No one, but no one, knows place, land, water, Earth, trees or even humans, better than the elemental beings. The degree to which active and tended to relationships with the elemental beings has become such an “out there,” weird, and forgotten idea, displays the degree of importance they actually have to the medicine work and spiritual practices of this planet.
On planet Earth, if you want to be a medicine worker, you must have a relationship to the elemental beings of place and Time. This bond was broken, destroyed and lost so long ago because it was the only way to remove us from our medicine, obstruct our power.
But the elemental beings never forgot. They waited and they watched and they recorded and they hid and they planned and they prepared…when will those who can hear us return? Where are our humans?
They have been trivialized, and they have been demonized. Most humans are terrified of this relationship. And yet they also feel the inherent truth of it. And that terrifies them even more.
The elemental beings (wedeme, kontomble, fairies, gnomes, elves, sprites) are ancient and yet they have youth, joy and laughter; playfulness. They love word play and riddles and quests and treasure hunts and surprise!! They love to evoke that in us, as well as our laughter, because it opens us back to awe and wonder to which we are at risk of losing total connection. Mystery? Yes. Why? Because questions keep us wondering. Wondering is a place inside that allows us to become surprised. And what is surprise? A huge opening.
It’s difficult for me to write of them. The relationship is so far beyond words and also filled with mystery, awe and tender connection and vulnerability on both sides. And so it should remain, but I would be remiss to not speak of them. Though it would be easy not to, because even as they are woven so deeply into every piece of the medicine work, they also keep themselves out of the spotlight, so egoless and invisible, that we can forget to mention them. They are small, so small, that nobody, not even the rain has such small hands.*
Their brains are not like ours. Their consciousness is different than ours, which is why we so badly need them. Their consciousness is one with the Earth and the cosmos, one of intricate webbing and embeddedness. Disconnection and separation are not something they choose to entertain. This, for them, is illness. This, for them, is unhealthy. For and to them, everything is gloriously connected, and they ardently show us over and over again, that we must heal the breakages, the fraying, the shattering, the holes, the hardened. We must rip off the scars of defense and hardening against, under which healing is needed— underneath, underneath, inside, within, deep down layers of hidden, hidden hurt, old wounds; we must dig them all out and display them and soothe them.
They LOVE us! Omgoodness! Do they ever, and they wish the best for us but truly it is Gaia they worry about for she is their Mother and their home and they see. They see what is happening and they know humans are the ones who can actually do something about it.
But it is not self serving. No. It is in service to life. Life! Life.
Defenders, protectors of life. And yes, if you do something against life, they may not be kind to you, for it hurts them physically and you shouldn’t do it anyway.
But at the same time, they need our protection and care. We are bigger than them, literally, and we have different skills; which they admire. And they need us…they have trusted and we have not been kind to that trust.
In the Dagara tradition, one must marry, merge consciousness or with an elemental being in order to be able to divine. I believe very strongly this was a worldwide phenomena of medicine people in all places having different articulations, of course, but that it was lost to most of us, and that is why the Dagara lineage can help restore so many others. THEY NEVER LOST THIS. This is of unimaginable importance. We owe a great debt to the Dagara lineage.
The understanding that a human being cannot divine alone, without the elemental beings—a being with another consciousness guiding them; without collaborating with another species, a species that is one with the planet in every way, a species that has a very different point of view—is an understanding that is impeccably astute, and inordinately sane. Humans are flawed and we are flawed by our egos and with our arrogance. Relationships with the elemental beings guard against this.
“No,” they tell us, “that is not how it is. That is only how you think it is because you’re human. That is the way you want it to be or the way you think it should be because of all you cannot see.”
They continually expose our humans minds, our own consciousness, our own point of view, to us, pointing out to us the pitfalls. They help us remain humble, open and aware of our own blind spots. Of course they brought this medicine to us, and back to us. Of course we need them. Look what has happened to the planet since we lost connection to them. Oh my, do we need them.
The elemental beings are ingenious. True genius. I do believe that the reason why genius is associated with the world daemon is because of this.
The bonds are strong and can last through generations of a family lineage, multiple lifetimes. They wait for us when we die. They wait for us to come back or for someone new in the lineage to be born to take up the relationship again, to work together again. It is a symbiotic, mutually enhancing, relationship.
Some humans say, “I must see them. They must give me proof.” Ha! No faster way to send them away. If you say that, then it is clear you have no use for the mystery or the quiet subtleties of the world and you have no tenderness for them. They require tenderness. They are so tender and fierce at once. But above all, the deepest truth about the elemental beings, one that must be understood and respected is this: the elemental beings are very shy.
Would we but remember how to engage beings that are shy.
~Theresa C. Dintino
©Theresa C. Dintino 2018
*line from e.e.cummings poem, somewhere I have never traveled
©Theresa C. Dintino 2018
Theresa C. Dintino is an ancestral Strega (Italian wise woman), Earth worker, and initiated diviner in the West African Dagara tradition. For more than 20 years Theresa has studied and practiced an Earth-based spirituality. She currently helps others reclaim their personal lineages through her divination work. Theresa is the author of seven books which include her Tree Medicine Trilogy. Learn more about her books here.