Sylphs - Nature Spirits of the Earth
By Rose Greenwood
Sylphs are viewed as mythological creatures in much ofWestern tradition. According to the Middle Age beliefs of the Rosicrucians andCabalists, sylphs are the elemental spirits of air, so named from the Greeksilphe, meaning a butterfly or moth. The name and concept was popularized byParacelsus, a Swiss physician, astrologer and philosopher who lived from1493-1541. He is also credited with numerous medical texts and books of occultliterature.
They are considered to be one of the four types of naturespirits: gnomes (earth element), sylphs (air element), undines (water element)and fiery salamanders (fire element). In many legends, sylphs are thought tocreate artistic renderings in the sky by transforming clouds into recognizableshapes. Sylphs are also said to be responsible for wind and certain types ofstorms and weather patterns.
According to some folklore tradition, they have a verybroad wingspan and live in the high mountains of the earth. They are purportedto be regal in manner and bearing. Most traditions view sylphs as immortal,non-physical beings. In modern times, the term "sylph" has also cometo mean a lithe, graceful woman.
Some sources associated the sylphs with angels, includinga possible connection between young sylphs and small cherubs. Angel overlordsor devas are said to be in charge of the activities of sylphs. Others believethat sylphs function as messengers for both angels and other elementals.
Sylphs, along with other nature spirits, are guardians ofthe earth. The hierarchs of the sylphs are Aries and Thor. Sylphs areparticularly involved in clearing the air of pollution and other chemicalhazards. Sylphs play an important role in the spiritual world and in themaintenance of balance and purity for the physical platform of the earth formankind's evolution.
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