Oweynagat Cave of the Cats

Oweynagat Cave – Cave of the Cats – Gateway to the Underworld and the Morrigan’s Palace.

Oweynagat Cave – Cave of the Cats
– Gateway to the Underworld and the Morrigan’s Palace. Rathcrohan / Rosscommon, Ireland
GPS: 53.79677, -8.31038
Article/Research by Thomas Baurley/Leaf McGowan/Technogypsie Productions, 10 October 2017

One of my most favorite sites in Ireland is the “Cave of the Cats” underneath the realm of “Rathcrohan“. It is officially called “Oweynagat” and pronounced “Owen-ne-gatt”.
The Cave is also labelled “Uaimh na gCat”, Irish translating to “Cave of the Cats”. When I first visited this site we had a tremendously hard time finding it. We found where it was supposed to be, but it lay behind fencing on a farmer’s field. We knocked on the farmer’s door, and there was no answer. A neighbor saw us, asked what we were doing and who we were, and he showed us the entrance, giving us permission to enter. It was a small hole under some Fairy thorn trees. The Site is actually a natural narrow limestone cave that hosts a man-made souterrain at its entrance. This is seen by all as the official entrance to the Otherworld and home to the Morrigan or Medh. In the Medieval Period of Ireland, it was labeled “Ireland’s Gate to Hell”. It is a particular sacred site for the Pagan holiday and festival of “Samhain” or Halloween.

It is said that during the Feast of Samhain, the dead, their God/desses, and Spirits, would rise from their graves and walk the Earth. This cave is one of the main places where Spirits and the dead associated with the Fae and/or the Morrigan, would re-surface including creatures, monsters, and the un-dead. There exists an Irish legend based off the “Adventures of Nera” where a warrior is challenged to tie a twig around the ankle of a condemned man on Samhain eve, after agreeing to get him some water would discover strange houses and wouldn’t find water until the third house. Upon returning him back to captivity would witness Rathcroghan’s royal buildings destroyed by the spirits. After this he must follow the fairy host to the Sidhe where he meets a woman who tells him the vision he saw will happen a year from now unless his mortal comrades are warned. He leaves the Sidhe and informs Ailill of his vision who destroys the Sidhe in response.

Some believe the “síd” or the Sidhe of this tale is either the Mound of Rathcroghan or Oweynagat, the Cave of the Cats. It makes the most sense that the Cave of the Cats is where the destructive creatures and fae emerged. There was a triple-headed monster called the Ellen Trechen that went on a rampage across the country before being killed by Amergin, father of Conal Cernach. There have been tales of small red birds emerging from the cave withering every plant they breathed on before being hunted to their death by the Red Branch. There is also legends of herds of pigs with similar powers of decay emerging from the cave until hunted and killed by Ailill and Medb.

The name itself, “Oweynagat” is believed to refer to the Magical wild cats featured in the tale of “Bricriu’s Feast” that emerge from this cave to attack the three Ulster warriors before being tamed by Cúchulainn. Some also claim that the cave was named after Irusan, the King of the Cats, who is featured in Irish fairy tales and hailed from a cave near Clonmacnoise (her home). Another tale from the 18th century CE tells of a woman trying to catch a runaway cow that fell into this cave (nevermind the entrance being too small) and followed it into this cave. It is said the cow and woman emerged miles away in County Sligo, near Keshcorran. There is also a legend of a woman that was told to have killed a monster cat in this cave, turning the woman into a great warrior, and this is why its called “Oweynagat”, Cave of the Cats.

The Birthplace of Medb

It is also believed that this cave is the actual physical birthplace for Queen Medb. The legend states that the Fairy Queen/Goddess Étain who was fleeing her human husband with her fairy lover Midir came here. Midir wanted to visit a relative named Sinech (the large breasted one) who lived in the cave. Within the cave was said to be a great otherworldly palace where a maid servant named Crochan Crogderg (“Blood Red Cup”) lived, and she had granted Midir and Etain entrance. It was here that Crochan was believed to have given birth to a daughter named “Medb“.

The Entrance

Nestled under a fairy tree in a farmer’s field (private property) is a small opening that really only looks large enough for a house cat to fit through. But if a human gets down on their hands and knees, can shimmy into this small hole, they will be presented with a small chamber that connects to a passageway that continually increases to a massive tunnel wider and higher than one could fathom. At the inner lintel of this entrance is an Ogham inscription that bears the words “VRAICCI…MAQI MEDVVI” translating to “FRAECH” and “SON OF MEDB”. Some also translate this to mean “The Pillar of Fraech son of Madb”. This is also seen as the birthplace of Medb. A second ogham inscription, barely visible, reads “QR G SMU” but has not been translated. This beginning chamber is actually a man-made souterrain at the entrance to a natural narrow limestone cave. The souterrain was originally contained within an earthen mound that was later damaged by a road construction project in the 1930’s. The souterrain is made of drystone walling, orthostats, lintels, and stones that measure approximately 10.5 meters from the entrance to the natural cave’s opening.

Oweynagat Cave – Cave of the Cats – entrance chamber

The Tunnel

After crawling on one’s hands and feet, the passage increases in width and height, eventually one can stand up, and eventually the tunnel becomes wide and tall enough that a small Giant could move through it. This is the passage of the Fae, and leads to the Morrigan’s Lair. As one continues down, they’ll find a caved in shamble that is behind a muddy pool of water. If one successfully climbs up and over it, the passage continues to another area that is caved in. Apparently workers on the surface planted a utility pole that collapsed this section of the tunnel. Beyond this is believed to be the Entrance to the Otherworld, and the Morrigan’s Lair. This is actually a natural limestone cave that has been mapped approximately 37 meters deep.

The Morrigan

The Queen of the Dark Fae, the Goddess of the Underworld, of Darkness, and Battle, rules the world of the Fae from this place. It is believed that every Samhain, she is pulled on a chariot out of the Cave of the Cats by a one-legged chestnut horse alongside various creatures such as those mentioned above. Some also say on occasion she leaves the cave with a cow, guided by a giant with a forked staff, to give to the Bull of Cúailgne. She is also known to take the bull of a woman named Odras who follows her into the cave before falling under an enchanted sleep upon awakening to see the Morrigan who repeatedly whispers a spell over her, turning her into a river, the same river that feeds the muddy pool at the shamble. Apparently the cave is seen as a portal through which the Morrigan would pass in order to work with Medb as Goddess of Battle. She drove her otherworldly cattle into the cave every sunset. The Morrigan was blamed to have stolen a herd of cattle who belonged to a woman named Odras, and upon following to Morrigan to retrieve them, was turned into a lake by the Goddess. As is the story of Nera, a servant of Medb who met a Fairy woman here in this cave. He married her, and she warned him of Medb’s palace being burnt to the ground next Samhain by the creatures of the otherworld. Upon hearing this, Medb stationed her forces in the cave each Samhain to protect Cruachan from destruction.

Rathcrohan is the legendary burial grounds of the Kings of Coannaught. The region covers approximately 518 hectares hosting more than 20 ring forts, burial mounds, megalithic tombs such as the Relig na Ri (burial ground of the Kings), Rath na dTarbh (For the Bulls), and the Rathbeg. The archaeological site is massive, with earthworks spread over the region with the Grave of King Dathi (Last Pagan King of Ireland) as a 2 meter high standing stone being one of the few physical landmarks left that can be seen. This is also the site of the mythical battle of the “Tain Bo Cuailgne” that remains in the hearts, minds, and folklore of the people of Tulsk and Rathcroghan recorded in the Ancient Irish Epic of the Tain Bo Cuiailgne, the “Cattle Raid of Cooley”. The Tain Bo tells the story of Queen Maeve of Connaught and her armies that pursued the Grat Brown Bull of Cooley, the mighty warrior Cuchulain who does battle with the armies here, and his foster brother Erdia as he defends the Brown Bull, and the province of Ulster. There is a “Tain Trail Cycling and Touring Route” that re-traces the journey that Queen Maeve and her armies traveled from her Royal Palace at Rathcroghan across Ireland to the Cooley Peninsula in County Louth, the home of the Brown Bull. Rathcrohan hosts over 60 National Monuments here.

Bibliography/References:

  • Druid School: Oweynagat Cave of the Cats. Website referenced January 2012.
  • Fenwick, J. et al 1977 “Oweynagat”. Irish Speleology 16, 11-14.
  • Hannon, Ed 2012 “Visions of the Past: Oweynagat Cave”. Website referenced 10/10/17 at https://visionsofthepastblog.com/2012/10/01/oweynagat-cave-souterrain-co-roscommon/.
  • Mulranney, R. n.d “Caves of Ireland: Oweynagat Cave of the Cats”. Website referenced 10/10/17 at https://cavesofireland.wordpress.com/home/caves/oweynagat-cave-of-the-cats-co-roscommon/.
  • Waddell, J. 1983 “Rathcroghan – A Royal Site”. Journal of Irish Archaeology 1.
  • Wikipedia n.d. “Rathcroghan”. Website referenced 10/10/17 at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rathcroghan.

Oweynagat Cave – Cave of the Cats – Passage downward.

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Griffin

Griffin
http://www.technogypsie.com/faerie/?p=2479
by Leaf McGowan

A mystical beast of legends and mythology, especially within the Greek, Roman, and Celtic worldviews the Griffin (aka griffon, gryphon, grypon, gryps, and gryphus) is a fantastical creature with the body, tail, and back legs of a lion; the head, front leg talons, and wings of an eagle. Sometimes it is represented without wings (later called an alce or keythong in other mythologies). It was always representing royalty and leadership, with power and majestic authority as king of all beasts and birds. It many legends, the Griffin ruled over all creatures, protecting richly treasures, and gold. There is a proposition by folklorist Adrienne Mayor that the griffin was a misconception derived from the fossilized remains of the Protoceratops found in the gold mines of the Altai Mountains of Scythia, present day Kazakhstan.

amongst the earliest representations of a griffin were found in Ancient Persian and Egyptian art dating around 3,000 B.C.E. The Egyptian palette from Hierakonpolis called the Two Dog Palette dating to 3300-3100 B.C.E. possibly depicts a griffin. Cylinder seals from Susa, Persia dating from 3000 B.C.E. depicts griffins. They can also be found in ancient art from the Levant, Syria, and Anatolia dating from the Middle Bronze Age (1950-1550 B.C.E.) Ancient Greek art from the 15th century B.C.E. frescoes show griffins in the Throne Room of the Palace of Knossos. From 5th-4th century B.C.E in Central Asia, the griffin appears in iconography representing the Achaemenid Persian Empire who considered the beast a protector from evil, witchcraft, and secret slander.

There are other mythical beasts carrying resemblance to the griffin including the Lamassu (Assyrian protection deity hosting a bull or lions body, eagle wings, and a human head); Anzu (demon creature from Sumerian and Akkadian mythos half man and half bird); the Jewish Ziz (resembles Anzu); the ancient Greek Phoenix; Minoan Genius; and the Hindu Garuda (large bird-like creature).

Griffins were believed to have mated for life, and if its partner passed, the other would continue the rest of its life alone never searching another. Because of this the Church used it as an emblem to represent its opposition to remarriage. A Griffins claw was believed to possess medicinal properties and its feathers could restore sight to the blind. When represented in a herald or crest, the griffin represents courage, strength, power, boldness, leadership, and military courage. In British iconography, the male griffin is shown without wings, body covered in tufts of formidable spikes, and a short tusk protruding from his forehead. The female griffin is depicted with wings.

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“Shadow Hills” – Fontana California Hauntings

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Shadow Hills – Haunted South Ridge and Fontana area, California

According to the Inside the Inland Empire web site and various other ghost hunting blogs, the South Ridge area of Fontana is quite haunted. It has been nicknamed Shadow Hills. One family off of Jurupa street claim much paranormal activity in their home. Foot steps up the stairs with no one around, doors slamming on their own, microwave fan turning itself on, lights flickering, a little girl spirit on the stairs, spirits demanding the family to Get Out, apparitions of blood in the shower, zombies, and shadow creatures in the yard. Shadow creatures are commonly reported around the Inland Empire, especially at Mt. Rubidoux. Several of their neighbors off Jurupa street also claim a lot of activity. Rumor has it, there occurs a lot of moving in and out of the Jurupa street neighborhood. Stories and reports extend off Jurupa into the houses along Cypress, Coleen st, oleander ave, corner of Woodcrest drive, and Citrus. Some of the hauntings were reported in brand new homes without former residents. Apparitions of a little boy wearing a striped shirt, plumes of smoking rising up from the closet floor, feelings of being touched, jiggling door knobs, and chairs moving on their own. Some conclude that these houses are built atop an ancient Indian burial ground, although the reportings and activities dont necessarily support such a theory. A house on the corner of Oak Park Elementary reports seeing a 1800s dated apparition of a woman wearing a bonnet, lights turning on and off, voices, shadows, stuff moving around, etc. Another resident nearby also claims seeing women with white bonnets and powder blue dresses in their homes in the South Park district at 17203 Avenue Del Sol. A South ridge resident claimed poltergeist activity reflections of people standing behind the sofa when the tv was off, doors opening and closing, banging in the walls, etc. Also reports on Heritage by various neighbors one claiming a mirror in their house on the east wall was a portal for entry as dictated by a psychic investigating the activity. A haunted house report on 14774 Mountain High Drive off Canyon Crest with apparitions of a silhouette atop the stairs, shadow beings, voices, etc. Another house below baseline near Beech Avenue reports of shadow beings, a little boy made of rock in the fire place, a little girl running about. Again more legends of houses built over a Indian Burial Ground. One claims their house was built above John Redcorns burial ground and had a apparition of a woman. Others report sightings and activity off Argentine by Oakwood Drive and behind the Pancho Villas.

Sightings of a chariot drawn by horses coming down the street, a figure in a trench coat with glasses, off Green Vista drive behind Southridge middle school. Reports of an area with creepy trees and bomb shelters with a ghost of a girl wearing a hospital gown also declared. Off of Woodcrest drive there was a family sighting a gnome in one of the bedrooms. This gnome was spying on the resident while he was sleeping, was no taller than the electrical socket, wearing weird dirty sport coat and a evil Leprechaun smile. There is the fabled Victorian style manor at 4701 Sierra Avenue in Hesperia (can be seen from the 15) reportedly haunted. Some say the house was relocated from where it was originally built atop a ancient burial mound. Some say the ghosts moved with it (house originally was in Redlands built in 1888 for Judge George E. Otis by D.M. Donald). One report of a spirit of a giant angry man who hurled a trespasser onto stones causing severe injuries to the man reporting it. Some say the owner confirms the hauntings.

Along highway 66 originally, the foothill boulevard is believed to be haunted by a young man in a striped shirt carrying a long stick or buggy whip, he is reported to cross the street when cars approach then disappears. Sometimes he is accompanied by a black dog. (GPS 34.10648057912253, -117.47255516122095)

Green Acres cemetery has reported occurrences of blood appearing on the table between the three marble chairs in the southeastern part of the cemetery every Halloween. East end of 7th street (GPS 34.039240814445115, -117.39045982811149) Also at the Agua Mansa Pioneer Cemetery there are rumors of a mother that haunts the bend around this cemetery and is the spirit of the mother who drowned her 6 children. According to Hispanic legend she is known as La Llorona or the Weeping Woman searching for the children she murdered. The spirits of two people who were executed here also reportedly haunt the cemetery and have been known to be the cause of fatal car accidents on this bend (2001 Agua Mansa Road GPS 34.0420097, -117.36421819999998)

On Valley between Fontana and Colton there are reports of a man covered in black often walking the roadside. Reports of decayed children walking about at night. Multiple ghost sightings reportedly around Jurupa Park or Martin Tudor Park.
The Big Lots store (formerly Pic n Save) at the corner of Foothill Boulevard and Sierra is reportedly haunted with reports of several ghosts flickering lights, making noises, voices, knocking things off shelves, pulling of employees hair, etc. Some say the Ghost of a former Pic n Save employee named Manny haunts the store.

Along the Thompson Creek Trail, some report shadow beings following them when hiking this trail, and that skulls appear in the clouds above. Also that trees and bushes bleed on occasion. Some say they have had visions of levitating boulders, invisible walls blocking the path, and violent images. GPS 34.1290555, -117.7222145. Also the old boy scouts cabin that burnt down up there is reportedly haunted.

    Properties:
  • Aqua Mansa Pioneer Cemetery
  • Aqua Mansa Road (2001 Aqua Mansa)
  • Argentine
  • Avenue del Sol (17203)
  • Beech Avenue
  • Big Lots store (Foot Hill boulevard and Sierra)
  • Citrus Street
  • Coleen Street
  • Cypress Street
  • Foot Hill Boulevard and Citrus Ave
  • Green Acres Cemetery
  • Heritage
  • Jurupa Street
  • Mountain High Drive (14774)
  • Oak Park Elementary
  • Oakwood Drive
  • Oleander Ave
  • Sierra Ave (4701)
  • Southridge Middle School
  • Thompson creek trail
  • Valley between Fontana and Colton
  • Woodcrest Drive

    References:

  • Ghosts of America unknown Fontana, California ghost sightings http://www.ghostsofamerica.com/9/California_Fontana_ghost_sightings.html website referenced 5/22/2015.
  • Haunted Hovel unknown Fontana, Ca. / Renne / Sierra Ave off the 15 fwy. http://www.hauntedhovel.com/fontana-ca-renne-sierra-ave-off-the-15-fwy.html. website referenced 5/22/2015.
  • Haunted Places unknown Haunted Places in Fontana, California http://www.hauntedplaces.org/fontana-ca/ Website refrenced 5/22/2015.
  • Inside the IE.com unknown Haunted House in South Ridge Fontana. http://www.insidetheie.com/haunted-house-fontana. Website referenced 5/22/2015.
  • Palmer, Chuck 1982 Old House has new home. The Sun Feb 15, 1982. DM Donald built the home in 1888 in Redlands for Judge George E. Otis.
  • Wikipedia unknown Shadow Hills California http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_Hills,_Los_Angeles website referenced 5/22/2015.

If you’ve experienced sightings in this area, please share here.

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WEREWOLF ALLEGEDLY MURDERS HIS VAMPIRE NEIGHBOR

02.27.2015 –09:11 am

Heres something you dont hear every day: Mark Andrews, 51, of Atascadero, CA, who believes hes a werewolf allegedly shot his neighbor Colleen Barga-Milbury, 52, twice because he was convinced that she was a vampire.

Defense witness Carolyn Murphy, a forensic psychologist said, (He believes) he transforms into a werewolf, and holds the spirit of the wolf.

The first record of Andrews believing he was a werewolf, she said, dates to 1996, though she suspects he had that same delusion during his first psychotic episode three years earlier.

Murphy said Andrews believed the voice of God commanded him to kill Barga-Milbury, whom he believed was a vampire.

In 2009 Andrew became convinced that another one of his neighbors was a vampire:

Andrews believed a different neighbor was a vampire. Andrews left mounds of dirt and flour on that neighbors door and once pounded on the neighbors door, calling her a bitch, though she didnt answer.

At his home, according to police reports, police found two lists of names, several marked hate with death.

As to why Andrews didnt kill this particular vampire neighbor God didnt tell him to kill her Murphy said.

Mark Andrews has believed himself to be a werewolf for the past 20 years. During the time of the murder, Andrews was apparently not taking his medication.

Via Tribune News Death and Taxes

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Gnome caught on film by Kids in Mexico

Here’s a recent youtube find: A Gnome watching kids playing in their basement, runs and hides off screen.

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Pluto’s Cave (Weed, CA)

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Pluto’s Cave
* Shasta, California * Article by Leaf McGowan, Technogypsie Productions © 2014: Written March 31, 2014.

During our fabled quest for Telos, we decided to head off in search of Pluto’s Cave. In the heart of the high desert just 12 1/2 miles north of Weed, California. “Pluto’s Cave” is not really a cavern, but a lava tube dating to over 190,000 B.P. (before present) from early eruptions of Mount Shasta. It is located on the northern outskirts of Mount Shasta in the high desert. Segments of the tube are collapsed, while other portions are buried. There are about three segments one can access reliably. Unfortunately the entrances and walls within many sections of the early part of this lava tube has been vandalized with graffiti from locals partying at the location. Some of the graffiti is historic dating to the early 20th century. The cave floor is very dusty and too much activity will cause a cloud burst of fine powder that will take a bit to settle. The tube has a strong stench of bat guano. The early part of the tube has some flat level walking areas, but the deeper you go the more shambling and climbing you’ll need. Bring water, good hiking boots, long pants (I wore shorts and had received a bit of scrapes), and make sure you have a good head torch and several reliable back up lights. It is recorded that visitors can safely hike into the cave approximately 1200 feet. The tube varies from 20-50 feet in height at points. There is evidence that the cave was used by Pre-Columbian peoples. The tube was discovered by Westerners in 1863 by Nelson Cash, a local rancher looking for stray cattle that he believed wandered into these fields. He named the cave “Pluto’s Cave” after the Greek God of the Underworld. Pluto’s Cave is often described as a “classic lava tube” as it was a tunnel formed by molten lava passing through tubes in older, hardened lava. It was discovered because sections of the roof collapsed exposing the inner chamber. This desert contains numerous lava tubes and caves in the region. It is believed that there are over 778 caves and tunnels in nearby Lava Beds National Park, and over 150 documented caves in the Marble Mountain Wilderness that Mount Shasta is part of. Many of these have not been explored.

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Local mythology: Pluto’s cave is not without its share of mythos. Some believe it is an entrance to the ancient Lemurian city of Telos – whether they be races of aliens, faeries, or other people. No scientific evidence supports these claims and is therefore classified as local legends, lore, and superstitions. In the 2008 edition of Fate Magazine, an article tells the story of “The Shaver Mystery” – depicting bizarre accounts of his abduction by subterranean beings known as “Deros” made into a low-budget movie called “Beyond Lemuria” by a California based Church of Hermetic Scientists that was filmed in Pluto’s Cave. The film’s plot encompasses a sinister Draconian Society that has secretly funded the development of a Intragravatron device and plans to open the vortex at an inter-dimensional convergence point deep in the lava caves on the northern slopes of Mt. Shasta. This was based on a original story of a 17 year old boy named Frederick Spenser Oliver who in the early 20th century published a telling of his channeled story of Phylos in his book “A Dweller on Two Planets” which eventually became an occult classic tale. Some believe it was this book that has triggered many of the myths of the area about Phylos, Telos, and the Lemurians. In 2011 there was a recording of a local boy disappearing. This tale is full of childhood imagination, aliens, and abduction theories. [see details here: http://www.messagetoeagle.com/oddunexdismtshasta_p2.php#.Uzw5ACjDU2c ] That same year, a tourist from Los Angeles claimed to have heard a beautiful woman’s voice coming from the direction of Mount Shasta as he was hiking the Pacific Crest Trail. He followed the voice, became lost, and found his way to Pluto’s cave where he claims to have been abducted, stripped of his clothing, greeting by a beautiful tall woman with unnatural blue eyes, and given a gift as well as secret information. After being lost for several weeks, he was found and he claimed to be “Lord Kalki” – the incarnation of a messianic Hindu god. Legends of a spectral lady appear to haunt the caverns, appearing as a spiritual guide, alien, a Lemurian, or Faerie queen. Online articles also claim there is a Native American legend of a red-headed female who used to live in caverns beneath Mount Shasta, some believe was at Pluto Cave. Some claim this lava tube as well as other tubes, caves, and tunnels in the region interconnect southern Oregon, Mount Shasta, and the upper coasts of California. Some writers online claim that Native American tribes admit to these locations and entrances, but that they are a closely guarded secret never shared with the outside world. Others believe the St. Germain foundation secretly guard the entrance of a lava tube above Mossbrae Falls in Dunsmuir, south of Mount Shasta. It is believed that this Mossbrae Falls tube is the secret entrance to Telos, not Pluto’s Cave. While meditating in the darkness at the end of the tunnel, in the pitch black silence there was a split second I thought I heard a moan, though that could have been my comrade’s stomach. There was another un-determined noise we both heard during our meditation. Other than that, light scratchings of the bats above on the lava rocks was all that permeated the silence.

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How to get there: Drive approximately 12.5 miles north on Highway 97 from Weed to A12 (the Grenada turnoff), turn left, go past the “Juniper Valley OHV area” signs approximately 3.25 miles to a small sign post saying “Pluto’s Cave”, turn on that dirt road follow to parking lot at hiking trail head. Hike 1/4 mile down the trailhead, following the red lava rocks outlining the trail to a small white arrow sign pointing down into Pluto’s Cave.

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Lothlorien Nature Sanctuary

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Lothlorien Nature Sanctuary
* P.O. Box 1082 * Bloomington, IN * 47402-1082 * / * Needmore, Indiana * http://www.elvinhome.org/index.php *

I remember the first time hearing about Lothlorien … it was by a member of the Omneopoia band in Eugene, Oregon in the early 1990’s as a place I must go for the folk there were like me. I made it there in the late 1990’s as I attended Wild Magic and Elf Fest. I was in awe and completely impressed by how this Elvin community cooperatively live together and manage the Lothlorien Nature Sanctuary. The estate is a center for spiritual retreat as well as a land sanctuary green haven all centered around community and the Earth. It is owned and operated by Elvin H.O.M.E., Inc. – The Holy Order of Mother Earth. In its origins it was known as E.L.F. but changed names when confused with a radical eco-group under the same acronym. They possess federal 501(c)3 status as a non-profit spiritual and ecological entity (since 2008). Lothlorien consists of 109 acres of forest, hills, and valleys along the southern edge of Indiana’s limestone belt. Operated by volunteer labor by means of community, love, ecology, and faith – the center is open to anyone for visitation and attendance to festivals. It is also a nature based campground where sponsors and members can come camp and share in its growth, perpetuation, and regeneration. It was founded by the Elf Lore Family (ELF) in 1983 as a woodland meeting ground, survival education center, and a retreat for Elves. It has since evolved to a sanctuary for all earth-respecting faiths, religions, paths, and beliefs. Members, volunteers, ELF, and HOME all consider themselves Earth Stewards – coming to the land working it, shaping it, and transforming it. They hold several festivals every year, have community gardening, landscaping, lawn-care, path clearing, building of structures and shrines, and repairing those existing as their sacred duties. In addition to the garden, there are several self-composting permanent toilet teepees, a Long hall where meetings, gatherings, and feasts held, a loaning library, a kitchen, campgrounds, communal showers, stages, sacred circles, a thunder dome for drumming, altars, shrines, and temples. Camping season runs from March 21st until October 31st. Definitely a magical model I’d love to follow, create, or be a part of … if only it existed on the west coast! Rating: 5 stars out of 5.

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Rhine Maidens

Rhein maidens warn Siegfried. By Arthur Rackham. Published 1912. Copyright expired

Rhein maidens warn Siegfried. By Arthur Rackham. Published 1912. Copyright expired

Rhine Maidens

Common Names: Rhine Maidens, Rhine Maidens, naiads, river spirits, nymphs, sirens, nixies, nixen

Habitat: – Found in Germanic fairy lore. Attributed to the Rhine River of Germany.

Description: Rhine Maidens are water spirits known along rivers, especially the Rhine River in Germany, that protect children. The most popular myths depicts them as three sisters – water nymphs known as the “Rheintchter” or “Rhine Daughters” most classically famous from the Richard Wagner’s opera cycle called “Der Ring des Nibelungen”. These sisters are named Woglinde, Wellgunde, and Flohilde (Flosshilde) which were inspired by Wagner from myths and legends of the Nibelungenlied involving water nymphs, sprites, nixies, and mermaids. The tale tells that these river guardians along the Rhine were in charge of the golden treasures and through the renunciation of love had their gold stolen from them leading to world domination. Much of the myth today is influenced by Wagner’s works. They appear in the beginning and towards the end of his four opera cycle beginning in Das Rheingold and then in Gtterdmmerung.

These German Nixen (Nixies) or Water Sprites were known to appear very innocent but with a range of sophisticated emotions. They are seductive, elusive, flirty, and enchanting. No one seems to know of their origin. Unlike much of the mythos they appear in, they do not originate from the Prose Edda (Iceland’s source for Norse Mythology), but rather from much older European based folklore. Sometimes they are described with siren and selchie traits, similarities to mermaids and naiads, but otherwise as shape-shifting seductive wise women found bathing and basking along the Rhine River or the Danube River nude. Much drama and trickery is mixed in the tales surrounding their stories which led to the creation of the modern day opera. Some say their existence was influenced by the German legend of Loreli – the lovelorn maiden who drowns herself in a river and becomes a siren luring fishermen to their deaths. Other similarities to Greek myths of the nymphs and naiads. Parallels of the Rhinemaidens of Das Rheingold to the Hesperides myth are extraordinary relating to three females guarding a golden treasure that ends up stolen. Most attribute them as daughters of the Rhine River. In the story telling they are however not destroyed by the fires at the end of Gtterdmmerung but rather just swim away joyously in the river with their found treasure. They are said to have the good nature of the Oceanids (being helpful) and the austerity of the daughters of gir (willing to drown people). A mystical ring that belongs to the treasure was supposedly imbued with the powers to allow its wearer the ability to rule the world – but was cursed until the stolen gold was returned to the Rhine’s Maidens. In 1933 they were depicted on a postage stamp designed by Alois Kolb for use in the Third Reich. From the 19th-20th century they have been a highlight in Opera, theater, and the arts.

Folklore/Mythology:

Sightings:

For more German Faeries, visit our German Faeries page.

Article by Leaf McGowan, Thomas Baurley, Technogypsie Productions: http://www.technogypsie.com
© 2013 All Rights Reserved. If you enjoy this article, please consider treating the author to a drink or meal, and/or donating to ensure that this article stays preserved on the internet. You can do this by going to our Donation Page or sending the treat to the author at leafworks@yahoo.com.

Rhines fair children bewailing their lost gold Arthur Rackham from The Rhinegold n the Valkyrie, by Richard WagnerLondon, N
Rhines fair children, bewailing their lost gold, weep. Arthur Rackham, from The Rhinegold & the Valkyrie, by Richard Wagner, London, 1910

Bibliography/Recommended Reading:


  • Terreno, Bella 2006-2008 “Mystical Myth: Germanic Faeries”. Website referenced 1/25/2014 at http://www.bellaterreno.com/art/german/germanfairies.aspx.
  • Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia undated “The Rhine Maidens”. Website referenced 1/20/14 at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhinemaidens.

siegfried-and-twilight-of-gods-Art by Arthur Rackham- London1911
“Though gaily ye may laugh, In grief ye shall be left, For, mocking maids, this ring Ye ask shall never be yours.” (Art by Arthur Rackham – from ‘Siegfried & The Twilight Of The Gods’ by Richard Wagner, London, 1911).

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Rock Close: Fairy Glade (Blarney Castle)

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The Fairy Glade in the Rock Close of Blarney Castle
* The Rock Close * Blarney Castle, Blarney, Ireland * http://www.blarneycastle.ie *

Not much is known of this glade except that fairies are rumored to flitter around the foliage. Of course this is more-less the Victorian image of small insect-like fairies that resemble tiny human-shaped beings with wings (better known as “pixies”) rather than a habitat for the human-form shaped Fae or Faeries like Elves, dryads, naiads, nymphs, faun, trolls, orcs, and various other hundreds of beings known as Faeries. Its a beautiful little garden section with a ring walk around. A new addition I noticed in 2013 was a wood carved stump chair with the Druid’s rays on it. Little altars and offerings abound throughout the glade. Since Faeries or fairies cannot be proven to exist, neither does any sound history or archaeology on this place being that it most likely was dreamt up by the Castle grounds owners in the early 1800’s when they landscaped and created the “Rock Close” around the prehistoric dwellings that were believed to be utilized by Druids and early Celtic peoples.

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The Rock Close of Blarney

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Rock Close

Rock Close
* Blarney Castle, Blarney, Ireland * www.blarneycastle.ie *

A mystical portal in the heart of the castle grounds of Blarney Castle is Rock Close, a place where faeries dance, Witches’ bless and answer wishes, Druids weave magic, stone monuments made, and magic is alive. The Rock Close garden is not only a site of myths and legends, but of romance and art. A dolmen greets you as you walk along the river after walking through a weaved willow tunnel, with misty meadows, moss covered rocks, and waterfalls. As you walk up the Witches Wishing steps to the Witches Kitchen and where the Witch is trapped in the stone, overlooked by the Druid Cave and by the Druid Ceremonial circle where you can walk around where the faeries play. This is one of the most fun and condensed folklore heavy sites I’ve encountered in Ireland – of course its history is a mystery in of itself. It is also a great romantic getaway from the tourist heavy section of Blarney Castle. Prehistoric dwellings adapted by 10th, 13th, and 19th century adaptations lead a lot to the imagination in this garden. In 1824, Croften Croker wrote in his “Researches in the South of Ireland” about the mysteries of this spot.

    In this romantic spot nature and art (a combination rather uncommon in pleasure grounds) have gone hand in hand. Advantage has been taken of accidental circumstances to form tasteful and characteristic combinations; and it is really a matter of difficulty at first to determine what is primitive, and what the produce of design. The delusion is even heightened by the present total neglect. You come most unexpectedly into this little shaded nook, and stand upon a natural terrace above the river, which glides as calmly as possible beneath. Here, if you feel inclined for contemplation, a rustic couch of rock, all festooned with moss and ivy, is at your service; but if adventurous feelings urge you to explore farther, a discovery is made of an almost concealed, irregularly excavated passage through the solid rock, which is descended by a rude flight of stone steps, called the “Wishing Steps,” and you emerge sul margine d’un rio, over which depend some light and graceful trees. It is indeed a fairy scene, and I know of no place where I could sooner imagine these little elves holding their moon-light revelry. ~ Croften Croker, 1824

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It was a highly popular in the early 19th century with antiquarians. The mysteries of the Blarney Witch, the Fairies, the Druids, and the Dolmen are sure to enchant you. Blarney Castle does document that this was a place for Druidic worship. The sacrificial altar of course is hearsay, the Druid’s circle is probably, the hermit’s cave or Druid’s cave is a mystery as is the Witches’ kitchen and wishing steps. It has been documented that in the late 1700’s C.E. (Common Era) that the Rock Close was made into the garden area upon which foundations are walked upon today. Apparently the castle owners landscaped around already existing prehistoric dwellings, stone monuments, and Druid circles to make the magical faerie glen it is today.

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