The element of air is connected to rational thoughts, the minds intellect and communication. It is a masculine element and it corresponds to the north, the winter season and the middle of the night, some also associate this element with dawn and spring. As I mentioned at the beginning of this lesson, it is really up to you what correspondences you want to use.
Air has also a strong affinity to movement and travel. It is not fixed to the ground, but it can rise up and travel around the world. It is an element of new possibilities, new ideas, messages and communication. Its energy can cause rapid change. The element of air is so essential as it contains oxygen but it also helps to bring new life, as it scatters seeds across the ground so that the plants can take root in the earth.
But we can also see the destructive energy of this element in tornadoes for example. Air can move water, or if the winds are unfortunate it can aggravate forest fires.
We can’t see air as such, but we can observe the movement of air by watching the clouds, or as we see the leaves of a tree dancing in the wind.
I strongly connect with the element of air, maybe not a big surprise as I’m an Aquarius.
When we think of air, we also think of mountains and high places, and this is where I ended up living. I live in the highest place of my area and it is always quite windy here. I didn't look for a place like that, because it can be a little unpractical and we often have to mend our fences, but I somehow just landed in this place.
Air people often enjoy to travel, are adventurous and they love their freedom. They always seem to be on the move. A lot of them are soft spoken, but they can have their periodic outbursts.
In general they dislike anything rigid and people who are overly concerned with rules.
The best representatives for the element of air in Faery are the sylphs, these are little winged creatures whose features are somewhat human, and probably what we associated most with faeries in general. The term originates in Paracelsus, who describes sylphs as invisible beings of the air, his elementals of air. Sylphs are believed to be an offshoot branch of the sidhe, also winged rulers of the dream world, controllers of the weather and the great birds of the mountains both regal in manner.
Birds are of course closely connected with the element of air, in folklore and mythologies birds were often messengers of the gods, and still today many people pay attention to the omens which birds can bring. Feathers are a wonderful representation of this element and I’m sure you have found many already and you will find many more.
When we find a feather we often asks ourselves what message it brings to us. Here are a few ideas :
Hawk: the magic of the hunt.
Eagle: huge amounts of energy but also bring peace, happiness and protection.
Magpie: magic, divination skills, wisdom and change.
Pigeon: peace, love and communication.
Blackbird: poetry, inspiration, music and a stronger connection with meditation.
Blue Jay: joy, happiness and light.
Crow: wisdom, knowledge and helping us to let go of unwanted feelings, thoughts or negative energy.
Robin: new projects, plans and beginnings.
White swan: purification, cleansing, beauty and positive energy
Black swan: can be used to dispel negative energy.
Owl: Healing, Intuition, Wisdom, spiritual growth
When working with the element of air, we can also have a look at the four winds.
I will give you a brief description of this, and you may want to work with the four winds but it is not something you have to do. However you can incorporate this in you Faery magic.
We have the four winds of North, East, South, and West. All of them with different attributes.
North Wind ruled by the God Boreas:
The North Wind is the wind of Death, not necessary a physical death, but it signifies change and transformation and the elimination of negativity. It is a dry and barren wind and you can use it in spellwork when you are angry, anxious or depressed for example. It can also help you to break a bad habit or to get better organized.
East Wind ruled by the God Euros
The east wind is the wind of renewed life, freshness, and intellect.
It signifies a new beginning, strength gathered, and a spark of creation. It is a warm wind and you can use it for changes for the better, especially in behavior. It relates also to the mind. It has the power of dramatic improvements. You can use it in spellwork for creative projects, new ventures, for inspiration and abstract learning. You can also work with it to improve your psychic abilities.
South Wind ruled by the God Notus
The south wind is the wind of cursing, or acts of deception.
It is associated with noon.
It is a hot and fiery wind and is also associated with spells for love, lust and passion.
The South Wind can be used for any type of magic when it’s blowing. It’s a good time to cast spells. As this wind is connected to fire, you might want to be careful, as we know fire can burn. You can also use it for purification and for working banishing magic whether it is for toxic people, jealousy or selfish actions.
West Wind ruled by the God Zephyrus
The west wind is the wind of love and fertility.
It is a cool and moist wind, it can carry a hint of rain or mist as it washes over the land.
It represents a time where everything stands still, the liminal time of twilight.
You can use it for water magic, and for healing, fertility and love spells.
It is also great for cleansing purposes or happiness, sleep and dream work.
Let’s bring in some lore and legends, and for this I want to go up farther north.
As air is often represented by wind we could take a closer look at the Valkyries. They are said to be Odin’s helping spirits and they carried the dead heroes to Valhalla. Nowadays they often seem gentle and nurturing but in heathen times they often had a more sinister image. Their name means „choosers of the slain“, they did not only chose who to take with them, but they also chose who died in battle and they used magic to ensure that their chosen one would not survive the battle.
They are associated with fairness, brightness, as well as bloodshed, and in some areas they were female spirits of carnage.
Frau Holle or Mother Holda, is a goddess one also could associate with air. She has many correspondences, so I would suggest to make your own research about her, but let’s have a brief look at her. Frau Holle has origins in Norse and German mythology, where she is revered as a goddess of the underworld, the land of the dead, the leader of the Wild Hunt, and guardian of young maidens and spinning and weaving. She is also acknowledged as an ancient sky-goddess who rules the weather, going back to Neolithic times.
What makes Holle stand out as a wind spirit is her airy nature, a fusion of different cultures, religions, and schools of thought.
Holda is a goddess of winter. She was said to bring on the first snowflakes of the year.
Holda is also a goddess of the faery folk. At least one race of faeries, the Huldrefolk, may be named for her.
Pixies are also associated with the element of air, it is said that they have pointy ears and noses and arched eyebrows. Their wings are shiny and translucent. In general they are quite friendly, depending on the lore, but they can be very cheeky and mischievous. The word Pixy may relate to the word Picts, the early inhabitants of Scotland, whose spirits the Pixies were once thought to be.
It is said that to much contact with iron can kill the pixies. Otherwise they love music and dancing and playing above all else. They are rich in magical power. They often use their powers to bring a smile to the face of a human friend.
However in Dartmoor and Cornwall they have a tendency to lead travelers astray, from that comes also the term pixie-led.
Here I will also share a little personal story.
Two years ago I traveled through Dartmoor with my husband. We only had one day left and decided to drive around and not go on a long hike. After a while we arrived at the Hound Tor. There is a parking very close by, maybe 500m from the Tor and you just need to go straight up. So we went up, looked around for a while and I took about 300 pictures. However after twenty minutes the mist rolled in and five minutes later, we couldn't see anything anymore. It was quite spooky, but also very atmospheric, I really loved it. So we still walked around for a short time until we’ve decided to go back to the car. I wanted to head straight forward to the parking, when my husband stopped me. He wanted to go into a complete different direction and for the life of him he couldn't figure out where we were. This is really not like him, as I’m usually the one who looses orientation. I was really sure about the way I wanted to go, but it took me a bit of persuasion for him to follow me. Every few meters he stopped again and looked around, as he was clearly lost. However a few minutes later we were back by the car. This was clearly a pixie-led situation and my husband was really astounded how he could have lost his way so easily. So when that should ever happen to you, and you may suspect pixie activity, it is said by turning your jacket inside out you can avert from getting lost.
For the time you are working with the element of air I would suggest to you to make your own incense.
A while ago I’ve made video on this topic and I also wrote a blog post, where I share my own herbal incense mix to connect with the faeries. Here are the links for you :
Blog Post: https://www.talesunfold.com/faeryconnection/
Another wonderful activity is a very simple one, just lay in the grass and watch the clouds, see how their form transforms into different shapes and let your imagination run wild.
Maybe you need some clarity on a specific topic in your life, just ask the clouds.
Whenever there is a windy day, take the opportunity and go for a walk in a windstorm. Of course if it’s really windy stay away from the trees, safety first, but enjoy it, as it brings literally a fresh wind into your mind.
As this element is associated with the mind, I want you to start writing, this doesn't have to be a long story, maybe you just want to write a little poem, a song, an article, whatever you like but write something. Let the words that you write express the feelings within you.
As you work with the element of air, it might be a good time to revisit Lesson One and do some more research about the different faeries. Take this time to learn something new. You can also research some of the beings I’ve mentioned in this lesson, like the pixies or the valkyries and see what you can find out for yourself, especially pixies have many different stories. You can also go back to the element of water and do more research about the Lady of the Lake, or about the Washer at the Ford for example.
Pay attention to feathers, wherever you go, as you connect with the element of air, you might find more feathers on your path. What do they mean to you? They are often signs of faery messages, on the internet you can find different sites where it is explained what the different colors of feathers mean.
Dressing up like Air
You could also try to wear light and floating clothes, in pastel colors, or white and yellow.
This might be a nice idea for you to do a little crafting. You could make your own wind chimes and hang them into your home or garden. A quick google search will help you to get some ideas, from using old keys, over beads and spoons you can find anything you like.
This is a practice by Gemma Gary, from her Book „Traditional Witchcraft - A Cornish Book of Ways“
To raise or lower the wind:
Thread a good length of cord through a hag stone and tie eight knots along its length. Take this is out to some exposed place and begin to whirl the stone in the air above your head, whilst invoking the spirits of the air. The speed at which the stone is whirled must be adjusted in accordance with the speed of the wind to be conjured. To slow the wind and conjure calm weather, one must begin by whirling the stone at great speed and gradually slow it down. To conjure great winds and gales, start to whirl the stone slow and gradually increase the speed to conjure the level of wind desired.
You may want to try this out, but always act responsible when using magic and don’t play around with weather magic.
Be the Wind
Go outside on a windy day to a place where you feel safe and undisturbed. Truly feel the element of air around you. Feel the wind on your face, on your skin and feel how it blows through your hair.
Listen closely to the sound of the wind, how the leaves rustle, maybe you can hear wind chimes nearby, or maybe even your own clothes make a sound while flapping in the wind.
Listen if you can hear any whispers in the wind.
Become aware of your own breath and let it merge with the air from outside. Breath with the rhythm of the wind, then change your breath to a deep and steady breathing. What changes for you?
Start moving your body, as the wind grows and wanes, you could move your arms according to this rhythm.
If you feel comfortable you could also start dancing in the wind.
To end this exercise you just need to become still again, lower your arms, maybe even sit on the ground for a minute and thank the wind for this experience.
Finding Stillness in the Wind
You can do this exercise on a wind still day outside or even inside.
Focus on your own breath for a moment and become aware of the transformation that takes place while you breath. You breath in oxygen and you breath out carbon dioxide. Breath in pure life and breath out everything that doesn’t serve you at this point.
Contemplate about the air that fills all spaces; the endless sky just as the tiniest corners of your human body.
How does it feel for you when the air is absolutely still?
Quiet your mind as best as you can and bring clarity into your thoughts.
Write some of your ideas down in your journal.
As we saw in this lesson, the wind is all about movement.
I want you to take the opportunity to play your favorite music and dance, dance like a madman or madwoman, dance like a graceful sylph, dance like a child, it doesn't matter how you do it just get that tushie moving.
Well as long as we work with air, we will focus on breathing a lot as it seems.
This exercise is a breathing exercise as well as grounding technique and a way to let the energy flow through ourselves.
You can do this exercise while standing up, or sitting down, just make sure your feet are touching the ground.
Give yourself a moment to become relaxed. Now take a deep breath in while counting to seven, and then breath out again while counting to seven.
Seven is a sacred number in Faery work.
It may be difficult at the beginning but you will get used to it.
Keep breathing and imagine how roots grow out of your feet, or if you are sitting imagine how they grow out of your spine. The roots dig deep into the earth and you pull up the energy of the earth and you bring it to your center. Now raise your arms above your head and open them so they shape a „V“. Imagine how there is an opening in the sky and a bright light pours down on you. The light flows through you, down your arms and it merges with the earth energy in your center. Let the light from above and the energy from below flow through your entire body.
Don’t forget to breath.
When you are ready let the light pass through your body, up to the sky again, and let the energy of the earth pass to your feet, and into the earth. Lower your arms and let the roots disappear into your body again.
Take three deep breaths to finish this exercise.
At the beginning it may be easier to focus just on your breath, this is absolutely fine and you can add the grounding and centering technique when you are more aquainted with the breathing technique.
Seek out every possibility to go to high place while you work on this lesson. Enjoy the views from the high places and let your mind become clear while you walk up.
You can try then one of the above exercises. I wish I could see pictures of you beautiful people dancing on a high place 😃
Please have fun with this.
We already saw an exercise that focuses on the moving aspect of this element. With this exercise I also want you to focus on the moving aspect, but also on exploration and to get to know new things in your life.
So as you work on this lesson I want you to take a day off and go on a little adventure.
You may want to take a hike, or you want to take your bicycle and ride somewhere you’ve never been before, maybe you even want to paddle a canoe. Again it is about moving.
Got to a place you have never been before, of course you can also enjoy taking a longer stay and go camping for a few days. Whatever is possible for you.
Have fun on your adventure, don’t worry about taking anything with regarding Faery work, just enjoy your day out.
For this I would suggest to make some incense again, I would recommend to use mugwort, this is THE Vision herb. It is easy to cultivate and grows easily.
We will not enter the Faery Realm at this point, just ask the faeries for permission to get a glimpse of their world. I repeat you will not actively enter their realm.
Play some drumming music, or something else with a steady rhythm.
Take the dried leaves and burn them on charcoal.
Close your eyes and become still.
Focus on your breath and on the steady rhythm.
Let your mind wander and just be open for whatever you receive.
This is an open exercise and there will be no further instructions.
You can do this as long as you feel comfortable, may it be five minutes or an hour, it is up to you, just be sure to only observe and not walk around in Faery.
When you are ready to come back simply open your eyes and sit up.
Move your body, drink and eat something and write your experiences in your Faery journal.
Feed the birds
At the time you work on this lesson it may not be nessesary yet, but maybe you want to think already what you could do during the cold winter months to help to feed the birds. Maybe you want to buy or build a little birdhouse for them, or you could hang up some feeding cages for them. Connect through this activity with our little feathered friends.
Work with the sylphs
The sylphs can help you find solutions to difficult problems, ease overwhelming feelings and allow you to get a better perspective on any situation, as they dwell up in the sky and they can help you to see the problem from higher up, and give you a little bit of distance. Call upon them for new insights, fresh ideas and clarity of thought. Go on top of a hill, relax and feel them caress your cheeks and playing with your hair. Let your mind be refreshed and your creativity stirred when connecting with them. To maintain contact throughout the day, pay attention to your breath and inhale deeply.
Your Faery Homework for Air
- Listen to your guided meditation
- Try out some of the activities
- Do the exercises during the time you work with the element of air
- During your busy day, take a moment where you just become aware of your own breath, even if it is only for a minute, just take a few deep breaths and let the world around you slow down for just a moment.
Write your experiences down in your journal
Whenever you have negative thoughts about yourself, replace them with the words :
„ I am enough, together we shine“
even if it doesn't make sense to you, just repeat those words over and over again until you've banished the negative thoughts.