Saturday, May 1, 2010

Strolling in Wales///Trolling in Wales.

I have little to offer today. I wanted to present something about the fairyworld encounters in Wales [stimulated by the incident in Glamorgan/Caerphilly mentioned a post or two back, and encouraged by a synchronistic stumbling upon an encounter by Paul Devereux just to the north of Glamorgan]. But the subject is too large and time and resources are too short to do a good job. But I have the urge to get this "off my mind" for a bit, so, with some embarrassment, I'll post the vague picture that I have, and fool myself into believing that I'll get back to it and maybe do a better job.-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Plus, today is Beltane. If you are going to see the "Good Folk", this is as good a day as any. The Olde Stones above are still standing in Radnor in Wales, and they have an orientation to sunrise on Beltane, so say the archaeoastronomers. Four thousand years ago did the predecessors of the Druids lay them? And did/do the fairies still dance there? Such things are believed and occasionally reported to this day. Places in Wales still exude a special something which says: the Other World is still here nearby. Get yourself "right" and maybe you can still touch it.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Paul Devereux is a very intelligent man, and a lifetime explorer of the anomalies. He is an interesting Walker-of-the-Paths of mystery, and particularly the actual paths of Earth energies and Leylines, and, even "fairy paths". My interactions with Paul have been friendly, even when he has, essentially, been calling me an idiot [which he can do in a very gentlemanly way]. As long as we stayed away from the topic of UFOs as advanced technology, we'd have a great time together and I'd like to walk his leylines with him, and learn. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------What gets Paul into this blog is a brief mention that he had in an article [more of a lengthy report: Fairy Paths In Ireland And Wales; 2004]. He said that while in the Brecon Beacons he saw flickering luminous orbs in the tree-tops near the mountain range. [ On another occasion in Ireland, he saw a luminous patch which seemed to be trying to firm up into some sort of humanoid form materializing in the grass]. The Brecon Beacons are one place [of many] in Wales where "fairy" experiences and folk tales abound, and Paul having an anomalous encounter there is not a shock. The area is also large, and the megalith which accompanies this section is doubtless far away from Paul's sighting. I place it here because it represents the feeling of "oldness" of much of the place [and many places in Wales]. It is part of the "atmosphere", even the spiritual nature of the unengineered land. It does not intrude.-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Such "naturalness" seems almost necessary to allow the intersection of whatever these experiences are based upon to manifest to us. In the area of the Beacons is something called in the literature Craig y Coed: a rocky outcropping which is a focus of fairy haunts. [near Pontneddfechan]. And there is a lake, Llyn Cwm Llwch, where on Beltane [appropriately] a door opens and one might there enter the fairyworld. At other times on that Lake, a fairy mermaid sings her siren song to lure men to a bad end---apparently Paul was able to avoid that. The point is, that encounters are felt to be part of this land in a variety of ways.-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Below the area of the Beacons is the country called Glamorgan, all across the southern coast of Wales. As mentioned in the old post, it is one of the Welsh areas where the King of the Fairies allowed an entrance into the other world. Here and there megaliths like the one at left remind one that this is still ancient and sacred country. One such place is Rhondda, where another fairy siren sits on a stone near her lake and lures travellers to no good end. [as this is so near Pontneddfechan, I wonder if the two lakes are really the same one]. At Maesteg it is said that a group of Irish fairies migrated across the sea to take residence in an old oak tree. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Evans-Wentz in his great book, had an interview which told of an encounter at Newton in about 1870. Here people were about to go to market [a prime time for the "Good Folk" to show up], when a woman saw a number of very tiny men gamboling about on the back of a mare and climbing up and down its mane. When she pointed this out, no one else said that they could see them. In Glamorgan, the fairy people are said to dress mainly in red, but sometimes with green, and to dance on moonlit nights in circles. They are not angels nor demons, and can behave with good or evil intention just as do we. Evans-Wentz reported a truly Out Proctor story which he was told by a person who said that the percipient had told him. [that is, it was not told as an old folk tale but as an encounter]. At Eynonsford, a man awakened to see a tribe of pixies busily slaughtering his ox. When they were done, they placed the bones and skin back "in order" and when he got up the next morning he found that the ox was whole [except for a new limp when walking which he attributed to his seeing the pixies misplace one of the bones]. Well, this is a good candidate for a vivid dream, despite the protestations of the witness to the contrary, but it also reminds me of the phenomenon seen in exorcism cases where the attending priests see all manner of apparently physical action [flying crockery et al], which when the prayers take effect turn out to have only happened as illusions. Further along the coast, in Laugharne, [this is in Carmarthenshire], a modern [2009] report tells of a pale red-headed water nymph-like entity "flowing" in green-blue silks across a park area. In this same area at the Lake of the Maiden [Llyn y Morwynion], another common story is that a tribe of fairies live there and can be seen entering and emerging from the lake, bringing their cows to and from pasture. Perhaps the flowing nymph was out for an adventure of her own.--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
In the north, there is a striking ancient megalith, the Pentre-Ifan Cromlech. This cromlech has a old connection with the Druids, who are said to have used it in their instructions of new candidates. Unusually roomy as cromlechs go, the inner space was said to be walled about with wood [or whatever] making a dark enclosed space. In this space, learnings/awarenesses would come to the novices. It reminds me of the mediaeval use of the underground tombs as "Purgatorios" for deep sacred meditation on ones life path.----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Fairies were reported to Evans-Wentz as dancing about the cromlech as well as the fields of nearby farms. He was told that they preferred red clothing and appeared like little children in military clothes. Red caps were a staple attire. One informant told him that the fairy folk were always about in that place and in great numbers, but invisible to those of us who weren't in the proper state of mind [or, one supposes, that they did not want to manifest to]. Again the comment was made that they were not angels good or bad, but rather a spirit race capable of either. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Other manifestations were reported from nearby. "Death or Corpse Candles" were described. One had appeared [apparently a Ball of Light] right inside the house. It migrated to the outside and across fields for some distance, a light-blue patch, which "dances as if borne by an invisible agency, and sometimes it rolls over and over". It ended ominously at a graveyard, and the percipient interpreted a later death to its augury. Another incident involved a haunted farmhouse near the cromlech. Typical poltergeist activity abounded along with the apparition of a Lady dressed in silk. Whether these things are related who can say? Are the Fairyfolk incidents one part of the array of ghostlights, will-of-the-wisps, poltergeists, and apparitions, or are we dealing with an unsorted mess? My intuitions are that it is an unsorted mess of different phenomena, but probably deliberately mixed up by the fairyfolk tricksters. And...I can rest comfortably in the knowledge that I have no idea what I am talking about.------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The old Welsh people are telling me that the Tylwyth Teg [the Fair Folk, their preferred name] have been with us [and are with us] since time immemorial. They are a spiritual race, not and never human [i.e. not "ghosts" of departed humans], and live in a world alongside our own [what we now call our parallel reality]. They can "cross over" and manifest, and allow us to glimpse them. They are like us not in body or "law", [that is they don't have to obey our physical laws] but are like us in that they have lives and interests and must make free choices to do good or ill. They like water and dancing for whatever reason and occasionally seem to like interacting with humans as well--but are pretty intolerant much of the time. Some seem to be generally good entities, and whole "tribes" sometimes are felt to be on the good side. And, the reverse is true for other individuals and groups---again, very like ourselves. Their behavior, when we are involved, seems to be aimed at amusement more than anything which we would regard as serious. One open-minded priest said that he wondered if God allowed them to interact with us at all, because we were so inherently non-spiritual in our ordinary lives, that an encounter with the Tylwyth Teg might shock us back to awareness that the spiritual world was really there. That is a thought, strangely, which resonates very much with this blog. { and "up there" I can feel Catherine Crowe smiling }.----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
In the far north around the Snowdon Mountains the Tylwyth Teg dance around many lakes and on one floats a disappearing island [at Rhyd-ddu, Llyn Cwellyn] where you can hear the music, and the entrance to the fairyworld is nigh. But the most atmospheric [holy?] place is Anglesey. Here gratefully, are still awesome megaliths and the landscape which was a Druid stronghold long after the time of the Earth religionists who made them. The alien-looking megalith on the left is attributed to, who else?, the Queen of Fairyland who lives in the Sea. Here can be heard the Tylwyth Teg "singing like angels" and occasionally visiting homes of we mere mortals. At Pentraeth they sing by the nearby lake and incidents were reported to Evans-Wentz wherein they would show on moonlit nights and behave unthreateningly, suddenly disappearing if approached to nearly. Mostly they are described as small and garbed in red, but one young woman told of walking at night when she encountered a normal sized pretty girl. She came quite close and reached out to her. Like previous tales of the Black Dog Pookhas, her hand passed right through. Recovering her nerves, she asked: "Why do you not speak?", whereupon the girl just vanished. Whether this was Tylwyth Teg or a separate apparitional phenomenon, who can say? But once again, many sorts of encounters appear in the same ["accepting"?] environments. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
There is a great deal more which can and should be said about the ancient Welsh landscape and its apparent appropriateness for encouraging these exciting anomalous encounters. I admitted above the poor incompleteness of my own knowledge of these matters but maybe you can do better. I'll try [but I'm not sure when] to put more of this together by reading a wonderful new acquisition to my library, an 1881 edition of Wirt Sikes' British Goblins---yes, I know, I should have done it before I wrote this, but, what can I tell you? {The thing IS difficult to penetrate you know, not exactly a page-turner}. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------On the other hand the picture for this section is rather neat. It is the passage tomb of Bryn-celli-ddu on the Isle of Anglesey. A Tylwyth Teg inhabitation no doubt right out of Tolkien--and, its passageway is oriented towards the rising of the Beltane Sun--so there.---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I can't help but believe that these encounters are still out there to be had. I can't help but believe that if I walked the welcoming sort of fairy path, that even I, with my horribly-trained scientific head, might be granted a glimpse of the Tylwyth Teg. And that would be one of the few sorts of experiences [this side of the Pearly Gates] that I would deem spiritually-expanding and just plain wonderful to be blessed with---even if it was a mischief making leprechaun. Seamus Muldoon, where are you?


  1. Prof: "I can rest comfortably in the knowledge that I have no idea what I am talking about."

    Beautiful, beautiful - a REAL scientist'd never claim anything more.

    When I went to university as a mature student in the early '90s - a time when I was still trying to convince myself my experiences were symptoms of incipient madness - I thought a dose of hardcore science might be the perfect cure, so went on an engineering science foundation core.

    In the various physics modules I took, every so often I'd come across these peculiar formulae that seemed to work but without any explanation as to why.

    Whenever I'd ask, various seemingly embarrassed lecturers'd inundate me with these torrents of abstruse gobbledegook that seemed more designed to confuse rather than enlighten me.

    But being a persistent little cuss, I eventually got one lecturer to admit off the record he, like a number of his colleagues, didn't really understand them either; and in fact at one stage he himself'd been taken to one side and told if he wanted to earn his doctorate he'd best just memorize the official spiel and recite it back - and stop asking questions!

    Maybe that's why I came to view science as a wonderful method for attempting to draw closer to the truth, rather than, as I'd originally viewed it - under the influence of Richard Dawkins' books - the fount of all knowledge.

    That was also the time when I finally started to see through the world view of the Dawkinians, and began to grow more comfortable with being either a straightforward loony or some microwave boiled brains tinfoil hat project of the CIA.

    Ooh! I've just realised: all this stuff you're waffling on about's just down the road from us, (well, on your scale of things).

    D'you know the Wirral - which is on the opposite bank of the Mersey, (a titchy little river, really, for one that had such a monumental affect on world history in general, and US history in particular) - is actually mentioned in Arthurian mythology?


    1. i know the wirral quite well;the trouble with the arthur stuff, however is that it is something of an accretion-you never know who added what when.but the wirral-specifically"the wilderness of wirral"(which i know will delight you),certainly features in "sir gawaine and the green knight."which i think may be dated.

  2. Prof: "I can't help but believe that if I walked the welcoming sort of fairy path, that even I, with my horribly-trained scientific head, might be granted a glimpse of the Tylwyth Teg."

    I tell y'wha': if I ever win the lottery - the statistical likelihood of which'd be exponentially increased if I ever actually did it - I'm paying for you to go on an all expenses paid tour of these here British Isles, (something I've never actually done meself!); and if I throw in as a guide my girl mate who me Dad flashed at - so to speak - as a ghost, you'll be guaranteed to experience something, 'cause that girl's a weirdness magnet, (as a five year old she was chased down the street during a huge thunderstorm by ball lightning which actually bounced on right past her as she was waiting for her parents to let her in)!

    So, 'oy, you lot up there! I've put the Prof on a promise now, and since you're the ones that say, ask and ye shall be given - I'm OFFICIALLY askin'.

    Chop, chop!

    1. Wonderful writing, alanborky, I just lurve the slightly irreverent comment on the whole scale of things, as diverse and mysterious the universe itself.. Please keep doing what you do, these little conjunctions with people like you reassure me that it's all worth while, that sardonic humour is the only way to approach life's exigencies and even joys. And be assured, you are way saner than most. xxx Marianne in Sydney.

  3. Hello, Prof.

    Fascinating stuff. I'm a push-over for it. For those who cannot afford or find a copy of 'British Goblins' by Sikes,the book is available in its entirety on the net. I'm halfway thru it, and it is GOOD reading. Regards.



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