Friday, May 26, 2017

Fairyland, Witches & Souls of the Pagan Dead

Fairies as Souls of the Pagan Dead

by Susan Sheppard

Centuries after the Picts faded into oblivion the now Christian population of the British Isles began to view fairies somewhat as ghosts, since fairies were thought to be the unbaptized souls of the pagan dead. Much superstition surrounded fairies, and thus, they were not entirely trusted. In fact, fairies, such as banshees, thought to be the souls of women that died in during childbirth without given the proper rites by a priest, would visit curses on certain families. This was especially true of the families who did not honor the memories of these souls of the pagan dead.

Like the ghosts that haunted houses, it was believed fairies were not pure enough to get into heaven but were still too good for hell. Also, the souls of human beings were considered to be small and could crawl out of the body at night. Thus, fairies like ghosts might appear as small.

Yet the fairies could be terrifying. In Devonshire houses began to be by haunted what inhabitants concluded were Pixies. The Pixies and the Fauni (nature spirits) were reported to throw great stones, pieces of wood and clods of earth at inhabitants to drive them away from sacred groves and fairy mounds.

Fairies became associated with ghosts and spirits of the dead in other ways. It was thought the fairies, in a realm exactly parallel to our own, were helpers who assisted human souls into reaching the Otherworld, or Land of Eternal Youth after dying. Upon each human death, a disturbance would take place in the astral realms that the fairies could readily feel. When Celtic persons died the first spirits they were to meet were fairies coming to their aid for a peaceful transition. 
Fairies were also thought to attend births and christenings.

During Elizabethan times, the role of fairies grew diminished and the fae folk were shut inside the broom closet with witches, both no longer believed in. However, literary works, such as those by William Shakespeare continued to draw upon fairy lore as inspiration, even though the fairies were no longer the magical children of the pagan gods, or the fairy races as sentient beings. Fairies were no longer taken seriously.

Around this time, fairies began to shrink further in size. They weren’t giants or anywhere near to human size. In fact, fairies could be held in a teacup and people seemed immune to their blessings and curses. Fairies began to lose their power over the human imagination. By this time, it was thought if fairies were real, only children could see them.

Fairyland and the Dead

I have learned that whenever I dream of fairies someone is going to die. This may startle those who still view fairies as airy, winged sprites or as miniature angels, however, throughout history most especially in the British Isles fairies have long been associated witches and spirits of the dead. Yet the idea that links fairies with spirits of the dead should not cause alarm. It is all a part of the natural transition such beings have a part in.

Tales of human entry into Fairyland, mostly in Scotland, held that fairies attended to the dead, and were sometimes responsible for a number of hauntings in homes, or ghostly visits, acting as witch’s familiars. To some, fairies were souls from pre-Christian days cloaked in some astral form, not knowing how or deserving to get into a Christian heaven. In Celtic belief, it was thought Fairyland was the very first place souls would visit after death before moving on to an astral realm, guided by fairies into Summerland or Celtic Otherworld and the Netherworld of the Egyptians.

But in popular culture, this link has been largely forgotten. Death, and anything associated with it, such as ghosts or spirits of the dead, is an area of cultural and religious taboo. New age circles are not always so comfortable with the idea of ghosts or haunted places. We revere fairies while we fear the dead. The concept of ghosts remains disturbing to many and is erroneously associated with evil. It may seem hard to see fairies in such a place, but people in the past believed some fairies were in the land of the forgotten dead.

Some say that the communications with spirits upsets the dead and such spiritual interference should only be allowed during Samhain. In some respects, this very well may be true. But there are many spirits who still want to communicate with the living, and they will make their presence known until their message is received. This is what causes hauntings. Thus in our modem day, like the Banshee fairy that washes out the bloody clothes of her dead along waterways, fairies and their connections to ghosts have been rinsed of their powers.

Long ago, fairies and ghosts were viewed as much as the same, spirits neither good nor bad but something in-between. Even human beings were thought to be fairies if they showed special powers or unusual ugliness or beauty — much the same as witches. In Scotland, it was considered great esteem for a man to marry a woman who was a “fairy witch.” This could be dangerous as well since fairy witches were often blamed for blights and bad luck.

Yet in Ireland, where the ghosts were called Thevshi or Tash, Finarva, the King of the Fairies ruled over the dead. Again, there was danger that was associated with fairies and haunting ghosts. If not treated with proper respect, they might come back to wreak havoc on the living, thus, all fairies were referred to as “the little people” or the “wee folk” and the names of the dead were rarely spoken.

It was believed in the Celtic realm that when a soul leaves the body, it could be enticed away, at times, by fairies, looking for a new soul to join them in fairyland. Very small children were susceptible to this, because they fairies themselves are much like children themselves, open and natural to the world. In western Ireland, in Christian times, when a small child died, blood from a chicken would be sprinkled on the threshold so spirits or fairies would be enticed away from the body.

According to Lady Wilde, in her 1897 book Ancient Legends, Mystic Charms, and Superstitions of Ireland that starting on All Hallows Eve, “the dead would spring up in their shrouds and rush out into the moonlight with mad laughter to join the fairies.” On the last night of November, it was especially tenuous between the living, souls of the dead, and the fairies. It was this last night (believed by the Irish) that fairies would dance with souls of the dead on hillsides before they must return to the chilled, cold earth. Certain tales indicate fairy witches joined them in their dance.
Individuals who died at twilight would find themselves in Fairyland and could visit the living as ghosts. It is interesting to note that modern ghost researchers say the most opportune time to investigate ghosts and hauntings, is to start around dusk since this is the time spirits tend to show themselves to mortal human beings. Once again, with the coming of night pulls us into a twilight world, a ghostly dreamtime.

Fairies As Witch’s Familiars

Familiar spirits are ghosts, or discarnates such as fairies, that contact human beings routinely and can be used for magic. The most recognized familiar in witchcraft as in popular culture has to be a black cat, followed closely by a raven or a crow. Native American familiars arrive in the form of a totem animal more likely to be a bear, eagle or an elk. The animal’s body is possessed by another spirit or divinity that is primarily an imp, a ghost or a fairy. When called upon, the familiar may wish to assist a sorcerer, magician or witch, or rescue a person who needs help.
The name “familiar” was first used in English and Scottish witch trails, believed to appear as an attendant to witches and sorcerers. Familiar comes from the Latin word familiaris, meaning intimate, friendly with, as is related to one’s family or someone very familiar. The first used of familiar, as in a “familiar spirit,” imp or fairy, was written down in1584.
The animal familiar is mostly found in England where accused witches were thought to have familiars that were really fairies, demons, imps and elves, and sometimes ghosts of evil people invading the body of an animal. 
Familiars could be kept as a pet, or even a spider or a toad found inside the house of the accused witch. The idea of familiars traveled to America to show up in some of the Salem Witch Trials later.

By 1598, beliefs in fairies appearing in the guise of animals was firmly solidified, when a man in Aberdeen claimed he had met with the Quene of Elphen (Queen of Elfiand) along with her cats wandering along the rode at Twilight.
At this time, in Gaelic lands it was believed that anyone who passed away around at Twilight, his or her spirit could get lost, ending up in Elfiand only to return as ghosts. Fairies were very much like the undead, or the nosferatu, whom some believed they shared tombs with while in Elf or Fairyland.

Fairies and familiars exhibited related psychic powers, they have the ability to divine the future, and leave their realms, just like ghosts who want to interact with the living. They are also described as ghosts very early on, as in a green glowing light, rather large or small and inside a moving shadow. In British occult lore, it was believed that sometimes when the Devil appeared, he did as a handsome man dressed in green, a color primarily associated with fairies. The Devil would then vanish in the form of a black dog, of course, associating him to the banshee’s Black Shuck and other British hobgoblins.
What is lost on our culture today is fairies became a part of demonology after the witch trials. 

It is only when the Victorians cleaned up fairies, and their associations with witches and the dead, that they were re-introduced as very much watered down creatures.
It was once feared that when there was no water or milk left out for the fairies or familiar spirits that visited the home, they might have to drink human blood. The most common name for a witch’s familiar in England was “Robin.” It is interesting to note that the legendary figure of Robin Hood, like the fairies so often, is always portrayed wearing green clothing.

Fairies and Poltergeists

When considering poltergeists, and how we view them in our modern day, it is not so different than the way common folk used to see fairies. Fairies, like spirits, could cause havoc and mayhem in the household if not given the proper respect. Fairies could also move objects and hide them in the most unlikely places. At times, they even threw things, like glasses or cups and might splash food or liquids in people’s faces to show their unhappiness. Sometimes the fairies might drum to keep residents awake all night, tap or knock on doors or walls in order to draw attention to their plight or just to show their disapproval at homeowners. Others were reported to run a cane up and down the headboard of a bed or made loud invisible footsteps in homes. Unruly children might cause the fairies to slap, to pinch or push. Mysterious lights or shadows appear and disappear in the home. This was all just a part of fairy mischief.

If this all sounds vaguely familiar, it should. The unseen type of fairy, the kind that plays tricks, is very much like our everyday poltergeist. Of course, in German, poltergeist simply means a rapping ghost or meddlesome spirit. The appearance of the poltergeist tends to occur in cycles, and never appears as a person, or a personal ghost, with a face or a history or a name. (They may lie and respond to any name given though.) Some may mistake their poltergeist for a person that they know of that died in the home or perhaps a relative who passed on. Such unsettling occurrences, such as doors slamming, shelves crashing and empty footsteps must be explained somehow. But it usually is not. Poltergeists may be our own volatile and erratic psychic powers unleashed, and are typically associated with an adolescent boy or girl.

Therefore, the popular theory explaining poltergeists over the past fifty years is, that poltergeist phenomenon is fueled by dormant telekinetic powers found within the human brain. 
The stress of adolescents may stimulate the poltergeist activity that at one time could easily be mistaken for the powers of fairies, witches or spirits of the deceased. What is intriguing about linking poltergeists to fairy hauntings in the distant past is that poltergeists are generally not thought to be spirits of the dead, either. They are a form of haunting all on their own, but generally associated with other types of hauntings.
In fact, I have found during my own ghost investigations that the appearance of poltergeists are often a pre-cursor or a “firing up” to other major types of hauntings, which may involve actual ghosts or spirits of the dead. Where you have poltergeists, you will most likely find actual ghosts. There must be some synergy between the human mind and spirits, and other type of spirits, for instance fairies, earth energies, and elementals.

Imagine what might happen to the owner of a home plagued with poltergeists during the times of the witch trials and executions. It would seem insane to admit to poltergeists (as fairies or ghosts or imps) in the home to anyone, most especially authorities who could put you on trial. And a number of witch inquisitors, when visiting the homes of many supposed witch’s home, reported having their hats knocked from their heads, having their shins kicked and their pockets turned inside out. In any event, the only way to save oneself was to point a finger at the “real witch” responsible for the haunting.
Fairies as Elementals: Spiritual Expressions of Earth Energies

Elementals, or natural earth energies representing the four elements of fire, earth, water and air, have much in common with fairies. They are ethereal forms of life and spirit that are not usually seen by the human eye but are also expressions of earth energies. In fact, many believe fairies are just that — elemental spirits that are really not human in any way, but can be contacted by psychic visions and by other powers.

One could hardly call elementals supernatural since they are very much a part of the natural world. But they sometimes appear as balls of light, colored gases and cloudy lights, the rippling silver of waves on water, or even in the simple stirring of a blade of grass. Such energies have personalities and it is the tradition of witchcraft that interactions with elementals will benefit crops, will cause gardens to be more abundant and will generally make life on earth more pleasant for human beings. After all, elementals are in the primordial phase of all creation on earth and in our solar system. Yet they are not impartial to humans — they are in essence helpers.

Earth Elementals govern the physical realm of sinew, bone, mountain, muscle, grass and rock. Air Elementals govern the ethereal realms, such as wind, storms, the influencing of stars, planets, oxygen and spirit. Water Elementals represents the astral realm, just beyond the earth realm. They rule emotion, empathy, mediumship and ghosts.
As the Welsh poet Dylan Thomas once wrote: The force that through the green fuse drives the flower, drives my green age. Behind nature, perhaps, is where the spark of divinity lies. Such could be said of the elemental forces found in the natural that are apart from the human mind or soul, and yet also a part of both.
However, in more ancient times, it does not seem probable that that the beings country folk claimed to have communications with were spirits of nature. They saw fairies as very similar and related to human beings, sometimes wicked, other times mirthful and filled with wit, fairies could extremely ugly and yet at other times shining and beautiful beyond compare...

Summoning the Fairies by Susan Sheppard

Summoning The Fairies

Whether you believe fairies to be actual souls of pagan ancestors, shining ones named devas, earth’s elementals, spiritual guides or watchers, or ghosts from a forgotten race such as the Tuatha Da Dannan, there are ways to contact the fairy realms. In most instances, the fairies will contact you first, but if you wish to bring them into your own domain, with evidence for their existence, you might try these methods.

> Begin by making an effort to spend time in the natural world. Meditate or contemplate under a grove of cool trees, fall asleep under the stars, near an isolated water source, such as a waterfall or a stream. This will open your consciousness to the fairy realms.

> Get comfortable and relax, especially nearby a nature setting or one easily in your view. Now close your eyes. Allow your mind to fill with a rich, velvety darkness.

> Imagine a shimmering green light filling your mind’s eye. Mentally, move toward it. Focus fully on this glowing green.

> At this point, perhaps you feel a gentle rocking sensation. Surrender to it.

> Now imagine a shining green sphere expanding throughout the blackness. Watch the green ball fill throughout your consciousness. See black no longer. Only green. Now imagine a favorite scene from nature.

> Mentally, call out to your fairies or fairy. Do you see anyone walking or flying toward you? Is there mist, vapors or fluttering over you, or nearby?

> Invite your fairy into your abode. Greet your fairy visitor with good cheer.

Focus on a name or on a fairy clan name. If the fairy has no answer, think harder. (If the fairy does not give you a name, tell it to go away for the time being. It may not be one of the sidhe.)

> Expect your fairy to answer you in imagery and pictures. Your fairy may come across to you clear enough to get names and words. If you do, consider this a bonus.

> If you have a need, ask it of your fairy, or inquire of your fairy what ways your need or goal can be accomplished.

> Before your fairy leaves you, ask for peace and wisdom in forging your own path.

> Bid your fairy farewell by saying “Merry part.” To invite your fairy to visit with you again, set out small bowls of sugar, flowers, or milk.

Once you make contact psychically, creatively or mentally, there are signs that indicate the presences of fairies in your life. This may seem juvenile to some, but fairies were once and still are taken very seriously in parts in the British Isles and now America. Individuals in the past knew that fairies were powerful presences. That is why people in the countryside gave the sidhe great respect.

Signs of Fairy Presences

 > You experience dreams (ones that stick with you) where nature plays a prominent role, especially nature dreams that involve singing or music.

> Dreams of miniature human clothing, such as shoes, jackets or pants, etc.

>             The sound of bells, or childish laughter from which you cannot determine the source.

>             A sudden unexplainable gust of wind.

>             Finding impressions of circles in the grass not there the day before.

>             You hear your name being whispered into one ear (never aloud) and not in the other. You just basically hear whispering when no one is there.

>             A sudden feeling of warmth, wit or mirth. A giddy happiness.

>             What is usually termed poltergeist activity in the home, such as the motion or displacement of objects, disembodied movement such as lamps, swinging, doorbells being rung with no one there and other strange spiritual manifestations.

>             Pets begin to show great interest in certain parts of your yard, area or home, such as sniffing, whimpering or ears standing up or just becoming more alert.

>             Walking into a room or area and you suddenly see shimmering lights, or bright sparkles in the black grasses after dark, as well as evidence of small lights or miniature orbs in pictures near your home.

In a green world, this is what fairies are about. Do not be afraid to seek them out.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

The Truth About Fairies

Fairies & Other Non-Human Spirit Beings

Spiritual beings, whether those that haunt us as ghosts or blessed beings such as angels, permeate our existence, surrounding us at critical times. Such spiritual beings will make themselves known as soon as they see a need to make contact with living persons and not until, unless you already a psychic medium who is gifted at peering into other dimensions.
But not all spirits are spirits of deceased relatives or resident ghosts. Not all spirits involve hauntings or possessed places and people. In fact, only a part of them do.

There is a realm parallel to the earth’s atmosphere that teems with spirits we have learned to refer to as fairies, elementals, angels and divas. There are also darker aspects to these spirit realms, such as vampires in folklore, 20th century Mothman or even a frightening psychological experience called the “Night Hag,” or “Old Hag.”

Although spirits such as fairies are often portrayed as miniature or winged human beings they are not exactly human. They are beyond all that. It does seem, however, they have a consciousness and an intelligence that wishes communication with other life forms. In fact, such beings are our helpers, even though we may not realize it.

“Fairy” or “faerie” comes from the Latin word fata or fate. The name was earliest associated with enchantment and also the witches powers of glamoury or bewitchment. The Celtic peoples and their descendants in the British Isles have the most dramatic and developed fairy lore or fairy faith of any other people on earth. But there are places, such as Japan, China, India and the Middle East that have their own supernatural beings similar to fairies.
Many of the fairy faiths and belief in fairies belong to the small island country off the coast of Great Britain. It is impossible to delve into European fairy lore and beliefs without looking into Ireland. It is also difficult to understand the complexity of fairy lore without considering that green, misty place with the brogue.

But fairies weren’t always called fairies. At least not in Ireland, Scotland or Wales. Fairy is relatively recent term, which at first enjoyed popularity in France as faerie. In the ancient Celtic tongue, fairies were referred to as the Sidhe, which is pronounced as Shee.
In modem day, our understanding of fairies is far from accurate. It is only very recently that fairies are portrayed as tiny dolls that are identical to young girls only with diaphanous wings. In earlier times, not all fairies were small, and like angels in the Middle East, were not thought to have wings. In fact, some fairies were giants and could be menacing, and many were feared. After all, fairy luck could be bad luck just as it could be good luck. It depended upon the mind-set of the fairies.

Irish legend taught that fairies were originally the “Tuatha de Danann,” or rather the “People of the Goddess Danu.” At one time, the Tuatha de Dannan, or the sidhe, were considered actual human beings who pre-dated the Celts in the British Isles by centuries. Excavations revealed gravesites with remains of people who were not the Celts, the Saxons or Nordic types. Many of the skeletons were beneath five feet tall. It was thought that the ghosts of the Tuatha de Danann could visit curses or blessings on people in the countryside. Also, some isolated people in the British Isles claimed these small people as their ancestors.
Fairies as a race of people

When the Celtic population of the British Isles spoke of the “Little People,” “the Little Darlings,” or the “Wee FoIk,” or sometimes just as “Themselves” in prayers or blessings they may have meant just that: little people, or rather a race of humans that were diminutive, a group who no longer existed, except in the tales that were told about them, in the stone art or cairns they left behind, and like the fairies the race became mythical, and to this day, still largely unknown.

In her book the “God of Witches,” anthropologist Margaret Murray pointed out links between British fairy lore and a strong fairy connection to a more ancient hereditary witchcraft, a connection now very slim in the mists of time, with a people who had almost entirely vanished and a magic that was inspired by an earlier race who probably did not speak an Indo-European language. Unlike the Celts and the Saxons who came later, they were a group that was mostly matrilineal or mother-based.
Such mysterious people tended to be small in stature and their skin may have been dark or dusky compared the Germanic or Norwegian types who came into the British Isles later. They are thought to have used their own skin as a canvas for their art since it was reported they were covered from head to toe with tattoos. This group was said to have painted their faces blue and their name holds the very essence of the word “picture” as it relates to their art of tattooing. The race is known as the Picts.
The Picts were one of the earlier groups in what is now modem Scotland, known then as Caledonia and Pictiand, although they inhabited other areas of the British Isles, especially Ireland. The Picts were in mainly Scotland as long as 1500 years ago but became converted to Christianity between the years 300 to 800 A.D. and then seemed to vanish entirely.
A 12th Century Icelander described the native Picts as “pygmies who did wonders in the morning and evenings as workers but who lost all strength in the midday sun.”
The Romans called the Picts as “picti” which meant painted although many believe pict was probably a Celtic word originally and perhaps, could be translated better as tattooed. 

The Picts were referred to later by the Celts as the Pict Sidhe. Translated, this simply means “painted fairy.” It is quite easy to see the evolution of the words Pict Sidhe into Pict-shee and later as “pixie.”

Later, other fairies in Scotland were called Pechs, which, of course, sounds a great deal like Picts. Like the Picts it was said the Pech fairies could not bear the sunlight and so had to do their work at night or very early morning. They were said to live in earthen mounds and fairy hills and only came out after dusk. Yet fairies seemed very much a composite of the ancestors, and such is written by later Scots that as a people and as a race the “Pechs were uncoo wee bodies, but terrible strang.”

Whenever one group moves into an area where there is evidence of some former culture dominated such as in stonework or stone art, the earlier race remains mysterious, and begin to have a divine status as select children of the Gods. Such seems to be the case with the Picts in the British Isles.

Since the Picts were matrilineal they were encouraged to take Irish brides, the Pictish influence faded in the British Isles around 800 AD. And yet, the history of these painted and tattooed people are firmly rooted in the fairy lore of Ireland, Scotland and other parts of the British Isles. There is little doubt the Tuatha de Danann once existed as people. So, in a sense, our memories of fairies may be remnants of a race of people, such as the Picts and earlier the Tuatha de Dannan, mostly mysterious and almost forgotten.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Sendings, Abduction By Fairies, Witches Hats & Elf Arrows -- Oh My!

What Is a Sending? 
Magicians and witches were able to send out thought forms in what was called “sendings” as in an act of sorcery or malevolent magick. For instance, if the magicians felt another magician was persecuting him, he might send an idea, a thought, or a ghost that might intimidate the other one into backing down.
            Pennsylvania Dutch Powwowers practiced the art of “sendings” causing what was then called "witch wars" in the Appalachian and Allegheny Mountains. Some of the German “hexenmeisters” or witches ended up murdered.
            “Sendings” can also involve positive intentions generated by love. For instance, if one wanted to send another one kind thoughts, comfort and aid. It has to do with whatever thought or intention takes form. A sending is considered a particularly powerful type of a spell. 

Abduction by Fairies

In ancient times, especially among the Celts and early British tribes, a belief in fairy abductions was common among the population. Fairies, during those periods, were thought to have guardianship over the realm of the dead and also the underworld.  It was then that fairies were given the task of guiding the souls of the dead departing earth by helping their transition into the afterlife. Because fairies were associated with death and were not viewed as the friendly sprites we now see them as, superstitions and fears surround them.  
 In the children’s classic “Peter Pan,” Tinkerbell is characterized as a jealous fairy.  Those who suffered from malingering illnesses (see “Hag-ridden” and “fairy led”) were believed to be victims of malevolent fairies (and sometimes their mortal kin witches) who stole people from their beds at night and rode them through the night sky like horses. (Here we see the relationship between the words “hag” and “nag” both tied to horses.) Even so, not all fairies had unkind intentions toward their fellow mortal human beings and often acted as helpmates and agents for good such as granting wishes and even doing housework when the owners were away!     Scotland, it was held in great esteem for a Scotsman to marry what was called a “faery witch,” insuring a life with fine children and other comfort rewards. Fairies were still feared by some and blamed for outbreaks of fires, bad crops, or livestock going dry, becoming diseased, or crops experiencing blight.
When certain individuals woke up drained or tired in the morning, many sincerely believed to have been abducted by fairies the previous night. Fairy children or “changelings” were placed in the beds of children, while the real human child was stolen away to Fairyland.

Where Do Witches Hats Come From?

The symbol of the typical Halloween witches hat is extremely ancient. It represents the witches “Cone of Power” and has been found in Celtic graves in parts of China, where an elderly female shaman, with spiral tattoo and tartan plaid, was entombed with a black hat that anyone would recognize as a typical witches hat. Conical hats made of gold have also been unearthed in Ireland thought to be thousands of years old belonging to an group unknown, so far. The Dunce cap, used to humiliate schoolchildren in the 19th Century probably had its ancient purposes as well. It was thought the conical shape drew down wisdom from the heavenly bodies. In essence, the conical was thought to make people more attuned and of course, this made them a little smarter. Such a hat was also worn by people in the Middle Ages, but soon it grew out of style, except for the country folk, of
course, who were poor and could not afford a newer hat. Therefore, the hat was called a pagani, or a “hat worn by pagans,” another witchcraft connection for the conical hat.
What are Elf Arrows?
Fairies have always been believed to be capable of great mischief and even evil, so the same holds true for elves who sometimes take on an even darker energy or intent. People brought down by sudden strokes were thought to be victims of elf darts. Elves were believed to be capable of stopping any work or building over their own fairy territories, especially when a Christian or another type of church was built on top of fairy areas by defending them with their elf darts of elf arrows.
After all, the fairies are not all good and can be territorial or jealous. The name given to these elf darts or arrows, which are said to be triangular shaped flints, is Beleminites, found in many countries but most often in Scotland where the fairy magick was once particularly strong.
Elf arrows were thought to be fatal to cattle, and other forms of livestock. In fact, horses can be leveled and break their legs if hit by an elf dart or arrow.  After the British Isles were Christianized, elves were turned in to the Devil’s imps who were thought to bring paralysis on the Christian clergy with such darts. Later, witches were accused of using such darts to also bring destruction on their enemies. It is important to remember most accused of these charges were seldom witches, instead was the result of superstition and religious paranoia