Historical setting: 589 C.E. when Brittany was forest
My plan is to let the tribe of hunters move on ahead by a day and night, then I will follow them to find the Celtic Christians and their leader Columbanus. But apparently, this wood is teeming with notions of fairies and right here in front of me is this very tangible thief. He says he follows the pagans and takes advantage of their myths.
“So you are a Christian,” begins the thief.
“I follow the Jesus teachings, but I don’t adhere to the Creed, so I’m a heretic in these times.”
“As though there were other times.” He argues, “I believe in reality myself.”
“Don’t we all?”
“Not so. Celts and Christians believe in things that are unseen. Their entire view of the world is based on some invisible power known only by its signs regardless of the sights, and smells and tastes of reality.”
I offer a defense, “I believe that the God who is God is Creator of all the earth and in fact the total universe, seen and unseen, and that God is love. I see Spirit through metaphor, and I feel the very real love of God. So I do believe in an invisible God but certainly not in pagan gods and fairies.”
“Believing in things unseen is all one foolishness. It causes people to leave gifts to their wild imaginings in tangible offerings – fishes here, for example – which are now only for the pleasure of this thief. I make my way trusting in tangible reality and taking for myself those edible, spendable offerings left out for the unfounded fears of lurking troublemakers.”
I choose not argue. I simply state my boundary, “I intend to keep my fleece and my winter shoes. You are welcome to the fish that were left here by someone else.”
“You know what they would teach their little ones don’t you?”
“I didn’t think they had any little ones these days.”
“Serves them right. Even though none of them has actually seen a fairy or an elf, even among those who believe, they still tell the tales anyway because such lying and trickery seems to appease children. So the children leave biscuits and milk out for the unseen elf, who is really a thief in their own household, because the child believes it is elves that bring them gifts not their own loving and trusted parent. The love and trust of parent is stolen by the elfin lie.”
(Continues Tuesday, February 1, 2022)