Fairies – an excerpt

Dec 6th, 2017 | By | Category: Book News, Books, Books for Pagans

Here’s a taster from Morgan Daimler’s new book on fairies…

“Fairies have long fascinated and frightened people and a complex set of traditions has risen around them that reflects this. In a Celtic context these beliefs and practices are often called the ‘Fairy Faith’ and represent the sum total of what humans have learned about fairies over countless generations. Despite its name the Fairy Faith is not actually a specific religion itself, although it is most strongly associated with Christianity, and anyone of any belief system can follow the Fairy Faith.

This book is not a text on the modern idea of what fairies are, and really there’s little need for such a book. There are already quite a few on the market that are aimed at a pagan audience and written from that perspective. What this book is meant to be is a text for pagans focusing on the older understanding of fairies while still seeing them as a part of our very modern world. It focuses largely on the Celtic fairies and to some degree closely related cultures with similar fairy beliefs, but fairies can be found around the world and in every culture as far as I know. It would be impossible, though, to discuss every fairy from every culture in any depth in a single book, so instead this book will aim at offering a deeper view with a specific focus.

As we begin it is probably best to be clear that if you are expecting friendly little flower fairies or ephemeral nature spirits this book is not going to give you what you are looking for. The American cultural view of fairies since the Victorian era seems to be very strongly influenced by a subconscious reflection of idealized human culture. Prior to that time we see a widespread, real belief in the Good People as a force to be respected and feared, propitiated and protected against. But starting around the Victorian period we see an increasing cultural diminishment of the fey into cute winged children and nature sprites, essentially harmless and entirely pleasant. They become the province of children and a thoroughly domesticated garden. This, I think, can rightly be viewed as a reflection of the wider culture of the time, which was one of the middle class, of repression and sanitization, one that in many ways sought to rewrite unpleasant stories into
pleasant ones to create an illusion of a better world.”


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