Wednesday, October 1, 2008
A Trip to Faeryland
Last weekend, I and a dear beloved co-facilitated a workshop all about connecting to the Fae, those magnanimous and beautiful beings of the wild woods, lakes, beaches, deserts, cities, worlds seen and unseen.
The gathering was absolutely magickal, and I can't remember the last time I felt so fulfilled, so contented after a witchy weekend.
At the start of the event, we set up sacred space using a variety of means, including various circle castings, some of which were done with the idea that we would create this space through spoken commitments to our own and others' well being.
Much of the weekend focused on creating gates to Faery, including a very large one that we walked through on Friday night and didn't return from until Sunday late morning.
I and the other facilitator have spent time working gates on our own, recognizing that the need for them in the world isn't just about getting from one realm to another - very often it's a symbol of trust between the worlds, one where we consciously ask the Fae into our world and they allow us into theirs. I've created gates of found objects in the wild, I've drawn them into honey (thereby transferring the world traveling power to the sweet treat), I've drawn them on one of my drums (again, when played it shifts our being into the Faery realm), and other experiments. I have a couple outside near my home that I regularly visit and walk through, spending time in the Faery realm with some regularity.
Spending time in the Faery world for an entire weekend was a wonderful experience and one I hope to repeat. While there, we created ritual art and offerings from the heart, aspected with the Fae, danced, sang, did sacred beading and embroidery, laughed (a lot), cried, and deepened our relationship to these wonderful beings. There were lights shining in the darkness and a rainbow that appeared in a downpour outside the main hall, about 10 feet off the ground.
The Wild Fae have been near and dear to me for many years (since childhood, really), and after this weekend, I began to understand my role with them more and more. Much of what I do is based in the idea of Faery Freedom - my spiritual calling is about freedom and liberation.
The tarantella and the tammorriata are dances of liberation. Yoga is all about liberation. Belly dancing is about freedom. Queer Spirit work is certainly about freedom. All these threads tie together, and I began wondering about the nature of the bodhisattva during the weekend.
These are the beings who have vowed not just to achieve spiritual and everyday liberation for themselves - they have agreed to come back to the world again and again until everyone is freed from cycles of pain, misery, and suffering.
In many ways, this seemed a very Fae-like vow to make, and my mind is whirling with possibilities.
I was deeply moved over the weekend by what all the other priestesses brought to the workshop. I learned a great deal about the nature of Faery and myself through their experiences and willingness to share what they had seen and felt up to this point and what was unfolding during the magick. I am so grateful to everyone there for meeting the magick head on and committing to the work of Faery.
Especially in this twilight time of the year, I would encourage you to spend some time with the Fae. Maybe set up a comfortable spot outside, beautifying it in whatever ways seem right to you (or leaving it as beautiful as it already is), call in your allies, and begin to strike up a conversation - mostly through listening.
As a side note, this is the time of the Navratri, a sacred festival of India that honors the divine feminine through various rituals, including nine days of sacred dance. I learned about this last night at yoga class, and I'm planning on doing sacred dances for this next nine days.
(The first photo is one I took of the dozens of mushrooms at the park site where we held the weekend. There really is something to Faery mushroom magick. Many of us have heard that mushrooms can save the world, and given their ecological powers, it seems like a good bet. The second is an image from the Brian Froud Faery Oracle deck. The third group of mushrooms sprouted up in my absence at a clearing I visit regularly near my home. What a great surprise!)