This quote is about "The Mists of Manannan", an ancient Celtic idea in a really interesting book about the Druid Mysteries that I am reading now:

From Brendan Cathbad Myers's The Mysteries of Druidry (2006):
"The Mists of Manannan...can be seen as what it feels like for someone standing in a place that is neither one place nor another, neither day nor night, neither sea nor land, neither one world nor the other. It is what it feels like to be stepping into a realm of magic. The dissolution of these boundaries is a step towards the recognition of primordial unity."

The Mists of Manannan are what obscure the magical nature of the world, a cloak around the Celtic gods and the spirits that prevent us from seeing them clearly. "Manannan" is the sea god in Celtic mythology. The sea is symbolic of the Otherworld, a place interpenetrating our own existence where spirits and magical creatures arise from, such as faeries. This is the Sidhe, or the land of Faerie. This is also related to the Underworld where souls are taken when they die, but the souls do not stay there forever, but can reincarnate into other bodies. The main principle of Druid philosophy is the transmigration of the soul (which I'll probably have another Quote of Wisdom about), which means that our world is constantly interacting with the Otherworld by the births and deaths of people and other animals.
So the mists are the barriers between our world and the Otherworld, as well as the means by which we can travel between them, from our world into a realm of magic. The sea, or any body of water, was seen by the Druids to be a way of travelling to the Otherworld. Birds such as swans are symbolic of the Otherworld, and are messengers to guide us there.
Parting the mists is also a symbol for breaking down intellectual barriers that prevent us from seeing the world as a unity. We usually see the world in terms of categories and composed of distinct substances, but there is an underlying spiritual unity to the world, a conclusion that not only spirituality but also modern science is continually pointing to.
Certain threshold places in the world are supposedly especially potent for a connection to the Otherworld and magic, such as places by the waterside, doorways, bridges, and dawn and dusk. Here, we have the mists obscuring our perceptions, but in doing so, we also have the ability to breach the mists to see the magical aspects in the world beyond them. These special places are not well defined--they are neither land nor water, day nor night--and so they help us take a step towards recognizing the unity in the world. In Celtic mysticism, magic arose from the Otherworld, and so by parting the mists, we can see into the magical reality of things.
How does one part the mists? The first step is similar in most spiritual traditions: to adopt a spiritual attitude so as to see the unity in things, not in terms of how useful or practical they are. Our common day-today attitude is focused on getting things done, and not about understanding the inner nature of ourselves and the world. So we must go beyond this in order to see correspondences in the world and how they connect to greater principles, which is what the saying "as above, so below" means. And if we can part the mists, we may do as the Druids did, and walk between two worlds.

I'll put up more quotes from this book in the coming weeks!


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"A Soul Wanderer never knows. He wanders; he makes his own path through the
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