Eddie Watkins's Reviews > The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries

The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries by W.Y. Evans-Wentz
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Jul 07, 2008

it was amazing
bookshelves: paranormal-etc

An early book by the guy who brought us (in English) The Tibetan Book of the Dead, and in its own way it too is a serious book on alternate realities and/or other dimensions. Plus the edition I have is part of the Library of the Mystic Arts and has an intro by Terence McKenna, the late psychonaut, who elsewhere had paralleled fairies and the little gibbering beings he encountered after taking DMT.

The Fairy Faith in Celtic Countries offers plenty of speculation and theories regarding who or what fairies are and where they come from, which is interesting though probably futile. But it is also an anthropological study of fairy faith which involved interviews with hundreds of people in Ireland, Wales, Scotland, Isle of Man, etc. in the early 20th century. This is probably my favorite part of the book, in that the interviews help create in my mind one of the most evocative portraits of down-to-earth country life tinged with the supernatural I’ve ever come across. Just reading these oral tales can make you get up from your chair and go fall asleep in a haystack, or climb a stile in farmland at twilight, the back of your neck tingling in expectation of something subtle but very weird waiting to happen. Reading this can make air itself seem thicker; thicker with darting intelligences and mystery and fleeting meaning.

There are so many images and definitions of fairies swirling around in our culture that it’s probably hard to read a book like this with a clear mind, but if you can do it you’ll see that there are no pat definitions of fairies and that anyway it’s all about the human imagination and the ability to regard the imagination as just another component of reality and source of information as we continue to try to make heads or tails of life and its infinite intrigue and complexity.
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message 3: by tENTATIVELY, (last edited Jul 08, 2008 01:16PM) (new)

tENTATIVELY, cONVENIENCE I had mushroom poisoning once. I had EXTREME stomach cramps that caused my body to go from a laying-down position to snap up into a sitting position. I went to the toilet to see if I cd vomit. Sitting on the toilet tank was a gargoyle. From that I tendered a conclusion that gargoyles might be real beings that are only seen under such specific conditions. Reading a history of gargoyles wd interest me.

Reports of seeing a green man while under the influence of peyote are completely believable to me. I've seen, in the company of a small group of people who saw the same thing - all of us under the influence of mushrooms, something that I wd describe as 'intelligent lightning' or, at least, geometrical lightning.

The point is that I'm sure that there are all sorts of intelligences all around us that we don't have the appropriate sensory apparatus to easily perceive. However, when we alter our senses thru the use of plants & what-not we temporarily aquire the senses of those plants. As such, we perceive more of what the plants perceive. Under the influence of peyote I've felt like a plant, felt that I cd take root.

SO, why not "fairies"? The ability to see 'fairies' might just be a matter of being attuned in a particular way to their environment, it might not even involve plant ingestion. I don't have any belief or disbelief in fairies, I just think it's possible that any & all 'myths' about ordinarily invisible intelligences that ocassionally cross the human path are completely reasonably possible as being rooted in actual physical experience.

People get too easily confused by the mode of presentation of such 'myths' - in other words, fairies are too cutesy, too Disney, therefore they can't exist. Allowing one's self to be critical of a possibility b/c one doesn't like the irrelevant trappings around it is to miss out on the possible kernel of 'truth'.

Eddie Watkins Great stories tENT! I think it's hard for people who've never intelligently ingested entheogens to take tales and evidence from such experiences seriously, but it's obvious who's losing out.

I don't think we understand at all how our minds and imaginations interact with and affect our perceptions of physical reality. To me it's obvious that we only experience what our minds are capable of experiencing; the world we experience is the world in our mind, just as everything we see is what's reflected in the back of our eyeballs. By increasing the capacities of our minds and tapping more deeply into our imaginations (through meditation, psychotropics, will power, faith, etc.) we enlarge our worlds of experience by learning how to process more of what's "out there". Given this it's obvious to me that we all live in different worlds, though of course there's a "base plan" or consensual reality that is there for convenience sake so that there's some common ground for all of us to interact on.

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