Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Hungarian Folk Tale: Oak Tree Fairy (video)

Hungarian Folk Tales; Amber Larson, Dhr. Seven (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly

Princess Yasodhara as sal tree dryad, like Queen Maya (Loriyan Tangai/Indian Museum)
Tree spirit: deva or dryad
"Fairies" (earthbound woodland devas*) are real in Buddhism.

In this ancient Hungarian fairy tale, Prince Green goes into the forest to hunt and slaughter animals. But they persuade him to be merciful, and they reward his kindness with a secret. With the animals' help he locates a special oak tree. From its branches tree fairies (dryads) are released. He loses two due to his miscalculations, but a rabbit helps him keep the third alive. They are so "airy" (vata dosha) that they need lots of water (kapha element) to live in a denser body. He falls in love and takes her to his castle to marry. But a wicked sorceress interferes and tries to replace the fairy with the sorceress' own unattractive daughter, whom the prince marries until he realizes what has happened.

India called me a devi, Ancient Greece a dryad
*DRYAD (Greek Δρυάς) is a tree  nymph or spirit in ancient Greek mythology. Drys is Greek for "oak." While a dryad is specifically a nymph of oak, the term has come to be used for all tree-fairies and all human-tree hybrids in general (at least in fantasy). They are usually depicted as very shy creatures except around the Goddess Artemis, who is friendly to most of them. More

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