What Are Elementals?
Elementals and Calling the Quarters
- Call the elements themselves
- Call the directions (north, south, east, west)
- Call the elementals or
- Call the guardians
Working with Elementals
How Do We Perceive Elementals?
"Elementals are natural energies associated with the elements of Earth, Water, Fire and Air. We can't really be sure what they are like in their own realms, for like all beings that appear to our clouded vision, they tend to be shaped by our own imagination. A simple example is an angel. Now, you can look at pictures throughout Christendom and see illustrations of robed figures with feathered wings, in various colours, designs and degrees of reality. Show such a picture to a foreigner or a child and they will probably be able to identify the image as that of an angel.
Angels don't actually look like that - they are not flying people but great energy forms, shapeless and rainbow-hued, if you ever see them in their own forms, as you can if you ask them to appear like that. But human artists, over many hundreds of years, have created the stereotyped image, originating from some vision but interpreted into human form. The same applies to Elementals. They look like their element, flowing, streaming, illuminating, almost invisible giant vortices of power, but because they are willing to limit themselves to the stereotyped image constructed by humans, they may be perceived as nymphs or dryads or sylphs or gnomes.
Once you learn to catch them unaware, by entering their worlds gently and without making crossdimentional ripples, you may see them as they are. Do realise, though, that all these beings are huge, vast, lofty and expansive. Imagining them as little animal-like spirits diminishes them and demeans their might. They are eternal, awesome, potent and far wiser than we children of Earth.
Part of the Old Arts is the acceptance of other dimensions, other realms, alternate realities from which we are only cut off by ignorance, or perhaps over-keen skepticism. We cannot see TV pictures without a set, electricity and an aerial, but those waves of information are all round us. We cannot see Elementals or angels, but if we visualise them, so mentally providing the power, the aerial and the receiver, we may well perceive them. As we tune these senses, just as an engineer would tune a satellite dish, the picture becomes clearer, the sound more distinct and our understanding of what is being transmitted greater all the time. All of us are born with the ability to pick up these 'astral' signals from the starry heights. Many of us as children were well aware that we could travel through the air, meet fairies or animals or other childhood heroes. We encountered them most nights in our 'dreams' but now, as adults, we have to learn again that childlike simplicity, acceptance of what our adult logic tells us is improbable. That is the secret of walking into the Otherworld, realising that there can be things of which we are not aware in our everyday state of mind, but which the Old Arts may reveal to us if we trust intuition and our inherited wisdom.
It may require us to make huge cultural leaps, but that is one aspect of 'becoming a witch' or walking the solo path towards the realms of the Great Ones. We will certainly be surprised, for that is a sure sign that something magical is at work in our lives, and that we have stepped through that flimsiest veil of conscious acceptance, and so begun to see and experience for ourselves. Try it; it might genuinely change your life!"
|A sculpture of an undine|
(a part of a fountain),
city: Baden-Baden, Germany
Water is connected to emotions (especially love) and intuition as well as cleansing, healing and fertility. The key word here is feeling, so undines embody all emotions and represent the aforementioned notions fully. Like I said, elementals really are extreme, so an undine has no connection with discipline (which is an earthy characteristic) nor will it be logical (any though and logicality is connected to air). Undines can be very emotional, spontaneous, hard to control and active (as in constantly moving) so reasoning with them or trying to calm them down is pointless. The best way to attract an undine into a ritual circle is by playing the emotion card; to be almost seductive and emotional in the invocation and possibly even a bit spontaneous as this is their nature also.
Fire is a male element and is connected to laws, order and renewal (but also destruction). Imagine a fire and a large one at that, it consumes everything in its path, it is dominant, untamed, many are afraid of it and show it respect because it has the power to kill, but when controlled it can be very useful. It does not care who or what it burns; it is in its nature to simply burn. Still, fire can give warmth and light both physically and metaphorically. Salamanders completely embody all of these qualities; they are very passionate, call for caution and good handling just as any fire does. So when calling them, there has to be a certain distance, there has to be caution. They also have to be firmly dismissed at the end of the ritual.
Although earth is a female element, gnomes are usually depicted as men and small ones at that. They are often mentioned in mythology living in the land and working hard to maintain their lifestyle. They react to respect and are not emotionally developed whatsoever as they do not have any of the characteristics of the other elementals. Gnomes are often described as being stubborn, very connected to the earth and all physical (including the senses), which is why the best way to attract them into a circle by activating all their senses (with smells, nice decorations and so on) as well as by showing great respect when invoking them.
The Problems of Working with Elementals
Until next time. Yours,