For ages, people have told stories of Fae mythology and folktales. The Fae were depicted as frightening shadows in the night and human-like beings with magical abilities in these myths.
This article will give you an overview of what Fae are and what uses they have in the Wiccan tradition.
What are the Fae?
The Fae are magical entities that appear at critical junctures in one’s life and live in liminal spaces (an area where two worlds connect, like a forest).
The Fae are supernatural spiritual beings or creatures who live in the Otherworld.
In European mythology, they are mythological beings: spirits characterized as metaphysical, supernatural, or preternatural.
General Facts from Fae Mythology
The Fae are notoriously mischievous and cunning and should only be interacted with if you know exactly what you’re up against. Make no promises or offerings that you can’t keep, and don’t make any deals with the Fae unless you know exactly what you’re getting–and what they’re getting in return.
(Later parts of this article will help with this).
You should know that there are no gifts or presents among the Fae; every transaction is an exchange, and it is never one-sided.
Faeries are frequently linked with the dead. The souls of the dead were said to lodge near churchyards on fairy knolls, waiting to reunite with their bodies on the Day of Judgment.
Faeries are small because the soul is a miniature replica of the person to whom it is tied.
In the Celtic tradition, Ban Sidhs have been compared to ghosts. A less widely held notion was that the faeries were actually humans, based on the recollection of a more primitive race driven into hiding by invaders and living in caverns or fens.
So, where does the term come from?
The Terminology “Fae”
What is the distinction between the terms fairy and faerie? Fairy, faerie, Fae, fey, and fair folk are all names that are frequently used interchangeably.
Throughout the years, several historians have proposed many explanations for the origins of the names Fairy or Faerie.
So, depending on who you ask and what civilizations they’re referring to, you can get a variety of responses.
“Faery” is the proper term to use when referring to Spiritual Beings or Celtic and Fae Wicca deities. “Fairy,” refers to creatures seen in fairy tales’ imaginative pages. There is some overlap since characters in fairy tales can be elves, fairies, goblins, and other Fae creatures.
Faery Witchcraft and Wicca Fae Mythology
Fae Wicca is the worship of one or more patron deities from the ancient Celtic tradition. Faery witches combine magical rituals with ancient pagan feasts honoring the seasonal, solar, and lunar cycles, the earth’s rhythms, nature, and the Divine as represented by various Fae aspects.
If you choose Faery Wicca, know that it is a way of life that shapes and improves one’s daily life. It’s a syncretic type of Witchcraft that combines Wiccan principles with a concentration on dealing with magical creatures, elementals, and nature spirits.
When possible, rituals are held in the woods, forest groves, or near lakes or big bodies of water, with rites held in the woods, forest groves, or near lakes or large bodies of water ( but when this is not possible, the practitioner can bring elements of the natural world into ritual practices and spellwork).
Worship of the earth is important, as is respect for all creatures, large and tiny.
Put simply, Faery witchcraft is one of many ways to be Wiccan. It is a form of Wicca that seeks out Fae to enhance the practitioner’s magick.
Can Fae Lie?
Yes, Fae can lie. Remember that many Fae are evil and will try to cause harm. Do not believe them no matter how much trust you’ve earned.
When engaging with Wicca as a part of one’s practice and as a way of life, the practitioner should not engage with or encourage these devious creatures if the intent is to do harm.
Fae magic should be done for a specific purpose known ahead of time. Otherwise, you are just playing with fire.
Remember the threefold rule: if you practice Faery magick and the Fae ends up causing harm, even if it is not on purpose, that negative energy will come back to you three times worse.
Go read any of the classic Fae mythology listed in the references section to get a taste of how terribly this has gone throughout history.
How to Find and Interact with Fae
If you are going to summon, interact with, invoke, or use Fae in Wicca, then you will need to learn where they live.
Fae live in a place that goes by many names: The Land of the Fae, the Inner Realm, or the Otherland, according to legend and many magical practices.
It is easier to visit at between times. These are times when time is transitioning from one state to another, such as sunrise, dusk, and midnight, to name a few. Equinoxes, solstices, New Moon phases, and even Samhain, when the old Pagan year gives way to the new, are all good times to connect with the Fae and Spirits.
The easiest way to find faeries in nature is to look for a “faery ring.”
Faery rings are essentially finding a ring of natural objects that wouldn’t naturally form a ring. This way you know that supernatural forces are at work.
A ring of mushrooms around a tree or in an open area is frequently thought to be a sign of faeries. Fae prefer to perch on top of mushrooms to make it look as if they are growing out of them and blend in with the surroundings.
A circle of dead grass also counts. It’s hard to give specifics because whatever you encounter will be unique to the area and faery you deal with.
Do not ever sit in the ring. This is the faery’s zone. It can be useful to meditate near the faery ring until the faery appears to you.
Finding the Fae
Now that you’ve found a faery ring, you will want to find the actual Fae associated with it.
This will not be easy.
Fae are misunderstood beings who should not be enraged. When irritated or when they believe humans have overstepped their limits, Fae might turn violent.
Fae are primarily concerned with themselves, but they may be interested in humans if they feel there is anything unusual about them.
Warning: Learn to protect yourself in the section below before trying to make contact.
Wait patiently near the ring. Listen for laughter or look for flickering lights. This is how the Faery will first make contact. It may seem natural, like sunlight through trees, but this can be how the Faery tests you.
A nut may fall from a tree into your lap. This is the first part of an exchange and you should go home and find a return gift. Making contact can be a long process that involves many trips as the Faery comes to trust you and understand your intent.
Although some Fae will be nice and helpful, don’t assume that all Fae will want to collaborate with you. Some will be courteous, while others will be completely uninterested in you.
You can’t force a Fae to collaborate any more than you can force an animal to cooperate. You must realize that not every Fae will approve of you. Keep your expectations in control and don’t get insulted.
A Faery Summoning Spell
Fill a crystal glass halfway with water and place it in the Full Moon’s light. Bring the glass inside before it is exposed to the morning light.
Write or carve the name of the Faerie you want to call into an open area of dirt. If you don’t know the name, I recommend using a reference book. My favorite is Fairies: A Guide to the Celtic Fair Folk by Morgan Daimler.
Place five twigs at a location where you believe Faeries may reside in a circle. Wait five nights and then chant the Faery’s name five times.
Then you must wait as discussed in the previous sections.
What exactly are you looking for? If we turn to Fae mythology for answers, you’ll learn that Fae come in all shapes and sizes. It’s impossible to predict what yours will be.
Here’s a list of commonly asked questions about Fae appearance:
- Do Fae have wings? In short, the answer is not necessarily. For example, the kelpie of Celtic lore is a type of Fae without wings. They take the shape of a human or horse until dragging you into the water.
- How many fingers do Fae have? This is a key giveaway. Fae can have 4, 5, or 6 fingers on each hand. Thus, if you find a small human without 5 fingers, you could be dealing with the Fae.
- Do faeries have blood? No. The Fae are pure spirits in nature. They will not bleed blood if you manage to cut one.
Protecting Yourself Against Faeries
The most common form of protection is to carry a charm made from something that repels Faeries. Remember to only do this once you find out you do not want to interact with the Fae anymore. If you carry this with you, you will not be able to make the first contact.
Herbs that are known to provide protection are:
- Dry bread carried in the pocket
- Churchyard mold
- St John’s Wort
Also, make sure you have a Wiccan protection spell memorized and ready to use in the case of calling an evil Fae. You can find one here. Carry a stick with you to quickly draw a circle of protection around yourself.
Tips for encountering the Faery
Here are a few ideas for encountering the Fae.
- Do not eat their food.
- Do not give them your name.
- Do not enter the fairy ring.
- Do not be rude.
Remember, if one makes itself known through a gift, it may come as food or plant. Do not eat this and make sure to return a gift.
Names have incredible power. This is why you can use the faery names to summon them. But this goes both ways. Once a faery has your name, it has control over you.
Since many Faeries are evil or tricky, entering their ring and being rude to them can cause a major long-term problem for you. They can curse you with bad luck or worse.
Are Fae weak to iron?
In classic Fae mythology, the Fae are weak to iron. It’s sometimes stated as “cold iron.” Many folktales revolve around this myth and it persists in popular culture to this day.
It is not known if this is true, and I no longer believe it. Stick to the above methods of protection to be sure.
- “The Origins of Fairies,” Ellen Castelow, Historic UK.
- Kirk, Robert; Lang, Andrew (2007). The Secret Commonwealth of Elves, Fauns and Fairies. Easy Reading Series. Aberfoyle, Scotland: Forgotten Books.
- Narváez, Peter (1997). The Good People: New Fairylore Essays. University Press of Kentucky.
- Diane Purkiss, Troublesome Things: A History of Fairies and Fairy Stories (Allen Lane, 2000).