I’ve written about a few of the fae Beings. Now I’m writing about one of my favorite fae mystical creatures, dragons.
There is so much myth, legend, and misunderstandings that surround the dragon. The truth is so different from the famous and commonly legendary images in fanciful movies of fierce, winged fire-breathing creatures. However, the true story might be very different from movie depictions.
To begin, let’s start at their origin. Their existence began in water, then progressed to living within the earth, to next walking upon Earth Mother’s surface, next taking wing to be in the sky, and finally and lastly, they were driven to acquire the heat of fire.
All dragons hatch from eggs. Throughout all their evolutionary steps, starting life within an egg has remained a constant. Whether in water to flying and breathing fire, another commonality is their leathery skin. Something that has changed though, is the dragon’s coloring. Water dragons are generally described in earthen tones of grey, brownish, dark, unassuming tones. Earthen dragons are considered to be more brown with slight green tints and often said to resemble the colors of new growth, sticks, and tree roots. The Earthen dragons that first began to walk above ground became the land dragons, have been described as able to blend into nature, shift color ever so slightly as not to be seen. They are the colors of trees. Never are they the bright fanciful colors of flowers, but with their hint of shimmer, they may reflect a flower’s color to blend in with all around them. And then when dragons in their evolution took on wings, they adapted to now being able to show many differing colors of the rainbow. This is how we often think of dragons today, coming in the many shades of the rainbow. Legend claims they were so exuberant to fly, they climbed to great heights, and as they flew through the rainbow they were blessed with the colors as well. Most winged dragons have iridescent shimmering wings. It’s said that a few so delighted in flight they went so high their wings were scorched by the sun. But the sun was so delighted when he saw the dragons in flight, he reigned in his power so the wings were only lightly scorched. There are only a very few dragons who did not fly to such great heights and maintained the original wing color of velvety hues.
Another nearly common trait is, from origin, dragons are naturally herbivores. They loved the water’s various vegetation, with kelp a strong favorite. Then as they began to live within the Earth, with a diet of roots, they soon adapted to more earthy hues. As they began to walk upon the Earth, they changed again. This time they were more the colors of trees with a few subtle shades of grasses and leaves. Yet, because their skin now touched the sun, the sun’s gift to them were to hold hints of glimmer, shimmer, and shine. At first when they grew wings, their coloring remained the same. When flight became comfortable and common, they went higher and higher and as mentioned flew up to and through the rainbows. From then on, their colors were a reflection of their magnificent flight. Some think what dragons ate has greatly influenced their external color. That is, what they ate influenced their color until they flew through the clouds and rainbows.
During these times, dragons and people communed. Dragons helped people move goods, clear lands, and all was in friendly agreement. After the dragons grew wings, people were more excited. The idea of goods going far distances brought the belief that people could then do more. However, dragons were not made to haul great heavy loads. So, people believed if they changed their diet to include meat, it would give the dragons strength and the ability to haul heavy things, maybe even people themselves. This was a tragic mistake done by people. Unused to eating any and especially such large quantities of meat developed the need to blow fire to release the strange new force created by meat in their bellies. And as well, it created a problem for people. People could no longer live easily with their one-time companions. All too soon, people began killing dragons out of fear for themselves, their families, and their home and lands. As a result of people’s terror, dragons soon lived nearly completely within the veil, unseen by human eyes. Yet ever so occasionally they do emerge through the veil to allow us to see them or to more clearly see us. It’s rare to have a dragon sighting, yet not impossible.
There were a few who luckily did learn how to commune with dragons. These few who befriended the dragons even learned how to train dragons to help them and be allowed to ride upon their back.
There seems to be a connection between sirens and dragons. The sirens tend to live on rocky shores, while dragons might live in water, on land, or in the skies. It’s believed the dragons who live on land and sky live in harmony with sirens. And sirens with their wings can fly and play with the dragons. And the sea dragons carry the sirens’ messages to voyagers to help keep the sailors safe.
If you are lucky, you may be able to see one of these magnificent creatures, in the water, moving about within the earth, upon the land, or even in the skies. And there may even be pictures and times recorded through history that demonstrate their existence.
I cannot say I know for sure, but when I see pictures of Scotland’s Loch Ness monster, I see a water dragon. They live deep within the water ways and travel easily through underwater canals and passages. For shelter, they thrive in the underwater caves. As well they live between the veils, in their hidden world as well as in ours occasionally.
In 785 CE, on the Isle of Kilpatrick, the Viking women had a connection with sea songstresses (sirens) and sea dragons, who watched out and warned the voyaging men before they encountered peril. It was said the women wore knotted rope belts that tied their men to the land. However, it was the sea dragons that that would hear the protective song of the sirens and try to steer ships away from danger. The women of Kilpatrick had an alliance with both the sirens and the dragons. The women would hear the songs and give praise and give gratitude to the sea creatures for their help in returning the men back to home lands. However, when the women were encouraged to trust the skill of the men and no longer wear their knotted belts, the alliance between the women, sirens, and dragons was lost. (You can see more of this account in my piece on sirens.)
Survivors of the Titanic claimed to hear singing and see sea creatures near the ice caps not long before the crash. However, those recording the events decided that the songs were from the winds and waves and creatures were merely shadows and more ice caps. Perhaps it was from our long-ago alliances, that dragons came and attempted to help the Titanic travelers.
For centuries women have been connected to dragons. And it was as recently as the 1950s that women were compared to dragons. As well during this time, there were reports of women meeting with water creatures in the cranberry bogs of Wisconsin. Books were written during this time that said the blood of women and their turning moods were a result of this connection with dragons. The thought was dragons influenced the moods of women and pulled them to such distraction and stirred a desire to fly the skies. If you tied a knotted bracelet on a woman, it would tame her and sever her alliance with dragons.
Whether myth or written with a foundation of truth, Greek mythology is filled with legends that feature dragons. In Carthage, priestesses, in defense of their land, stepped out of their robes and became fire-like nymphs and monsters (dragons). At the priestesses’ direction, the sea burned with a thousand pyres. Carthage, at that time, was seen as a noble city of dragons. During their escape, the priestesses journeyed to islands that did not lie on any map. Did the dragons bring the priestesses to the hidden islands of the sirens and nymphs?
There are very sad tales that tell of holding a dragon down to encase their energy. Also, if you put a knotted bracelet on each wrist, the bracelets still their flight. And if you feed their fire bellies sour grapes, their bellies will no longer smoke and fire. When you’ve successfully encased their energy, you can try to take it for yourself.
Dragons are wonderful beings. They are beings that have evolved from water to land to air. This is much like their earthen reflection, the dragonfly. Yes, dragonflies are kin to dragons. They are a representation to remind us that dragons are real, well, and thriving. Both are a representation of each of the elements; water, earth, air, fire, and spirit. Remember when you see a dragonfly, you are seeing their earthen spirit companion, the dragon.
Well, has this account of dragons changed your opinion about how dragons have been commonly shown in mythology and in movies?
And, from a friend: they are the originators of BBQs.