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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in water wights

Posted by on in SageWoman Blogs

Recently I’ve been weaving water magic, and taking brief pilgrimages in search of depth. In the Celtic traditions, bodies of water, lakes, rivers and wells hold special positions as liminal places, where the realms of spirit may be easier to access, and where healing and wisdom can be sought. In the Irish tradition the otherworld and the gods are often found by journeying over bodies of water or on mysterious islands off to sea, as well as at the many holy wells and springs that are found across the country. In Wales it is similar, with lakes also holding this sacred significance, and the Welsh word for the otherworld, Annwn, or its older spelling, Annwfn, literally means ‘the deep place.’ Seeking depth, physically, in the dark ever renewing stillness of wells and wild waters, and the bright flowing of waterfalls on mountainsides I find my mind and my whole being refreshed and cleared of strain. I’ve found the stillness within which may allow new thoughts, new ideas, new insights to arise. The deep isn’t only to be found in the earth, or under water, it needs to be found in our hearts and minds as well, for transformation to come, for a new way of being to be born. So I’ve made a commitment to sit in silent communion near water and to place my feet in rivers and streams at least once a week, to seek healing, renewal, and new vision in these difficult times. To access the source of my soul and the soul of the land, and physically hold that connection in my body.

Meditating near bodies of water is always a special and useful practice. There is something in the sounds of water that helps us to change our consciousness even for a while, and gain access to those deeper parts within…making friends with the water in our bodies too, by drinking more water, and undertaking cleansing rituals that use water magically for change are also powerful. Try adding seasalt to your baths, and using vibrational essences, as well as making space for your emotions to be felt and honoured, with regular time set aside to keep in contact with yourself and your feelings. This is essential especially when life gets tough. Honouring the waters of the world with offerings is also good practice; sing to your rivers and streams, read them poetry, take time to pick up rubbish and get involved defending them from pollution. Buy green products that don’t pollute, walk your talk. But most of all, love them, spend time with them, build relationship with them, and healing will flow naturally. Honouring the waters, and seeking our own deep places, has its own simple magic, and sometimes that is the strongest kind of all.

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Water Ones: Moving through fluid realms, with intuition

About five hundred million years ago, fish were the first vertebrates to appear on earth. Since that time, they have evolved into one of the most diverse and successful of animal groups. The "lobe-finned" fish, such as the lungfish, can live for brief periods on land. Sharks and rays have no bones, only cartilage, while the bony fish range from sturgeon to trout to seahorses. Eels, the snakes of the water, can slip in and out of small spaces.

The other animals, who live in water, are the anemones, cephalopods, clams, crustaceans, echinoderms (starfish), and jellyfish. Crustaceans live in freshwater, deep oceans, and tidal pools. Their claws and hard shells serve to protect them from predators. The cephalopods, with their tentacles, are known for their inky defenses. Jellyfish float from North Pole to South Pole, seeking food. Anemones have tentacles traps to prey on unsuspecting shrimp. Clams will quickly burrow in the tidal flats with their tube feet. Sea cucumbers put out sticky tentacles to catch food particles that drift by.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Born out of the Water by Виталий Смолыгин. Courtesy Publicdomainpictures.net.
Born out of the Water by Виталий Смолыгин. Courtesy Publicdomainpictures.net.

Okay, I have a Witch's message to share. I'm talking to the Pagans and any sympathetic spiritual paths who care to listen.

I am not prone to making public commentary like this because I often feel that people who do so are being arrogant and pretentious. Nevertheless, this is the vision I was given so I will share it as it was given to me. I'm not telling anyone what to do, but if you care to listen, this is what I feel I was asked to share. If this isn't something you're resonating with at this time, you won't hurt my feelings. But I'll thank people not to crap all over me about it. I'm doing this because if I believe in my faith, my faith moves me to do it, whether I look a fool or whether or not it's popular.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • nolongerhere
    nolongerhere says #
    Who cares if many people don't believe you? Someone else will answer the call and improve the relationship with water. Those who s
  • Sable Aradia
    Sable Aradia says #
    Thank you.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The People of the Waters

In 1653, Swedish witch Karin Persdotter confessed to having learned her magic from a male water spirit, called variously the "man of the stream" (strömkarlen), "the river" (älven), and the "nix" (näcken) (Hall 32).

 

Readers of the Brothers Grimm will recognize this latter term: the nix (masculine) and nixie (feminine) (German nix and nixe) have haunted the rivers, lakes, and ponds of folk tales for (apparently) several millennia at least. They are, in effect, fresh water merfolk.

 

The Hwicce, the Anglo-Saxon tribe ancestral (some say) to today's witches knew a similar species. Their nicor survived in English folklore as the nicker or knucker. The youthful Beowulf was said to have wrestled with several while swimming.

 

In fact, all these names descend from the same ancestor: proto-Germanic *nikwiz, *nikwuz (Watkins 59). To judge by surviving folklore, all the Indo-European-speaking peoples knew of the People of the Waters. But of course, other peoples know them too; everyone knows them. Here in Minnesota, the Anishinabe (Ojibway) call them nebaunaubaequaewuk.

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Witches and Fairies

In 1632, Erik Johan Prytz, vicar of Linköping, Sweden, wrote that people would frequently strike deals with nature spirits such as forest nymphs and water spirits in order to learn sorcery, for success in hunting and fishing, and for luck generally (Hall 28).

The evidence, not just from Sweden, but from all over Europe, bears him out.

Swedish sorcerer Matts Larsson was accused in 1685 of having intimate relations with a bergrået, a mountain nymph (Hall 30).

In 1697, the infamous sorcerer Jon of Hallebo confessed that he had received a book of magic from “the man in the stream,” a water spirit known in Swedish as strömkarlen (Hall 32).

The notorious outlaw Tidemann Hemmingsson was also accused of having concluded a pact with a “forest maiden,” a skogsrået, which reportedly granted him good luck in hunting (Hall 35).

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Anthony Gresham
    Anthony Gresham says #
    In "Power Within the Land" R. J. Stewart lists a three step process for listening to folk and fairy tales. He recommends taking t
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Asked what books one should read to get started in paganism, my teacher Tony Kelly once said: Well, you could read these books on
  • Tony Lima
    Tony Lima says #
    ...win the lottery!!!!
  • Tony Lima
    Tony Lima says #
    Interesting! I have but one thing sometimes against spirits attending to humans, and that's this - on occasion, spirit influence c
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Eyes and ears open is the best way to enter into any relationship.

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Women of the Waters

What do they do in winter, the women of the waters? In our Land of Ten Thousand Iced-In Lakes, do they sleep burrowed deep like turtles or frogs? Do they dream in suspended animation, frozen in ice, like fish? Or do they slowly swim beneath the ice, haunting with their singing the fisherman in his lonely ice-house?

It seems as if everyone knows them: mermaids, nixies, necks, nereids, víly, rusalki, we call them. Every spring, every pond, every lake, has its own, they say, and some lakes many. Old in the land, the Anishinabe—known to the Cree, who spoke a related but unintelligible language, as Chippewa, “mutterers”—call them nebaunaubaequaewuk. Everyone agrees that their beauty is a dangerous beauty.

They take people, and children in particular; in our own day, people are taken. In summer they sing and dance, especially on nights when the full moon floats like a shining lily on every lake. Our attraction is a mutual attraction, and many stories tell of the handsome youth or maid who goes to live with them and is never seen again. Sometimes they marry humans, but such matings rarely end well. Although we reflect one another, in the end, the People of the Land and the People of the Waters are different peoples, other.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Annwyn Avalon
    Annwyn Avalon says #
    Hi Steven, Thanks for the clarification! When I read that I got really excited! I thought you had found a source I had never seen,
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Thanks Annwyn; I'd certainly love to see your research on the subject. I heard this version of the story on a BBC radio article a
  • Annwyn Avalon
    Annwyn Avalon says #
    Lovely article, I have done extensive research on the Lady of Llyn Y Fan Vach, and the Gwragedd Annwn. Can you please cite the sou
  • Anne Forrester
    Anne Forrester says #
    LOVE IT!!! Thanks so very much Steve. Bright Blessings, Helga

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