Elves are Fairies? Wait, what?

051566a01e2563f469eb7f08b368dfe1

 

Elves are Fairies? Wait, what?

Dökkálfar and Ljósálfar, light and dark Elves; Seelie and Unseelie, Light and Dark Fae…

 

To begin and in general regarding Elves, this this blog has this to share with it’s readers. “The elves are luminous beings, “more beautiful than the sun,”[2]whose exalted status is demonstrated by their constantly being linked with the Aesir andVanir gods in Old Norse and Old English poetry.[3] The lines between elves and other spiritual beings such as the gods,giants, dwarves, and land spirits are blurry, and it seems unlikely that the heathen Germanic peoples themselves made any cold, systematic distinctions between these various groupings. It’s especially hard to discern the boundary that distinguishes the elves from the Vanir gods and goddesses. The Vanir god Freyr is the lord of the elves’ homeland, Alfheim,[4] and at least one Old Norse poem repeatedly uses the word “elves” to designate the Vanir.[5] Still, other sources do speak of the elves and the Vanir as being distinct categories of beings, such that a simple identification of the two would be misguided.” (1)

 

At the earliest point it seems there were generally two types of elves:

“Ljósálfar” (“Light-elves”) of Álfheim…In Norse mythology, the light elves (Old Norse: “Ljósálfar”) live in the Old Norse version of the heavens, in the place called Álfheimunderneath the place of the Gods. The idea of the light elf is one of the most ancient records of elves (Old Norse: “álfr” singular, “álfar” plural) preserved in writing, as close to the prototypical idea of the elf as we might get (Nordic mythology preserved an ancient German paganism).

According to the early Nordic source that mentions light versus dark elves, the Nordic Eddas of the 13th century, the light elves are bright and radiant. The Edda “Gylfaginning” by Snorri Sturluson, says that they are “fairer to look upon than the sun” (Arthur Gilchrist Brodeur’s translation).” (2)

 

Also in Norse mythology, Svartálfar (“Swart-elves” or “black elves”), sometimes considered synonymous with “duergar” (“dwarves”), are subterranean creatures who dwell in the world of Svartálfheim. They may be either benevolent or malevolent. The original Svartalfar worked the forges on the lowest level of the world tree. Their roles and countenance vary throughout Germanic folklore but are sometimes mentioned with Black or Dark skin as a result of working at the forge.

The Dökkálfar (“Dark-elves”) are male ancestral spirits who may protect the people, although some can be menacing, especially when one is rude to them. They are generally light-avoiding, though not necessarily subterranean. (3)

 

The lines of distinction are pretty vague now but probably was a bit more clear during this ancient time. Then the legends of the Germanic Dwarfs is intermingled with the Dark Elves. On top of that, the Greco/Roman pantheon later had some affect on how things were interpreted into more Forest like spirits for the High Elves as the Dark elves had altered with the Germanic Dwarves. Time passed. Countries and cultures changed. Legends and myths were exported and then reimported with a new interpretation and influence from that culture, then exported again! This happens a few times, including various changes from religion to religion, their appearance, stature and very nature. We have our current classifications or what we think they are now because of this, later writers and romanticism.

 

So, how does this relate to or have anything to do with Elves being Fairies?

“Fairy comes from the Old French word faerie. The word has been overused to describe a supernatural being….” (4) Early Fae had no wings and had much in common with elves, both having light and dark races. The Fae has history from France and all over Britain. In the Scottish traditions, There were two kinds of Fae, the Seelie or Beings of light and the Unseelie or dark beings. This is also true of the elves, as already mentioned.

 

In summary, we have the wonderful and rich culture of the Norse mythos to draw from giving us  the Elves, and all magical beings in their pantheon. In emphasis, I also repeat how we have seen how they altered with time, culture, religion on top of being, again, exported, altered and reimported several times too so they became all under the umbrella of the “Fairy” title. Now today, we see them as separate beings, thanks largely to, again, popular and wonderful fictional authors.

 

 

(1) http://norse-mythology.org/gods-and-creatures/elves/ (I highly recommend you visit this blog packed with Norse myths and information.)

(2)  http://en.academic.ru/dic.nsf/enwiki/167247

(3) http://en.academic.ru/dic.nsf/enwiki/179251 (Check out this page/link/site for more info on this, sources and info relating to Scottish Trow and Drow “Elves” !)

(4) http://www.timelessmyths.com/celtic/faeries.html (I highly recommend you visit this blog packed with fairy mythos and history, including types of fairies and from what countries and cultures!)

 

Moro

(I did not write this article in any way, other than small additions. I simply enjoy sharing pearls of wisdom and beauty from different sources into one source for many to enjoy. If inspired to from there, go to the original sources to discover more!)

Art title: ‘Differences” by artist: liiga @ http://liiga.deviantart.com/art/Differences-87959548

 

Advertisements

“Introduction to Faerie Paganism”

314171_367939856623820_1316202792_n

 

“Introduction to Faerie Paganism”

“The Faerie Folk have inhabited the hills, valleys and plains of the Earth since 
the very beginning of time. Shamanism is as old and as vast as the night sky.
Paganism, as a religion based on paganism, has been a part of humanity since the
building of the first small communal village. Faerie Paganism is a modern
expression of these three Universal Creations.

Faerie Shamanism and Paganism is a religion and belief system of great personal
and universal power. Imbedded in the Faith of the Fey is a deep reverence for
the Earth and all of her bounties, a firm belief in the Faerie Folk of the
Ancient Celtic and Norse Worlds, a respect for all life from the tiny insect to
the gigantic whale, a personal internal and external power called Magick, a love
of the nature inherent in human beings both inner and outer, and a communion
with the Ancient Divinities of the Earth, Sea, Sky, and Stars.

One of the first and most important beliefs of Faerie Paganism is a respect for
the Earth and an environmental consciousness which runs so deep it connects with
the divine spirit within. Energy and healing are gained from the soil. knowledge
and wisdom are gained from the trees, cleansing and purging comes from the
lakes, rivers, and streams. protection comes from the rocks and fire. The Earth
is a magickal, mystical Realm which mirrors the Astral Other Worlds and it is
important to see her as the Ultimate Mother who nurtures and protects her
children, whether they are Faerie, Human, Animal, Plant, and Mineral. Rites are
practiced which attune the seeker to the harmonious workings of the seasons of
nature.

Faerie Paganism has a firm belief in the Faerie Folk stemming from the
mythologies and folk beliefs of the Celtic and Norse Peoples. The Faeries are
sought for protection, companionship, wisdom, knowledge, inspiration, and
magick. They are invited to all of the Rites and Rituals, and they are
acknowledged in every aspect of life. Along with this comes a respect for all
creatures, both great and small. For the Fey are Shape-Shifters, and can assume
any shape. from a lady bug, to a bear, to a rock, a tree, or spring mist.

Magick is an integral part of the Faerie Shaman Faith. Magick is the art and
science of causing change in ones environment in conformity with one’s will.
Magick can be used to heal, to divine, or to assist in the obtaining of goals.
The only possible limits of Magick are the self, the imagination, and the
knowledge of the Faerie (or any other) Magickal System.

In Faerie Paganism, the natural human body, soul, and mind are seen as
beautiful, powerful, and divine. Human beings were not cast out of paradise,
they are born into it. Human beings are not born inherently evil or bad, they
are born innocent with the gift of choice. Human beings do not answer to the
laws of an omnipotent god, they answer and account for their own actions. And
the eternal afterlife of a human being is not judged by one lifetime alone. many
lifetimes will be traversed before we are all reconnected with divinity.

Finally, in Faerie Paganism, there is the communion with the Ancient Divinities
of the Ancient World. the Gods and Goddesses, Heroes and Heroines of the ancient
Celtic and Norse lands. The original race of Faeries who first came to the Earth
from the Stars were known to the Celts as the Tuadha De Dannan, or People of the
Goddess Dana. Eventually, when the Milesians (humans) came to inhabit the Earth,
the Tuadha De Dannan moved into the Realm of the Faerie, or Faerie Land. We know
speak and commune with them when we travel to their Realm or when they cross
over into reality….”

from http://www.ladyoftheearth.com/faeries/faerie-paganism.txt

 

Moro

 

Art title: ‘Believing‘ by artist Josiane-Rey @ http://jorgeremmy.deviantart.com/art/Believing-256323340

Muspelheim and Niflheim-the lands of fire and ice…

 

1926940_708019109220150_1436901650_n

 

“Thaw and Frost. Muspel and Nifl. Their names are derived from Muspelheim and Niflheim-the lands of fire and ice respectively in Norse mythology.

Two guardian spirits, brothers, watch over the cycle of water in our world. Where Nifl walks the water condenses, turns solid and becomes ice and snow. Muspel follows closely after, his path melting the ice to turn back into water, evaporating it, causing steam and clouds to drift skyward in his wake.

The presence of both tigers ensures the eternal presence of liquid water in our world, our most valuable source of life. In order to sustain this delicate yet important balance they share a mutual reliance on the other.

Despite this however they are highly competitive and fiercely territorial. Certain parts of our world are predominately the terrority of Nifl, while others are governed by the presence of Muspel. Fights over dominance are reflected in the state of our world’s climate, ever shifting and as unpredictable as the spirits’ tempers.

In the end, neither truly wins, nor loses. And as the world cycles through night and day their battle continues to rage beneath the surface of our water.”

Moro

 

Title: Off-White: Thaw and Frost by Artist: Vyrilien @http://delun.deviantart.com/art/Off-White-Thaw-and-Frost-253469930

from “Contest Entry ‘Off-white’