Heart of Faerie oracle - (14) The Shape Shifter


"In the nineteenth century guns without shot in them were taken along on the wassail and fired into the branches to frighten away owls, faeries, and other haunts. Owls got thrown into this group for two reasons. It was a feared bird, sacred to the Goddess who had been well-demonized and nearly forgotten by this time, and also because owls were often thought to be shapeshifted faeries." ---from "A Witch's Guide to Faery Folk" by Edain McCoy; pg 28, Chapter 2: The Faery Experience Around the Globe (section: The Welsh and English Experience)

"The wings of flying faeries are symbolic of air, and their human or animal legs of earth. A shimmering, luminous quality is their fire aspect; the fluid aspect of shape-shifting represents water. Thus they make balanced connections among the four earthly elements and the four directions of the mystical winds. To all these, however they add the magic of moonlight, the fifth faery element." --Brian Froud

I think it's really interesting how the keywords in the guidebook for this card are perception, illusion, and truth within. The card reminds me of the whole aspect of yin & yang; light and dark...

I drew this card along with a tarot reading that was all cups cards (the suit of water), and it is interesting that Brian Froud said that the shapeshifting is representative of water; water being the suit of imagination, emotions, dreams, intuition, etc.

The artwork in the card itself looks like the faery is shifting into an owl whose wings are in the formation of flight.

To me, this card is reminiscent of how we are always shifting within ourselves. I thought of the way wings are made up of many individual feathers, and only together as a cohesive whole is flight possible... only then do the feathers help the bird to fly. Like each feather working together, "birds of a feather flock together." Every aspect of the self must be embraced in order for us to function in feeling complete within ourselves. And if we do not feel complete within ourselves, it can indeed branch out into impacting relationships, as Wendy Frouds' explanation in the book leans toward. [Note the tree branches in the card as well]

It is through closing the eyes (as the faery is doing), looking within, finding ourselves and feeling whole, that we embrace the totality of ourselves and shift into the higher wisdom represented by the owl [and the face with wide open eyes above him, symbolizing this level of insight and revelation]. To do this, we must not fear flying into the night; journeying into ourselves, to recollect that like the dark side of the moon, the shadows of ourselves are a parts of ourselves which call to be accepted and integrated into our understanding. By exploring every emotion, every thought, we get to know ourselves and become more whole.

....Those were the thoughts I wanted to share. I hope someone finds it interesting or useful. And I'd love to hear what others think of the card as well. :)