Puck and a Fairy, from A Midsummer Night’s Dream
by Arthur Rackham
Some call him Robin Good-fellow,
Hob-goblin or mad Crisp,
And some againe doe tearme him oft,
By name of Will the Wispe;
But call him by what name you list,
I have studied on my pillow,
I think the best name he deserves
Is Robin the Good Fellow.
— from The Merry Pranks of Robin Goodfellow,
probably by Ben Johnson (1572?-1637)
In a recent discussion with some of my Circle sisters and brothers, the topic came up of how to determine, in fact, whether you are being visited by the Good Folk. Is there really a Faery there, when you see that flicker in the corner of your eye? Or get that tingle upon your skin? Or suddenly notice the scent of roses or lilies in the air, where there are none?
These are but a few of probably thousands of ways, over the centuries, that humans have discovered that they are being contacted by the People of Peace.
Of course, not all visitors from other realms are the Sidhe. There are certainly ancestor spirits, the beloved dead, the spirits of your land, plant devas, and so on.
Despite all the fearful lore about Others of all sorts, including the Fair Ones, in my experience, those that initiate contact with us, rather than responding only to our invitation, usually have a good reason for doing so. And I believe that in most cases, the reason is well-meaning.
So, if you feel that you are not alone as you meditate at your altar, or as you putter amongst your flowers, you are probably right. And the simplest way to ascertain who, exactly, is visiting you, is to ask.
One of the common themes in many faery tales (many of which have become distorted and sensationalized versions of actual contact experiences), is the power of naming. Benevolent Folk, when asked, will tell you who they are. Once you’ve confirmed that they are of the Faery race, politely ask for their names.
If, for some reason, the energy being near you refuses to answer, or you feel they are dissembling in their response, politely but quickly remove yourself. And please avoid sharing your own name, even though they may well know it, and even call you by it. By actually giving your name, you are creating a magical bond, as have they by giving or not giving theirs to you.