Thursday, May 1, 2008

Fae Days

One of my longest-standing magickal experiences has been with the Fey. As a child, I saw them, played with them, was comforted by them in hard times - we were pretty tight.

Years later, when going through my initiation process, I chose to become a priestess of the Wild Fae, the Silver Bloods, aligning myself with their ancient, healing, transformative and deep magick, because I believe so strongly in their tenants, their ways of embracing all aspects of life, their endless sense of love and compassion, and their commitment to great delight and beauty.

One of the things I hope to do periodically on this blog is share my experience with the Fae as a counterpoint to the reputation they've gotten from various sources (not the least of which is hideous artistic representations of doe-eyed cherubs staring out at the world from underneath buttercup hats - don't get me wrong, the Fae love a good hat, but still.).

I struggled for a long time with my calling to the Fae, partly because of the cloying ickiness of their represenation and also because they get a bad rap for being capricious and bothersome. It wasn't until I started exploring their world that I began diving deeply into it all and understanding more what it's about.

I work with Elavin, a fantastic Faery who, as I understand it, used to be one of the Queens of the Fae people, she eventually rejected that title as being too hierarchical (something she detests). Originally from the British Isles, she left the land very early in her reign, deciding to travel the world and see how others lived. She journeyed to India, where she introduced herself to Kali, partied hard in Italy and learned the ways of the Mediterranean Fae, wandered through Africa adorning herself with dark nuts and seeds and learning dances of creation and fecundity from the Fae there, painted herrself in tribal patterns in Australia, played the drums and abandoned herself to the ways of the Wild in North America upon meeting the Mysterious Ones of the land there. (I hear it told she has been dubbed a "friend of the bears" by none other than Grandmother Bear, and Grandmother Spider and Elavin became fast friends after Elavin presented herself to the Ancient One at one of her homes, Spider Rock in Canyon De Chelley.)

It was in the Americas where she found some of her greatest hope for how to take back the Ways of the Wild (which include a devotion to freedom) to her kingdom in the Isles. Once home, she presented all that she had learned through a series of talks around sacred fires, but there was much dissention from the ranks, and many thought she had gone mad during her journeys.

Her consort, the Faery King, was not confused, however, and shared her passion for shaking things up. There were great arguments between the Fae of her court over rulership, hierarchy and the need for change, yet Elavin and her King persisted, trying to create a clan, not a kingdom.

Many of the Fae abandoned the effort, too frightened by the prospects and too angry to see past their own needs, but a core group remained, and it is this group that now holds the name Clan of the Wild Ones, Those Who Run in the Moonlight, Those Who Dance Freely on Moss-Covered Trunks and Mushrooms, Those Who Fear No Freedom (among many other descriptors).

It's my understanding that much of this took place in the years from 600-1000 C.E.

More on the Fae another day, but on this May Day, perhaps spend some time outside, sitting in a place that speaks of wildness to you. This could be a garden, a spot by a beautiful tree in a city park, near a stream, lake or on a rock. Bring an offering of something that's precious (which could be lavender buds, a drop of honey or a handmade card - "precious" doesn't mean "expensive"), leave all expectations behind and open up to their depth.

(The above image is by Brian Froud, one of few artists who I think really captures the feeling of the Fae.)


Donald Engstrom-Reese said...

My Dear Greg,

Thank you so much for this information. It all makes sense to me. From queendom to clan, yes, this information fills in a lot of spaces in the tales that I have been hearing.

I love you and Happy May Day!


cordieb said...

Those are some very interesting little beings. I'd never heard of faes before. Thanks for sharing.