Tag Archive | elements

How the Fire learned her magic

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Once upon a time Fire thought she had no magic. She knew Earth had magic. Earth held the seeds that sprouted in the soils both rich and poor. Earth could make more land, she could move it around. But Fire didn’t know what her magic was.

She knew Water had magic. Water could make things disappear and float things. She was the fluid that made life in all living beings. Fire thought Water had amazing magic.

Air had magic. She made the wind blow and the clouds move. She could shape trees and rocks. She could make things spin and move things from place to place. But what was Fire’s magic?

Fire was getting depressed when finally the other Elements decided they had to tell Fire what her magic was.

They went to see Fire who was hiding in a volcano in Southern Italy. “Why are you hiding, Fire?” They all asked.

“You all have magic and I don’t.” Fire said morosely. She was having quite the pity party.

“You silly thing,” the Elements said, “Of course you have magic, we all have magic. Don’t you know what magic is?”

Fire shook her head no.

“Magic is Change and you do it all the time. Don’t you cook people’s food and keep them warm when it’s cold? Don’t you change plain old rock to shiny sparkly metal? Sometimes you get out of control but we all do. It can’t be helped. Sometimes major change is needed to heal things. When you burn forests it’s the only way native plants can come back where they belong. Fire! You have always had magic, you just didn’t see it.”

Fire flickered quietly as she thought. “I do have magic. Why did I ever think I didn’t? Shall we go change the world, sisters?”

And they went off to shape the world and to help it grow.

How the Air learned to sing

Once upon a time the Air was very quiet. There was no sound as she moved across the Earth and Water. This used to scare the Earth quite a lot and it also made the Air lonely. No one ever greeted her or played with her because they didn’t know Air was there.

The other Elements got together for a meeting. “This has got to stop!” said the Earth. “How can we work together and play together when we never know she’s there!”

“We can’t see her or hear her. How can we change that?” said Fire.

“We need her to make some noise. Can we teach her to sing?” pondered Water.

“Hmmm, maybe I can.” contemplated the Earth. “I’m tired of getting spooked and when she knows she’s frightened us she gets even quieter!”

So the Earth put a mountain where she thought the Air was and sure enough the Air tried very shyly to creep around the mountain. “Please stop and stay for a bit.” the Earth said to the Air.

“Why?” said the Air. “Why do you want me to stay?” The Air was moving in slow spirals.

“Because we want to get to know you and you never play with us. May I teach you to sing?” said the Earth. “We’d like you to play with us and we can’t see you or hear you and if you would sing with us I think we’d all be happier.

“You want me to play and sing with you?” asked the Air.

“Yes! You are the only one who doesn’t play with us and we would like you to join us and be friends.” said the Earth.

“Really? You want me to play with you?” cried the Air. “I’ve been lonely and I didn’t know if I was welcome.”

“How do you know if you aren’t welcome if you don’t come and find out.” asked the Earth. “So, do you want to learn to sing or not?”

“Oh, yes!” said the Air, “Yes, what do I have to do?”

“See the trees on this mountain? They have leaves that if you move against them will make a lovely sound. And if you move around this mountain quickly that will make a different sound. Why don’t you try that and then I think Water has some sounds to teach you as well.” explained the Earth.

The Air started through the trees and it made a lovely rustling noise and she tried moving slowly and then quickly and she found she could vary and change the sound with different speeds. Then she tried moving up, down, and around the mountain. That made fun noises too. The Air was getting more and more excited. This was fun!

Air went to find Water. “Hello Water! What can you teach me? I’m so excited!”

“I can see that,” laughed the Water. “I take it Earth found you and showed you how to sing with the trees?”

“Oh, yes! And it’s lovely.” said Air. “How did you know I could sing?”

“I heard you and I liked what I heard,” laughed Water. “Would you like to try some more sounds?”

“Please?” sang Air.

“All right, please move across the lake here and see if you can make the tops dance and then you can try the ocean. If you push it around I’m sure it will make some lovely sounds.” explained the Water. “When you’re done, why don’t you try Fire?”

The Air went and played across the lakes and learned wonderful splashing sounds. She stayed and played for awhile and then went to try the ocean. She found she could make huge booming sounds and little splashing sounds and this taught her a new sound, giggling. This pleased her very much and she went to find Fire.

“Fire! I’m having so much fun playing with the Earth and the Water. I can make noise! Will you teach me too?” Air was very excited and moving in quick little eddies.

“Of course,” said Fire. “I’ve been waiting for you to ask. There is a nice campfire down the way. Why don’t you try playing with her and then you can work your way up to one of my volcanoes.”

Air went to the campfire and found she could make nice crackling noises but she had to be careful. She didn’t want to get out of control and hurt something. She went and found the volcano and saw that she could make more loud booming noises as well as small dripping and glooping & blooping noises. Air was very happy and noticed that playing with the other Elements was fun. The Elements were happier too and that is why Air sings. They were supposed to work together and now they could. All was in balance and good in the world.

How the Earth learned to dance

Once upon a time the Element of Earth was sad. She had been looking all over and no matter where she looked the other elements and things around her danced. She wanted to dance. She knew if she danced people and animals would get hurt.

The other Elements noticed that Earth was silent. So they came to ask her what was wrong. Fire was the bravest so they let her ask the question. “Earth, what’s wrong? Is there something we can do?”

The Earth thought and then said,” I don’t know if you can. I see all of you dancing alone and with each other but I can’t join in and I really, really want to.”

Fire was quiet and then said, “Wait here a moment.” She went to the other Elements and they met in a huddle. “Is there some way we can each let her dance with us? She can’t dance alone but I bet there is some way she can dance with each of us.”

Air spoke up, “Well, I can take some of her and dance. I can’t be all over her but I can dance with her edges.”

Air went to Earth. “May I go to the dry parts of you and would you dance with me?”

“Oh, yes!” said the Earth.

And the Air went to the desert and started to spin slowly across the Earth’s surface. A dust devil rose in the Air and the Air gently spun the Earth across the desert surface.

“Oh that was lovely”, cried the Earth. “I can dance with my edges! If I dance with my edges people will usually have time to get out of the way. Do you think Water and Fire will dance with my edges?”

Air replied, “Of course, let’s go see.”

Water stepped forward. “Would you like dance in me or me to dance over you?”

Earth was so excited, “Let’s try both!” And Water took some Earth and danced her through the waves taking her back and forth all over the world. “Would you like me to dance over you now?”

The Earth smiled happily and Water slid and danced down mountains and over hills laughing all the way and the Earth laughed too. If you listen you can still hear them laughing if you go to a brook or stream. “I think Fire would like to dance with you now, too.”

“Do you mind if we heat you up?” asked Fire.

“Oh no! However you need me to be I’ll be.” Replied the Earth.

And Fire heated up the Earth around her. “I can only do this if you let me through some cracks, is that alright?”

The Earth sighed happily. Fire took her up through a crack and spun in the air, they came back down, they flowed over the Earth rising and falling. Air and Water joined in all three danced. Now there are islands that people call Iceland and Hawaii.

The Earth was happy. She could dance, maybe not all of her but parts of her and she could be happy with that.

How the Water learned to Laugh

DSC08358Once upon a time Water never laughed. Earth laughed. You could hear it in mud pots that burped their hot mud up. Air laughed. You could hear it in spring breezes and in old forests. Fire laughed. You could hear it in volcanoes that threw lava and watched it flow down hillside but Water didn’t laugh. She just flowed smoothly along.

Water was serious. She needed to be rain for the crops. She needed to take ships on their journeys. She didn’t have time to play. She had deserts to brighten with spring flowers. She had missions to complete. Earth didn’t have to do anything if she didn’t want to do it. Fire had other things to do and Air was there around everything.

Water was serious.

Earth was tired of how serious Water was. She was determined to make Water laugh. She threw up big rocks at the edge of the ocean. Water just pushed them aside and wore them away. She tried to force Water between two plateaus and Water created the Grand Canyon. Nothing seemed to work until Earth decided to tickle Water. She went to several places around the world all at once. She went to the headwaters of Victoria Falls. She went to the headwaters of the Mighty Mississippi. She went to the headwaters of the Danube and the Rhine and she asked all the small rocks in those headwaters all over the globe to rise slowly at different times. The rocks were to be small enough to roll easily and to move in Water’s streams.

The Water began to feel something odd. What was happening. It was a very strange feeling. It itched and it wouldn’t stop. It wasn’t bad feeling but it started to feel … funny. Water started to chuckle. She’d never felt this way before. It was Fun! She started to giggle and then to laugh. She broke into laughter and kept chuckling. She liked this feeling. She was going to remember how this felt. She decided she didn’t always have to be so serious and that maybe, just maybe it was alright to every once in awhile to be a laughing stream or a chucking brook.

Earth watching from a distance nodded to herself and went on her way.

Been thinking about elements and where they intersect our lives the last few days. I have come to the conclusion that one (at least this one) can not deal properly with grief issues unless one spends time in the Earth element. That is besides the obvious symbolism of earth to earth.

Death leads us back to the dark of the earth womb as does this time of year. Hecate is often associated with Earth as well as her ravens. And ravens as scavengers and carrion birds are birds of the earth as well as Air. Birds of cleaning the earth of the rotten things. ( Nature {PBS}was on ravens last night and was wonderful. It had Maddy Prior talking about them as well as Native American trickster traditions.)

I may have Sun and Moon in Air and five other planets and aspects in Water but Earth is where I go to feel safe and process. Yesterday I spent time in my garden, planting and cleaning and watering. My garden teaches me so much. When to be ruthless and bring death as needed such as dealing with my nemesis the snails and slugs. When to cut back and prune like taking care of the rapacious vines and my roses. When to take stock and prepare for at least our small bit of winter so Spring can come such as planting bulbs and winter bedding plants. And to appreciate the white rose that was blooming yesterday and the camellias which are early. When to honour life and when to honour death and to appreciate the balance between the two as well as the balance between dark and light.