Faery Taling: An Interview with Signe Pike – Part I

Once you experience magical things that you can't rationally explain it changes how you view existence in its entirety.

Signe Pike was an editor at Penguin when she decided to leave her career in Manhattan and embark on a magical journey of discovery through Mexico, England, Ireland, Scotland and beyond, seeking to find the elusive beings we call faeries. I came upon her book Faery Tale at a time in my life when I longed for a dose of magic to drag me out of a self-imposed emotional prison, and it instantly captivated my heart.

Having finished the book I was surprised to find myself referring back to it over and over again until I ended up reading it for the second time, something I only do with Harry Potter! This came as a clear sign that there was something more behind the invigorating adventures and elegant prose; the aura surrounding the book exuded the kind of energy and passion that usually comes from experiencing something monumental that changes you as a person, therefore, I could tell that Signe’s faery journey had had a huge impact on her life.  Her passion for exploration along with her sense of wonder and purpose in search of the magic we all had to bury while growing up whetted my appetite for adventure and inspired me to undertake my own faery journey.

In the months that followed I made it my quest to acquaint myself with the faery realm and, what seemed to have started as an overnight obsession transformed into a fascinating ride of enchantment and self-discovery that altered my perspective on life completely. The faeries unleashed my inner child and unlocked childhood memories of carefree adventures, introduced me to the healing abilities of nature and reminded me of the importance of playing and having fun. More importantly, the faeries proved to be loving and invaluable friends, melding my heart from past hurtful relationships and helping me open myself to love, something I had been struggling with for a long time. Enchanted by their skillfulness and surprising intimacy I allowed them to wrap me into a blanket of love and worthiness that healed and nurtured me.

Today, I see the faeries as my invisible friends that constantly enhance my life with playful experiences, “coincidental” rendezvous and infinite amounts of love and support. Intrigued by the book’s impact as well as all the changes and inspiration that permeated my life following my experience with the faeries, I was curious to find out Signe’s perspective on the matter. Therefore, at a moment of faery tipsiness and thrill I found the courage to contact Ms Pike, exclaim my admiration, and invite her into a festive communion of faery taling.

How has your experience with the faeries affected your everyday life so far?

Researching and writing Faery Tale helped me rediscover an invaluable skill that we all are born with, one that so many of us ignore or forget about: Trusting our intuition. As I travelled around England, Ireland and Scotland hoping to have an encounter with an unseen and ancient spirit world, I had to learn how to listen to my gut instincts on where to go, who to speak with, and what to do – for example, on Isle of Skye I visited the incredibly fascinating site known as “Fairy Glen,” a mysterious series of conical mounds that surround a small, dark pool of water. It’s of course believed to be a faery place. It had been my plan to go back there at night and sit in the dark, seeking to have an experience. But once I was there, I felt very strongly that I needed to revise my plan – that it just wouldn’t be right. Fairy Glen felt like an incredibly powerful place and in my gut I couldn’t ignore the feeling that it would be very disrespectful to do that. So I listened and went somewhere else that night. I wasn’t rewarded with any experience, but you can’t force these things.

I had come to understand that trusting my intuition was the most important thing – I believe it’s the link that Spirit uses to try and communicate with us, keep us safe and guide us. What would have happened if I had gone that night? I often wish I knew. But that’s the point when dealing with the mysteries. They’re mysteries. I can only be in control of what I decide to do, what I decide to listen to, and the many experiences I’d had up to that point had taught me that my only job was to trust my inner voice and everything would happen just as it should. I remind myself to use that in every decision that I make today. When I ignore my gut instincts, 100% of the time I end up wishing I’d just listened in the first place!

Have you altered your interests, hobbies or the way you perceive the world?

The book led me to a whole new life – something I never anticipated when I first got interested in the idea. I just followed the road as it plotted down before me, even when it was scary to have such radical trust that everything would be okay. My way of life changed in that I left New York City and went on a journey that led me to Charleston, South Carolina where I live now. I had the inspiration, and soon realized that to write the book in the way it was forming, I would need to leave my job in order to travel and research it (publishers aren’t too keen on their editors taking off for three months to write a travel memoir).

Now I’m able to pursue my interests more fully – to try and self-actualize, as they say. In New York I still loved plants and gardening, but could only have a window box; here I have an full-on herb garden and room to grow hydrangeas and other plants that make me happy. I’ve always loved hiking and spending time in the outdoors, and the book allowed me to do just that, in some of the most stunning locations throughout the British Isles and Ireland. I’ve traveled to England to promote it, and might be heading to Austria next year to promote the German edition, so travel has become a regular part of my life. I still love the things I loved, but now my life has blossomed in a way that allows me the freedom to pursue my happiness more fully. I believe this is what happens when we follow our hearts. My perspective on everything did shift – once you experience magical things that you can’t rationally explain, it changes how you view existence in its entirety.

Have your relationships changed in any way? Are you emotionally more happy or unhappy?

My journey caused me to realize we’re here to seek relationships with people who nourish us. I realized that throughout my life, I’d been in some friendships that left me feeling completely drained and that wasn’t right. Now I can say that the people I spend time with always make me feel happy, loved, recharged, and very often inspired! I may not get to speak to some of the friends I love as much as I’d like to, but I make sure there’s a mutual understanding that though our lives may be busy, I hold them in a place that isn’t susceptible to time or distance.

As far as emotions go, I may have gained a deeper perspective than I used to have, but I still have happy days and sad/moody days just like I used to! (Just ask my poor husband!)  I think remembering to stay present in life, to connect and recharge ourselves is always a challenge – it’s no different from eating well or making sure you get the exercise you need – none of us are 100%, but we strive to do the best we can, and when we can integrate the discipline to take good care of ourselves into our daily lives, we can only get more luminous. That’s what I strive for – luminosity. But it still feels very much like striving!

How have the faeries changed you?

Faerie energy is completely enmeshed in anything living, as well as in anything natural that exists in our world. As such it reminds me to be present, to slow down, to be kind and considerate of all the other living things that make up our planetary existence. I think people too often make the mistake of thinking that when we’re talking about faeries we’re talking about tiny little Tinkerbells that wear flower costumes. There may be more minute energies that look after specific plants, etc., but when you spend a lot of time out trying to connect with faery, you realize the idea of faeries is very difficult to grasp in a concrete way. As one of my interview subject said in Faery Tale, there are likely as many different types of faeries as there are species of animals on our planet. What does it feel like to connect to the spirit of a river that travels thousands of miles and flows into the sea? That’s faery too. Mostly my experiences with these nature energies have changed me in that I’ve realized we can’t know all the answers. The best we can do is love, be open to learning, and trust. The answers come from somewhere in there, and they are possibly unique to each of us.

A Magical communion

While reading Signe’s answers I was excited to confirm that her life had also been transformed as a result of the faeries. She learned to get in touch with her intuition, let go of unhealthy relationships, she travels around the world promoting her book, she even moved to another state where she can finally embrace her love of nature by growing her own garden. The transformational evidence resulting from both of our work with the faeries is incontrovertible, and so I couldn’t help but wonder: What is it about the faeries and spirit in general that inspired these changes?

My work with the faeries and other spiritual entities has led me to understand that, when we establish a connection with the spirit world we get glimpses of those spirits’ perception of life. We literally become more as we allow the energy of the spirit to blend into ours and infuse us with their view of life. Faery, is the name given to the spirit or soul of nature, and therefore, connecting with the faeries allows us to enmesh our energy with the refreshing and uplifting energies of nature. As a result of this communion, we can’t help but be influenced by the faeries’ perspective and undertake changes that reflect their view.

It is faery energy that urges us to stop and admire a beautiful flower, that calls us to go out basking in parks, that inspires us to grow our own garden, that softens our heart and guides us into making decisions that will benefit our vitality and well being. It is the faeries that urge us to smile more, appreciate more, to laugh and play more, to love every aspect of ourselves and the wonderful planet upon which we live. In Signe’s simple yet powerful words, “Once you experience magical things that you can’t rationally explain, it changes how you view existence in its entirety.”

Close your eyes and leap

My life has blossomed in a way that allows me freedom to pursue my happiness more fully. I believe this is what happens when we follow our hearts.Signe’s experience with the faeries does much more than provide information about these magical creatures of nature. On the contrary, the progression of her journey reveals the ingredients of a precious formula I’ve been searching for a long time now – A formula for finding your Life Purpose.

Her words demonstrate that finding your life’s purpose requires, first and foremost, the conscious decision to follow your heart’s desires – those deep, life-long desires that make you feel euphoric and blissful when you think about them.  When you decide to give your dreams a chance and always choose what makes you feel good, you will align yourself with the energy of your Source; that pure-positive, all-loving energy that forms the basis of who you are.

This spiritual communion between you and You will open you up to intuition – your innate ability to receive accurate and precise impulses in your journey. As Signe suggested, intuition is “the link that Spirit uses to try and communicate with us.” Therefore, trusting your inner voice grants you access to the infinite intelligence of Source which knows exactly who you are and what you can achieve. As a result, intuition acts like a guidance system, lighting up the road to finding and thriving in your life purpose.

Following your heart and trusting your intuition are the two basic ingredients in finding your life purpose and living the life that you were born to live. Yet, one might still wonder: What is it that ensures this smooth and fruitful unfolding of you path? More intriguingly, how can you be certain that following you heart will lead you to it? Signe’s story portrayed vividly that, as a result of her choice to follow her dream and trust her intuition, she received constant guidance that, did not only guide her entire journey but inspired her to make positive changes in all aspects of her life. What’s the underlying mechanism of this formula? What is it that made this unfolding possible?

The secret behind this is no other than the most powerful law in the universe – the Law of Attraction. The Law of Attraction states that what we give out comes back to us. Therefore, when we give out love and happiness for what we are doing, we will always receive the necessary impulses, circumstances and physical manifestations to back up that emotional state. Therefore:

Following your heart + Trusting your intuition + Law of Attraction = Thriving on your Life Purpose!

Living your life according to the stereotypical Dos and Don’ts of society will lead you to a life of sameness and mediocrity. Daring to follow your heart and trusting your inner guidance will open you up to a fascinating world of infinite opportunities, with the Law of Attraction orchestrating the life you’ve always desired; and soon enough the road will plot down before you and, just like Signe, you will be living your very own Faery Tale.

Faery Taling: An Interview with Signe Pike Part II will be posted on Monday 17th.

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FAERY TALE earned a “Best of 2010” nod from Kirkus Reviews in addition to receiving glowing reviews from  Harper’s Bazaar, Women’s Adventure Magazine, and New York Times bestselling author Marianne Williamson. Pike has been featured on National Public Radio’s “To the Best of Our Knowledge” along with Salman Rushdie, Neil Gaiman, and A.S. Byatt. Her first poetry collection, Native Water, published in Spring 2012. To find out more about Signe and her work, please visit her website at www.signepike.com