery Seers would never have used the word ‘shaman’. This word comes from Siberia and the Tungus tribe (2) and means ‘one who can see in the dark’…meaning that the shaman can see what others cannot.

Up the airy mountain

down the rushy glen

we daren’t go a hunting

for fear of little men

good folk, wee folk trooping all together

green jacket, red cap and white owl’s feather

William Allingham (3)

Core Shamanism

Here’s a great definition by Caitlin Matthews: “Shamanism is a world-wide practice in which the spiritual interrelationship of the earth with the Otherworlds forms an interwoven fabric of physical and psychic being, affecting all forms of life, both seen and unseen. Shamans are walkers between the worlds and interpreters of the spirit realms. They explore these unseen realms by means of the spirit journey (which occurs in shamanic trance) to interact with the beings they encounter there and to retrieve knowledge, healing and advice, which may benefit the people.

Shamanism exists among peoples who have an animistic worldview; in many cultures it functions as spirituality, although it often exists separately from formal religion as a healing, divinatory and spiritual practice. Shamanism is identifiable the world over by its practices, chief of which are the spirit-journeys to gain information, healing, divinatory and prophetic insight, and to enter into ancestral discourse.” (4)

What is Faery Seership?

According to R.J. Stewart (5) the Sidhe are beings one level of awareness from ours. The name ‘Sidhe’ is a common way of referring to them, but actually the Sidhe is the mound where they live and the proper term for them is “Sith” which means dwellers of the Sidhe. I use the term Faery to embrace all the races of Faery and the Sidhe to refer to the High Shining Ones. Our realms intersect and interact and each Faery is different as are we. Faeries are known in every culture from Japan to Native America. The stories strangely parallel each other. Science cannot prove the existence of Faery, but that does not mean they have disproved them either.

R.J. Stewart describes Faery Seership in a unique way. He says it is a journey of intuition, imagination and inspiration. Ask yourself not “do I believe?” but rather why have I come here seeking an encounter with Faery? Faery seership is a complex power tradition. The Faery races are different in each land but the techniques we work on can be used wherever you are. We enter the world of Faery using our imagination as a tool and the imagery of our ancestors. In Faery there are no politics, no dogma and no religion. So why would we want to encounter Faery? The main value for undertaking this is that it is a great adventure leading us to liberation from the slavery of modern life. (5)

My personal reasons for working with Faery are because I have encountered them in my work outside and had some strange experiences with them, so I want to understand what is happening. Also, I know that some of the Faery are interested in healing the earth as the Witches are, so they collaborate with us if we are sincere. I believe the Faery can help and heal us as well if they become our allies. I am also curious as to their way of understanding energy, the world and the Divine. I was called to them and it was not a call I wanted to ignore.

What are your reasons for embarking on this journey?

The Faery Realm from R.J. Stewart’s ‘Earth Light’

“The realm of the Sidhe has a consistent appearance in accounts. It is the primal land, the land of youth, the summer land but also a reflection of our world. In Celtic traditions it is known as the Underworld and is considered to exist “within the planet”. It is therefore the “Primal Image” of the land where you live, a pristine reflection with no sin and no pollution. We all carry this shared dream and by dreaming this dream together we manifest our land. So Faeryland is the primal land inherent within our manifest land. These two lands were once close together and the inhabitants met, mingled and married. We moved away from Faery by our greed for power and control, our elevation of logic and science over creativity and art. Faery is experienced through Initiation and the Second Sight. Working with the image of the primal land can restore our land to health and by re-attuning our land to the Faery land we manifest balance. But to encounter Faery we must first enhance our own energy signature.

When we enter Faery we find a land of pure light, the land that we are longing for, and returning to our gray world can cause sorrow. If we are seduced into wanting to stay in Faery to escape our life here, that is a weakness within ourselves. But if we bring back the primal image and the purified light we bring back the power to transform ourselves and to transform the world. This is the first test. We do this work not from a place of power hunger, but a place of compassion for the suffering here. It is possible to walk between the worlds, to enter the land of Faery and return.

The Nature of the Faery People

  1. a non-organic/spiritual race of beings close in vibration to humans

  2. they are attuned to the land and vary from land to land like us

  3. they contact humans usually concerning the vitality of the land

  4. they mirror humanity in many ways

  5. they adapt their communication with us according to what is in our imagination

  6. they have a “hive” consciousness, if you interact with one they will all know about it. Different orders of Faery have different hives and all the hives do not interact. We are composed of all 5 elements but elemental Faeries are not, so an Earth Faery (Gnome) might not interact with Air Faery (Sylph) etc.

  7. they experience universal unselfish love but not the emotion of human love. We must be careful about human sexuality when interacting with faery.

  8. Faery companions often complete something lacking in us as we complete something lacking in them.

  9. Time is different. What seems hundreds of years to us may be only hours to them.

  10. They are usually human size or taller but there are giants, theriomorphic beings (animal/human) and bodies of light.”

 

Dormant

The Dormant Greenman painting by Elissa Baltszer

Are the Elementals Faeries?

I recommend that you do all Faery work outside no matter what the weather. The Faery do not come into your house, unless they are Brownies. Traditionally they also won’t come where there are cats.

The Faery you encounter may not fit any of the myths; they are what they are. Some people don’t think that Elemental beings are Faery but I do. I think of them as World Faeries, being made of Spirit with one element. Earth Faeries are Gnomes, made of earth and spirit; Air Faeries are Sylphs and made of air and spirit; Water Faeries are Undines and made of water and spirit; Fire Faeries are Djinn or Salamanders and made of fire and spirit. (6) I like the paintings of Brian Froud (7) and I think that they are good representations of World Faeries.

To see a Faery take a stone with a natural hole in it. Bath your eyes in Marigold tea. (Make sure you are not allergic…put some on your inner arm for half an hour to see if there is no reaction first.) Go outside just as the sun is setting in a wild and quiet place. Even your garden if it is quiet and secluded would work. When it is neither dark nor light, day nor night; when twilight covers the world with a soft blue mantle, that is the betwixt and between time. Sit quietly and enter a calm and meditative state. Use the holy stone as a telescope and look around you in each direction. If you are lucky enough to see the Faery they will appear but remember…if you can see them, they can see you.

How do you start to work with Faery?

The first step is an attunement with their energy. Stand outside and imagine the light of the Faery world is rising up through your body, filling you with their energy. Breathe it up and through your whole being, cleansing you at a cellular level. For a more complete instruction of this technique R.J. Stewart shares it publicly in an exercise called: the Rising of the Light Below (8) which you can use with his permission. See the reference below for the link. However as Witches, doing ritual and meditation outside also attunes us to their energy. There is a caveat however; to work with Faery you must live an impeccable life! They don’t like those that harm the earth or are liars. Does that sound like trying to keep the Wiccan Rede?

It’s important to keep a book with all your Faery encounters because most of the time you will be meeting them in an altered state of consciousness. This means that in ordinary consciousness you may forget some of what you learned, just like we forget dreams. Another reason to keep a book is that sometimes the Faery themselves will ‘overshadow’ your writing and things that you were intending to write become inexplicably changed to something else!

Create an altar to the Faery outside and make a ritual asking them to meet you and work with you. This altar should be made of natural and organic things like wood or stone. Historically Faery don’t like iron, so nothing metal please. Use a wand rather than an athame when working with them. On the altar you can also offer them food. They don’t eat it like us, but rather they take the energy from the offering. That is why natural products made into something by our own hands are the best offerings. For example: homemade cakes and bread, beer or whisky. They also like offerings of milk, butter and honey. After the offering has sat on the altar for a day it should be taken down and the plates washed. Don’t eat this food or feed it to pets as it has no energy left and is not good for living people to eat. Please don’t offer them cut flowers; the dying energy of the beautiful flowers makes them sad.

Besides the Elemental Faeries there are also the High and Shining Ones, which are beings of pure spirit residing in Faeryland. They are immortal and hold the blueprint of life within them. The myth is that they come from the stars and live within the earth. A wonderful reference about them is in “The Tree of Enchantment: Ancient Wisdom and Magic Practices of the Faery Tradition” by Orion Foxwood.

 

 

Rain Faeries: A personal experience with Faery Lights

I once decided to spend the night alone in the forest on a vision quest but unfortunately a few hours before I was to leave it started raining. Not wanting to postpone my experience I decided to go ahead, bringing only a plastic tarp, a jacket and a flashlight. When I arrived at the place I was to park my car the rain was torrential! However, being the stubborn person that I am I carried on, making my way into the forest on a familiar path. When I had walked about fifteen minutes along the path I turned left and carefully scrambled a few feet into the forest deep under the canopy of the trees. The rain was getting even stronger and if not for my warm water-proof jacket I would have been a shivering mess. I strung my plastic tarp between two trees but it fell down, then my flashlight conked out and I started questioning my motivation for coming at all! I said to myself as I wiped the rain out of my eyes: “At your age! What on earth are you trying to prove?”

I wrapped myself up in the plastic and, thoroughly miserable, dosed off to the sound of pouring water on the dark trees around me. I couldn’t really sleep and every few minutes opened my eyes to peer out at the complete darkness, rain dripping into my eyes. Shortly after that I heard distant music playing and thought, someone nearby must be having a party and playing their radio very loudly! It didn’t dawn on me until the morning that there was no way I could be hearing music or a radio as I was too far away from anyone. At the time I was convinced that it was human music and a little disappointed to be hearing it in the middle of the forest. I guess I was starting to slip into a confused state of mind to think like this.

A few hours later my eyes opened to see a globe of light about the size of a cantaloupe three feet away from me, hovering about a foot off the ground. Stunned I tried to tell myself that it was a firefly and its glow was refracting through the still falling rain. As I looked at it, it held steady, never wavering and then another identical globe of light appeared about a foot to its right, and then another and another until a ring of lights surrounded me in a perfect circle. “Oh boy, these fireflies are something!” I thought. Gradually I realized that fireflies don’t behave like this and my mind started reeling, frantically trying to invent some plausible explanation for the lights. Swamp gas? Oh right, not in a swamp! Finally I had to admit to myself that I was having an encounter with Faery, and I started to get scared! My eyes were wide open and I couldn’t take my eyes off the lights. I tried to slow my breathing and relax noting that I did not feel any malice or threat from the lights, and in fact it was almost as if they were protecting me. Finally I said out loud, in a very shaky voice: “Hello?” The lights stayed with me for about two hours then gradually disappeared and in the morning I did not see any sign that they had been there.

This experience has remained vivid and important for me. I have encountered the lights one more time in this forest at midnight at the Autumn Equinox. There is always a strong presence watching me there. This was confirmed one day when I took my little dog Nicki with me to walk in the forest at this spot. The poor dog would not go any further up the road past where I had seen the Faery lights and sat on the road howling and shaking, seeing or feeling something that I was not.

Conclusion

Many of those practicing the Craft have Faery experiences because their energy body changes and the Faery start to notice them when they work outside. Living by the Wiccan Rede and doing regular energy work, magick or meditation changes us, perhaps at a cellular level. Although not many Witches talk about Faery Seership, it is an integral part of the Craft Mysteries.

References:

    1. Charge of the Goddess by Doreen Valiente

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    • Poetry

  • -11.php

      1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tungusic_peoples Here is a reference to the Tungus people who are an animistic society and Shamans are part of their culture.

      1. William Allingham, The Faires, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EADkQqVu3Q4

      1. John and Caitlin Matthews, “Encyclopedia of Celtic Wisdom” has many wonderful things related to Celtic myth and folklore.

      1. R.J. Stewart, “Earth Light”. R.J. Stewart has written many books on Faery and he will be visiting us in Montreal the weekend of Sept. 26th, 2015 for a weekend concert, and workshop based on his book “The Living World of Faery”. If you are living near us, you are welcome to come. You can e-mail for more information at www.sacredcauldron.ca R.J. gives many workshops. For on in your area please see www.rjstewart.org

      1. www.gnomesandfairies.com/mythology

      2. http://www.worldoffroud.com/

      3. http://www.esotericonline.net/profiles/blogs/the-rising-light-below-r-j-stewart

    Faeries, Elves, and Other Kin

    April, 2010

    The Faerie Cross

    By

    Kat Cranston

    There are two gemstones claiming the name of the Faerie (or Fairy) Cross or Stone.  How do they differ and how do you choose which one you want to use?  Let’s investigate the candidates.

    Staurolite

    Staurolite

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    Known in the greater part of the literature available as the “Faerie Stone” or “Faerie Cross,” legend says the tears of faeries formed the crosses when they heard about the death of Jesus.  Many believe the stones protect the wearer against witchcraft, sickness, accidents and disaster.

    We derive the name Staurolite from the Greek words stauros (cross) and lithos (stone).  Crystal twinning occurs when two separate crystals share some of the same crystal lattice points in a symmetrical manner.  The result is an intergrowth of two separate crystals in a variety of specific configurations; in this case, a cross.  The cross can be twinned at sixty degrees, as in St. Andrew’s cross, or ninety degrees, as in the Greek cross.  Staurolite is red brown to black with a rather complex chemical formula, mostly iron, magnesium and zinc.

    Staurolites are abundant in North Carolina, Virginia, Georgia, and Tennessee.  In fact, Fairy Stone State Park, located in the Appalachian Mountains of Virginia, was named for its generous deposits.  Other sources include deposits in Connecticut, Maine, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Vermont, Canada, France, Madagascar, Namibia, Scotland, Sweden, Switzerland and the Urals.

    Chiastolite

    Chiastolit

    Your browser may not support display of this image.

    Commonly called a “Cross Stone,” you will still find many who call it a “Faerie Stone,” as well.  Sometimes called baseler taufstein (baptismal stone) or lapis crucifer (cross stone), the stone was used as an amulet at baptisms in the 18th century.  Believers said the stone would stanch the flow of blood from any part of the body if worn against the skin, and it could also increase the secretion of milk.  Worn around the neck, a chiastolite cured all kinds of fevers and the cross it bore drove away evil spirits from the neighborhood of the wearer.

    We derive the name Chiastolite from the Greek words chiastos (cross marked) and lithos (stone).  Chiastolite is a variety of Andalusite, a silicate mineral consisting of aluminum, silicon and oxygen. Noted for its distinctive cross-shaped black inclusions of graphite, you can find this stone in white, red, brown, orange and green, with brown being predominate.

    Chiastolites are found predominantly in California, Algeria, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Russia, South Australia, Spain and Sri Lanka.

    My Personal Opinion

    Although staurolite has an impressive pedigree when it comes to the name “faerie cross,” I’m rather troubled by the density of iron in the twinned crystals.  Iron is what gives these crystals their red brown to black coloring.  For whatever reason (hmm, I foresee a column topic), faeries abhor iron and I personally do not use any tools that contain it.  If your purpose is to ward yourself against malevolent faeries, then this is the stone for you.  However, if you wish to communicate and interact with the fae realm while retaining a degree of protection, I recommend a chiastolite.

    As in all things pagan, fae and witchy, it is up to you to review the material, apply your cognitive thinking skills, and come to your own conclusions.

    Faerie blessings and blessed be.

      Bibliography and Works Cited/Recommended Reading:
      Photographic Attributions:
    • Staurolite by Rob Lavinsky / iRocks.com photo / CC-BY-SA-3.0
    • Chiastolite by Grzegorz Framski under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

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