Copyright © 2009 by William R. Mistele.  From Undines: Lessons from the Realm of Water Spirits, N. Atlantic Books, summer 2110


                           An Undine Possession


Fairy tales sometimes mention that an undine can take possession of a woman’s body in order to marry a man.  Consider a case in Germany from the 1930s.  A master of hermetic magic warned one of his students not to seek an undine as a companion, but the student ignored his advice.

     According to tradition, an undine enters the body of a woman at the moment of her death and revives the body, restoring its life. She then has the departed woman’s memories and may pretend to be the woman who died.  Soon after entering a body, she goes in search of the man who called her.      

     In this case, the man who sought the undine as a lover was very skilled in manipulating elemental energies.  That was part of his magical training.  He did not, however, understand the spiritual significance of water.  He could open with ease the gates to the undine realm, but he understood little of the ways undines feel and perceive. 

    Although knowledgeable of magic, he had few social skills and some psychological problems.  As a result, he felt acutely isolated and empty inside.   

    It was, therefore, much easier for him to find a girl friend who was an undine rather than a real woman.  He found an undine that was both available and comfortable with him.  In normal courting, sometimes men will put out a tremendous amount of energy and creativity in order to win a woman’s affection.  As a magician, he focused an entire cycle of courting and romance into one magical command: He asked the undine to find and enter a suitable body in his area. 

    She had a great capacity for bonding.  She could easily make a man feel like she was inside of him and part of him.  To be near her was to feel an inner connection. 

   The undine’s inner life had the feeling of the open sea, of a strong wind during a dark night with gusts, huge waves and spray.  She was wild, free, an elemental being attuned to water in its primordial power.  He found her refreshing, invigorating, energizing, and reviving.

    This is what happened next:  An otherwise healthy young woman choked to death one night in his city.  The undine immediately entered the woman’s body and brought the woman back to life, restarting her heartbeat and breathing.    

     Since the man and undine were in telepathic contact, he was aware that the undine had entered his world.  At that moment, he felt that his life was about to change profoundly.  Telepathically, he asked her to meet him in front of a nearby cathedral.    

    Dating is a risky business.  But in this case, he already knew the undine--they had bonded.  Nonetheless, meeting the undine in physical form for the first time was like meeting a woman who had just stepped out of a gate to heaven.    

   He got everything he wanted or could imagine in a partner and lover.  The downside was that he lost interest in just about everything else in his life.  His job was okay.  But he lacked ambition.  And he never got around to developing any social skills worth mentioning.

    The society in which they lived was formal, and the gender roles were restricted.  They married and had two children. 

    The children never suspected that their mother was a mermaid.  She loved and nurtured them, perhaps more than other women.  But as is possible with undines, bonding and love do not preclude detachment.  For an undine, love is not so rare that one must stake a claim or define its direction in order to preserve it.    

    Consequently, she was not ambitious for her children.  She never discussed their goals in life.  That was outside of her experience.  

     What of the man?  He had been told that under an undine’s influence, he could lose his opportunity to pursue a spiritual path.  Was the master’s warning insufficient to guide the student?  

    When he held the undine in his arms at night, he felt the wild waves of the open ocean crashing down and rolling around and through him.  With this pageantry of nature welling up from within his feelings, he was content.

     Perhaps more is required than having a sacred purpose if one is to overcome the enchantments of beauty and love.  In our world, happiness is so rare, its sources so hidden, that when it appears, it carries its own authority.  The will of a magician often seeks to attain great goals and fulfill noble missions.  But love contains mysteries that magicians have yet to imagine.