Fairy Cats: The Magic & Lore of the Celtic Cait Sidhe
The Celts believed strongly in the “good folk” or “sidhe”, also known as fairies. One such belief was in the Cait Sidhe or cat fairies, of which we magically know little about…until now. A guest writer known as Koala Anne has been on a journey to learn as much as she can about these elusive Celtic fairy cats and wants to share what she’s discovered. Here she educates on the cat fairy’s nature, how to talk to them, how to journey to their land, magical correspondences and appropriate offerings.
What are the Fairy Cats or “Cait Sidhe”?
What are the cat fairies? Well, they certainly aren’t what you’d normally think. They aren’t cute litte tinker bells with cute little fairy wings. In fact, they don’t have wings at all. However, they can walk on two legs, and they do have the ability to speak a human dialect.
In folklore, the cait sidhe are often depicted as large black cats with a white spot on their chest. This honestly isn’t the case. Those of royal bloodlines are most often completely, or almost all white. The cait sidhe can inhabit the bodies of magical cats, and therefore create a witch’s familiar, or if they need a body simply to pass on a message.
We really don’t know enough about the Cait Sidhe. We know they are seen as “oracles”: they foretell the future and predict the weather. It is said if you look into the eyes of a cat fairy, you see the otherworld, and the fairy cats’ home land. These independent trickster-like cat fairies live on an island in the otherworld. On their island, there is a palace, where the royal bloodline resides. It is to my understanding, however, all cait sidhe factions live within the palace’s ruling, and are protected by the King (or Queen). For some unusual information, they get on and off their island in little silver boats. (Click here to read about the ancient miniature gold boat that may be an actual fairy boat!)
Fairy Cat As Familiars
During my research on fairy cats, I would often hold my necklace (which has correspondences with my feline familiar whose earthly body passed on) at bed time and I would thank him for helping me with my research. I would always hear a purring coming from my pillow. While he was in an earthly physical form, he would sleep on my pillow and purr the night away.
So what makes these inquisitive and astute creatures eager to bond with the magical people in our world? Why are they keen on becoming a witch’s familiar? It’s quite simple really. The cait sidhe demands justice and harmony. They represent virtue and honor. They imbue with good intentions and well meaning actions. Not to mention, they’re one of the most wise, intuitive, and intelligent creatures. They make for great familiars and guardians.
How to Acquire a Fairy Cat Familiar
The next big question, how does a mortal acquire patronage from the cait sidhe? Let me list it for you: one must have self control over the mind. They must practice moderation, patience, accommodation, harmony, and self management. Compatibility is certainly a key component. Exciting confidence and complexity is also ideal. Deep concentration and application of study, and perhaps just a little bit of luck. Some of you might call it destiny.
How To Get to the Fairy Cats’ Land
How does a mortal get to the cait sidhe’s land? There are very few entrances to their homeland, which can be accessed through liminal spaces and fairy mounds. First, you must be invited. In order to be shown the way, you must be receptive, and practice obedience. For when you trust your courage more than your doubt, you will be ready to listen and then you’ll be ready to act on what you perceive.
The cait sidhe, fairy cats, are not usually hostile unless they are threatened, but that does not mean any other spirit, fairy, or being wouldn’t become aggressive. So it is extra important to take precautions. While traveling to, and through the fairy lands, please use caution! Absolutely anything can happen, and you run the risk of bringing a spirit home with you OR getting stuck in fairy land altogether.
Protection While Traveling to the Fairy Cats’ Land
Take every magical precaution when journeying to the Otherworld, because there’s potential loop holes to everything if you aren’t thorough. Wear an amulet to ground and protect yourself. It creates a shield around you. Also, wear something around your head, to protect the back of your neck and top of your head. Your mind is a hot zone for psychic attacks. Cleanse yourself thoroughly before and (especially) after your visit to fairy land.
Communicating with the Celtic Cait Sidhe
Cait sidhe are guardians of the Otherworld. When summoned, they may grant a variety of insights regarding esoteric knowledge. The keyword here is may. The cait sidhe are incredibly secretive and don’t give up their secrets freely.
My familiar and I have an extremely close bond, and even getting him to give me even a slight clue was, as the phrase goes, like pulling teeth. He begrudgingly gave me little secrets here and there. Then gradually gave me more and more. To start, the fairy cats answer only 4 questions, IF they are willing to answer at all. And they will try to distract you from even discussing themselves in any aspect. Why only 4? The number 4 is a grounding number. It is stable, calm, and practical. This happens to be a good number when speaking with an aloof, secretive, and clever creature like a fairy cat.
Talking to the Cait Sidhe: What is Their Purpose?
In my quest for answers, I had asked my cait sidhe companion; what are the cait sidhe’s purpose/what do they represent? The answer I had received was:
-Romance, harmony, prosperity, peace, and achievements
-A journey, an advancement into the unknown, alteration, and flight
-An ability in handling matters
-Subtlety, artifice, inducement, slight and cunning
If you are lucky enough to meet one of the fairy cats…
The cat fairies are incredibly resourceful, and usually unpredictable. They often will give messages of change, flexibility and adaptability. Seeing one reminds us to modify our usual routines and make fresh adjustments to our daily lives. To the Ancient Celts, messages perceived were; needing to step back and look within yourself. What mysteries did you need to work on? What psychic or sensual powers? Trust your intuition to guide you on the right path, and find new ways to be creative and resourceful while you explore the unknown.
Cat Fairy Offerings & Magical Correspondences
Below are some confirmed associations, and humble offerings for the Cait Sidhe:
- White Aventurine- focus, peace, communication, clarity, acceptance, psychic awareness
- Blue Goldstone- connects to the divine, wisdom, energy, courage, learning, communication
- Petrified Wood- concentration and highest level of understanding, balance, grounding, past lives, protection against disease, patience
These are non toxic to cats (just in case):
- The Violet Flower- protection, luck, love, lust, wishes, peace, healing
- Thyme- healing, purification, psychic awareness, courage, luck, fairy summoning
- Catnip- love, beauty, happiness, sleep, psychic awareness, healing (they really love it when catnip is grown in your garden then offered fresh)
- Silver- psychic abilities, intuition, love, protection, balance, reflection
- Some aromatic meats, left as an offering (the cait sidhe have their preferences)
- Milk specifically designed for cats (to be safe), left as an offering.
- Wednesday’s are their best working days, and the months of May and August are particularly favorable.
- They are represented by the Air Element.
- They enjoy feathers (which feline doesn’t?). Feathers promote change, manifest wishes, focus, concentration, clarity, and luck.
Colors for the Cait Sidhe:
- Indigo- honor, devotion, spiritual wisdom, integrity, intuition, vision
- Purple- benevolence, enlightenment, psychic power, creativity, spiritual growth, ambition
- White- purification, unity, blessing, spirituality, innocence, higher power, truth, enlightenment, guides, astral travel
- Gray- intuition, dreams, astral travel, balance, judgement, psychic awareness, removing negativity and Influences, neutrality
Cait Sidhe Summoning Spell Jar
If you plan on summoning the cait sidhe, there are some precautions to take, especially if you’re on sacred land. Casting a circle is recommended. There are different ways in which to do this. You can use physical objects to bring your intentions to fruition. If you do not wish to make a physical circle, you can use a wand or your finger to draw a circle in the air, starting at the North (or East, depending on your tradition.)
- Rain, storm, or fog water (preferred)
- Frangipani ashes to bring peace, clarity, and soothing vibes
- Blue Goldstone for psychic awareness
- Milk as an offering
- Thyme for summing sidhe, and strength
- A piece of a Pigeon feather for communication
- A jar
- One ribbon: purple, indigo, white or gray in color
What To Do:
- Dig a hole in the earth.
- Put each item in the jar, naming what each is for.
- Tie a purple, indigo, white, or gray ribbon around the jar
- Recite while shaking jar and ingredients thoroughly: “I call through the fog and whisper through the gate, Hear my plea, one with fur and whiskers and eyes of deep. I create a space of protection and harmony And offer you a milk treat. I call a single cait sidhe to visit me.”
- Then point jar upside down to release the spell above the dirt hole so that the spell remains may be given back and nourish the Earth.
There is still an abundance of information that we can learn from and about the cait sidhe, and I will probably spend the rest of my life chasing after them.