Ethereal being

Ethereal being

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Ethereal beings, according to some belief systems and occult theories, are mystic entities that usually are not made of ordinary matter
Matter
Matter is a general term for the substance of which all physical objects consist. Typically, matter includes atoms and other particles which have mass. A common way of defining matter is as anything that has mass and occupies volume...

. Despite the fact that they are believed to be essentially incorporeal, they do interact in physical shapes with the material universe and travel between the mystical and the everyday world. Given the lack of scientific evidence of their existence, science does not acknowledge as factual, though paranormal researchers and psychic
Psychic
A psychic is a person who professes an ability to perceive information hidden from the normal senses through extrasensory perception , or is said by others to have such abilities. It is also used to describe theatrical performers who use techniques such as prestidigitation, cold reading, and hot...

s claim them as real.

Several belief systems include ethereal beings such as ghosts, mythological
Mythology
The term mythology can refer either to the study of myths, or to a body or collection of myths. As examples, comparative mythology is the study of connections between myths from different cultures, whereas Greek mythology is the body of myths from ancient Greece...

 entities, nature spirits, angels, thoughtforms, jinns, and they are mentioned in religious, folkloristic, and magic texts. Since the nineteenth century, the existence of ethereal beings was being claimed by various spiritualist philosophies as well, and they are found in the popular imagination and represented in movies, TV series and cartoons.

Etymology


Originating between 1250 and 1300 from Middle English
Middle English
Middle English is the stage in the history of the English language during the High and Late Middle Ages, or roughly during the four centuries between the late 11th and the late 15th century....

, being
Being
Being , is an English word used for conceptualizing subjective and objective aspects of reality, including those fundamental to the self —related to and somewhat interchangeable with terms like "existence" and "living".In its objective usage —as in "a being," or "[a] human being" —it...

refers to "a living creature; the state or fact of existence, consciousness, or life, or something in such a state". In philosophy, being is the object of the study of metaphysics
Metaphysics
Metaphysics is a branch of philosophy concerned with explaining the fundamental nature of being and the world, although the term is not easily defined. Traditionally, metaphysics attempts to answer two basic questions in the broadest possible terms:...

, particularly ontology
Ontology
Ontology is the philosophical study of the nature of being, existence or reality as such, as well as the basic categories of being and their relations...

. The term being is characteristically comprehended as one's state of being, and consequently its common meaning is in the background of human experience, with aspects that involve expressions and manifestations coming from a being's innate being, or personal character.

Ethereal derives from the Latin aetherius, meaning “of or pertaining to the ether, the sky
Sky
The sky is the part of the atmosphere or outer space visible from the surface of any astronomical object. It is difficult to define precisely for several reasons. During daylight, the sky of Earth has the appearance of a pale blue surface because the air scatters the sunlight. The sky is sometimes...

, or the air or upper air”, and from the Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek
Ancient Greek is the stage of the Greek language in the periods spanning the times c. 9th–6th centuries BC, , c. 5th–4th centuries BC , and the c. 3rd century BC – 6th century AD of ancient Greece and the ancient world; being predated in the 2nd millennium BC by Mycenaean Greek...

 aitherios (αἰθέριος), meaning "of or pertaining to the upper air". The analogous variant Aether
Aether (mythology)
Aether , in Greek mythology, is one of the Protogenoi, the first-born elementals. He is the personification of the upper sky, space, and heaven, and is the elemental god of the "Bright, Glowing, Upper Air." He is the pure upper air that the gods breathe, as opposed to the normal air that mortals...

originates from Æthere (Greek: Αἰθήρ). Aether in Greek mythology
Greek mythology
Greek mythology is the body of myths and legends belonging to the ancient Greeks, concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world, and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. They were a part of religion in ancient Greece...

 is one of the Protogenoi
Protogenoi
In Greek mythology the Prôtogenoi are a genealogy of primordial Greek gods, the name literally means "first born" or "primeval" and are a group of deities born in the beginning of the universe....

, the first-born elemental gods. A deity, son of Erebus
Erebus
In Greek mythology, Erebus , also Erebos , was often conceived as a primordial deity, representing the personification of darkness; for instance, Hesiod's Theogony places him as the first five beings to come into existence from Chaos...

 and Nyx
Nyx
In Greek mythology, Nyx was the primordial goddess of the night. A shadowy figure, Nyx stood at or near the beginning of creation, and was the mother of personified gods such as Hypnos and Thánatos...

, Aether is the personification of the upper sky, space, and heaven, and is the elemental god of the "pure, bright, upper air".

Hindu philosophy
Hindu philosophy
Hindu philosophy is divided into six schools of thought, or , which accept the Vedas as supreme revealed scriptures. Three other schools do not accept the Vedas as authoritative...

 relates Aether to the concept of Akasha
Akasha
Akasha is the Sanskrit word meaning "aether" in both its elemental and metaphysical senses.-Hinduism:...

(आकाश), a Sanskrit word. The Nyaya
Nyaya
' is the name given to one of the six orthodox or astika schools of Hindu philosophy—specifically the school of logic...

 and Vaisheshika
Vaisheshika
Vaisheshika or ' is one of the six Hindu schools of philosophy of India. Historically, it has been closely associated with the Hindu school of logic, Nyaya....

 traditions of Hindu philosophy set Akasha or ether as the fifth physical substance, which is the "substratum of the quality of sound". "It is the One, Eternal, and All Pervading physical substance, which is imperceptible".

Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

 portrayed aether as that which God operated in the delineation of the universe. In the Greek Ionian philosophy of Aristotle
Aristotle
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and polymath, a student of Plato and teacher of Alexander the Great. His writings cover many subjects, including physics, metaphysics, poetry, theater, music, logic, rhetoric, linguistics, politics, government, ethics, biology, and zoology...

, aether was the "fifth element", "the quintessence", had no qualities (neither hot, cold, wet, nor dry), was incapable of transforming (except change of place).

According to medieval science as Alchemy
Alchemy
Alchemy is an influential philosophical tradition whose early practitioners’ claims to profound powers were known from antiquity. The defining objectives of alchemy are varied; these include the creation of the fabled philosopher's stone possessing powers including the capability of turning base...

 and Natural philosophy
Natural philosophy
Natural philosophy or the philosophy of nature , is a term applied to the study of nature and the physical universe that was dominant before the development of modern science...

, aether, also spelled æther or Ether
Aether (classical element)
According to ancient and medieval science aether , also spelled æther or ether, is the material that fills the region of the universe above the terrestrial sphere.-Mythological origins:...

, is the substance that pervades the region of the Universe
Universe
The Universe is commonly defined as the totality of everything that exists, including all matter and energy, the planets, stars, galaxies, and the contents of intergalactic space. Definitions and usage vary and similar terms include the cosmos, the world and nature...

 above the terrestrial sphere. In 19th century, ether or luminiferous aether
Luminiferous aether
In the late 19th century, luminiferous aether or ether, meaning light-bearing aether, was the term used to describe a medium for the propagation of light....

, meaning "light bearing aether", was the term used to describe a medium for the propagation of light.

At the end of 19th and beginning of 20th century several occultists started to renew the term "etheric" for sponsoring the cosmologic principles
Esoteric cosmology
Esoteric cosmology is cosmology that is an intrinsic part of an esoteric or occult system of thought. It almost always deals with at least some of the following themes: emanation, involution, spiritual evolution, epigenesis, planes of existence or higher worlds , hierarchies of spiritual beings,...

 of mysterious energies and planes of existence before at that time mostly represented by term "astral". One of the earliest eminent figures was C. W. Leadbeater who practically recaptured the concept of an etheric plane
Etheric plane
The etheric plane is a term introduced into Theosophy by Charles Webster Leadbeater and Annie Besant to represent one of the planes of existence in neo-Theosophical and Rosicrucian cosmology. It represents the fourth[higher] subplane of the physical plane , the lower three being the states of...

.
In English literature
English literature
English literature is the literature written in the English language, including literature composed in English by writers not necessarily from England; for example, Robert Burns was Scottish, James Joyce was Irish, Joseph Conrad was Polish, Dylan Thomas was Welsh, Edgar Allan Poe was American, J....

 ethereal naturalizes affiliative definitions in quotations such as,
1667: Go, heavenly guest, ethereal messenger —English poet Milton
John Milton
John Milton was an English poet, polemicist, a scholarly man of letters, and a civil servant for the Commonwealth of England under Oliver Cromwell...

 in Paradise Lost
Paradise Lost
Paradise Lost is an epic poem in blank verse by the 17th-century English poet John Milton. It was originally published in 1667 in ten books, with a total of over ten thousand individual lines of verse...

(book VII).

1862: I trust that we shall be more imaginative, that our thoughts will be clearer, fresher, and more ethereal, as our sky —American philosopher Thoreau
Henry David Thoreau
Henry David Thoreau was an American author, poet, philosopher, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, and leading transcendentalist...

 in Walking
Walking (Thoreau)
"Walking" is an essay written by Henry David Thoreau, . Between 1851 and 1860 Thoreau read the piece a total of ten times, more than any other of his lectures...

.


Associated with the "quality of beings; consisting of ether, hence, exceedingly light or airy; tenuous; spirit-like; characterized by extreme delicacy, as form, manner, thought":
1733: Vast chain of being, which from God began, Natures ethereal, human, angel, man —English poet Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope
Alexander Pope was an 18th-century English poet, best known for his satirical verse and for his translation of Homer. He is the third-most frequently quoted writer in The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, after Shakespeare and Tennyson...

.


Meaning "spirit-like, impalpable; of unearthly delicacy and refinement of substance, character, or appearance":
1722: The soul may be also perceptive of finer impressions and ethereal contacts —English philosopher William Wollaston
William Wollaston
William Wollaston was an English philosophical writer. He is remembered today for one book, which he completed only two years before his death: ....

.

1810: Only Kehama's powerful eye beheld the thin ethereal spirit —English poet Robert Southey
Robert Southey
Robert Southey was an English poet of the Romantic school, one of the so-called "Lake Poets", and Poet Laureate for 30 years from 1813 to his death in 1843...

 in Curse of Kehama
Curse of Kehama
The Curse of Kehama is an 1810 epic poem composed by Robert Southey. The origins of the poem can be traced to Southey's school boy days when he would suffer insomnia along with his memories of a dark and mysterious schoolmate that later formed the basis for one of the poem's villains. The poem was...

, an epic poem.

1847: Her ethereal nature seemed to shrink from coarse reality —British Benjamin Disraeli in the novel Tancred
Tancred (novel)
Tancred; or, The New Crusade is a novel by Benjamin Disraeli, first published by Henry Colburn in three volumes. Together with Coningsby and Sybil it forms a sequence sometimes called the Young England trilogy...

.

1870: As men, we only know of embodied spirits, however ethereal their bodies may be conceived to be —German orientalist
Orientalist
Orientalist may refer to:*A scholar of Oriental studies*A person or thing relating to the Western intellectual or artistic paradigm known as Orientalism...

 Max Müller
Max Müller
Friedrich Max Müller , more regularly known as Max Müller, was a German philologist and Orientalist, one of the founders of the western academic field of Indian studies and the discipline of comparative religion...

.

1879: A faith which is so wholly ethereal as to be independent of facts —British W. J. Loftie
W. J. Loftie
William John Loftie was a British clergyman and writer, on the history of London, travel, art and architecture.-Works:*The Latin Year *Views in the English Lake District...

.

General view


In current time, especially in the United States, there are several organizations named as paranormal researchers or ghost hunters
Ghost Hunters
Ghost Hunters is an American paranormal reality television series that premiered on October 6, 2004, on Syfy . The program features paranormal investigators Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson who investigate places that are reported to be haunted. The two originally worked as plumbers for Roto-Rooter as...

 which consider some particular characteristics to ethereal beings.

Focused on investigations of haunted sights, the alleged conclusion is that some spectral beings seem to be nourished by energy provided from electronics devices, natural sources, and also from living organisms such as a human or an animal. Emotional energy, fear, and common negative feelings appear to be preferential sustenance of ethereal beings, namely those known as poltergeists. Temperature measurements taken from haunted places reveal abrupt and inexplicable drops. According to some proposed explanations, the ethereal being absorbs environment's energy to self-manifest in a perceptive way to humans. That is to say ethereal beings usually have so little energy that humans cannot perceive them, although pets seem able of doing it.
The “ethereal being phenomenon” is basically classified on two branches by ghost hunting
Ghost hunting
Ghost Hunting is the process of investigating locations that are reported to be haunted by ghosts.Typically, a ghost hunting team will attempt to collect evidence claimed to be supportive of paranormal activity...

: "residual energy
Residual haunting
In the terminology of ghost hunting, residual hauntings, also known as restligeists , are repeated playbacks of auditory, visual, olfactory, and other sensory phenomena that are attributed to a traumatic event, life-altering event, or a routine event of a person or place, like an echo or a replay...

" and "interactive energy
Intelligent haunting
In the terminology of ghost hunting, an intelligent haunting differs from a residual haunting, being a haunting in which a spiritual entity is aware of the living world and interacts with or responds to it...

". In other words when the ghost “answers” requests from ghost hunter, he would be an intelligent ethereal being, while if not, a "residual ethereal" or "site memory" (not really alive in that last case).

A regular procedure for ghost hunting is, through gadgets, the tape of “electronic voice phenomena” (EVP) which essentially are sounds recorded from “unperceptive source”. However, as claimed by some paranormal investigators, the perception of ethereal beings through electronic apparatus constitutes an established field of communication between people and them.

Denominated as "instrumentally assisted trans-communication” (ITC) occurrence, it consists in receiving voices, text and images from supposed friendly ethereal entities, which purportedly originate from diverse immaterial planes by way of computers, radios, televisions, telephones and other devices. According to parapsychologist Swiss Theo Locher, the contacts with such ethereal entities and results of these transmissions rely on common qualities, beliefs, thoughts and good intentions of experimenters and not only on instruments.

As stated by these interchanges of information, as for their time of life ethereals live hundreds of thousands of years. They, as “higher beings”, can incarnate like humans to demonstrate spiritual ways and not necessarily as a conspicuous person. They have no human emotions but can learn about them. The ethereal entities possess abilities regularly above normal humans as to foresee the future, although they are not supreme beings who could not fully avert disasters. They would not be flawless; they would be evolving over time like the human being.

On the other hand, ITC allows too the manifestation of “dark spirits” which oppose the “high ethereals” who assist the humanity. Under ITC messages some ethereals alert that merely opening the door to the spiritual worlds may be dangerous.

In the nineteenth century the French occultist Eliphas Levi
Eliphas Levi
Eliphas Lévi, born Alphonse Louis Constant , was a French occult author and purported magician."Eliphas Lévi," the name under which he published his books, was his attempt to translate or transliterate his given names "Alphonse Louis" into Hebrew although he was not Jewish.His second wife was...

 defended the idea that temperature drops, chill, noises and shots heard in haunting places are promoted by creatures denominated elementals or fluid maggots (lately known as thoughtform
Thoughtform
A thoughtform is a manifestation of mental energy, also known as a tulpa in Tibetan mysticism. Its concept is related to the Western philosophy and practice of magic. links mantras and yantras to thoughtforms:...

s
). He declares these astral entities
Astral plane
The astral plane, also called the astral world, is a plane of existence postulated by classical , medieval, oriental and esoteric philosophies and mystery religions...

as begotten from humans by mean of intense disoriented imagination and nightmares with sexual context. Like parasites these ghosts drain vital heat from people, debilitate individuals with fragile health and imitate like shadows theirs human creators. Besides they act as astral vampire
Vampire
Vampires are mythological or folkloric beings who subsist by feeding on the life essence of living creatures, regardless of whether they are undead or a living person...

s
consuming the astral steam provided in blood shed from accidents, deaths and sacrifices.

Levi and likewise after the English C. W. Leadbeater sustain that every person has an astral body
Astral body
The astral body is a subtle body posited by many religious philosophers, intermediate between the intelligent soul and the physical body, composed of a subtle material. The concept ultimately derives from the philosophy of Plato: it is related to an astral plane, which consists of the planetary...

and in death, the soul
Soul
A soul in certain spiritual, philosophical, and psychological traditions is the incorporeal essence of a person or living thing or object. Many philosophical and spiritual systems teach that humans have souls, and others teach that all living things and even inanimate objects have souls. The...

 may leave this one behind. The astral body retains the living memories and personality, still seeks its passions, wants return to life, feeds on energy of spilt blood and floats about the places where its life elapsed. But over time the cosmos absorbs it; its intelligence fades away; its memory gradually vanishes and all its spectral being dissipates. So, while available, it is this astral entity that is driven by Necromancy
Necromancy
Necromancy is a claimed form of magic that involves communication with the deceased, either by summoning their spirit in the form of an apparition or raising them bodily, for the purpose of divination, imparting the ability to foretell future events or discover hidden knowledge...

, the art of evoking the dead.

Inward this prospect, Leadbeater sees a miscellany of cases ranking them, for citing some pertinent ones, as shades, etheric doubles, thoughtforms, degenerated souls and so on. All them may be deemed astral parasites because whenever they have the opportunity they prolong their existence by draining away the vitality from humans whom they find themselves able to influence.

A "shade" is a residual astral not conscious of any act of impression, a soulless bundle of all lowest qualities, which bears personal appearance, possesses memory and all idiosyncrasies of a dead person. It is still able to communicate by borrowing temporary intelligence from the medium
Mediumship
Mediumship is described as a form of communication with spirits. It is a practice in religious beliefs such as Spiritualism, Spiritism, Espiritismo, Candomblé, Voodoo and Umbanda.- Concept :...

.
An etheric double
Etheric body
The etheric body, ether-body, æther body, a name given by neo-Theosophy to a supposed vital body or subtle body propounded in esoteric philosophies as the first or lowest layer in the "human energy field" or aura...

 is the shell, the etheric mold, one of subtle bodies
Subtle body
A subtle body is one of a series of psycho-spiritual constituents of living beings, according to various esoteric, occult, and mystical teachings...

 which constitute living beings. The etheric shell is devoid of consciousness and intelligence; has a bluish-white misty form remaining near the decaying physical body.

A Thoughtform
Thoughtform
A thoughtform is a manifestation of mental energy, also known as a tulpa in Tibetan mysticism. Its concept is related to the Western philosophy and practice of magic. links mantras and yantras to thoughtforms:...

 is a vitalized etheric shell, an artificial elemental animated by life, intelligence, desire, and will from a creation of man's evil thought. It is a malevolent being, a tempting demon.

Degenerated souls comprise men whose earth-lives have been extremely low or brutal then they are liable to recoil into evil ghostlike entities. As well black sorcerers, in an attempt of stretching out their lives, transform themselves in ghostly bizarre beings. Pisachas, incubus, succubus, and the demons of gluttony, lust, avarice and wickedness drawn by tempting devils of ecclesiastical literature, represent this class of creatures.

Thereof, as a matter of fact, retrogressing to 16th century the physician and occultist Paracelsus
Paracelsus
Paracelsus was a German-Swiss Renaissance physician, botanist, alchemist, astrologer, and general occultist....

 already appreciated those phenomena. In his alike words a man after death leaves a sidereal or astral body having no soul upon Earth. This sidereal body brings his thoughts and the heart’s desires of the dead man; it keeps itself in the neighborhood of that place where his cravings has been stayed. In all these things the soulless being performs for the desires of that heart, and it does the same thing in a shadowy manner after death, until, as the physical body is consumed, the sky devours that ghost. Partaker of that it is the necromancy, which grounds around the philosophy of sidereal beings, states the occultist.

Regarding the concept of shade of the departed, this also was the term used in Roman mythology
Roman mythology
Roman mythology is the body of traditional stories pertaining to ancient Rome's legendary origins and religious system, as represented in the literature and visual arts of the Romans...

 for a class of beings of the underworld
Underworld
The Underworld is a region which is thought to be under the surface of the earth in some religions and in mythologies. It could be a place where the souls of the recently departed go, and in some traditions it is identified with Hell or the realm of death...

. Shades, in turn, split between the harmful lemures or larvae, which haunted the former home, and the beneficent lares
Lares
Lares , archaically Lases, were guardian deities in ancient Roman religion. Their origin is uncertain; they may have been guardians of the hearth, fields, boundaries or fruitfulness, hero-ancestors, or an amalgam of these....

, which protected the house. In more recent esoteric interpretation, a shade belongs to the astral body
Astral body
The astral body is a subtle body posited by many religious philosophers, intermediate between the intelligent soul and the physical body, composed of a subtle material. The concept ultimately derives from the philosophy of Plato: it is related to an astral plane, which consists of the planetary...

. It gathers the "kama treat", which it is connected with desire principle, the propelling vital force, and the higher parts of the human constitution, which have separated from the shells. In depth, Kama
Kama
Kāma is often translated from Sanskrit as sexual desire, sexual pleasure, sensual gratification, sexual fulfillment, or eros54654564+more broadly mean desire, wish, passion, longing, pleasure of the senses, the aesthetic enjoyment of life, affection, or love, without sexual connotations.-Kama in...

 in Hinduism personifies the god of love, he is similar to the Greek Eros
Eros
Eros , in Greek mythology, was the Greek god of love. His Roman counterpart was Cupid . Some myths make him a primordial god, while in other myths, he is the son of Aphrodite....

, both source of motivation and desire of life.

According to Native Americans
Indigenous peoples of the Americas
The indigenous peoples of the Americas are the pre-Columbian inhabitants of North and South America, their descendants and other ethnic groups who are identified with those peoples. Indigenous peoples are known in Canada as Aboriginal peoples, and in the United States as Native Americans...

 and other shamanic traditions, an ethereal being could be an ancestor spirit
Spirit
The English word spirit has many differing meanings and connotations, most of them relating to a non-corporeal substance contrasted with the material body.The spirit of a living thing usually refers to or explains its consciousness.The notions of a person's "spirit" and "soul" often also overlap,...

 from a former living human or animal, or else just an entity with the human look or not. Within that first outlook, the western modern view, based on some religious beliefs, puts ghosts as human spirits waiting the moment to be freed and leave definitely the Earth.

On the second possibility alluded by natives, the Christian religion defines that type as demon regardless of the entity may be helpful. But Native Americans deem these sorts of ethereal beings, with human aspect or not, simply as spirits where they can be good such as the protector manitou
Manitou
Manitou is a general term for spirit beings among many Algonquian Native American groups.Manitou may also refer to:- Geography :* Manitou, Manitoba, Canada* Manitou, Kentucky, USA* Manitou, Oklahoma, USA- Other uses :...

 or evil like the predator wendigo
Wendigo
The Wendigo is a mythical creature appearing in the mythology of the Algonquian people. It is a malevolent cannibalistic spirit into which humans could transform, or which could possess humans...

 from Ojibwa
Ojibwa
The Ojibwe or Chippewa are among the largest groups of Native Americans–First Nations north of Mexico. They are divided between Canada and the United States. In Canada, they are the third-largest population among First Nations, surpassed only by Cree and Inuit...

 and Cree
Cree
The Cree are one of the largest groups of First Nations / Native Americans in North America, with 200,000 members living in Canada. In Canada, the major proportion of Cree live north and west of Lake Superior, in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and the Northwest Territories, although...

 mythology. Among the peoples Coast Salish and Okanagon
Okanagan people
The Okanagan people, also spelled Okanogan, are a First Nations and Native American people whose traditional territory spans the U.S.-Canada boundary in Washington state and British Columbia...

 from Washington some of those spirits act as guardians chiefly protecting the children and shamans. According to these peoples such ethereal entity is called "power animal
Power animal
Power animal, is a broadly animistic and shamanic concept that has entered the English language from Anthropology, Ethnography and Sociology. A tutelary spirit guides, helps or protects individuals, lineages and nations. In the shamanic worldview, everything is alive, bearing an inherent virtue,...

" or "animal totem", though sometimes it can have human form. In point of fact this guardian spirit, which is called arutam wakanl by Jivaros
Jivaroan peoples
Jivaroan peoples refers to groups of indigenous peoples in the headwaters of the Marañon River, and its tributaries in northern Peru and eastern Ecuador...

, uses to appear as human in dreams, while under shamanic vision
Altered state of consciousness
An altered state of consciousness , also named altered state of mind, is any condition which is significantly different from a normal waking beta wave state. The expression was used as early as 1966 by Arnold M. Ludwig and brought into common usage from 1969 by Charles Tart: it describes induced...

 has an animal shape.
The shamanic tradition regards spirits as something indispensable for everyday life of man, when it is absent then must be rescued by a shaman through his magic arts, like in this Siberian chant translated in 1894:


Come, oh come spirit and ally. If you do not come, I will go to you.
Awake, oh, awake spirit and ally. Now I came to you, and I wake up you from your dreams.


The importance of such spirits also can be seen in some American tribes, which believe if a newborn does not find a "power animal" until six days after the birthday, the child will die right away, and hereof an adult can routinely fall sick when he is deprived of his guardian spirit. Whereby certain line of thought claims that the western belief in angels it is derived from archaic shamanic traditions. But not solely protection, likewise powers exclusively accessible through those spirits are delivered. In this same category, argue some scholars, are the familiar spirit
Familiar spirit
In European folklore and folk-belief of the Medieval and Early Modern periods, familiar spirits were supernatural entities believed to assist witches and cunning folk in their practice of magic...

s in Europe, which are reasoned as an inheritance from those shamanic traditions.

And like in any animism
Animism
Animism refers to the belief that non-human entities are spiritual beings, or at least embody some kind of life-principle....

ic tradition there are different characters of them. For instance among the Lakotas the benevolent power animal can friendly speak, while other kind can be a maleficent being which may cause illness, and yet other variety harasses the person during the sleep provoking bad dreams. Hence, originated in the Ojibwa Nation, to protect the sleeping person there is the indigenous and magic artifact called dreamcatcher
Dreamcatcher
Dreamcatcher is a Native American cultural object.Dreamcatcher may also refer to:-Entertainment:* Dreamcatcher , a 2001 novel by Stephen King** Dreamcatcher , based on the Stephen King novel...

, which according to the legends was given in dreams by Gitchi Manitou, the Great Spirit. These nightmarish spirits find some similarity at western culture with the wicked beings called incubus
Incubus
An incubus is a male demon that has sexual intercourse with sleeping women.Incubus may also refer to:- Film :* Incubus , a film in Esperanto starring William Shatner* Incubus , a horror film starring Tara Reid...

, but otherwise the latter entities could make the individual become ill or die.
Regarding the energy subject where it is absorbed by ethereal beings, the occasional interaction of ethereal beings when a person or animal dies, performs an especial case. From that situation may emerge an anchimayen
Anchimayen
The Anchimayen is a mythical creature in Mapuche mythology. Anchimayens are described as little creatures that take the form of small children, and can transform into fireball flying spheres that emit bright light...

 crafted by the entity, while in Chinese tradition
Chinese mythology
Chinese mythology is a collection of cultural history, folktales, and religions that have been passed down in oral or written tradition. These include creation myths and legends and myths concerning the founding of Chinese culture and the Chinese state...

 would be a particular case of an hungry ghost
Hungry ghosts in Chinese religion
The term , literally "hungry ghost", is the Chinese translation of the term preta in Buddhism."Hungry ghosts" play a role in Chinese Buddhism and Taoism as well as in Chinese folk religion....

, in Tibetan tradition
Tibetan Buddhism
Tibetan Buddhism is the body of Buddhist religious doctrine and institutions characteristic of Tibet and certain regions of the Himalayas, including northern Nepal, Bhutan, and India . It is the state religion of Bhutan...

 a tulpa
Tulpa
Tulpa is an upaya concept in Tibetan Buddhism and Bon, discipline and teaching tool. The term was first rendered into English as 'Thoughtform' by Evans-Wentz :...

 and in Western Tradition
Western mystery tradition
Western esotericism or Hermeticism is a broad spectrum of spiritual traditions found in Western society, or refers to the collection of the mystical, esoteric knowledge of the Western world...

, a thoughtform
Thoughtform
A thoughtform is a manifestation of mental energy, also known as a tulpa in Tibetan mysticism. Its concept is related to the Western philosophy and practice of magic. links mantras and yantras to thoughtforms:...

 or a kind of familiar
Familiar spirit
In European folklore and folk-belief of the Medieval and Early Modern periods, familiar spirits were supernatural entities believed to assist witches and cunning folk in their practice of magic...

. These anchimayen ethereals suck in the whole psychic, mental and bodily energy released during the process of death. Masked by the taken energy, the ethereal being frames the visual form, behavior and many times even the personality of the dead person, or animal once in a while. Similarly as thoughtforms, the ethereal creature would remain in this human or animal form and slowly would weaken until the absorbed energy was all spent meanwhile producing the reported haunted places for centuries.

It is relevant point out that the Chinese feng shui
Feng shui
Feng shui ' is a Chinese system of geomancy believed to use the laws of both Heaven and Earth to help one improve life by receiving positive qi. The original designation for the discipline is Kan Yu ....

 philosophy embraces the idea that the arrangement and shape of landscapes, buildings, rooms and furniture can bring good or bad energies (Ch'i energy) to the environment. In fact, on eastern, particularly in China the matter is very serious for builders, to the point that ignoring it may cause consequences such as a haunted house. On western perspective, the base of that knowledge dwells on esoteric idea of radiation of form waves, which also makes strong grounding in Radiesthesia
Radiesthesia
Radiesthesia is the claimed paranormal or parapsychological ability to detect "radiation" within the human body. According to the theory, all human bodies give off unique or characteristic "radiations" as do all other physical bodies or objects. Such radiations are often termed an "aura".A...

, sigils
Sigil (magic)
A sigil is a symbol created for a specific magical purpose. A sigil is usually made up of a complex combination of several specific symbols or geometric figures, each with a specific meaning or intent.- Name and origin :...

, amulets, and as well as source of power of the Runic letters, for example. The French author Roger de Lafforest
Roger de Lafforest
Roger de Lafforest, born January 11, 1905 and died November 16, 1998, was a French writer. Lafforest has titles published and re-editions since 1927 in Czech, English, French, Portuguese, Slovak and Spanish...

 widely explained this concept claiming the shape of buildings and objects as capable of making people ill, to protect or kill them through the emission of "form waves". Lafforest affirms that ancient Egyptian priests protect pharaoh's tombs creating their own ethereal beings as product of magic. These ethereal beings were thoughtforms and the magicians to protect themselves from these ghosts, used sigils, which on the other hand may be used for the creation of thoughtforms as well.

In addition the French Jean Gaston Bardet and Jean de La Fye developed a system consisted of Hebraic letters as source of "form waves" radiation. This system lately was improved with contributions added from 777, work by Aleister Crowley
Aleister Crowley
Aleister Crowley , born Edward Alexander Crowley, and also known as both Frater Perdurabo and The Great Beast, was an influential English occultist, astrologer, mystic and ceremonial magician, responsible for founding the religious philosophy of Thelema. He was also successful in various other...

.

Thereby according to that knowledge, once the environment’s structure is stocked of residual energy, or has the favorable shape (for generating energy), the ethereal being haunts the place for long periods.
Thus when an area resident makes a reform or restoration (in a supposed haunting place) altering the shape of the rooms and furniture, he is changing the Ch'i energy flow. Consequently phantasmal manifestations, would be more likely in such altered conditions.

Castaneda


Under the interpretation made by writer Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda was a Peruvian-born American anthropologist and author....

, even living in another dimension of perception, ethereal beings are some sort of intelligent alien beings or energy beings, and so terraqueous as men are.

Practically inside of an animism
Animism
Animism refers to the belief that non-human entities are spiritual beings, or at least embody some kind of life-principle....

ic perspective, he closely approaches these entities of the sprites
Sprite (creature)
The term sprite is a broad term referring to a number of preternatural legendary creatures. The term is generally used in reference to elf-like creatures, including fairies, and similar beings , but can also signify various spiritual beings, including ghosts. In Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl books,...

 and metaphorically designates them as "inorganic beings" on an allusion they are not made of flesh and bones. Therefore as expected, in scientific terms these alien ghosts would have neither inorganic nor organic structure
Organic structure
Organic structure may refer to:* Organic , forms, methods and patterns found in living systems, often used as a metaphor for non-living things* The molecular structure of an organic compound, also known as the structural formula of an organic compound...

.

Only the powerful sorcerers, the seers, this means to him, with great amount of energy (above the ordinary human), can perceive these ethereal beings. As a result usually they are out of the common perception of a regular person.

Along his books, at this shamanic world’s scenery, like exists many species
Species
In biology, a species is one of the basic units of biological classification and a taxonomic rank. A species is often defined as a group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring. While in many cases this definition is adequate, more precise or differing measures are...

 of animals, there are umpteen kinds of ethereal inhuman beings. Similar to human organic realm, there are the harmless, little dangerous and the very dangerous entities. Or drawing a parallel there are irrational, intermediary and intelligent ethereal creatures. Comparatively on the same sense, other mystic literatures speaking of these ethereal creatures would recognize them as: elementals, fairies, ghosts and demons on identical sequence.

These entities have only self-interests while others can help the sorcerer to gain power. He calls these last ones as "Allies". The outward appearance of them may be any thing: a person, an animal or still a geometric form. Even the death
Death (personification)
The concept of death as a sentient entity has existed in many societies since the beginning of history. In English, Death is often given the name Grim Reaper and, from the 15th century onwards, came to be shown as a skeletal figure carrying a large scythe and clothed in a black cloak with a hood...

 would be personified as a fierce ally who should be called for fulfilling the apotheosis of a sorcerer, his enlightenment
Enlightenment (spiritual)
Enlightenment in a secular context often means the "full comprehension of a situation", but in spiritual terms the word alludes to a spiritual revelation or deep insight into the meaning and purpose of all things, communication with or understanding of the mind of God, profound spiritual...

.

Nevertheless, such assertions have ancient paradigms in places like the Mediaeval Europe where these ethereal beings could be rendered respectively as Succubus
Succubus
In folklore traced back to medieval legend, a succubus is a female demon appearing in dreams who takes the form of a human woman in order to seduce men, usually through sexual intercourse. The male counterpart is the incubus...

 that could too have animal forms or familiar spirit
Familiar spirit
In European folklore and folk-belief of the Medieval and Early Modern periods, familiar spirits were supernatural entities believed to assist witches and cunning folk in their practice of magic...

s, where believed to assist witches in their practice of magic. In the beginning of the 20th century, familiars were identified as "niggets", which were crawly things that witches kept over them.

With respect to the forms of these creatures, also in Asian folklore, the Japanese represents a class of beings that may have the shape of animals, people, objects, or metamorphic characteristics, as well as the Korean ghost Dokkaebi
Dokkaebi
Dokkaebi is a common word for a type of spirit in Korean folklore or fairy tales.The Dokkaebi is a mythical being that appears in many old Korean folktales. Although usually frightening, it could also represent a humorous, grotesque-looking sprite or goblin. These creatures loved mischief and...

, which can transform itself in a stick or a club. Moreover, according to Japanese tradition, particularly from the Kamakura period
Kamakura period
The is a period of Japanese history that marks the governance by the Kamakura Shogunate, officially established in 1192 in Kamakura by the first shogun Minamoto no Yoritomo....

 onward, when a household item reaches in years the age of hyaku, virtually the number one hundred, which overflows the sheer numbers of the everyday world in Japanese culture, such object acquires a spirit and turns into a yōkai called tsukumogami
Tsukumogami
Understood by many Western scholars as a type of Japanese yōkai, the Tsukumogami was a concept popular in Japanese folklore as far back as the tenth century, used in the spread of Shingon Buddhism...

. Tsukumogamis could come from any objects such as knives, paper lanterns, or if a umbrella the spirit would become a karakasa, as comically pictured in the famous scroll Hyakkiyagyō
Hyakki Yako
thumb|300px|"Hyakki Yakō" by [[Kawanabe Kyōsai]], collected in [[British Museum]]Hyakki Yakō was a Japanese folk belief. The belief holds that every year yōkai, the Japanese supernatural beings, will take to the streets during summer nights. Anyone who comes across the procession will die, unless...

 emaki
(百鬼夜行絵巻), which literally means "night procession of one hundred demons".

Alike creature to the yōkai, the Chinese yaoguai
Yaoguai
Yaoguai or yaomo or yaojing is a Chinese term that generally means "demon". Yaoguai are mostly malevolent animal spirits or fallen celestial beings that have acquired magical powers through the practice of Taoism...

 can change its shape as well and appear in the form of an animal. The Japanese foxlike spirit kitsune
Kitsune
is the Japanese word for fox. Foxes are a common subject of Japanese folklore; in English, kitsune refers to them in this context. Stories depict them as intelligent beings and as possessing magical abilities that increase with their age and wisdom. Foremost among these is the ability to assume...

, also assumes human forms. The term kitsunetsuki refers to the state of being dominated by this spirit.Comparable with the incubus, the yoguai hulijing (狐狸精), a ghostly fox, disguised as a woman could bring death to a man while it drew his vital essence during the sexual intercourse. However the yoguai sometimes can be also a good ally devoted to its beloved man, as well as in some myths it can have a godlike nature and still assume a subservient role. For example in a Jiayi
Chiayi
-Administration:-City attractions:*Chiayi Park*Sun Shooting Tower *Lantan *Historic Archives Building of Chiayi City*University of Chiayi*Chiayi Museum...

 myth, yaoguais were assistants of Guanyin, who was a bodhisattva
Bodhisattva
In Buddhism, a bodhisattva is either an enlightened existence or an enlightenment-being or, given the variant Sanskrit spelling satva rather than sattva, "heroic-minded one for enlightenment ." The Pali term has sometimes been translated as "wisdom-being," although in modern publications, and...

, an enlightenment-being in Buddhism.

Similarly on Greek mythology
Greek mythology
Greek mythology is the body of myths and legends belonging to the ancient Greeks, concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world, and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. They were a part of religion in ancient Greece...

 and other mythologies and religions (such as the Animism
Animism
Animism refers to the belief that non-human entities are spiritual beings, or at least embody some kind of life-principle....

 of Japanese Shinto
Shinto
or Shintoism, also kami-no-michi, is the indigenous spirituality of Japan and the Japanese people. It is a set of practices, to be carried out diligently, to establish a connection between present day Japan and its ancient past. Shinto practices were first recorded and codified in the written...

ism and Balinese mythology
Balinese mythology
Balinese mythology is the traditional mythology of the people of the Indonesian island of Bali, before the majority adoption of Hinduism.Balinese mythology is mainly a kind of animism with some widely-known characters and deities...

), there are mountain's spirits, river’s gods, forest’s gods, nymphs, mermaid
Mermaid
A mermaid is a mythological aquatic creature with a female human head, arms, and torso and the tail of a fish. A male version of a mermaid is known as a "merman" and in general both males and females are known as "merfolk"...

s, that harm or help people (including mundane people, besides priests and shamans) on situations, problems or just granting supernatural powers to humans that request them. For instance, the priestess of the Delphic oracle made her prophecies possessed by power of Apollo
Apollo
Apollo is one of the most important and complex of the Olympian deities in Greek and Roman mythology...

, sun’s god.

As laid down by Castaneda, though living much longer, somewhere around thousands of years, these ethereal beings are mortal; they eventually die as well any living being. Feature that shared with the hungry ghosts
Hungry ghosts in Chinese religion
The term , literally "hungry ghost", is the Chinese translation of the term preta in Buddhism."Hungry ghosts" play a role in Chinese Buddhism and Taoism as well as in Chinese folk religion....

 in Chinese tradition
Chinese mythology
Chinese mythology is a collection of cultural history, folktales, and religions that have been passed down in oral or written tradition. These include creation myths and legends and myths concerning the founding of Chinese culture and the Chinese state...

, the Germanic
Germanic peoples
The Germanic peoples are an Indo-European ethno-linguistic group of Northern European origin, identified by their use of the Indo-European Germanic languages which diversified out of Proto-Germanic during the Pre-Roman Iron Age.Originating about 1800 BCE from the Corded Ware Culture on the North...

 nix
Nix
The Neck/Nixie are shapeshifting water spirits who usually appear in human form. The spirit has appeared in the myths and legends of all Germanic peoples in Europe....

es, as well as according to Greek Plutarch
Plutarch
Plutarch then named, on his becoming a Roman citizen, Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus , c. 46 – 120 AD, was a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist known primarily for his Parallel Lives and Moralia...

, all nature spirits, called in ancient Greece
Ancient Greece
Ancient Greece is a civilization belonging to a period of Greek history that lasted from the Archaic period of the 8th to 6th centuries BC to the end of antiquity. Immediately following this period was the beginning of the Early Middle Ages and the Byzantine era. Included in Ancient Greece is the...

 as daemons, live 9720 years; while under the poet Pindar
Pindar
Pindar , was an Ancient Greek lyric poet. Of the canonical nine lyric poets of ancient Greece, his work is the best preserved. Quintilian described him as "by far the greatest of the nine lyric poets, in virtue of his inspired magnificence, the beauty of his thoughts and figures, the rich...

, nymph
Nymph
A nymph in Greek mythology is a female minor nature deity typically associated with a particular location or landform. Different from gods, nymphs are generally regarded as divine spirits who animate nature, and are usually depicted as beautiful, young nubile maidens who love to dance and sing;...

s live no longer than the trees that they inhabit.

As animals eat food for surviving, as conveyed by writer, those ethereal entities would feed themselves on pure energy from other intelligent life forms. In fact humans would be easy prey. Also they compete surrounded by distinct brands of them, meaning that they can prey each other on their hunting for energy. On the other hand, an ethereal being would have regularly much less energy than humans. Comparatively could say that it is like a single candlelight while a person is like a strong electrical lamplight.

As a common motif, the presence of fairy predators of humans, is seen in several mythologies. Among the Celts, an abundant theme was the horse-like entities such as the Kelpie
Kelpie
The kelpie is a supernatural water horse from Celtic folklore that is believed to haunt the rivers and lochs of Scotland and Ireland; the name may be from Scottish Gaelic cailpeach or colpach "heifer, colt".-Description and behaviour:...

often appearing too as a blue man or a beautiful woman; the Caoranach
Caoránach
In Irish folklore, Caoránach was a monster which was banished by St Patrick to Lough Derg. Perceived as female, Caoránach was said to be the mother of demons and devils....

, a female being that sucked men and cattle; the Nygel of Shetland and its variants like the fatal specter Water horse
Water Horse
A Water Horse is a Celtic mythical creature, such as the Ceffyl Dŵr and Kelpie, as well as other water dwelling cryptids.-Name origin:The term "water horse" was originally a name given to the kelpie, a horse like creature similar to the hippocamp that has the head, neck and mane of a normal horse,...

and the Scottish Nuckelavee
Nuckelavee
The Nuckelavee is a creature from Orcadian folklore.The name is a corruption of the Orcadian name "knoggelvi", which in turn seems to be a variant of the "Nokk" or "Nuggle", and is thus related to the Icelandic Nykur....

, this last a kind of centaur
Centaur
In Greek mythology, a centaur or hippocentaur is a member of a composite race of creatures, part human and part horse...

, all of which usually allured their victims to ride on them only to drag these persons to deep waters and devour them. In Japanese folklore the intelligent and amphibious kappa (河童) came out from waters for sucking the blood of people or animals, and in some variations it also raped women and ate human livers.

In Indian tradition, in the midst of predators are the ghostly rakshasa
Rakshasa
A Rakshasa or alternatively rakshas, is a race of mythological humanoid beings or unrighteous spirit in Hindu and Buddhist religion...

s. Usually regarded as evil spirits or demons, they are of the ogre-vampiric type which intimidated by light always fly before the dawn. They could be hideous or very beautiful, some had parts of animals, others seemed humans, and they could change into almost any form. But some of them also were subject to benignity. In the Sanskrit text Mahabharata
Mahabharata
The Mahabharata is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India and Nepal, the other being the Ramayana. The epic is part of itihasa....

, Jarâ, a female rakshasa, is regarded a household deity
Household deity
A household deity is a deity or spirit that protects the home, looking after the entire household or certain key members. It has been a common belief in pagan religions as well as in folklore across many parts of the world....

, which granted magical gifts in exchange by benefits of worship paid to her. Rakshasas also bestowed wealth on those whom they had approval, like Târâ Bâi in the story of Seventee Bâi. As well are counted among the rakshasas, the yaksha
Yaksha
Yaksha is the name of a broad class of nature-spirits, usually benevolent, who are caretakers of the natural treasures hidden in the earth and tree roots. They appear in Hindu, Jain and Buddhist mythology. The feminine form of the word is ' or Yakshini .In Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist mythology,...

s and their female counterparts, the yakshis. The yakshis, also entities of dual character, in their malevolent aspect were airy geniis who seized children. In popular traditions they act as spirits who seduce men at night, drain their energy, and drink their blood. In Kerala
Kerala
or Keralam is an Indian state located on the Malabar coast of south-west India. It was created on 1 November 1956 by the States Reorganisation Act by combining various Malayalam speaking regions....

, South India, people used to plant bamboo trees in communities to drive off yakshis, which supposedly can get caught in the branchy net of bamboos at their nocturnal travels.

Devic kingdom


According to some authors, there is a huge realm of ethereal beings interlacing and creating all that exists on nature. The core vision, more accentuated in lately times, is the existence of cooperative ethereal entities yearning for helping humans take care of the natural world.

Folklore


Europeans in the 17th century described ethereal beings as an abridged mist with graceful fickle bodies easier to see in faint light; intelligent spirits seem to have a lost nature among demon, man and angel. Capable of vanishing or emerge with their easily moldy bodies at any moment.

The Indonesian folklore sees the universe populated of visible and invisible beings. They are spirits of plants and animals becoming humans, human spirits becoming wild spirits, and demons that occupy the Seven Abysses of underworld, meanwhile nymphs and gods fill the superposed Seven Heavens. All are in communication with each other through the seven plains of the man and also merged as a moveable, polymorphic and single unit.

In folklore several nature spirits and their variations epitomize ethereal beings involved with the destinies of the men. An example of that is the Irish fairy called Banshee
Banshee
The banshee , from the Irish bean sí is a feminine spirit in Irish mythology, usually seen as an omen of death and a messenger from the Otherworld....

 who is very similar to other mysterious characters from Celt
Celt
The Celts were a diverse group of tribal societies in Iron Age and Roman-era Europe who spoke Celtic languages.The earliest archaeological culture commonly accepted as Celtic, or rather Proto-Celtic, was the central European Hallstatt culture , named for the rich grave finds in Hallstatt, Austria....

ic countries. She can assume distinct forms like a bird, a woman or a ghost and travels beyond the three dimensions of space. Even druid
Druid
A druid was a member of the priestly class in Britain, Ireland, and Gaul, and possibly other parts of Celtic western Europe, during the Iron Age....

s frightened her since originally the apparition of a banshee announced a death in family. Actually already in the Roman empire, these beings have a foundation over mythological beings like the Parcae
Parcae
thumb|#00px|Early 16th-century [[millefleur tapestry]] depicting the Three Fates under their Greek namesIn Roman mythology, the Parcae were the personifications of destiny, often called The Fates in English. Their Greek equivalent were the Moirae. They controlled the metaphorical thread of life of...

. The Parcae were known in Latin as the “Tria Fata” that means in English the “Three Fairies”.
The Parcae represented personifications of destiny, in many cases called “The Fates”. Previous to the Roman period, and analogous to them, are in Greek mythology the Moirae
Moirae
The Moirae, Moerae or Moirai , in Greek mythology, were the white-robed incarnations of destiny . Their number became fixed at three...

, whose mother is the Night goddess Nyx. The Moirae managed the thread of life of mortals and immortals from birth to death. Resemblances are found in the Keres
Keres (mythology)
In Greek mythology, the Keres were female death-spirits. The Keres were daughters of Nyx, and as such the sisters of Fate , Doom , Death and Sleep , Strife , Old Age , Divine Retribution , Charon, and other personifications...

 who in the Greek mythology
Greek mythology
Greek mythology is the body of myths and legends belonging to the ancient Greeks, concerning their gods and heroes, the nature of the world, and the origins and significance of their own cult and ritual practices. They were a part of religion in ancient Greece...

 also were hellish daughters of Nyx as yet capable of determining good or bad fate for men although definitively as dark spirits feeding on vital essence, like the blood shed, of wounded men.

The Celtic druids feared banshees as long as the same happened to Zeus, the lord of Greek gods, who was afraid of the Moirae. However the Moirae also received veneration at the moment that such entities were associated with the birth of children, as well as their equivalent fairies of the British tradition, which were responsible for conducting the souls of stillborn children and fight against the evil.

Thereupon the ancestral relation of fairies expresses a deep connection with the Earth mother. As a matter of fact this already was made explicit by Greek philosophers Zeno of Citium
Zeno of Citium
Zeno of Citium was a Greek philosopher from Citium . Zeno was the founder of the Stoic school of philosophy, which he taught in Athens from about 300 BC. Based on the moral ideas of the Cynics, Stoicism laid great emphasis on goodness and peace of mind gained from living a life of virtue in...

 (3rd century BC), Posidonius
Posidonius
Posidonius "of Apameia" or "of Rhodes" , was a Greek Stoic philosopher, politician, astronomer, geographer, historian and teacher native to Apamea, Syria. He was acclaimed as the greatest polymath of his age...

  (1st century BC), Plutarch
Plutarch
Plutarch then named, on his becoming a Roman citizen, Lucius Mestrius Plutarchus , c. 46 – 120 AD, was a Greek historian, biographer, essayist, and Middle Platonist known primarily for his Parallel Lives and Moralia...

 (1st century) and the Roman philosopher Cicero
Cicero
Marcus Tullius Cicero , was a Roman philosopher, statesman, lawyer, political theorist, and Roman constitutionalist. He came from a wealthy municipal family of the equestrian order, and is widely considered one of Rome's greatest orators and prose stylists.He introduced the Romans to the chief...

 (1st century BC). According to them the Moirae were identified with the divine, the destiny and the nature. Concerning Cicero all happenings have causes determined in the nature. Regarding Plutarch, the Moirae depict the soul of world divided in three planes: high (Clotho
Clotho
Clotho is one of the Three Fates or Moirae, in ancient Greek mythology. Her Roman equivalent is Nona. Clotho was responsible for spinning the thread of human life. She also made major decisions, such as when a person was born, thus in effect controlling people's lives...

), middle (Atropos
Atropos
Atropos or Aisa , in Greek mythology, was one of the three Moirae, goddesses of fate and destiny. Her Roman equivalent was Morta.Atropos or Aisa was the oldest of the Three Fates, and was known as the "inflexible" or "inevitable." It was Atropos who chose the mechanism of death and ended the life...

) and low (Lachesis
Lachesis (mythology)
In Greek mythology, Lachesis was the second of the Three Fates, or Moirae, also known as the Triple Moon Goddesses or the Lunar Dieties. Each phase of the moon representing each of the fates - Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos...

) where the works made in high and middle worlds are transmitted by Lachesis for the earthly substances.

According to some authors like the French Jean Chevalier
Jean Chevalier (writer)
Jean Chevalier was a French writer, philosopher, and theologian, best known for his co-authorship of the Dictionnaire des symboles , first printed in 1969 by publisher Éditions Robert Laffont....

, in the tales, while living among people, the materialized ethereal being at some point have a disruption with that anthropomorphic
Anthropomorphism
Anthropomorphism is any attribution of human characteristics to animals, non-living things, phenomena, material states, objects or abstract concepts, such as organizations, governments, spirits or deities. The term was coined in the mid 1700s...

 life by reason of your permanent and natural connection with the infinite. This is seen, for instance, in the legend of the being Melusine
Melusine
Melusine is a figure of European legends and folklore, a feminine spirit of fresh waters in sacred springs and rivers.She is usually depicted as a woman who is a serpent or fish from the waist down...

 who once by week had to leave her husband and hidden transmuted herself in half serpent, half woman. This sighting of the mystery at odds with the usual and limited integration with the universe in what the human psyche has consciousness. Thus a man beholding this dark side is directly subject to the psychic death of worldly life, ends up adrift leaving his human side.
Such aspects can be found in the Nordic myths
Norse mythology
Norse mythology, a subset of Germanic mythology, is the overall term for the myths, legends and beliefs about supernatural beings of Norse pagans. It flourished prior to the Christianization of Scandinavia, during the Early Middle Ages, and passed into Nordic folklore, with some aspects surviving...

 where many times ethereal beings are showed as elves, which in turn are portrayed as little flying beings emerged from water or earth and more visible in the brume. As delineated by those legends they are charming creatures but their fascination can entice people to enter in their dancing circles which are portals to spiritual worlds. Once inside, the person face the infinite what customarily is too much to human mind and in the narratives ends leading a man to insanity, disappear or die even when rescued.

Facing the mystery also was a dangerous deed in the Celtic version of the myth Wild Hunt
Wild Hunt
The Wild Hunt is an ancient folk myth prevalent across Northern, Western and Central Europe. The fundamental premise in all instances is the same: a phantasmal, spectral group of huntsmen with the accoutrements of hunting, horses, hounds, etc., in mad pursuit across the skies or along the ground,...

. According to the legend, fairies customarily go out of their other-worldly dwellings and ride wildly around the mundane world casting charms over people and taking them from their homes. Gwynn ap Nudd, king of Annwn
Annwn
Annwn or Annwfn was the Otherworld in Welsh mythology. Ruled by Arawn, or much later by Gwyn ap Nudd, it was essentially a world of delights and eternal youth where disease is absent and food is ever-abundant. It later became Christianised and identified with the land of souls that had departed...

, the Welsh otherworld
Otherworld
Otherworld, or the Celtic Otherworld, is a concept in Celtic mythology that refers to the home of the deities or spirits, or a realm of the dead.Otherworld may also refer to:In film and television:...

, was the leader of the Wild Hunt, who rode on stormy clouds with his red-eared hounds called Cŵn Annwn
Cwn Annwn
In Welsh mythology and folklore, Cŵn Annwn were the spectral hounds of Annwn, the otherworld of Welsh myth. They were associated with a form of the Wild Hunt, presided over by Gwynn ap Nudd...

. From time to time, only the howling dogs raided across the sky. Staring the riders was treacherous, but a twig of rowan
Rowan
The rowans or mountain-ashes are shrubs or small trees in genus Sorbus of family Rosaceae. They are native throughout the cool temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere, with the highest species diversity in the mountains of western China and the Himalaya, where numerous apomictic microspecies...

 on their doors could make safe to watch the procession. And likewise in a Japanese myth of the Heian period
Heian period
The is the last division of classical Japanese history, running from 794 to 1185. The period is named after the capital city of Heian-kyō, or modern Kyōto. It is the period in Japanese history when Buddhism, Taoism and other Chinese influences were at their height...

, the Hyakkiyagyō
Hyakki Yako
thumb|300px|"Hyakki Yakō" by [[Kawanabe Kyōsai]], collected in [[British Museum]]Hyakki Yakō was a Japanese folk belief. The belief holds that every year yōkai, the Japanese supernatural beings, will take to the streets during summer nights. Anyone who comes across the procession will die, unless...

(百鬼夜行) was the "Parade of one hundred demons", a unpredictable and temporary procession of tsukumogami
Tsukumogami
Understood by many Western scholars as a type of Japanese yōkai, the Tsukumogami was a concept popular in Japanese folklore as far back as the tenth century, used in the spread of Shingon Buddhism...

s passing through the city at night that also should not be seen or else could cause one's death.

Alike content is expressed in the Greek myth of the mortal Psyche and Eros
Eros
Eros , in Greek mythology, was the Greek god of love. His Roman counterpart was Cupid . Some myths make him a primordial god, while in other myths, he is the son of Aphrodite....

 god of love and in several fairy tale variants like Apuleius
Apuleius
Apuleius was a Latin prose writer. He was a Berber, from Madaurus . He studied Platonist philosophy in Athens; travelled to Italy, Asia Minor and Egypt; and was an initiate in several cults or mysteries. The most famous incident in his life was when he was accused of using magic to gain the...

's The Golden Ass
The Golden Ass
The Metamorphoses of Apuleius, which St. Augustine referred to as The Golden Ass , is the only Latin novel to survive in its entirety....

. Psyche, tells the myth, a beautiful mortal, falls in deep love and marries Eros without knowing he was a celestial creature. Like in the story of Melusine, Psyche ends up doing the forbidden and spies on her partner beholding the unfathomable mystery and this goes away.

In spite of that, Psyche like the hero Heracles
Heracles
Heracles ,born Alcaeus or Alcides , was a divine hero in Greek mythology, the son of Zeus and Alcmene, foster son of Amphitryon and great-grandson of Perseus...

 who carried out his twelve labours, engages to fulfill a series of mortal tasks. In the course, Psyche starts slowly stepping in the dark world of Eros but ultimately she has to abandon the men’s world descending until the Underworld
Underworld
The Underworld is a region which is thought to be under the surface of the earth in some religions and in mythologies. It could be a place where the souls of the recently departed go, and in some traditions it is identified with Hell or the realm of death...

, then after all, like a caterpillar developing in a butterfly and like Heracles who becomes an immortal, successful her also is transformed in a winged goddess. Therefore only overcoming her human condition Psyche (which in Greek also indicates “butterfly” and literally means “spirit”) could handle the ethereal world.

Another aspect emphasized by Chevalier it is the symbolism associated with a common shape embodied in ethereal entities, the serpent. In fact, Psyche suspects Eros be a monster, namely a snake in some versions. This association with the serpent propagates in several European tales, likewise with the number three (as in the Three fates; in the golden bough
The Golden Bough (mythology)
The Golden Bough is one of the episodic tales written in the epic Aeneid, book VI, by ancient Roman poet Vergil , which narrates the adventures of the Trojan hero Aeneas after the Trojan War.-Story:...

tale of Aeneas
Aeneas
Aeneas , in Greco-Roman mythology, was a Trojan hero, the son of the prince Anchises and the goddess Aphrodite. His father was the second cousin of King Priam of Troy, making Aeneas Priam's second cousin, once removed. The journey of Aeneas from Troy , which led to the founding a hamlet south of...

 in Aeneid
Aeneid
The Aeneid is a Latin epic poem, written by Virgil between 29 and 19 BC, that tells the legendary story of Aeneas, a Trojan who travelled to Italy, where he became the ancestor of the Romans. It is composed of roughly 10,000 lines in dactylic hexameter...

, which is said to have three branches; and the Hermes’s rod
Caduceus
The caduceus is the staff carried by Hermes in Greek mythology. The same staff was also borne by heralds in general, for example by Iris, the messenger of Hera. It is a short staff entwined by two serpents, sometimes surmounted by wings...

 called leaved three in the Homeric hymn
Homeric Hymns
The Homeric Hymns are a collection of thirty-three anonymous Ancient Greek hymns celebrating individual gods. The hymns are "Homeric" in the sense that they employ the same epic meter—dactylic hexameter—as the Iliad and Odyssey, use many similar formulas and are couched in the same dialect...

 to Hermes
Hermes
Hermes is the great messenger of the gods in Greek mythology and a guide to the Underworld. Hermes was born on Mount Kyllini in Arcadia. An Olympian god, he is also the patron of boundaries and of the travelers who cross them, of shepherds and cowherds, of the cunning of thieves, of orators and...

), which also point out the manifestation of the sacred natural (but still material, not spiritual). Also in Tantra
Tantra
Tantra , anglicised tantricism or tantrism or tantram, is the name scholars give to an inter-religious spiritual movement that arose in medieval India, expressed in scriptures ....

 philosophy the snake is associated with the Kundalini
Kundalini
Kundalini literally means coiled. In yoga, a "corporeal energy" - an unconscious, instinctive or libidinal force or Shakti, lies coiled at the base of the spine. It is envisioned either as a goddess or else as a sleeping serpent, hence a number of English renderings of the term such as 'serpent...

, a center of esoteric energy of the human body that releases the “rebirth” of the being when activated.
Similarly, in a folkloric version, the Chinese legend White Lady (Bai niangzi yong zhen Leifengta) narrates how a monk dealt with the Mrs. Bai, who was harmless and devoted to the hero Xu. In certain moment the monastic man discovers that she was a baishe (白蛇), the spirit of a white snake, that is to say a yaoguai
Yaoguai
Yaoguai or yaomo or yaojing is a Chinese term that generally means "demon". Yaoguai are mostly malevolent animal spirits or fallen celestial beings that have acquired magical powers through the practice of Taoism...

. Then he kills Bai due to the fact that he takes her into account as an evil entity in the shape of a graceful woman.

According to Swiss psychologist Carl Jung
Carl Jung
Carl Gustav Jung was a Swiss psychiatrist and the founder of Analytical Psychology. Jung is considered the first modern psychiatrist to view the human psyche as "by nature religious" and make it the focus of exploration. Jung is one of the best known researchers in the field of dream analysis and...

, a numinous creature like the mythical Pegasus
Pegasus
Pegasus is one of the best known fantastical as well as mythological creatures in Greek mythology. He is a winged divine horse, usually white in color. He was sired by Poseidon, in his role as horse-god, and foaled by the Gorgon Medusa. He was the brother of Chrysaor, born at a single birthing...

 "is the inspiration, the poet's winged libido, the power that carries above the stars". "Pegasus comes with golden wings" and takes the human being "up to region of inspired speech; inspiration is air, breathing, this is the ethereal region." However, states Jung, an animal in general stands for that which is non-human, the unconscious parts of the psyche such as the anima, and the "shadow archetypes
Shadow (psychology)
In Jungian psychology, the shadow or "shadow aspect" is a part of the unconscious mind consisting of repressed weaknesses, shortcomings, and instincts. It is one of the three most recognizable archetypes, the others being the anima and animus and the persona...

". Specifically the mythical image of serpent
Serpent (symbolism)
Serpent in Latin means: Rory Collins :&, in turn, from the Biblical Hebrew word of: "saraf" with root letters of: which refers to something burning-as, the pain of poisonous snake's bite was likened to internal burning.This word is commonly used in a specifically mythic or religious context,...

 incarnates the dark self, the incomprehensible, the mystery.

In ancient China, during the Han period
Han Dynasty
The Han Dynasty was the second imperial dynasty of China, preceded by the Qin Dynasty and succeeded by the Three Kingdoms . It was founded by the rebel leader Liu Bang, known posthumously as Emperor Gaozu of Han. It was briefly interrupted by the Xin Dynasty of the former regent Wang Mang...

, the chi-lin
Qilin
The Qilin is a mythical hooved Chinese chimerical creature known throughout various East Asian cultures, and is said to appear with the imminent arrival or passing of a wise sage or an illustrious ruler. It is a good omen that brings rui . It is often depicted with what looks like fire all over...

, once in a while translated as unicorn
Unicorn
The unicorn is a legendary animal from European folklore that resembles a white horse with a large, pointed, spiraling horn projecting from its forehead, and sometimes a goat's beard...

, or the phoenix
Phoenix (mythology)
The phoenix or phenix is a mythical sacred firebird that can be found in the mythologies of the Arabian, Persians, Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Chinese, Indian and Phoenicians....

, belonged to a class of holy spirits conceived in animal form, or as hybrids. Their rare appearances represented that the man was in harmony with the order of universe. In alchemy
Alchemy
Alchemy is an influential philosophical tradition whose early practitioners’ claims to profound powers were known from antiquity. The defining objectives of alchemy are varied; these include the creation of the fabled philosopher's stone possessing powers including the capability of turning base...

 some of these oneiric creatures symbolize the phases of the transmutational process. The phoenix, the completion; the unicorn, the required qualities to perform the act; and the dragon, the ingredient elements, the prime matter. It was said by Roman poets Lactantius
Lactantius
Lucius Caecilius Firmianus Lactantius was an early Christian author who became an advisor to the first Christian Roman emperor, Constantine I, guiding his religious policy as it developed, and tutor to his son.-Biography:...

 and Claudian
Claudian
Claudian was a Roman poet, who worked for Emperor Honorius and the latter's general Stilicho.A Greek-speaking citizen of Alexandria and probably not a Christian convert, Claudian arrived in Rome before 395. He made his mark with a eulogy of his two young patrons, Probinus and Olybrius, thereby...

 that a flock of birds rises from the earth and assembles for following the reborn phoenix, which in turn appear in unison with the sun. Renewed, the phoenix flies high in the air and when it has arrived at the area of pure ether, the birds turn back and the phoenix withdraws to its abode, the Isles of the Blessed. Such image ascribes to the Greek Stoic philosophy
Stoicism
Stoicism is a school of Hellenistic philosophy founded in Athens by Zeno of Citium in the early . The Stoics taught that destructive emotions resulted from errors in judgment, and that a sage, or person of "moral and intellectual perfection," would not suffer such emotions.Stoics were concerned...

, which, according to it, the souls lifting from the earth or descending from the sun are detained when they reach the realm of the moon because the lightness of its ether matches utterly with their own weight. At that place, according to Cicero, they are fed with the same nourishment that the stars are sustained and have everything one needs. According to Plutarch this is the vapor from the air and the flame of the sun, which is purer than in our world.

Mythic serpents for Chevalier, or winged serpents like the dragon
Dragon
A dragon is a legendary creature, typically with serpentine or reptilian traits, that feature in the myths of many cultures. There are two distinct cultural traditions of dragons: the European dragon, derived from European folk traditions and ultimately related to Greek and Middle Eastern...

, translate the allowed materialization of the mystery to the conscious mind. It is, in macrocosmic grade, represented as Ananta from Hinduism who defies and at the same time conserves the stability of the human world surrounded by the occult forces of the universe. The same happens with the Hebraic Leviathan
Leviathan
Leviathan , is a sea monster referred to in the Bible. In Demonology, Leviathan is one of the seven princes of Hell and its gatekeeper . The word has become synonymous with any large sea monster or creature...

, the Nordic Midgard
Midgard
Midgard is one of the Nine Worlds and is an old Germanic name for our world and is the home of Humans, with the literal meaning "middle enclosure".-Etymology:...

 serpent (Old Norse: Midgarðsormr), and the serpent river Styx
Styx
In Greek mythology the Styx is the river that forms the boundary between the underworld and the world of the living, as well as a goddess and a nymph that represents the river.Styx may also refer to:-Popular culture:...

 that bears the created world second the Theogony by Hesiod
Theogony
The Theogony is a poem by Hesiod describing the origins and genealogies of the gods of the ancient Greeks, composed circa 700 BC...

. Hells, primordial oceans, and deep earth gathered form the “prima materia”, which is the primordial substance, the serpent itself.

New Age


A famous example of a supposedly collaboration between humans and ethereal beings was alleged to have occurred in Findhorn community in Scotland. The New Age
New Age
The New Age movement is a Western spiritual movement that developed in the second half of the 20th century. Its central precepts have been described as "drawing on both Eastern and Western spiritual and metaphysical traditions and then infusing them with influences from self-help and motivational...

y commune formed in 1962 at village of Findhorn
Findhorn
Findhorn is a village in Moray, Scotland. It is located on the eastern shore of Findhorn Bay and immediately south of the Moray Firth. Findhorn is 3 miles northwest of Kinloss, and about 5 miles by road from Forres....

, is said to have received the help of nature spirits strongly connected with the flora, for preparing the soil, to sow and make grow the plants. Contradicting the odds, the commune had great success making happen what was considerable very difficult or unfeasible because the chosen land was sandy and windy, although locals from outside the community, had attributed this success by unique microclimate of the region.

The co-founder of Findhorn, the Canadian Dorothy Maclean
Dorothy Maclean
Dorothy Maclean is a writer and educator on spiritual subjects who was one of the original three adults at what is now the Findhorn Foundation in northeast Scotland....

, and other members of the group stated to be able to see the ethereal beings and communicate with them. The community discerned a hierarchic realm, regularly regarding them as angels of nature, and in some cases Maclean contacted the group soul, a type of archetypal intelligence responsible by a vegetable or animal species. Among those described entities, a peculiar creature was the powerful being called Pan in charge of many other nature spirits.

Also the Dutch writer Mellie Uyldert
Mellie Uyldert
Mellie Uyldert was a Dutch woman writer, alternative healer, occultist and astrologer. Uyldert made success with her about 30 esoteric books becoming a national reference in the Netherlands and a popular worldly author from New Age...

, self-proclaimed clairvoyant, characterized the semblance and behavior of ethereal entities, which, she said, hover above plants and transfer energy for vitalizing the plant, then nourishing themselves on rays of sunlight. They fly three meters over the ground, some have wings like butterflies while others only have a small face and an aura
Aura (paranormal)
In parapsychology and many forms of spiritual practice, an aura is a field of subtle, luminous radiation surrounding a person or object . The depiction of such an aura often connotes a person of particular power or holiness. Sometimes, however, it is said that all living things and all objects...

 waving graciously. Some are huge while others may have the size of one inch.

She depicted them as perishable beings, asexual gender, and composed of etheric matter
Etheric body
The etheric body, ether-body, æther body, a name given by neo-Theosophy to a supposed vital body or subtle body propounded in esoteric philosophies as the first or lowest layer in the "human energy field" or aura...

. They born from solar rays, mature in the atmosphere, and later go down to the land like drops of water or snow. In the ground they associate with a plant becoming a hamadryad
Hamadryad
Hamadryads are Greek mythological beings that live in trees. They are a particular type of dryad, which in turn are a particular type of nymph. Hamadryads are born bonded to a particular tree. Some believe that hamadryads are the actual tree, while normal dryads are simply the entities, or...

, an ethereal guardian of vegetal, also inhabiting under the soil or tree’s holes. The best manner of seeing them would be through a mist, which would be favorable to human eyes. The legendary “ball of elves” would be a magic movement for transmitting prana
Prana
Prana is the Sanskrit word for "vital life" .It is one of the five organs of vitality or sensation, viz. prana "breath", vac "speech", chakshus "sight", shrotra "hearing", and manas "thought" Prana is the Sanskrit word for "vital life" (from the root "to fill", cognate to Latin plenus...

, the vital life to the plants. These beings would be able to associate with humans amicably (assisting cultivation, gardens, curing illness and in other ways) most of time but also could prey them like succubus
Succubus
In folklore traced back to medieval legend, a succubus is a female demon appearing in dreams who takes the form of a human woman in order to seduce men, usually through sexual intercourse. The male counterpart is the incubus...

.

These beings have a social hierarchy, claims Uyldert. A tree has a skilled nature spirit for it, which is a nymph
Nymph
A nymph in Greek mythology is a female minor nature deity typically associated with a particular location or landform. Different from gods, nymphs are generally regarded as divine spirits who animate nature, and are usually depicted as beautiful, young nubile maidens who love to dance and sing;...

 or faun
Faun
The faun is a rustic forest god or place-spirit of Roman mythology often associated with Greek satyrs and the Greek god Pan.-Origins:...

 and this kind of entity is fond of humans, it desires to create a bond. Several supernatural personages are associated with trees. For instance the Greek Zeus
Zeus
In the ancient Greek religion, Zeus was the "Father of Gods and men" who ruled the Olympians of Mount Olympus as a father ruled the family. He was the god of sky and thunder in Greek mythology. His Roman counterpart is Jupiter and his Etruscan counterpart is Tinia.Zeus was the child of Cronus...

 and the Nordic Thor
Thor
In Norse mythology, Thor is a hammer-wielding god associated with thunder, lightning, storms, oak trees, strength, the protection of mankind, and also hallowing, healing, and fertility...

 are linked with the Oak
Oak
An oak is a tree or shrub in the genus Quercus , of which about 600 species exist. "Oak" may also appear in the names of species in related genera, notably Lithocarpus...

, Hecate
Hecate
Hecate or Hekate is a chthonic Greco-Roman goddess associated with magic, witchcraft, necromancy, and crossroads.She is attested in poetry as early as Hesiod's Theogony...

 with the Cypress and Yew
Taxus baccata
Taxus baccata is a conifer native to western, central and southern Europe, northwest Africa, northern Iran and southwest Asia. It is the tree originally known as yew, though with other related trees becoming known, it may be now known as the English yew, or European yew.-Description:It is a small-...

, the Buddha Siddharta Gautama  with the sacred Fig
Bodhi tree
The Bodhi Tree, also known as Bo , was a large and very old Sacred Fig tree located in Bodh Gaya , under which Siddhartha Gautama, the spiritual teacher and founder of Buddhism later known as Gautama Buddha, is said to have achieved enlightenment, or Bodhi...

. As said by Uyldert, behind that connection lies the ethereal tree's dryad
Dryad
Dryads are tree nymphs in Greek mythology. In Greek drys signifies 'oak,' from an Indo-European root *derew- 'tree' or 'wood'. Thus Dryads are specifically the nymphs of oak trees, though the term has come to be used for all tree nymphs in general...

 assisting the person for communicating with gods and achieving powers or enlightenment
Enlightenment (spiritual)
Enlightenment in a secular context often means the "full comprehension of a situation", but in spiritual terms the word alludes to a spiritual revelation or deep insight into the meaning and purpose of all things, communication with or understanding of the mind of God, profound spiritual...

.

Orient


In Buddhism
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

 there is a class of non-human beings denominated Devas
Deva (Buddhism)
A deva in Buddhism is one of many different types of non-human beings who share the characteristics of being more powerful, longer-lived, and, in general, living more contentedly than the average human being....

. They are mighty beings, openly inhabit the recesses of the Earth and other worlds but are visible only for people with extrasensory sense. They are mortals but live for periods of time, extending from thousands to billions of years. According to monk Vasubandhu
Vasubandhu
Vasubandhu was an Indian Buddhist monk, and along with his half-brother Asanga, one of the main founders of the Indian Yogācāra school. However, some scholars consider Vasubandhu to be two distinct people. Vasubandhu is one of the most influential figures in the entire history of Buddhism...

, devas are born in the Cāturmahārājika heaven are about 750 feet tall and have a lifetime about nine million years.

Inferior to an enlightened Buddha
Buddha
In Buddhism, buddhahood is the state of perfect enlightenment attained by a buddha .In Buddhism, the term buddha usually refers to one who has become enlightened...

, they have individuality; sometimes they may be jealous, ignorant, angry, arrogant and proud. Nevertheless some individuals among devas may have great moral deserving a high degree of respect though devas can not lead humans to enlightenment
Enlightenment (spiritual)
Enlightenment in a secular context often means the "full comprehension of a situation", but in spiritual terms the word alludes to a spiritual revelation or deep insight into the meaning and purpose of all things, communication with or understanding of the mind of God, profound spiritual...

.
The devas titled as the Four Heavenly Kings
Four Heavenly Kings
In the Buddhist faith, the Four Heavenly Kings are four gods, each of whom watches over one cardinal direction of the world.The Kings are collectively named as follows:...

are four guardian entities commanding each cardinal direction
Cardinal direction
The four cardinal directions or cardinal points are the directions of north, east, south, and west, commonly denoted by their initials: N, E, S, W. East and west are at right angles to north and south, with east being in the direction of rotation and west being directly opposite. Intermediate...

. They are the defenders of the world against evil, each one leads a host of mystic creatures to guard the Dharma. They are the devas Vaiśravaṇa
Vaisravana
' or ' also known as Jambhala in Tibet and Bishamonten in Japan is the name of the chief of the Four Heavenly Kings and an important figure in Buddhist mythology.-Names:...

 who embodies the north, Virūḍhaka
Virūḍhaka
Virūḍhaka is one of the Four Heavenly Kings and an important figure in Buddhist mythology. He is part of the Buddhist Pantheon of Esoteric Buddhism....

 watches over south, Dhṛtarāṣṭra
Dhṛtarāṣṭra
Dhṛtarāṣṭra refers to an important figure in Buddhist mythology.In Buddhism, Dhṛtarāṣṭra is one of the Four Heavenly Kings and an important figure in Buddhist mythology...

 acts for East and Virūpākṣa
Virūpākṣa
Virūpākṣa is one of the Four Heavenly Kings representing the cardinal direction of the west in Buddhist cosmology.His followers are the Nāga. His name means 'He who sees all'....

 represents west. Respectively they epitomize the colors yellow, red, green and white.

In the view of Hinduism
Hinduism
Hinduism is the predominant and indigenous religious tradition of the Indian Subcontinent. Hinduism is known to its followers as , amongst many other expressions...

, Deva
Deva (Hinduism)
' is the Sanskrit word for god or deity, its related feminine term is devi. In modern Hinduism, it can be loosely interpreted as any benevolent supernatural beings. The devs in Hinduism, also called Suras, are often juxtaposed to the Asuras, their half brothers. Devs are also the maintainers of...

(देव) is the Sanskrit word for god or deity. Usually they are interpreted as benevolent supernatural beings. Devas are the maintainers of the realms as designed by Trimurti
Trimurti
The Trimurti is a concept in Hinduism "in which the cosmic functions of creation, maintenance, and destruction are personified by the forms of Brahmā the creator, Vishnu the maintainer or preserver, and Śhiva the destroyer or transformer," These three deities have been called "the Hindu triad" or...

, which represents the creation, maintenance and destruction of Universe respectively personified by Brahmā
Brahma
Brahma is the Hindu god of creation and one of the Trimurti, the others being Vishnu and Shiva. According to the Brahma Purana, he is the father of Mānu, and from Mānu all human beings are descended. In the Ramayana and the...

, Vishnu
Vishnu
Vishnu is the Supreme god in the Vaishnavite tradition of Hinduism. Smarta followers of Adi Shankara, among others, venerate Vishnu as one of the five primary forms of God....

 and Śhiva
Shiva
Shiva is a major Hindu deity, and is the destroyer god or transformer among the Trimurti, the Hindu Trinity of the primary aspects of the divine. God Shiva is a yogi who has notice of everything that happens in the world and is the main aspect of life. Yet one with great power lives a life of a...

. They are in opposition to their counterparts, the Asuras, deities sometimes considered materialistic and sinful, as such are regarded in Indian Buddhism the group of the Kãlakañjaka
Asura (Buddhism)
Asura in Buddhism is the name of the lowest ranks of the deities or demigods of the Kāmadhātu.-Origins and etymology:...

 asuras. Within Chinese Buddhism asuras can be separated into four categories: "animal asuras", which dwell the deepest parts of the ocean and sea vast caves; "preta asuras", which are similar to the Pretas or "hungry ghosts" however to a great extent more powerful; "Human asuras" fallen from heaven and then settled near to the moon and sun; and the "deva asuras", close to the devas although at a lower level than their nobility.

The Devatas
Devatas
Deva is the Hindu term for deity; devatas , are a kind of smaller more focused devas, the equivalent of guardian spirits or guardian angels. The term "devata" also means devas . They are male and female devata...

in Hindu mythology essentially are devas who bear roles on the Nature as guardian spirits or protector angels, whilst according to the religious text Puranas
Puranas
The Puranas are a genre of important Hindu, Jain and Buddhist religious texts, notably consisting of narratives of the history of the universe from creation to destruction, genealogies of kings, heroes, sages, and demigods, and descriptions of Hindu cosmology, philosophy, and geography.Puranas...

 (पुराण) were they who conducted a war against the Daityas (दैत्य), a class of the asuras, and likewise other asura clans such as the Danavas and the relative groups Paulomas, Kalakeyas
Kalakeyas
In Hinduism the Kalakeyas or Kalakanjas were a powerful, ferocious and cruel clan of Danavas.-Kalaka and Puloma:The Kalakeyas were the descendants of Kalaka, daughter of Vaiswanara . Vaiswanara had three other beautiful daughters...

, Nivãtas (निवतकवच ) and Kãlakañjakas.

Devatas take care of a mountain, a cave, a river, a forest, a people, a family like the Kuladevatas, or a person. "Forest spirit" devatas are called Vanadevatas while the Lokapala
Lokapala
Lokapāla, Sanskrit and Pāli for "guardian of the world", has different uses depending on whether it is found in a Hindu or Buddhist context....

 devatas are guardians of the directions
Guardians of the directions
The Guardians of the Directions are the deities who rule the specific directions of space according to Hinduism and Buddhism—especially...

 who rule specific directions. The devatas polarize on male beings and Matrikas
Matrikas
Matrikas , also called Matara and Matris , are a group of Hindu goddesses who are always depicted together. Since they are usually depicted as a heptad, they are called Saptamatrikas : Brahmani, Vaishnavi, Maheshvari, Indrani, Kaumari, Varahi and Chamunda or Narasimhi...

 who are the saktis
Shakti
Shakti from Sanskrit shak - "to be able," meaning sacred force or empowerment, is the primordial cosmic energy and represents the dynamic forces that are thought to move through the entire universe in Hinduism. Shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power, sometimes...

 personified, which means their female emanations of divine energy. Both the sacred texts Puranas and Upanishads slightly differ in the arrangement of deities who govern the four cardinal directions but most contemporary lists have the male devatas Kubera
Kubera
Kubera , also spelt Kuber, is the Lord of wealth and the god-king of the semi-divine Yakshas in Hindu mythology. He is regarded as the regent of the North , and a protector of the world His many epithets extol him as the overlord of numerous semi-divine species and the owner of the treasures of...

 ruling north, Yama
Yama
Yama , also known as Yamarāja in India and Nepal, Shinje in Tibet, Yanluowang or simply Yan in China, Yeomla Daewang in South Korea and Enma Dai-Ō in Japan, is the lord of death, in Hinduism and then adopted into Buddhism and then further into Chinese mythology and Japanese mythology. First...

 the south, Indra
Indra
' or is the King of the demi-gods or Devas and Lord of Heaven or Svargaloka in Hindu mythology. He is also the God of War, Storms, and Rainfall.Indra is one of the chief deities in the Rigveda...

 commanding east, and Varuṇa
Varuna
In Vedic religion, Varuna is a god of the sky, of water and of the celestial ocean, as well as a god of law and of the underworld...

 the west. According to Indian Utpala
Utpala
Utpala or ' is the name of a 10th century Indian commentator of Vārāha Mihira's Brihat Samhitā. Brihat Samhitā is a Samhitā text of . Samhitā is one of three branches of Utpala or ' is the name of a 10th century Indian commentator of Vārāha Mihira's Brihat Samhitā. Brihat Samhitā is a...

 from 10th century, at first commenting on encyclopedic text Varahamihira's Brihatsamhita, the respective Matrikas are Kuberi, Yami
Yami
In Vedic beliefs, Yamī is the first woman, along with her twin brother, Yama. The Rig Veda, in the tenth Mandala, contains a hymn in which they sing to each other. They were children of Surya, the Sun god, in his form as Vivasvat, and his wife Saranya. She is also known as Yamuna. Another name for...

, Aindri (also Indrani), and Varuni
Varuni
Varuni or Varunani is the female consort of Varuna and the goddess was adopted by Varuna when she came out of the ocean, during the churning for amrita. She is a secret form of Vajravarahi and represents the purifying nectar of immortality...

.

Mesoamerica


A settled relationship between natural environment, ethereal entities, and humans also it is seen in the Aztec mythology
Aztec mythology
The aztec civilization recognized a polytheistic mythology, which contained the many deities and supernatural creatures from their religious beliefs. "orlando"- History :...

, as a matter of fact some scholars argue that the root of the word Teo, "god" in Aztec language, resemblances an altered form of the Sanskrit word Deva.
The Aztec pantheon has complex hierarchies and is composed of a profusion of male and female entities. These beings could be benevolent, but also be maleficent and arbitrary in their relationship with the humanity. Usually they were represented as a mixture of human, animal, and plant traits. In spite of being powerful, considered eternal, yet they could be subject to death and rebirth in later time, had imperfections, passions, whims, restrictions, and could be injured. The Aztec deity could manifest to human beings through visions, dreams, or under the form of a magical human known as nahualli, or an animal.

These divine entities assumed several functions over the nature, and could be embraced as guardians by a people, town, social category, or family. Major and lesser beings could be connected to a natural element and one or more specific places like Huchucteotl
Huehueteotl
Huehueteotl is a Mesoamerican deity figuring in the pantheons of pre-Columbian cultures, particularly in Aztec mythology and others of the Central Mexico region. He is also sometimes called Ueueteotl...

, the lord of fire; Tlaltecuhtli
Tlaltecuhtli
Tlaltecuhtli, Tlaltecutli is a pre-Columbian Mesoamerican deity figure, identified from sculpture and iconography dating to the Late Postclassic period of Mesoamerican chronology , primarily among the Mexica and other Nahuatl-speaking cultures...

, the Earth Lord; Ehecatl
Ehecatl
Ehecatl is a pre-Columbian deity associated with the wind, who features in Aztec mythology and the mythologies of other cultures from the central Mexico region of Mesoamerica. He is most usually interpreted as the aspect of the Feathered Serpent deity as a god of wind, and is therefore also known...

, the god of wind; or the goddess Chalchiuhtlicue
Chalchiuhtlicue
Chalchiuhtlicue was an Aztec goddess of love, beauty, youth, lakes, rivers, seas, streams, horizontal waters, storms, and baptism. Reputedly universally revered at the time of the Spanish conquest, she was an important deity figure in the Postclassic Aztec realm of central Mexico...

 linked with the water element, and who watches the lakes, rivers, and too kin to major Tlaloc
Tlaloc
Tlaloc was an important deity in Aztec religion, a god of rain, fertility, and water. He was a beneficent god who gave life and sustenance, but he was also feared for his ability to send hail, thunder and lightning, and for being the lord of the powerful element of water. In Aztec iconography he...

, god of the rain and lightning, which inhabits mountain caves. However before this latest distribution of attributions, the Earth was ruled and successively destroyed and replaced by the four predominant elements, one at a time. First the Earth was governed by earth element, under the ruler Black Tezcatlipoca
Tezcatlipoca
Tezcatlipoca was a central deity in Aztec religion. One of the four sons of Ometeotl, he is associated with a wide range of concepts, including the night sky, the night winds, hurricanes, the north, the earth, obsidian, enmity, discord, rulership, divination, temptation, jaguars, sorcery, beauty,...

, second by air element with Quetzalcoatl
Quetzalcoatl
Quetzalcoatl is a Mesoamerican deity whose name comes from the Nahuatl language and has the meaning of "feathered serpent". The worship of a feathered serpent deity is first documented in Teotihuacan in the first century BCE or first century CE...

, third by fire under Tlaloc, and fourth by water controlled by Chalchiuhtlicue.

In their conception of the universe, the Aztecs divided the terrestrial plan into five parts, the west that stays below, south to the right, east on top, north to the left, and the axis mundi
Axis mundi
The axis mundi , in religion or mythology, is the world center and/or the connection between heaven and Earth. As the celestial pole and geographic pole, it expresses a point of connection between sky and earth where the four compass directions meet...

 or center. Each cardinal direction is in charge of a distinct son of the primordial god Ometeotl
Ometeotl
Ometeotl is a name sometimes used about the pair of god Ometecuhtli/Omecihuatl in Aztec mythology...

. The god Red Tezcatlipoca controls the east "Tlpallan
Tlillan-Tlapallan
Tlillan-Tlapallan 'Place of the black and red colour' is a legendary place or region on the Gulf Coast of Mexico where king Quetzalcoatl went on his flight from Tollan in order to burn himself and change into the Morning Star....

", which also is the home of Tonatiuh
Tonatiuh
In Aztec mythology, Tonatiuh was the sun god. The Aztec people considered him the leader of Tollan, heaven. He was also known as the fifth sun, because the Aztecs believed that he was the sun that took over when the fourth sun was expelled from the sky...

; Black Tezcatlipoca watches the north "Mictlampa", "the place of Mictlan
Mictlan
Mictlan was the underworld of Aztec mythology. Most people who died went to Mictlan, although other possibilities existed . Mictlan was located far to the north, and consisted of nine distinct levels....

"; Blue Tezcatlipoca guards the south "Huitztlampa" where resides Huitzilopochtli
Huitzilopochtli
In Aztec mythology, Huitzilopochtli, also spelled Uitzilopochtli , was a god of war, a sun god, and the patron of the city of Tenochtitlan. He was also the national god of the Mexicas of Tenochtitlan.- Genealogy :...

; and White Tezcatlipoca oversees the west "Cihuatlampa", where dwell earth goddesses like Cihuacoatl
Cihuacoatl
In Aztec mythology, Cihuacoatl was one of a number of motherhood and fertility goddesses....

.

Theosophy


The occultist New Zealander Geoffrey Hodson
Geoffrey Hodson
Geoffrey Hodson was an occultist, Theosophist, mystic, Liberal Catholic priest, philosopher and esotericist, and a leading light for over 70 years in the Theosophical Society...

 without doubt it was one of the most who explored this theme. Very akin to Mellie Uyldert’s reports, he speaks about his extraordinary experiences and goes further. His writing classifies all kind of ethereal beings making an ample categorization ranging from elemental beings until the highest hierarchy. For him the ethereal Devas would be powerful nature-spirits responsible for taking care of vast landscaping, like a river, a lake, a mountain and other functions to help the nature. Beyond devas he observes mahadevas
Shiva
Shiva is a major Hindu deity, and is the destroyer god or transformer among the Trimurti, the Hindu Trinity of the primary aspects of the divine. God Shiva is a yogi who has notice of everything that happens in the world and is the main aspect of life. Yet one with great power lives a life of a...

responsible for planets and the universe. He fuses the eastern conceit of devas and mahadevas with angel
Angel
Angels are mythical beings often depicted as messengers of God in the Hebrew and Christian Bibles along with the Quran. The English word angel is derived from the Greek ἄγγελος, a translation of in the Hebrew Bible ; a similar term, ملائكة , is used in the Qur'an...

s and arcangels from western tradition and makes a direct relation with kabbalistic
Kabbalah
Kabbalah/Kabala is a discipline and school of thought concerned with the esoteric aspect of Rabbinic Judaism. It was systematized in 11th-13th century Hachmei Provence and Spain, and again after the Expulsion from Spain, in 16th century Ottoman Palestine...

 Sephirot, the tree of life
Tree of life (Kabbalah)
The Tree of Life, or Etz haChayim in Hebrew, is a mystical symbol used in the Kabbalah of esoteric Judaism to describe the path to God and the manner in which he created the world ex nihilo...

. Finally the whole path of his work is outlined by his dedication to Theosophic
Theosophy
Theosophy, in its modern presentation, is a spiritual philosophy developed since the late 19th century. Its major themes were originally described mainly by Helena Blavatsky , co-founder of the Theosophical Society...

 philosophy.

Following the theosophic field, the Dutch-born Dora van Gelder
Dora Van Gelder
Dora van Gelder Kunz was an American writer, psychic, alternative healer, occultist and leader in the Theosophical Society in America...

 professes see ethereal beings since was a child and holds them as maintainers and promoters of vital energies of the world. Inside a monumental quantity of these creatures, as explained by her there is a scale of beings where those of highest power and intelligence are called devas or angels. With the hierarchy exists a functional structure guided by devas who delegate attributions to inferior beings. The lesser beings, elementals and fairies speaking generically, are natured in four basic categories: earth, fire, water and air. Gelder also alleges the existence of an enigmatic creature living in extreme elevated altitudes, never coming down, and remembering a huge Chinese dragon. Colorful, it has big eyes, scales and slowly crosses the sky like a cow grazing in a meadow.
Some of those lesser entities, claims Gelder, are born through the magic intent by devas for assisting them. They are composed of heterogeneous ether, so they have different densities in their bodies. Devas have thinner consistency than fairies, thereby the difficulty is to see them larger. Also they have some basic internal organs where a master one is the heart whose purpose is pump power to the body and align with the pace of other livings creatures for energetically interacting. A fairy or deva, like humans, have emotions and their beat heart change according to them. Moreover their bodies are literally made of emotions. Usually they are happy creatures but can have negative emotions with short term.

According to Gelder, every one of four elements performs an activity associated with that element. Thus earth beings (such as fairies
Fairy
A fairy is a type of mythical being or legendary creature, a form of spirit, often described as metaphysical, supernatural or preternatural.Fairies resemble various beings of other mythologies, though even folklore that uses the term...

 and gnome
Gnome
A gnome is a diminutive spirit in Renaissance magic and alchemy, first introduced by Paracelsus and later adopted by more recent authors including those of modern fantasy literature...

s) can handle energy to vitalize plants and to all above or under the ground like rocks or minerals. Water fairies (such as ondines
Ondine (mythology)
Undines , also called ondines, are elementals, enumerated as the water elementals in works of alchemy by Paracelsus. They also appear in European folklore as fairy-like creatures; the name may be used interchangeably with those of other water spirits. Undines are said to be able to gain a soul by...

) suck the sunlight and spread into the water. Fire beings (salamanders
Salamander (legendary creature)
The salamander is an amphibian of the order Urodela. As with many real creatures, pre-modern authors often ascribed fantastic qualities to it , and in recent times some have come to identify a legendary salamander as a distinct concept from the real organism. This idea is most highly developed in...

) promote bonfires, feed themselves on magma energy and regulate the distribution of interior energy of planet to the surface. Air fairies (sylphs) manipulate clouds, winds and storms, which are very intelligent, look like and are the closest to angels (devas). Regarding devas, every one has a zone of influence. In the center of that region resides an energy vortex where dwells the angel’s awareness. When manifesting to humans the angel assumes a beautiful human form. Devas interact each other and despite having respect and being altruistic, may also be afraid of someone of upper rank. They plan and decide all what is going to happen in the natural world, including when lives must be taken.

Gelder still observes that when she started to study these beings, those of earth class used to be more interested in relating to humans while water or air beings were more indifferent and fire fairies could be even hostile. Nonetheless her last observations, after several years, witnessed fear and very little interesting in humans. Also she noted much less number of entities, sometimes none could be found where before used to exist.

Charles Webster Leadbeater
Charles Webster Leadbeater
Charles Webster Leadbeater was an influential member of the Theosophical Society, author on occult subjects and co-initiator with J. I. Wedgwood of the Liberal Catholic Church...

 fundamentally described and incorporated his comprehension of intangible beings for Theosophy
Theosophy
Theosophy, in its modern presentation, is a spiritual philosophy developed since the late 19th century. Its major themes were originally described mainly by Helena Blavatsky , co-founder of the Theosophical Society...

. Along with him there are various elusive planes intertwined with the quotidian human world and all inhabited by multitudes of these entities. Each plane is purported as composed of discrete density of astral or ethereal matter
Etheric plane
The etheric plane is a term introduced into Theosophy by Charles Webster Leadbeater and Annie Besant to represent one of the planes of existence in neo-Theosophical and Rosicrucian cosmology. It represents the fourth[higher] subplane of the physical plane , the lower three being the states of...

and frequently the denizens of a plane have no discernment of other ones. In his view the terrestrial arrangements of nature have not been designed exclusively to advantage of human specie.
Leadbeater grasps all life as sacred, and that without universal empathy there is no true progress to mankind. Manifold evolution is a widespread feature, and comparatively small place humanity fills in the universe. Good or evil elemental
Elemental
An elemental is a mythological being first appearing in the alchemical works of Paracelsus in the 16th century. Traditionally, there are four types:*gnomes, earth elementals*undines , water elementals*sylphs, air elementals...

, it is an entity created artificially because the nature-spirits
Animism
Animism refers to the belief that non-human entities are spiritual beings, or at least embody some kind of life-principle....

 from elemental kingdoms do not admit such conceptions. There is, however, permeating their realm a tendency that operates to render them rather hostile than friendly towards man. It is a bias resulted of that only blindly receives and reflects what humanity project upon it.

The nature-spirits are classified in earth, water, air or fire types and neither have been, nor ever will be, part of humanity; their lineage of evolution is another, and their link with man is present in the transitory habitation of the same planet. These entities indeed are the elementals of a higher evolution. Under ordinary circumstances they are invisible to physical sight, but are able of making perceptible themselves when they desire to be seen. They assume any guise at will most frequently human in shape and undersized, but have definite forms of their own. They differ in intelligence and the life-periods vary to the highest degree, some being brief while others much longer than human lifetime.

Leadbeater still regards devas
Deva (Buddhism)
A deva in Buddhism is one of many different types of non-human beings who share the characteristics of being more powerful, longer-lived, and, in general, living more contentedly than the average human being....

 as one of several divisions among these beings, for him devas are the highest system of evolution connected with Earth but though associated with the Earth, devas are not restricted to it.

Four devic kings, the Devarajas, rule over the elements earth, water, air, and fire with their indwelling nature-spirits. They are the regents of the Earth, angels of the four cardinal points
Cardinal Points
Cardinal Points is a student newspaper published in Plattsburgh, New York which serves the SUNY Plattsburgh community. The newspaper publishes 3,000 copies every Friday morning throughout the semester, from February until May 12...

east, south, west and north that respectively correspond the colors white, blue, red and gold. According to Leadbeater these sovereigns correspond to the creatures assigned in the episode of the Ezekiel’s vision
Merkabah
Merkabah is the throne-chariot of God, the four-wheeled vehicle driven by four "chayot" , each of which has four wings and the four faces of a man, lion, ox, and eagle...

 in the Bible and are, in a straight line, deeply involved in the destiny and paths of man.

Alice Bailey


The English writer Alice Bailey
Alice Bailey
Alice Ann Bailey , known as Alice A. Bailey or AAB to her followers, was an influential writer and theosophist in what she termed "Ageless Wisdom". This included occult teachings, "esoteric" psychology and healing, astrological and other philosophic and religious themes...

, a contemporary of Leadbeater, also gave continuousness to theosophical concepts anent ethereal beings, besides, her works had great impact over New Age
New Age
The New Age movement is a Western spiritual movement that developed in the second half of the 20th century. Its central precepts have been described as "drawing on both Eastern and Western spiritual and metaphysical traditions and then infusing them with influences from self-help and motivational...

 movement. She puts the nature spirits and devas as ethereal beings immersed in macro divisions of an interwoven threefold universe, usually they belong to the etheric, astral or mental plane
Mental plane
The mental plane, or world of thought, in Hermeticism, Theosophical, Rosicrucian, Aurobindonian, and New Age thought refers to the macrocosmic or universal plane or reality that is made up purely of thought or mindstuff...

s. The ethereal entities of the four kingdoms, Earth, Air, Fire, and Water, are forces of nature.
Thus lower-ranking nature spirits, the elemental
Elemental
An elemental is a mythological being first appearing in the alchemical works of Paracelsus in the 16th century. Traditionally, there are four types:*gnomes, earth elementals*undines , water elementals*sylphs, air elementals...

s, ascend hierarchically to devas also called “angels”. Human and devic realms would be the two great evolutions upon Earth but devas have their own development, it is parallel to the human. In spite of that, some devas would have passed by human stage long time ago and still a possible evolutionary path for a human or deva is the merger of the two evolutions.

The thoughtforms created by human mind are a kind of fire elementals, claims Bailey. Fire elementals, obscure entities and fire devas increase their activities in the course of summer months when there is more solar light. Hosts of fire elementals inhabit since the inner, surface and high pranic
Prana
Prana is the Sanskrit word for "vital life" .It is one of the five organs of vitality or sensation, viz. prana "breath", vac "speech", chakshus "sight", shrotra "hearing", and manas "thought" Prana is the Sanskrit word for "vital life" (from the root "to fill", cognate to Latin plenus...

 atmosphere of the Earth until the corporeal heat of humans. Devas from mental plane are fire devas. Fiery nature spirits are the most potent and the most dangerous elementals. They overcome in large numbers all the other elementals, being succeeded by air nature spirits and then in small amount by watery or earth elementals which are settled only in few planets from solar system.

Devas and elementals, says Bailey, labor in harmony with superior entities dedicating their endeavor to develop form aspect and consciousnesses. Intrinsically, when living at Earth, they vitally stimulate the planet's evolution acting unconsciously or consciously according to their evolutional grade. Several devas have intimate relations with mankind and specific attributions. For instance there are devas helping on distribution of the destiny or karma
Karma
Karma in Indian religions is the concept of "action" or "deed", understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect originating in ancient India and treated in Hindu, Jain, Buddhist and Sikh philosophies....

 to persons and peoples; etheric devas healing diseases; devas substantiating artistic, psychic qualities; others nurturing the relations between spirit and matter, as well as exist devas from a mental plane working with aspects of intelligence.
Agni
Agni
Agni is a Hindu deity, one of the most important of the Vedic gods. He is the god of fire and the acceptor of sacrifices. The sacrifices made to Agni go to the deities because Agni is a messenger from and to the other gods...

 the sovereign deva of salamander
Salamander (legendary creature)
The salamander is an amphibian of the order Urodela. As with many real creatures, pre-modern authors often ascribed fantastic qualities to it , and in recent times some have come to identify a legendary salamander as a distinct concept from the real organism. This idea is most highly developed in...

s and fire devas, also is the king of the mental plane. Agni is the prime solar deity of life and energy, he rules the cosmic fire which directly affects the human psychological processes and therefore the human evolution.

Certain devas communicate with humans by means of birds, which are closed allied to them. The water devas commanding the water elementals are focused in their task of nourishing all the vegetable and animal life upon the Earth. However are fire devas and their salamander assistants who take care of the evaporation of waters and minister the transmutation of matter
Alchemy
Alchemy is an influential philosophical tradition whose early practitioners’ claims to profound powers were known from antiquity. The defining objectives of alchemy are varied; these include the creation of the fabled philosopher's stone possessing powers including the capability of turning base...

, a lore exploited by ancient Atlanteans
Atlantis
Atlantis is a legendary island first mentioned in Plato's dialogues Timaeus and Critias, written about 360 BC....

, declares Bailey. The salamanders, which can be seen by psychics springing into flames, are realized in red, orange, yellow, and violet colors, where the violet kind is evolutionally very near to devas. Also devas irradiate colors according to their respective ascensional level, some pivotal ones start by violet, next come green, orange, interspersed by yellow, rose, blue, red, and higher, last of all, the white deva. Rose and blue devas protect the sanctuaries and temples, they act in the astral plane
Astral plane
The astral plane, also called the astral world, is a plane of existence postulated by classical , medieval, oriental and esoteric philosophies and mystery religions...

 whose king it is the deva Varuna
Varuna
In Vedic religion, Varuna is a god of the sky, of water and of the celestial ocean, as well as a god of law and of the underworld...

. White devas preside the air and water, some of them become guardians of humans. Green devas manage Earth’s magnetic spots and the vegetable life.
According to the writer devas evolve by way of sensation or emotion and not through the ability of aware thought like humans do. They reincarnate
Reincarnation
Reincarnation best describes the concept where the soul or spirit, after the death of the body, is believed to return to live in a new human body, or, in some traditions, either as a human being, animal or plant...

 not as individuals but in groups. The devic realm is deeply affected by sounds; particularly words stir and make tiny beings take diverse colorful forms.

Although at time of Atlantis
Atlantis
Atlantis is a legendary island first mentioned in Plato's dialogues Timaeus and Critias, written about 360 BC....

 civilization, man and ethereal beings had a closed relationship, presently deal with devas it is not safe for uninitiated
Initiation
Initiation is a rite of passage ceremony marking entrance or acceptance into a group or society. It could also be a formal admission to adulthood in a community or one of its formal components...

 students. However it is necessary to seek, study and have some kind of control over elementals and devas. For attracting elementals or devas, rituals and mantras are satisfactory methods but devas cannot be summoned, they freely select attend or not. Bailey prints generic dispositions for devas, she claims devas as celestial beings that may be good, bad or indifferent. In fact elementals and lower devas may be inconsequent and seriously harm a person as well several kinds of malevolent entities.

Devas can be denominated as “builders” in view of aspect they are involved in every procedure for materialization of the life. In a distinct scale would stay the “etheric builders”, meaning those who operate the etheric body
Etheric body
The etheric body, ether-body, æther body, a name given by neo-Theosophy to a supposed vital body or subtle body propounded in esoteric philosophies as the first or lowest layer in the "human energy field" or aura...

 such as fairies, elves and etheric devas. However the mysterious length of life cycles are also related to devas inasmuch their role it is to control the process. Indeed the angel of death
Death (personification)
The concept of death as a sentient entity has existed in many societies since the beginning of history. In English, Death is often given the name Grim Reaper and, from the 15th century onwards, came to be shown as a skeletal figure carrying a large scythe and clothed in a black cloak with a hood...

 it is not a metaphoric figure, tells Bailey, whereas is a authoritative deva.

Some beings, humans or not, choose follow the left hand trail, a deadend path ruled by individualism and conception of a predatory universe, states Bailey. They powerfully can dominate some elementals such as gnomes, brownies
Brownie (folklore)
A brownie/brounie or urisk or brùnaidh, ùruisg, or gruagach is a legendary creature popular in folklore around Scotland and England...

, and the brown, gray and dark fairies, and also can be assisted by watery elementals. In other level, elementals who then walk on the downward arc may take this same digression. Nevertheless high devas, sylphs, sprites, and blue, green, yellow and few of the red fairies are out of involutional influence exerted by those tracking on left side.

Western tradition


In ceremonial magic tradition
Ceremonial magic
Ceremonial magic, also referred to as high magic and as learned magic, is a broad term used in the context of Hermeticism or Western esotericism to encompass a wide variety of long, elaborate, and complex rituals of magic. It is named as such because the works included are characterized by...

 the English Murry Hope
Murry Hope
Murry Hope Richard Ellis, Imagining Atlantis, 1998. Alfred A. Knoft - original from University of Michigan; pp. 64-70, 269. ISBN 0679446028. is an English woman writer, lecturer, psychic, healer, astrologer, numerologist, palmist, former lyric singer and universal occultist. She makes part of the...

, a New Agey priestess, addresses elves as elemental beings
Elemental
An elemental is a mythological being first appearing in the alchemical works of Paracelsus in the 16th century. Traditionally, there are four types:*gnomes, earth elementals*undines , water elementals*sylphs, air elementals...

from the four elemental dominions fire, air, water and earth. They are helpers of the natural world and can assist the development of the human psyche through rituals of magic mysteries. Among the Celts, she recounts, Vivien
Lady of the Lake
The Lady of the Lake is the name of several related characters who play parts in the Arthurian legend. These characters' roles include giving King Arthur his sword Excalibur, enchanting Merlin, and raising Lancelot after the death of his father...

 was an ethereal being which instructed witchcraft to Breton and Scotch sorcerers.
Nevertheless, consistent with Hope, ethereal beings tend not to trust in humans, and an incursion in their world may be a really dangerous act. It is not something for fools or curious, the deed demands knowledge, respect and specific rules must be obeyed because there is a cosmic orderliness. Usually this is achieved through rituals bringing mutual benefits to humans and entities. Break the norms means punishment, following them helps the magician to develop psychic abilities and qualities. Rarely, in a balanced mode, a person joins up the four elements in his psyche, body and way of life. In this fashion all beings of the four elements can show the way or cure bad health and stabilize the physical equilibrium of a person. For instance salamanders (fire) fuel stamina and creativity; sylphs (air) stir the intellectuality, the communication; ondines (water) work the emotions, the sympathy; fairies (earth) can encourage physical well being showing curatives herbs while gnomes teach accumulation and prosperity.

She distinguishes elementar, seen as a very unfinished being on the evolutionary ladder, from elemental spirits, which following their ascensional line develop into angels. Thoughtforms would be elementares, entities with barely consciousness, and made of a bag of energy, which is, intentionally or not, created by emotional discharges or magic arts. Distinct from humans, but in spite of this, elementals can experiment the human lineage as well as can choose to protect people as guardians for some period. Accordingly, says Hope, there are many stories in folklore and mythologies telling how the mother or father of a character is not a human being but a creature like an elf, nymph, god, or other mystical entity. Hope avers have performed a past life regression
Past life regression
Past life regression is a technique that uses hypnosis to recover what practitioners believe are memories of past lives or incarnations, though others regard them as fantasies or delusions. Past life regression is typically undertaken either in pursuit of a spiritual experience, or in a...

 in a person whose history revealed that the individual did not belong to Homo sapiens basis but to the intermediate realm. The origin of that person was a fire salamander. Indeed Hope testifies to be herself from devic origin, she would have had various non-human lives.

A prime reference to early occultists since 19th century, the French Eliphas Levi
Eliphas Levi
Eliphas Lévi, born Alphonse Louis Constant , was a French occult author and purported magician."Eliphas Lévi," the name under which he published his books, was his attempt to translate or transliterate his given names "Alphonse Louis" into Hebrew although he was not Jewish.His second wife was...

 understood the devic realm as composed of four elementar forms that render the astral light completely filled with souls having no free will.
Elementary spirits, declares Levi, figure a great invisible chain and as such can motivate or determine impressive commotions in Nature. They show themselves under partial and fugitive forms. They are like kids, good and evil are the same; have no responsibility. They are not in mortal sin, simply are inquisitive and inoffensive. Frequently set up distressing or fabulous dreams; can bother unless one has control of them; can produce the movements and the knocks on walls and furniture. But they do not exhibit any other thoughts than those emanated from humans; they talk to people with all the incoherence of dreams.

Conjurers can employ or exploit them like unarmed. For that reason the magus who occupies their help burdens a terrible responsibility, for he will have to expiate all the evil, which he makes them do. Then only flawless persons in the air, fire, water and earth qualities should try impose upon the elements the verb of their will, by respective special consecrations of sylphs, salamanders, undines, and gnomes.

The kingdom of gnomes is at the north, that of salamanders at the south, that of sylphs at the east, and that of undines at the west. Their sovereigns are Gob of the gnomes, Djin of the salamanders, Paralda of the sylphs, and Nicksa of the undines. Levi still lays strong emphasis in the Ezekiel’s creatures
Merkabah
Merkabah is the throne-chariot of God, the four-wheeled vehicle driven by four "chayot" , each of which has four wings and the four faces of a man, lion, ox, and eagle...

 and depicts hieroglyphic signs as the "Bull" to the gnomes controlled with the "Sword"; the "Lion" to the salamanders commanded with the "Bifurcated Rod or Magic Trident
Trident
A trident , also called a trishul or leister or gig, is a three-pronged spear. It is used for spear fishing and was also a military weapon. Tridents are featured widely in mythical, historical and modern culture. The major Hindu god, Shiva the Destroyer and the sea god Poseidon or Neptune are...

"; the "Eagle" to the sylphs dominated by the "Holy Pentacles"; and the "Water-Carrier (Aquarius)
Aquarius (constellation)
Aquarius is a constellation of the zodiac, situated between Capricornus and Pisces. Its name is Latin for "water-bearer" or "cup-bearer", and its symbol is , a representation of water....

" to the undines ruled by the "Cup of Libations
Libation
A libation is a ritual pouring of a liquid as an offering to a god or spirit or in memory of those who have died. It was common in many religions of antiquity and continues to be offered in various cultures today....

".

Succeeding Levi, the French occultist Gerard Encausse whose pseudonym was Papus endorsed the Levi’s teachings in his own works but he articulated the symbolic relations of nature-spirits discoursed by Levi as founded in writings by magician Cornelius Agrippa who was born centuries before.

Paracelsus


Nonetheless many of these concepts also have resemblance with proclamations of Paracelsus
Paracelsus
Paracelsus was a German-Swiss Renaissance physician, botanist, alchemist, astrologer, and general occultist....

, a Swiss alchemist born at end of 15th century. In his view, the world is a living whole, which, like man, the microcosm, in whom the whole content of the macrocosm is concentrated. The later Victorian concept of ether is outlined in his words as "prima materia" which is the unified stuff from which matter is created and underlies all substances. Prima materia is not matter, but rather a potentiality. The four primary elements “earth, water, air and fire” manifest the concrete prima materia.

Disease is a checking of those four vital principles by contrary powers, which are of a terrestrial and of a sidereal nature. Three worlds are distinguished for Paracelsus: the elemental or terrestrial, the astral or celestial, and the spiritual or divine; all building the human constitution. The matter is built by means of air plus the three fundamental essences quicksilver, sulfur, and salt, by which in Latin, Paracelsus relates as: mercurius, that which makes bodies liquid (water); sulphur, that which makes them combustible (fire); sal, that which makes them solid (earth).

Compounded the four elements, each of which is ruled by elemental spirits. Earth by gnomes, water by undines or nymphs, air by sylphs, fire by salamanders; all are sublimated substances and not demoniacal beings.

They are not conventional spirits, because they live, procreate, eat, drink, smell, speak (some), laugh, sing, perform, rest and die. They differ from one another in person, character, and species; are beings populating a space between men and spirits, looking like the man in their organization and form and resembling spirits in the swiftness of their movement.

The water type looks like a man or woman living in the waters. Salamanders are fiery balls or else long, narrow, glowing lights running across meadows and living in the volcanoes and bonfires. The forest or mountain kind seems a little people. The sylphs have no defined form but are long and strong. They can have a rapport with humans but after while come back to their world. They know the minds, thoughts and cogitations of men. And they sometimes are the executioners of divine wrath, nevertheless they also can warn, watch and defend people from dangers.
Nature spirits cannot be destroyed by action of regular earthy substances on account of they are in etheric condition, therefore in a rate of higher
vibration. However they can have etheric diseases and their bodies after death solely disintegrate, no individual consciousness is preserved although they are of a high moral character.

Being made of ether, a single substance, there is no friction in their composition, consequently there is little "tear" brought upon their bodily functions, and they can live long time. Thus nature spirits have a mean of length of life between three hundred and a thousand years. Those made of air ether have longest life while those of earth ether are the shortest lived, states Paracelsus. Connected to this gist, the writer Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda was a Peruvian-born American anthropologist and author....

 substantiates that ethereal beings have an extremely narrow tear compared to one of a regular living being like the man. That ethereal tear or slit, located adjacent to center of body, as time goes, the spirit of death
Death (personification)
The concept of death as a sentient entity has existed in many societies since the beginning of history. In English, Death is often given the name Grim Reaper and, from the 15th century onwards, came to be shown as a skeletal figure carrying a large scythe and clothed in a black cloak with a hood...

 incessantly strikes and makes it to grow larger until it finally broke open the “lively casing” and cause an immediate death. That’s why people and animals curl when mortally injured; they are instinctively protecting their slits.
According to Paracelsus some sorts of earth elementals, like the gnomes, live congregated in communities, while others are restrict to the substances in which they perform. Hamadryads, for example, live and die with the trees of which they act. Small nature spirits often inhabit alone every shrub and flower. The man lives in the exterior elements and the elementals live in the interior Elements, states Paracelsus. Concerning that, the writer C. M. Gayley
Charles Mills Gayley
Charles Mills Gayley was a professor of English and the Classics at the University of California at Berkeley, from the fall of 1889 through July 1932.-Biography:...

 in The Classic Myths, observes each species is served by a distinct and suitable kind of nature spirit. For instance the hemlock
Conium
Conium is a genus of two species of highly poisonous perennial herbaceous flowering plants in the family Apiaceae, native to Europe and the Mediterranean region as Conium maculatum, and to southern Africa as Conium chaerophylloides....

, a poisonous shrub, has an elemental resembling a pygmy human skeleton covered with a thin translucent skin. This nature spirit, even if the plant is cut down, stays with the shrub’s remains while there is any residue of life until finally both die, plant and elemental guardian.

Looking through the assertions proclaimed by Paracelsus, particularly those related to sylphs, comes out the comparison with the work Phaedo
Phaedo
Plato's Phaedo is one of the great dialogues of his middle period, along with the Republic and the Symposium. The Phaedo, which depicts the death of Socrates, is also Plato's seventh and last dialogue to detail the philosopher's final days .In the dialogue, Socrates...

by ancient Greek philosopher Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

 in which there are correlated descriptions. In Phaedo the Greek philosopher Socrates
Socrates
Socrates was a classical Greek Athenian philosopher. Credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy, he is an enigmatic figure known chiefly through the accounts of later classical writers, especially the writings of his students Plato and Xenophon, and the plays of his contemporary ...

 fairly narrates the existence of an unaware world connected with the ordinary world of the man. According to Socrates, that is the "upper earth" where its diverse inhabitants live much longer than common persons and do not have diseases. They have sight, hearing and smell, and all the other senses. They openly talk and hear the voices and answers of theirs gods, which truly dwell their sacred places. In the upper earth some beings dwell in the air, they use the air as men use the sea, and the ether it is their air, articulates Socrates.

Even from perspective of nature spirits, proceeds Paracelsus, some entities are unorthodox creatures, such as giants and siren
Siren
In Greek mythology, the Sirens were three dangerous mermaid like creatures, portrayed as seductresses who lured nearby sailors with their enchanting music and voices to shipwreck on the rocky coast of their island. Roman poets placed them on an island called Sirenum scopuli...

s, due to the fact that elementals can beget these anomalies that die out soon. The apparition of these means a disequilibrium on nature and omen of impending disaster.
Elementals, says the alchemist, have subtle blood, flesh and bones; they are able to travel through walls but each kind has its own density according to its abode. Each kind does not withstand the abode of another kind. They work like men but their work is for the nature where them live.

They are non-Adamic creatures, are sinless, not have soul
Soul
A soul in certain spiritual, philosophical, and psychological traditions is the incorporeal essence of a person or living thing or object. Many philosophical and spiritual systems teach that humans have souls, and others teach that all living things and even inanimate objects have souls. The...

 but if procreate with man, gain soul and have human descendents. They are under protection of God, clothed and guided by him. However evil spirits can possess elementals and these can harm people. Besides elementals dispose of knowledge about past, present and future without penetration, so can be dangerous deal with them.

Concerning the question of the soul deliberated by Paracelsus, certain philosophies, such the Taoism
Taoism
Taoism refers to a philosophical or religious tradition in which the basic concept is to establish harmony with the Tao , which is the mechanism of everything that exists...

, posit it as manifold as well as some other cultures ground a dualism to the soul
Soul dualism
Soul dualism or a dualistic soul concept is a range of beliefs that a person has two kinds of souls. In many cases, one of the souls is associated with body functions and the other one can leave the body . Sometimes the plethora of soul types can be even more complex...

. The axial concept takes into account that inhabit the living body the po
Hun and po
Hun and po are types of souls in Chinese philosophy and religion. Within this ancient soul dualism tradition, every living human has both a hun spiritual, ethereal, and yang soul that leaves the body after death and a po corporeal, substantive, and yin soul that remains with the corpse...

, an animal soul, and the hun
Hun and po
Hun and po are types of souls in Chinese philosophy and religion. Within this ancient soul dualism tradition, every living human has both a hun spiritual, ethereal, and yang soul that leaves the body after death and a po corporeal, substantive, and yin soul that remains with the corpse...

, the spiritual soul. Po is connected to body functions, it is the "moon soul", an ephemeron and terrene soul, while hun is the “solar soul”, that is to say, the celestial and free soul. As a further matter, in his writings Castaneda gives another interpretation where he understands the absolute inexistence of everlasting souls. However, he states, the body itself it is an entity holding own consciousness, while the regular mind it is another separated being. Ultimately both entities would become a true oneness if they accomplished the enlightenment
Enlightenment (spiritual)
Enlightenment in a secular context often means the "full comprehension of a situation", but in spiritual terms the word alludes to a spiritual revelation or deep insight into the meaning and purpose of all things, communication with or understanding of the mind of God, profound spiritual...

.

Although Paracelsus thereof repeatedly claims the soulless nature of elementals he also clarifies that actually they have exquisite souls. Elementals do not have an eternal soul but they are themselves a kind of soul, its soul it is the life. When a fire burns, this happens for there is an "elemental soul", in other words, life it is present. Without that soul, a fire cannot burn; what burn it are not the elements of fire but its soul. The soul of the elementals is the life of all created things.

Gnosticism


The writer Colombian Samael Aun Weor
Samael Aun Weor
Samael Aun Weor , born Víctor Manuel Gómez Rodríguez, Colombian citizen and later Mexican, was an author, lecturer and founder of the 'Universal Christian Gnostic Movement' with his teaching of 'The Doctrine of Synthesis' of all religions in both their esoteric and exoteric aspects...

, founder of Universal Christian Gnostic Movement
Gnosticism
Gnosticism is a scholarly term for a set of religious beliefs and spiritual practices common to early Christianity, Hellenistic Judaism, Greco-Roman mystery religions, Zoroastrianism , and Neoplatonism.A common characteristic of some of these groups was the teaching that the realisation of Gnosis...

, gathers and syncretizes
Syncretism
Syncretism is the combining of different beliefs, often while melding practices of various schools of thought. The term means "combining", but see below for the origin of the word...

 a broad variety of teachings creating new terms and asserting for instance dryad, hamadryad, nymph, faun and genie
Genie
Jinn or genies are supernatural creatures in Arab folklore and Islamic teachings that occupy a parallel world to that of mankind. Together, jinn, humans and angels make up the three sentient creations of Allah. Religious sources say barely anything about them; however, the Qur'an mentions that...

 as elemental spirits of plants.

Other term, "innocent angels", refers to the elemental beings of plants, however he warns that black magic
Black magic
Black magic is the type of magic that draws on assumed malevolent powers or is used with the intention to kill, steal, injure, cause misfortune or destruction, or for personal gain without regard to harmful consequences. As a term, "black magic" is normally used by those that do not approve of its...

ians may utilize them in order to harm their enemies.
For Samael, the whole universe is elaborated with the ethereal matter, everything comes from the ether and everything returns into the ether. The ether condensed gives origin to all that is created. The four elements of Nature, earth, fire, water and air are only condensations of the four types of ether.

Innumerable elemental creatures from Nature densely populate the four varieties of ether. Salamanders live within the fire; ondines and nereids in water; sylphs in clouds; gnomes live within the earth. Nonetheless all entities have stimulus over the physical body of plants. Salamanders command vegetables under the signs of fire. Ondines rule plants which are influenced by the zodiacal signs of water. Sylphs are the elementals of the plants belonging to the signs of air. Gnomes operate plants under the effect of signs of earth.

The ethereal entities also can prompt magic arts. In order to unleash the tempests or to pacify the waters is done by commanding the occult power of the plants of water sign. When sylphs cross through the space, they move the masses of air producing the wind. So is possible unleash or calm the winds and hurricanes by directing the elementals of air, who are enclosed within the vegetables of this sign. Transmute lead into gold by controlling the occult power of the herbs belong to the signs of earth buy yet, in order to perform this, it is needful the fire elemental. When a magician moves the elementals of fire with his power, then, these elementals act over etheric fire with their own accord, and the fire devours what this magician wants.

The elements of the natural world are agitated when the corresponding elemental beings become emotional, enthusiastic or when they are intensely moved. A tempest explodes from the agitated combination of water and air. The roar of the sea and the whistling of the hurricane are the screams of achievement of the ethereal beings. Like a great battle exploding between the elementals over the sea, ondines throw the ether of their waters to the sylphs. Consequently, the sylphs return this movement by casting waves to the ondines.

Agrippa’s ancient view


Born at 15th century the German alchemist H. C. Agrippa
Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa
Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa von Nettesheim was a German magician, occult writer, theologian, astrologer, and alchemist.-Life:Agrippa was born in Cologne in 1486...

 wrote De Occulta Philosophia libri III, an interpretation of ethereal beings where he integrates occult lore of the natural world with Christianity, which remained as a reference and source for later and modern occultist traditions.

In his writings Agrippa cites Thomas Aquinas
Thomas Aquinas
Thomas Aquinas, O.P. , also Thomas of Aquin or Aquino, was an Italian Dominican priest of the Catholic Church, and an immensely influential philosopher and theologian in the tradition of scholasticism, known as Doctor Angelicus, Doctor Communis, or Doctor Universalis...

, ancient philosophers, scholars and religious books as references for his reasoning and quotations. In this manner he widely provides a united background over kabbalistic magic and Neoplatonic philosophy, and considers the wisdom inserted in the harmonies of nature as means to man achieve his greatest potential. Arising from those investigations Agrippa distinguishes three kinds of ethereal planes:

Realms


The first sphere would be an intellectual or mental realm
Mental plane
The mental plane, or world of thought, in Hermeticism, Theosophical, Rosicrucian, Aurobindonian, and New Age thought refers to the macrocosmic or universal plane or reality that is made up purely of thought or mindstuff...

 of divine beings without physical body which instill divine light unto inferior orders, and distribute duties to all of them.

The second realm belongs to worldly angels, which are divided into many orders and govern planes and stars shinning in sky of divers dimensions. There is a direct relation between the seven known planets at that time and the number of angelic domains, being each of them with their peculiar species and subdivisions. Thus the sun has a conglomerate of solar beings; corporations of angelic beings govern the astrologic relations
Astrological aspect
In astrology, an aspect is an angle the planets make to each other in the horoscope, and also to the ascendant, midheaven, descendant, lower midheaven, and other points of astrological interest. Aspects are measured by the angular distance in degrees and minutes of ecliptic longitude between two...

 having for each small aspect an assigned entity, as well for planets and men’s nations. They take care of the destinies of men with skilled beings.

Every one of four elements has an entrusted angelic being furthermore divided by sets of qualities like fire, water, air, earth and oriental, occidental, meridional, septentrional (northern). Hence the fiery beings follow the mind, the contemplation of sublime things; the aerial follow the reason, the rationality; the watery following the imagination, the voluptuous life; the earthly following nature, favor vegetable nature.

They assist everywhere on Earth, rule over large or small places, have unbounded bodies by space and time and receive the direction of the heaven. They are gods, goddesses and demigod
Demigod
The term "demigod" , meaning "half-god", is commonly used to describe mythological figures whose one parent was a god and whose other parent was human; as such, demigods are human-god hybrids...

s of woods, country gods, satyrs, familiar spirit
Familiar spirit
In European folklore and folk-belief of the Medieval and Early Modern periods, familiar spirits were supernatural entities believed to assist witches and cunning folk in their practice of magic...

s, fairies of fountains and woods, nymph
Nymph
A nymph in Greek mythology is a female minor nature deity typically associated with a particular location or landform. Different from gods, nymphs are generally regarded as divine spirits who animate nature, and are usually depicted as beautiful, young nubile maidens who love to dance and sing;...

s of the sea, naiad
Naiad
In Greek mythology, the Naiads or Naiades were a type of nymph who presided over fountains, wells, springs, streams, and brooks....

s, nereids, dryad
Dryad
Dryads are tree nymphs in Greek mythology. In Greek drys signifies 'oak,' from an Indo-European root *derew- 'tree' or 'wood'. Thus Dryads are specifically the nymphs of oak trees, though the term has come to be used for all tree nymphs in general...

s, hamadryad
Hamadryad
Hamadryads are Greek mythological beings that live in trees. They are a particular type of dryad, which in turn are a particular type of nymph. Hamadryads are born bonded to a particular tree. Some believe that hamadryads are the actual tree, while normal dryads are simply the entities, or...

es, pegasides (nymphs of wells and brooks), genii
Genius (mythology)
In ancient Roman religion, the genius was the individual instance of a general divine nature that is present in every individual person, place or thing.-Nature of the genius:...

s, hobgoblin
Hobgoblin
Hobgoblin is a term typically applied in folktales to describe a friendly but troublesome creature of the Seelie Court.The most commonly known hobgoblin is the character Puck in Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. Puck, however, is only another name given to a much older character named Robin...

s, the deities Agape (Eros)
Eros
Eros , in Greek mythology, was the Greek god of love. His Roman counterpart was Cupid . Some myths make him a primordial god, while in other myths, he is the son of Aphrodite....

, Pales
Pales
In Roman mythology, Pales was a deity of shepherds, flocks and livestock. Regarded as a male by some sources and a female by others, and even possibly as a pair of deities ....

, Camenae
Camenae
In Roman mythology, the Camenae were originally goddesses of childbirth, wells and fountains, and also prophetic deities.There were four Camenae:*Carmenta*Egeria*Antevorta, or Porrima...

, Muses and the Graces
Grâces
Grâces is a commune in the Côtes-d'Armor department in Bretagne in northwestern France.-Population:Inhabitants of Grâces are called gracieux.-External links:*...

. In this list Agrippa still includes some unusual names such as heliconides, candalides
Candalides
Candalides is a genus of butterfly in the family Lycaenidae....

, mionides
Mionides
Mionides is a genus of moths of the Noctuidae family.-References:*...

, and dodonas
Dodona (genus)
The Punches are a genus of butterflies found in Asia.-Description:Fore wing broad, short, triangular; costa very slightly-arched ; apex subacute; termen slightly convex; tornus angulate; dorsum straight; cell comparatively broad, about half length of wing; veins 6 and 7 from upper apex of cell,...

, which today denominate scientific genera of moths or butterflies, however in cultures, like the Mesoamerican, the butterfly is associated with manifestation of spirits, of the soul and of the "Black Sun
Black Sun (mythology)
The Black Sun in Mesoamerican mythology has many mystical meanings, among them it is connected to the god Quetzalcoatl and his penetration in the Underworld through the west door after his diurnal passage on the sky. Amidst the Mexicas there were two suns, the young day sun and the ancient sun,...

" in the underworld.
Megaera
Megaera
Megaera is one of the Erinyes, Eumenides or "Furies" in Greek mythology. Lamprière's Classical Dictionary states "According to the most received opinions, they were three in number, Tisiphone, Megara [sic] and Alecto" and "Megaera .....

, one of the Greek goddesses Erinyes
Erinyes
In Greek mythology the Erinyes from Greek ἐρίνειν " pursue, persecute"--sometimes referred to as "infernal goddesses" -- were female chthonic deities of vengeance. A formulaic oath in the Iliad invokes them as "those who beneath the earth punish whosoever has sworn a false oath"...

, also is the denomination of some species of moths
Euchloron megaera
Euchloron megaera is a moth of the Sphingidae family. It is known from most of Africa and Yemen. It is a migratory species.The length of the forewings is 40-50 mm and the wingspan is 96-121 mm. The body and forewings are bright deep green. The forewings have a black and white spot at the base, a...

. Greek, Roman and central Asiatic tales tell that human soul leaves the body with shape of a butterfly, while the writer Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda was a Peruvian-born American anthropologist and author....

 portraits the vision of a moth as a right expression of the “Spirit”.

As to the third domain, proceeds Agrippa, some of these beings become corporeal and mortal, whose bodies are begotten and die, yet to be long lived. They occupy the inferior world, four most malevolent kings rule over others, according to the four parts of the world and under these many princes govern legions. Hence the Gorgon
Gorgon
In Greek mythology, the Gorgon was a terrifying female creature. The name derives from the Greek word gorgós, which means "dreadful." While descriptions of Gorgons vary across Greek literature, the term commonly refers to any of three sisters who had hair of living, venomous snakes, and a...

s, the Erinyes and Cerberus
Cerberus
Cerberus , or Kerberos, in Greek and Roman mythology, is a multi-headed hound which guards the gates of the Underworld, to prevent those who have crossed the river Styx from ever escaping...

 belong to this kind of spirits. They plot, endeavor mischief, hid and open violence. They appreciate all things done wickedly and competitively.

Angelic beings


There are three lines of angelic beings where every one of which divides into three hierarchies making a total of nine spheres.

The superior type Seraphim, Cherubim, and Thrones
Thrones
The Thrones are a class of celestial beings mentioned by Paul of Tarsus in and related to the throne of God. They are living symbols of God's justice and authority. According to the New Testament, these high celestial beings are among those Orders at the Christ's service...

 are entities contemplating respectively the goodness, essence, form, and wisdom of God.

In the middle exist Dominions, Virtues and Powers as beings governing the world. The firsts command that which the others execute; the seconds minister to the heavens and sometimes assist miracles; the thirds remove what can disturb the divine law.

In the inferior hierarchy stay the Principalities, Archangels and Angels ministering spirits who descend to take care of inferior topics. The firsts of these conduct public issues, princes, magistrates, provinces, kingdoms; every nation has a ruling angel designated. The seconds comply sacred duties and direct the divine worship about every man; present the prayers and sacrifices of men in front of the gods. The thirds control every smaller affair; to each thing there is a preserver and providing vitality to plants, stones and to all inferior things; like ministers, mediate many common issues between God and the man.
Agrippa still stresses another subdivisions as watchful orders
Heavenly host
Heavenly host refers to an army of good angels mentioned in the Bible. It is led either by the Archangel Michael, Jesus, or by God himself. Most descriptions of angels in the Bible describe them in military terms, such as encampment , command structure , and combat...

 which are the Doctrinal order, Tutelary order, where him puts entities like the being Michael
Michael (archangel)
Michael , Micha'el or Mîkhā'ēl; , Mikhaḗl; or Míchaël; , Mīkhā'īl) is an archangel in Jewish, Christian, and Islamic teachings. Roman Catholics, Anglicans, and Lutherans refer to him as Saint Michael the Archangel and also simply as Saint Michael...

 one of the princes and the being Raphael
Raphael (archangel)
Raphael is an archangel of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, who in the Judeo-Christian tradition performs all manners of healing....

, then follow the Procuratorial order, Ministerial order, Auxiliary order, Receptor order and lastly the order of Assistants who assist the ruler of the whole Earth.

In sequence the writer highlights the Hebraic version of these orders of beings which appoint right relation with the cabalistic Tree of life
Tree of life (Kabbalah)
The Tree of Life, or Etz haChayim in Hebrew, is a mystical symbol used in the Kabbalah of esoteric Judaism to describe the path to God and the manner in which he created the world ex nihilo...

:
  • Haioth Hacadosh
    Chayot
    The Chayot or Hayyoth are a class of Merkabah, or Jewish Mystical Angel, reported in Ezekiel's vision of the Merkabah and its surrounding angels as recorded in the first chapter of the Book of Ezekiel describing Ezekiel's vision by the river Chebar.Chayot are ranked first on Maimonides' Jewish...

    (from Hebrew: holy creatures that in some traditions represents the four holy creatures
    Merkabah
    Merkabah is the throne-chariot of God, the four-wheeled vehicle driven by four "chayot" , each of which has four wings and the four faces of a man, lion, ox, and eagle...

    ) is the highest order; is composed by creatures which God gives the gift of being.
  • Ophanim which are entities of the forms and wheels arranging the Chaos.
  • Aralim
    Thrones
    The Thrones are a class of celestial beings mentioned by Paul of Tarsus in and related to the throne of God. They are living symbols of God's justice and authority. According to the New Testament, these high celestial beings are among those Orders at the Christ's service...

    are mighty angels by which God Jehova Elohim joined with He administers form to the liquid matter.
  • Hasmalim
    Hashmallim
    Hashmallim are an angelic entity in both Judaism and Christianity.They appear in the Hebrew Bible in Ezekiel 1:4Hashmallim occupy the fourth rank of ten in Maimonides's exposition of the Jewish Angelarchy....

    who frames the effigies of bodies.
  • Seraphim by which God Elohim Gibor draws forth the elements.
  • Malachim
    Malakh
    In Judaism an angel is a messenger of God, an angelic envoy or an angel in general who appears throughout the Hebrew Bible, Rabbinic literature, and traditional Jewish liturgy.-Etymology:...

    constitutes angels by which God Eloha, produces metals.
  • Elohim
    Elohim
    Elohim is a grammatically singular or plural noun for "god" or "gods" in both modern and ancient Hebrew language. When used with singular verbs and adjectives elohim is usually singular, "god" or especially, the God. When used with plural verbs and adjectives elohim is usually plural, "gods" or...

    are gods by which God Jehovah Sabaoth produces vegetables.
  • Beni Elohim by which God Elohim Sabaoth procreates animals.
  • Cherub
    Cherub
    A cherub is a type of spiritual being mentioned in the Hebrew Bible and cited later on in the Christian biblical canons, usually associated with the presence of God...

    im
    , the ninth and lowest order by which God Sadai creates mankind.

Under these is the order Animasticus called Issim where stay nobles or blessed men, by which God Adonai grants the gift of prophecy.

Evil beings


Agrippa shows an organization not so structured for the evil spirits, he does not exhibit exactly a nomenclature but only a generalization of mischievous characteristics. In that he seems be repetitive what on the other hand is something that could be expected of entropic
Entropy
Entropy is a thermodynamic property that can be used to determine the energy available for useful work in a thermodynamic process, such as in energy conversion devices, engines, or machines. Such devices can only be driven by convertible energy, and have a theoretical maximum efficiency when...

 beings but still him assigns nine orders contrary to those of the angelic beings.

Origins and behavior


In his work, though entitling chapters as evils beings, Agrippa also mixes in angels and other beings, he makes not a clear distinction among them. He as usual almost does not state directly a position on the subject of origin and features of ethereal beings but offers quotations, third assertions and some own:

Evil spirits, comments Agrippa, do wander up and down in this inferior world. Some enraged against all, are called devils, but what they are and how they are, is not clear. May be are apostate angels.
Ancient Greece thinks not that all these are damned, nor that they are all by design evil, but that from the creation of the world, the apportionment of things is commanded by this means, that the tormenting of sinful souls is made over to them.

Others say that not any devil was created evil, but that they were driven and expelled of heaven, from the orders of good angels for their pride. Others describe this fall due to a rebelling army. Some say that the devils themselves confess their fall of being cast into Earth; that are close to humans, wander up and down in dark air inhabiting lakes, rivers, seas and earth; that conquer those who dig wells and metals; cause the breach of the earth, strike the foundation of mountains, and exasperate not only men, but also other creatures. Some devils feel great joy in wars and effusion of blood. Some evil beings satisfy with illusion and laughing; devise by preference against tired men then hurt them. Some change themselves into big or small forms for tormenting men with fear.

There are nocturnal, diurnal, meridional devils and them have varied names. They are spirits who act of their own free will, left the service of God with their evil prince.

If they began to repent a little, they incarnate as humans. That further by this repentance, after the resurrection, by the same ways by the which they came into the flesh, they might at the last come back to God, being then also freed from ethereal and aerial bodies. There are many of the fallen angel
Fallen angel
Fallen angel is a concept developed in Jewish mythology from interpretation of the Book of Enoch. The actual term fallen angel is not found in either the Hebrew Bible or the New Testament. Christians adopted the concept of fallen angels mainly based on their interpretations of the Book of...

s who hope for their salvation. Some repentant devils shall be forgiven.
Zarathustra and the Vedas

At the period of Agrippa, the western thoughts about evil beings unveil ties with the ancient Persian mythology
Persian mythology
Persian mythology are traditional tales and stories of ancient origin, some involving extraordinary or supernatural beings. Drawn from the legendary past of the Iranian cultural continent which especially consists of the state of Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and Central Asia, they reflect the...

. In the Middle East around the 11th or 10th century BCE according to Gathas
Gathas
The Gathas are 17 hymns believed to have been composed by Zarathusthra himself. They are the most sacred texts of the Zoroastrian faith.-Structure and organization:...

, texts attributed to Zoroaster
Zoroaster
Zoroaster , also known as Zarathustra , was a prophet and the founder of Zoroastrianism who was either born in North Western or Eastern Iran. He is credited with the authorship of the Yasna Haptanghaiti as well as the Gathas, hymns which are at the liturgical core of Zoroastrianism...

, certain kinds of devas were originally known as daivas
Daeva
Daeva in Avestan language meaning "a being of shining light", is a term for a particular sort of supernatural entity with disagreeable characteristics. Equivalents in Iranian languages include Pashto dêw , Baluchi dêw , Persian dīv , Kurdish dêw...

 and ahura
Ahura
Ahura is an Avestan language designation for a particular class of Zoroastrian divinities.-Etymology:Avestan ahura derives from Indo-Iranian *asura, also attested in an Indian context as RigVedic asura...

s in Old Iranian, a classification of gods and spirits which drawn from asura
Asura
-In Hinduism:In Hinduism, the Asuras constitute a group of power-seeking deities, sometimes considered sinful and materialistic. The Daityas and Danavas were combinedly known as Asuras. The Asura were opposed to the Devas. Both groups are children of Kasyapa...

s of the Hinduism. The daivas were worshiped in earlier times but after while became identified as celestial beings having no discernment between virtue and badness. Meanwhile, especially under the Zoroastrian doctrine, they ended understood as full malefic entities and been completely rejected, what explains why the word “devil” derives from “deva”.

However in some analyses grounded in the school Mimāṃsā
Mimamsa
' , a Sanskrit word meaning "investigation" , is the name of an astika school of Hindu philosophy whose primary enquiry is into the nature of dharma based on close hermeneutics of the Vedas...

 of Hindu philosophy, there is also a resemblance with the term “rebel angels” coming from these roots. Asura is used in the earliest Vedic
Vedic
Vedic may refer to:* the Vedas, the oldest preserved Indic texts** Vedic Sanskrit, the language of these texts** Vedic period, during which these texts were produced** Vedic pantheon of gods mentioned in Vedas/vedic period...

 literature as a title of the cosmic hierarch or supreme spirit. Asura in Sanskrit is often disposed to a class of highly spiritual and intelligent beings. The other most important Vedic deities such as Varuna
Varuna
In Vedic religion, Varuna is a god of the sky, of water and of the celestial ocean, as well as a god of law and of the underworld...

 (god of water), Agni
Agni
Agni is a Hindu deity, one of the most important of the Vedic gods. He is the god of fire and the acceptor of sacrifices. The sacrifices made to Agni go to the deities because Agni is a messenger from and to the other gods...

 (god of fire) and Indra
Indra
' or is the King of the demi-gods or Devas and Lord of Heaven or Svargaloka in Hindu mythology. He is also the God of War, Storms, and Rainfall.Indra is one of the chief deities in the Rigveda...

 (king of devas), are all inferior cosmogonically and hierarchically to the Vedic Asura, which is Brahman
Brahman
In Hinduism, Brahman is the one supreme, universal Spirit that is the origin and support of the phenomenal universe. Brahman is sometimes referred to as the Absolute or Godhead which is the Divine Ground of all being...

, the primordial being originating the phenomenal universe. The asuras, under this perspective, made their rebellion against the insincere and deceptive ritualistic worship represented by Vedic deities Brishaspati, which are the defenders of prayers and sacrifices to the gods. Hence, in Zoroastrianism the brishaspatis have correspondence to the divine yazatas who originally also revealed right association with sacrifices, rituals, worship and antagonism to the daivas.

Depiction


In his descriptions Agrippa regularly use the word “demon” meaning like the Greek “daemon” inferring a generic term, not to classify as good or evil but rather a featured being and sometimes a holy entity for him.

Ethereal bodies


Some entities, continues Agrippa, abides the fire, have fiery bodies. Others are mixture of fire and air, are called ethereal and aerial. The third kind is called watery. And the most noticeable are the earthily demons.

The bodies of sublime demons are sustained of ethereal element. Being weaved of bright small strings they are softness, echo with splendor and vanish by their elusiveness. All angels are incorporeal though evil angels can assume bodies awhile and then put off. Angels are said to be aerial, and fiery. In the beginning of their creation angels were formed of the more pure, and superior part of the air. The bodies of devils are ethereal and aerial but under material influence as shadows and subject to passion although it being a spiritual body, yet it is more susceptible, and touched it suffer. However some devils draw a gross body, have much affinity with earth, water and are also taken with terrestrial pleasures like lust. Of which kind are hobgoblins, incubi, and succubi (though none of these is to be supposed male or female), but these devils have not elaborate bodies, cannot turn themselves into all shapes.

Fiery and airy beings easily change themselves into what shapes they want while subterraneous and dark beings cannot make this diversity of shapes. The watery beings usually have a woman form; they are the fairies of the rivers and nymphs of the woods. But the earthly ones show themselves in form of man like satyr
Satyr
In Greek mythology, satyrs are a troop of male companions of Pan and Dionysus — "satyresses" were a late invention of poets — that roamed the woods and mountains. In myths they are often associated with pipe-playing....

s, onoskelis
Onoskelis
Onoskelis was a female demon with a beautiful form mentioned in the Testament of Solomon. The name is usually associated with the hobgoblin, Empusa, who was able to assume various shapes, however in this case, she is a satyra ."Her body was that of a woman with a fair complexion, but her legs were...

 with asses legs, faun
Faun
The faun is a rustic forest god or place-spirit of Roman mythology often associated with Greek satyrs and the Greek god Pan.-Origins:...

s, incubi, and some demons called Dusii
Dusios
In the Gaulish language, Dusios was a divine being among the continental Celts who was identified with the god Pan of ancient Greek religion and with the gods Faunus, Inuus, Silvanus, and Incubus of ancient Roman religion. Like these deities, he might be seen as multiple in nature, and referred to...

 that tenaciously tempt humans to feel desire.

Human interactions


Dressed themselves with air like the Muses, claims Agrippa, there are 30000 of Jupiter immortal spirits living on the Earth, which affect and guard mortal men, going everywhere on the Earth. It is given to every man a good spirit and equally an evil genius, whereof each seeks a union with the human spirit. But good and evil spirits choose manifest or not their powers according to the deserving level of each man.
From souls of men sometimes are created spirits. They may be blessed familiar spirit
Familiar spirit
In European folklore and folk-belief of the Medieval and Early Modern periods, familiar spirits were supernatural entities believed to assist witches and cunning folk in their practice of magic...

s, which the Greeks call Eudaemon
Eudaemon
In the 1st century BCE, the Arabian city Eudaemon was a transshipping port in the Red Sea trade. The city and surrounding country were the Latin Arabia Felix. It was described in the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea as if it had fallen on hard times...

s or else beings fashioned from ill deserving men, which are evil hag
Hag
A hag is a wizened old woman, or a kind of fairy or goddess having the appearance of such a woman, often found in folklore and children's tales such as Hansel and Gretel. Hags are often seen as malevolent, but may also be one of the chosen forms of shapeshifting deities, such as the Morrígan or...

s or hobgoblins that the Greeks call Cacodemons. Also they may be named as ghosts and can have an animal shape. Besides ethereal beings when having an affair with humans beget human children. Merlin
Merlin
Merlin is a legendary figure best known as the wizard featured in the Arthurian legend. The standard depiction of the character first appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, written c. 1136, and is based on an amalgamation of previous historical and legendary figures...

 the magician and Plato
Plato
Plato , was a Classical Greek philosopher, mathematician, student of Socrates, writer of philosophical dialogues, and founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world. Along with his mentor, Socrates, and his student, Aristotle, Plato helped to lay the...

 would be born from this circumstance.

A certain kind of spirits, continues Agrippa, is closer to men, they are affected with human passions and many willingly dwell with them. Some of them are uncritically fond of women, children, domestic and wild animals. Some beings are subject to man's commands. Celestial, evil beings or nature spirits are necessaries for the man and can be called for helping with enlightenment
Enlightenment (spiritual)
Enlightenment in a secular context often means the "full comprehension of a situation", but in spiritual terms the word alludes to a spiritual revelation or deep insight into the meaning and purpose of all things, communication with or understanding of the mind of God, profound spiritual...

 and mystic works as allies or without bond. However bad entities must bind good ones and some these only do what brings advantages to them. They fear the edge of the sword. For expelling disobedient evil spirits one good way would be intonating the sacred passage written in biblical passage of Psalms 92:9. The best assistants are those who had some human life like the saints and Greek heroes.

The fairies and hobgoblins abide fields; naiads do fountains; potamides rivers; nymphs marshes and ponds; oreades mountains; humedes meadows; dryads and hamadryads woods, which also satyrs and sylvani
Silvanus (mythology)
Silvanus was a Roman tutelary deity of woods and fields. As protector of forests , he especially presided over plantations and delighted in trees growing wild. He is also described as a god watching over the fields and husbandmen, protecting in particular the boundaries of fields...

inhabit; the naptaes and agaptaes in flowers; the dodonaes
Pleiades (Greek mythology)
The Pleiades , companions of Artemis, were the seven daughters of the titan Atlas and the sea-nymph Pleione born on Mount Cyllene. They are the sisters of Calypso, Hyas, the Hyades, and the Hesperides...

in acorns; the paleaes and feniliaes in hay and the country.
The man therefore may go in these places and allure them with sweet smokes, pleasant sounds, and by such instruments made of peculiar wood, adding songs, verses and enchantments. Must to be observed in this process the innocence of the mind and constant silence to avoid them can have fear running away. Otherwise the calling can attract hobgoblins, familiars and ghosts who will strike the person.

Aliens and entheogens


Ancient traditions in the world such as those of the pre-Columbian peoples in the Mesoamerica
Mesoamerica
Mesoamerica is a region and culture area in the Americas, extending approximately from central Mexico to Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica, within which a number of pre-Columbian societies flourished before the Spanish colonization of the Americas in the 15th and...

, and the Greek Eleusinian tradition
Eleusinian Mysteries
The Eleusinian Mysteries were initiation ceremonies held every year for the cult of Demeter and Persephone based at Eleusis in ancient Greece. Of all the mysteries celebrated in ancient times, these were held to be the ones of greatest importance...

, celebrated mystical rituals between man and ethereal Gods that occurred through the effects of entheogens. In modern times, spiritual experiences still are seen in religious rituals of sects, such as the Ayahuasca cult
Santo Daime
Santo Daime is a syncretic spiritual practice founded in the 1930s in the Brazilian Amazonian state of Acre by Raimundo Irineu Serra, known as Mestre Irineu...

, or in isolated experiences of free will. Aliens realized as ethereal beings are reported by persons under effect of these psychoactive
Psychoactive drug
A psychoactive drug, psychopharmaceutical, or psychotropic is a chemical substance that crosses the blood–brain barrier and acts primarily upon the central nervous system where it affects brain function, resulting in changes in perception, mood, consciousness, cognition, and behavior...

 substances.

Although there is a large diversity of experiences and outcomes, each entheogen profiles some own character, what allows to identify a convergent line of reports. Hence, in some of these accounts, persons who were under altered state of consciousness
Altered state of consciousness
An altered state of consciousness , also named altered state of mind, is any condition which is significantly different from a normal waking beta wave state. The expression was used as early as 1966 by Arnold M. Ludwig and brought into common usage from 1969 by Charles Tart: it describes induced...

, claim to have made contact with the purported hamadryad
Hamadryad
Hamadryads are Greek mythological beings that live in trees. They are a particular type of dryad, which in turn are a particular type of nymph. Hamadryads are born bonded to a particular tree. Some believe that hamadryads are the actual tree, while normal dryads are simply the entities, or...

 of the entheogenic plant. In his writings the writer Castaneda, for example, personified the Peyote’s hamadryad by the name of "Mescalito". According to the researches and reports, some specific entheogens like the Peyote
Peyote
Lophophora williamsii , better known by its common name Peyote , is a small, spineless cactus with psychoactive alkaloids, particularly mescaline.It is native to southwestern Texas and Mexico...

, the Ololiuqui
Rivea corymbosa
Turbina corymbosa Turbina corymbosa Turbina corymbosa ((syn. Rivea corymbosa), the Christmas vine, is a species of morning glory, native throughout Latin America from Mexico in the North to Peru in the South and widely naturalised elsewhere. It is a perennial climbing vine with white flowers, often...

, and those with DMT alkaloid
DMT
DMT may refer to:In chemical substances:* Dimethyltryptamine, a psychedelic tryptamine* Dimethyl terephthalate, a polyester precursor* Desoxymethyltestosterone, a designer anabolic steroid...

, in particular the Tepezcohuite emphasize such features.
Alongside a disturbed sense of reality, other shared point narrated by protagonists under these effects, it is the hamadryad showing itself as an alien, which also lives out of the Earth and already was waiting for that contact. That is, there is a strange duality that exhibits the alien being living at the same time as a hamadryad on Earth, and as well in another dimension as an hallucinogenic version of the Quantum Entanglement
Quantum entanglement
Quantum entanglement occurs when electrons, molecules even as large as "buckyballs", photons, etc., interact physically and then become separated; the type of interaction is such that each resulting member of a pair is properly described by the same quantum mechanical description , which is...

. Such aspects were well observed by American writer Terence McKenna
Terence McKenna
Terence Kemp McKenna was an Irish-American philosopher, psychonaut, researcher, teacher, lecturer and writer on many subjects, such as human consciousness, language, psychedelic drugs, the evolution of civilizations, the origin and end of the universe, alchemy, and extraterrestrial beings.-Early...

 who describes them as "Machine elves
Machine elf
Machine elves is a term coined by the late ethnobotanist, writer and philosopher Terence McKenna to describe the apparent entities that are often reported by individuals using tryptamine-based psychedelic drugs, especially DMT...

".

Another recurrent elements are the loss of the sense of identity, lack of ability to think, a being which leads the person to an odd dimension, the meeting with more aliens, and the person being submitted to an ethereal abduction. Afterwards the aliens elucidate secrets of the universe to the subject, and usually welcome him to return soon.

According to theosophic author Alice Bailey
Alice Bailey
Alice Ann Bailey , known as Alice A. Bailey or AAB to her followers, was an influential writer and theosophist in what she termed "Ageless Wisdom". This included occult teachings, "esoteric" psychology and healing, astrological and other philosophic and religious themes...

, although seldom, alien beings from other planets can obsess
Obsession (Spiritism)
Obsession, also known as spirit obsession, is a technical term within the Spiritist belief and practice defined by the author Allan Kardec as the interference of a subjugating spirit with a weaker spirit...

 or possess humans. The assistance of "violet devas", which are devas that perform in the etheric plane
Etheric plane
The etheric plane is a term introduced into Theosophy by Charles Webster Leadbeater and Annie Besant to represent one of the planes of existence in neo-Theosophical and Rosicrucian cosmology. It represents the fourth[higher] subplane of the physical plane , the lower three being the states of...

, helps to strengthen the human body to resist obsessions. Hence by means of the violet light, it is fortified the "etheric web
Etheric body
The etheric body, ether-body, æther body, a name given by neo-Theosophy to a supposed vital body or subtle body propounded in esoteric philosophies as the first or lowest layer in the "human energy field" or aura...

", claims Bailey. Such concept finds some similarity in the tool dreamcatcher
Dreamcatcher
Dreamcatcher is a Native American cultural object.Dreamcatcher may also refer to:-Entertainment:* Dreamcatcher , a 2001 novel by Stephen King** Dreamcatcher , based on the Stephen King novel...

 used by American natives for protection against mischievous spirits. According to native tradition, the nightmarish spirits are trapped in the crafted web and dissipate under the effect of solar specter.

Conspiracy theories and doctrines


The connection between ethereal beings and man also comes from popular conspiracy theories, such as The Invisibles
The Invisibles
The Invisibles is a comic book series that was published by the Vertigo imprint of DC Comics from 1994 to 2000. It was created and scripted by Scottish writer Grant Morrison, and drawn by various artists throughout its publication....

, a comic book series by Grant Morrison
Grant Morrison
Grant Morrison is a Scottish comic book writer, playwright and occultist. He is known for his nonlinear narratives and counter-cultural leanings, as well as his successful runs on titles like Animal Man, Doom Patrol, JLA, The Invisibles, New X-Men, Fantastic Four, All-Star Superman, and...

 that was said be intended as a hypersigil
Sigil (magic)
A sigil is a symbol created for a specific magical purpose. A sigil is usually made up of a complex combination of several specific symbols or geometric figures, each with a specific meaning or intent.- Name and origin :...

, as well as from esoteric philosophies, where the plot would be the deviation of man’s sense of reality, and the obstruction of his spiritual development by some ethereal creatures.

Writers like Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda
Carlos Castaneda was a Peruvian-born American anthropologist and author....

 corroborate that sense unveiling certain type of ethereal beings as manipulators and parasites of the human mind. He declares that they control the whole life of a human being. As expounded by Castaneda, perception, thoughts and emotions are alien events restraining what a man realizes. To achieve such prowess, the ethereal being transfers his own alien mind to the young human. For that reason the human ego actually is an alien self and the reality sought by men is untruth, is not the universe as fact. Victim of that catastrophic situation, the only chance to escape from that, would be an entire life of breaking off thoughts discipline and other techniques. However for governing a human, at some moment there must be an agreement between the parts because according to him as well as other occultist authors, the “world of the ethereal beings” does not know lies but recognizes humans. The first word spoken is sacred, it is a final act, and thus regrets are useless. Nevertheless this does not mean that ruses could not be done by it.

Besides involving ghostly creatures such as familiars
Familiar spirit
In European folklore and folk-belief of the Medieval and Early Modern periods, familiar spirits were supernatural entities believed to assist witches and cunning folk in their practice of magic...

 and demons, western magic tradition deposits such mental practice of ceasing the internal mental dialogue as well a requisite in the path for becoming a magician.

In the Buddhist Tradition
Buddhism
Buddhism is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha . The Buddha lived and taught in the northeastern Indian subcontinent some time between the 6th and 4th...

 certain philosophic parallels concerning such discipline, also are found. The Dhyāna, the meditation practice where thoughts are canceled, would be a major factor to free the man of his Samsara
Samsara
thumb|right|200px|Traditional Tibetan painting or [[Thanka]] showing the [[wheel of life]] and realms of saṃsāraSaṅsāra or Saṃsāra , , literally meaning "continuous flow", is the cycle of birth, life, death, rebirth or reincarnation within Hinduism, Buddhism, Bön, Jainism, Sikhism, and other...

 strands and became an enlightened Buddha
Buddha
In Buddhism, buddhahood is the state of perfect enlightenment attained by a buddha .In Buddhism, the term buddha usually refers to one who has become enlightened...

.

The psychic death of ego and the annulment of desires, that in turn provide from self-image, as well would be key elements to man understand Maya
Maya (illusion)
Maya , in Indian religions, has multiple meanings, usually quoted as "illusion", centered on the fact that we do not experience the environment itself but rather a projection of it, created by us. Maya is the principal deity that manifests, perpetuates and governs the illusion and dream of duality...

, that in Sanskrit means world of illusions. The "non-self", the anatman
Anatta
In Buddhism, anattā or anātman refers to the notion of "not-self." In the early texts, the Buddha commonly uses the word in the context of teaching that all things perceived by the senses are not really "I" or "mine," and for this reason one should not cling to them.In the same vein, the Pali...

, the teaching that none of the things perceived by the senses constitute a "self", represents a commitment of most Buddhist doctrines. As for the sense of reality, there are variations in Tibetan Buddhism, but as clarified by school of Dzogchen
Dzogchen
According to Tibetan Buddhism and Bön, Dzogchen is the natural, primordial state or natural condition of the mind, and a body of teachings and meditation practices aimed at realizing that condition. Dzogchen, or "Great Perfection", is a central teaching of the Nyingma school also practiced by...

, all perceived reality is totally unreal.

Buddhism professes the existence of a myriad of ethereal entities pictured as demons or “angry gods”, which are accrued in the human psyche and must be overcome during the process of death to achieve the enlightenment
Enlightenment (spiritual)
Enlightenment in a secular context often means the "full comprehension of a situation", but in spiritual terms the word alludes to a spiritual revelation or deep insight into the meaning and purpose of all things, communication with or understanding of the mind of God, profound spiritual...

. Many teachings in Buddhism aim to face the death and fight against these creatures to achieve the freedom of human soul. A Buddhist doctrine altogether dedicated to that is Death yoga
Tantra techniques (Vajrayana)
Tantra techniques in Vajrayana Buddhism are techniques used to attain Buddhahood. Vajrayana partially relies on various tantric techniques rooted in scriptures such as tantras and various tantric commentaries and treatises...

, one of the Tantra techniques in Vajrayana
Vajrayana
Vajrayāna Buddhism is also known as Tantric Buddhism, Tantrayāna, Mantrayāna, Secret Mantra, Esoteric Buddhism and the Diamond Vehicle...

. That theme is very explored in the Tibetan texts written around the 8th century A.D., of the Bardo Thodol
Bardo Thodol
The Liberation Through Hearing During The Intermediate State , sometimes translated as Liberation Through Hearing or Bardo Thodol is a funerary text...

or The Liberation Through Hearing During The Intermediate State (Tibetan: bardo “liminality”; thodol as “liberation”) more known in Occident as “The Tibetan book of dead
Bardo Thodol
The Liberation Through Hearing During The Intermediate State , sometimes translated as Liberation Through Hearing or Bardo Thodol is a funerary text...

”.
Armenian writer George Gurdjieff claimed that mankind does not really sense the reality. According to Gurdjieff, people could not perceive reality in their current states because they do not possess consciousness but rather live in a state of a hypnotic "waking sleep". He declares: "Man lives his life in sleep, and in sleep he dies". The author, born in 19th century, at that time was considered polemic but succeeded to settle his school, also known as "the Fourth Way
The Fourth Way
The Fourth Way refers to a concept used by G.I. Gurdjieff to describe an approach to self-development that combined what he saw as three established ways, or schools: that of the body, the emotions, and the mind. Gurdjieff referred to the concept as "The Work," "Work on oneself," or "The System."...

", teaching his esoteric techniques of "awakening". The best legacy of his work, probably is represented by work of the philosopher P. D. Ouspensky
P. D. Ouspensky
Peter D. Ouspensky , , a Russian esotericist known for his expositions of the early work of the Greek-Armenian teacher of esoteric doctrine George Gurdjieff, whom he met in Moscow in 1915.He was associated with the ideas and practices originating with...

, In Search of the Miraculous
In Search of the Miraculous
In Search of the Miraculous: Fragments of an Unknown Teaching is a 1949 book by Russian philosopher P. D. Ouspensky about the teachings of G.I. Gurdjieff. It is widely regarded as the most comprehensive single volume account of Gurdjieff's system of thought....

.

The reality question according to theosophist Bailey
Alice Bailey
Alice Ann Bailey , known as Alice A. Bailey or AAB to her followers, was an influential writer and theosophist in what she termed "Ageless Wisdom". This included occult teachings, "esoteric" psychology and healing, astrological and other philosophic and religious themes...

, displays a dual sight, which she describes it as the necessary and holy work by devas of one side, while on the other hand it indicates such work as rightly charming the humanity. Men became slaves of what she calls “the compelling glamour of Maya”.

Inasmuch, progresses Bailey, there is the problematic control exerted by some elemental
Elemental
An elemental is a mythological being first appearing in the alchemical works of Paracelsus in the 16th century. Traditionally, there are four types:*gnomes, earth elementals*undines , water elementals*sylphs, air elementals...

s in human constitution. These elementals, which she calls "lunar lords", naturally build the own human essence. The lunar lords have own existence and power, however they are in an “involutionary arc” aggregating and arresting the human being under a world of forms. Virtually they are intelligences escorted by their will. When the lunar lords deploy a predominant command they transform themselves in the “lower personality”. In view of that fact, as a single being, “he” is a power directing the body’s energies for feeding himself in all the three basic levels: physical, astral and mental. The man must constantly hear the “formless” voice coming from “real man” for finding the deliverance from that bondage, for accomplishing the realization of this world of form.

Another opposing entity it is the “Dweller on the Threshold”, who only affects persons already in the path to knowledge, the initiates
Initiation
Initiation is a rite of passage ceremony marking entrance or acceptance into a group or society. It could also be a formal admission to adulthood in a community or one of its formal components...

. What the dweller comes to be, it is not clear to most esoteric schools, outlines Bailey, but effectively it is a huge and potent thoughtform
Thoughtform
A thoughtform is a manifestation of mental energy, also known as a tulpa in Tibetan mysticism. Its concept is related to the Western philosophy and practice of magic. links mantras and yantras to thoughtforms:...

, an elemental embodying vital, astral and mental energy, a force blocking the initiated progress that must be dissipated.

The “dweller” can be determined as all lower features marked in the human personality; he shifts the consciousness into a delusional and sensorial realm; he defies the human soul
Soul
A soul in certain spiritual, philosophical, and psychological traditions is the incorporeal essence of a person or living thing or object. Many philosophical and spiritual systems teach that humans have souls, and others teach that all living things and even inanimate objects have souls. The...

; he leads to the past intrinsically accompanied by its limitations and wicked addictions; he induces a fanatic mind and whilst in his worst manifestation causes mental insanity, asserts Bailey.

Concerning artistic expressions, stands out the mystic painting “The Dweller in the Innermost” by George Frederic Watts
George Frederic Watts
George Frederic Watts, OM was a popular English Victorian painter and sculptor associated with the Symbolist movement. Watts became famous in his lifetime for his allegorical works, such as Hope and Love and Life...

, which as well inspired the English Walter Crane
Walter Crane
Walter Crane was an English artist and book illustrator. He is considered to be the most prolific and influential children’s book creator of his generation and, along with Randolph Caldecott and Kate Greenaway, one of the strongest contributors to the child's nursery motif that the genre of...

 to write the sonnet:

Star-steadfast eyes that pierce the smouldering haze
Of Life and Thought, whose fires prismatic fuse
The palpitating mists with magic hues
That stain the glass of Being, as we gaze,
And mark in transit every mood and phase,
Which, sensitive, doth take or doth refuse
The Lights and shadows Time and Love confuse,

When, lost in dreams, we thread their wandering maze.
Fledged, too, art thou with plumes on brow and breast
To bear thee, brooding o'er the depths unknown
Of human strife, and wonder, and desire;
And silence, wakened by thy horn alone,
Behind thy veil behold a heart on fire,
Wrapped in the secret of its own unrest.
—Walter Crane, 1907.



A precursor of this theme at Victorian era
Victorian era
The Victorian era of British history was the period of Queen Victoria's reign from 20 June 1837 until her death on 22 January 1901. It was a long period of peace, prosperity, refined sensibilities and national self-confidence...

 was the English writer Edward Bulwer-Lytton who in his mystical romance Zanoni
Zanoni
Zanoni is an 1842 novel by Edward Bulwer-Lytton, a story of love and occult aspiration. By way of introduction, the author confesses: "...It so chanced that some years ago, in my younger days, whether of authorship or life, I felt the desire to make myself acquainted with the true origins and...

phrased the expression “Dweller of the Threshold” for representing a mighty entity opposing those in the way for the occult world:



Its form was veiled as the face, but the outline was that of a female;
yet it moved not as move even the ghosts that simulate the living.
It seemed rather to crawl as some vast misshapen reptile; and
pausing, at length it cowered beside the table which held the mystic
volume, and again fixed its eyes through the filmy veil on the rash
invoker.

All fancies, the most grotesque, of monk or painter in the
early North, would have failed to give to the visage of imp or fiend
that aspect of deadly malignity which spoke to the shuddering
nature in those eyes alone. All else so dark, —shrouded, veiled and
larva-like. But that burning glare so intense, so livid, yet so living,
had in it something that was almost HUMAN in its passion of hate
and mockery, something that served to show that the shadowy
Horror was not all a spirit, but partook of matter enough, at least,
to make it more deadly and fearful an enemy to material forms. As,
clinging with the grasp of agony to the wall, his hair erect, his
eyeballs starting, he still gazed back upon that appalling gaze,
—the Image spoke to him: his soul rather than his ear comprehended
the words it said.

Thou hast entered the immeasurable region. I am the Dweller of the
Threshold. What wouldst thou with me? Silent? Dost thou fear me?
Am I not thy beloved? Is it not for me that thou hast rendered up
The delights of thy race? Wouldst thou be wise? Mine is the
wisdom of the countless ages. Kiss me, my mortal lover.
—Bulwer-Lytton, 1842.



The characteristics of the ethereal dweller also were considered by authors such as the British Dion Fortune
Dion Fortune
Violet Mary Firth Evans , better known as Dion Fortune, was a British occultist and author. Her pseudonym was inspired by her family motto "Deo, non fortuna" , originally the ancient motto of the Barons & Earls Digby.-Early life:She was born in Bryn-y-Bia in Llandudno, Wales, and grew up in a...

, Russian H. P. Blavatsky, and the Austrian-Hungarian Rudolf Steiner
Rudolf Steiner
Rudolf Joseph Lorenz Steiner was an Austrian philosopher, social reformer, architect, and esotericist. He gained initial recognition as a literary critic and cultural philosopher...

. Steiner, amidst his studies, claims the existence of two dwellers, a “lesser and a greater guardian on the threshold”, and he and also Blavatsky corroborate the description made by Bulwer-Lytton's Zanoni to the dweller. According to Steiner the dweller originates from man as an independent intelligence and no longer destructible.

Dion Fortune compares the dweller with the mythological riddle of the Sphinx blocking the way of men, which in the legend confronts the man with the threat: “decipher me or I will devour you”. In current theosophic lines, the dweller is rendered as a being made of astral remnants
Astral body
The astral body is a subtle body posited by many religious philosophers, intermediate between the intelligent soul and the physical body, composed of a subtle material. The concept ultimately derives from the philosophy of Plato: it is related to an astral plane, which consists of the planetary...

originated from present and past lives
Past Lives
- Music :* Past Lives , a live album by Black Sabbath* Past Lives , an American post-punk band* Past Lives - The Best of the RCA Years, a compilation by the British musical group Level 42....

 of the man, whichever are bound by desires and terrene aspirations
Karma
Karma in Indian religions is the concept of "action" or "deed", understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect originating in ancient India and treated in Hindu, Jain, Buddhist and Sikh philosophies....

. Additionally, other possible origin to the dweller is taken under a psychological approach, which regard it actually not as a proper entity but a resistance built by sum of mind’s wishes for not abandoning the familiar and mundane ambitions of the ordinary man.
As delineated by gnostic author Samael Aun Weor
Samael Aun Weor
Samael Aun Weor , born Víctor Manuel Gómez Rodríguez, Colombian citizen and later Mexican, was an author, lecturer and founder of the 'Universal Christian Gnostic Movement' with his teaching of 'The Doctrine of Synthesis' of all religions in both their esoteric and exoteric aspects...

 the mind lives continuously reacting against the impact of the outside world. These feedbacks of appreciation depart from a demonic mental entity. This creature is the Guardian of the threshold of the human mental body
Mental body
The mental body is one of the subtle bodies in esoteric philosophies, in some religious teachings and in New Age thought. It is understood as a sort of body made up of thoughts, just as the emotional body consists of emotions and the physical body is made up of matter...

 
. This mental custodian enslaves the mind of all human beings.

Violence, desires and passions, hatred, bitterness, egoism, wrath, envy, and slander are responses coming from the mental keeper, claims Weor. The body of wishes is nothing else but a temper device of the mind keeper.

The true being is not the mind, the Being is the Being, says the Gnostic. If temporarily the disciple has dispossessed himself from his mind, he can talk with the guardian. Then, the mind seems to be an independent individual that sits in front of him. After this deep exploration, the devotee will be aware that his mind is a wild force, which he must overcome, command and direct. Depriving himself from this terrible sentinel allows transform his matter mind into Christ mind.

To succeed the spiritual practitioner works via the inner fire, asserts Weor. Awaking the igneous serpent
Kundalini
Kundalini literally means coiled. In yoga, a "corporeal energy" - an unconscious, instinctive or libidinal force or Shakti, lies coiled at the base of the spine. It is envisioned either as a goddess or else as a sleeping serpent, hence a number of English renderings of the term such as 'serpent...

of the mental body, it runs the spinal cord (the igneous wings) and then him daringly faces this dark beast and defeats it in an appalling wrestling match. As a consequence, after that moment, the mind of the spiritual practitioner only obeys the direct commands of the true self.

See also