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Nature Spirits

48 49 befriending The nymPhS sacred springs and holy wells Sacred springs and holy wells hold special significance for mankind, as the spirits of rivers and lakes run like the lifeblood of the planet, supporting the health of human, plant and animal life, and encouraging settlement and agriculture. Cultures across the world have revered the spirits of water for thousands of years, worshipping the goddesses of wells, rivers and lakes for their lifegiving waters, binding their people with the realms of water spirits through offerings and sacred tales. Myths abound of the Greek sea nymphs, and there are countless tales of the Lady of the Lake, the magical faery mistress of Avalon, who grants healing to the weak and weary, protects Britains sacred treasures and guards the sleeping king Arthur. The Celtic goddesses of holy wells, such as Covetina and Sulis, are still honoured by silver coins cast in their waterssilver representing the moon, their mistress, who reigns over all beings of water and wave. Visiting sacred waters at the full of the moon is a powerful ancient practice, as the vision of moonlight reflected upon water was used by Celtic seers for centuries for augury and access to the otherworld. The selkies song, drifting over the waves on the shores of the Herbrides was a call to mortals to remember the sacred pacts between the people of Earth and the people of Lir, the sea god. It is said that a single tear of a seal maiden upon the waves will cause a storm, and gifts of flowers and other offerings cast on reedy rafts upon the waves ensured plentiful fishing and safe passage across this treacherous kingdom. Connection with these beings is made today in the same way, and over time lends a deep soulfulness to life, as the nymphs of spring, river and sea refresh and unlock access to personal longings and dreams.
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