Natural! Natural beings, an overview

Nature beings and nature spirits. Who are they, where do you find them and what do you do with them? This article is intended to give you an insight into the world of natural beings, without being exhaustive. The range of topics is extremely broad; entire series of books could be written on the subject. But I can offer you an introduction. You make the real contact in practice anyway, not in the theory. If you have any questions or need help, please feel free to contact me anytime.
Gerhard Zirkel

What is a nature being / nature spirit?

From a shamanic point of view, we are spiritual beings who have created a material world in order to incarnate in it. In other words, having an energetically dense, material body. There are many theories and opinions as to why we do this. My favorite assumption is that we want to gather experiences here that are not possible on a spiritual level.

A nature being is a spiritual being that is not incarnated in our extremely dense body, but is one level higher, so to speak. Not quite as dense, not a solid body, but still very close to our world.

Close enough to be there, to be noticed and sometimes to take action. Close enough to be a mediator, a helper, an advisor. But also a learner, because spiritual beings can and want to learn from us humans. Acting purposefully in the matter, for example.

A nature being is a spiritual being that appears to you in a form that can be attributed to nature. In contrast to a house spirit, for example, which is more likely to be located in a household or a family.

A nature spirit can be a goblin as well as a plant or animal spirit, an elf or a giant. Basically, the manifestation of a spiritual being is just that: a manifestation. On a spiritual level, there is neither time nor space and therefore no forms of appearance.

But we humans live in a material world and here we need a form to be able to imagine an entity. Very few of us can handle a pure form of energy. Shamanism therefore works with the manifestations of the entities.

How do you find them and work with them?

The shaman has a very basic method of making contact with spiritual beings of all kinds. The shamanic journey. Also known as a drum or trance journey. In such a journey, he specifically seeks contact with certain entities or asks questions to see who comes to answer them.

He is often accompanied by his spirit animals. Incidentally, they are not natural beings, but personal helpers. Even if they appear in animal form.

But the shamanic journey is not the only way to make contact with nature spirits. This often happens “on the side” in everyday life, especially in areas where there are many of them. Ireland is right up there, but so are Iceland, Scotland and regions with lots of nature and fewer people in general.

They can also be contacted in meditation and there are countless rituals for this. Certain times such as the Rauhnächte or other stations in the annual cycle are also particularly suitable. In the end, each person finds his or her own access to the beings that are in his or her vicinity.

Working with them depends a little bit on who you are and who they are. Nature beings are not always well-disposed towards us humans and they are certainly not always equally helpful. But neither are your neighbors and you deal with the Spirits in a similar way to your neighbors.

You are polite, introduce yourself, give before you ask for something and if someone doesn’t like you, you leave them alone. Ask for permission before you set up a ritual place somewhere or begin to work shamanically.

Ask permission before removing plants or parts of plants, before building, tearing down or altering anything. Especially with power plants such as elderberry, it is better to ask three times too often than once too little.

Assume that all of nature is animated. Even stones are natural beings. Try talking to them once, you’ll be amazed.

What natural beings are there?

Now it’s getting extensive. There were and are an incredible number of manifestations of spiritual beings and, of course, of natural beings. Each culture knows slightly different entities than the neighboring culture. Much has not been handed down and much has been summarized.

At the end of the day, you have no choice but to make your own experiences. But I would like to explain a few terms here because they are often used and are useful for an initial categorization.

Deva / plant deva / plant spirit

A plant deva is the spiritual being behind a plant, the soul of the plant, so to speak. Just as we humans incarnate as spiritual beings here in the material world, spiritual beings also incarnate as plants.

The reason for this is that you can communicate with plants on a spiritual level just as you can with people and animals. Incidentally, the word Deva comes from Sanskrit and means something like the shining ones, the radiant ones.

And so the plant devas were and are repeatedly described as radiant beings of light, sometimes also somewhat teasingly as little flower elves or forest fairies. But this is always just an idea, because spiritual beings in themselves have no physical appearance. Or, in the case of plants, the appearance of the plant as it stands before us.

Many people who collect medicinal herbs or harvest plants make contact with the plant spirit beforehand. They ask for permission and advice on how much they can take without causing too much damage to the plant. You can also gain valuable information about them by talking to a plant deva.

Herbalists often get their knowledge directly from the plants and not so much from books. This ranges from the use of certain herbs for certain diseases to detailed information on harvesting, preparation and dosage.

Sometimes well-meaning devas even actively help us. Whenever the exact herbs that we actually need shortly afterwards appear in our garden, seemingly of their own accord, because they are needed to heal an ailment.

This is why it is also not advisable to fight “weeds” too vehemently in your own garden. It’s better to communicate with them first or at least look up their effect and find out what they want to tell us. Perhaps afterwards we will be quite glad that they came to us.


Dragons are mythical creatures and come in various forms. While dragons in the Christian world are fire-breathing, sulphur-smelling and demonic creatures that are fought against, in Asia they are delicate beings of luck.

In a shamanic context, they often resemble demonic and evil dragons, but their character is more helpful to all those who are willing to accept their help. They are sometimes divided into the elements, so there are fire, water, air and earth dragons.

Elemental spirits

We speak of an elemental spirit or elemental being when a spirit helper is assigned to one of the four elements fire, water, earth or air. The term elemental being is therefore more of an umbrella term or serves to categorize.

Earth spirits include trolls, mountain men, elves, fairies, dwarves and gnomes. The water spirits include mermen, water women, nymphs, mermaids and mermaids.

Air spirits can be wind and storm, fire spirits can be found in fire. Both have forms that can rarely be described.


Elves are familiar from Norse mythology and Disney films. Although the image of the elves in the latter is very misleading. They are by no means little fluttering creatures that get into trouble with a squeaky voice.

Rather, they are powerful spirits who are not always well-disposed towards humans and are also known in Germany, England and other western countries in addition to Nordic mythology.

There are different types of elves, besides the bright and friendly light elves who are often described as benevolent and kind-hearted, there are the dark elves who live underground and appear rather dwarf-like.

The royal elves are a special genus, whose appearance most closely resembles that of the elves in “The Lord of the Rings”.


Fauns are known from Greek mythology and are also called satyrs. They are forest gods and are often described as having pointed ears, goat tails and curved noses. Incidentally, Pan, with his goat’s feet and horns, is a faun.


Fairies are certainly among the best-known natural creatures. They appear in countless mythologies and in the most diverse contexts. Unlike in classic fairy tales, fairies are very powerful beings. Not, as with the elves, little Disney fluttering creatures in the shape of girls.

Fairies are very large beings who live for a very long time and have very great magical abilities. They may or may not be well-disposed towards people. The benevolent fairies help people in need, usually appear in the form of beautiful women and can fulfill wishes.

Evil fairies, on the other hand, can cause great harm and are masters at deceiving people and getting them into situations they can hardly get out of on their own.

Anyone who encounters a fairy on a shamanic journey or in everyday life should always be respectful and polite. A disgruntled fairy can be very unpleasant.


The term goblin is mainly known in English-speaking countries, especially in Sussex. They are also called puck or pook. Goblins are quite similar to European goblins.


Goblins can be found in the mythologies of countless cultures. They are often tied to a particular house or to the people who live there. They like to get up to mischief and behave like poltergeists. They can change their shape.

As annoying as they are at times, they protect the house and their humans. Their jokes never cause serious damage. Goblins are good-natured and funny roommates who are much more powerful than they appear at first glance.


Nymphs are mainly found in Greek and Roman mythology. They are nature spirits that appear in female form and are usually young and beautiful. As nature spirits, they are mainly found at springs, streams and rivers, but also in the mountains and on trees.

Almost everywhere where nature is intact and where it is quiet. They are generally well-disposed towards humans, but they should never be underestimated just because they appear in the form of a little girl. The prosperity of a place often depends on the prosperity of the resident nymph. If it dies or goes away, the place dies too.


Trolls are mountain giants, known from Scandinavian mythology. Trolls embody the raw forces of nature and are correspondingly unpredictable.

Later, the actual trolls mixed with other creatures such as dwarves, goblins, fairies and elves. Which has made the troll more of an umbrella term. They are often depicted as ugly or misshapen, sometimes with only four fingers per hand.

They appear in countless legends and myths, but also appear during shamanic journeys.


Dwarves are usually described as small, often misshapen, human-like creatures. In most cases, the body proportions are not right, arms are too long, legs too short or stomach or head too big.

They are skilled craftsmen and can make many a magical item. They like to live far away from sunlight, underground or in dense forests. In the sunlight they petrify, some rocks could also be petrified dwarfs.


The gnome is an elemental being that is assigned to the element earth. Gnomes are often described as small and human-like. They are often located in mountainous regions. They are a bit like goblins or dwarves.

They are often regarded as guardians of great treasures, to which they sometimes grant access to selected people. Which is not good for these people if they become too greedy. Male gnomes are often described as ugly, while the women can be very pretty and occasionally seduce people.

Forest spirits

Forest spirit is a collective term for all creatures that can be found in a forest. Admittedly, this term is somewhat vague, because a forest contains almost all beings that can be found outside a forest, from plant beings (devas) to fairies, elves and dwarves to animal beings. Nevertheless, such a forest has a very special energy, which is why shamanic workers are always drawn there (and because of the peace and quiet, of course).


The Norns (nornir in old Norse) are female beings in Norse mythology who descend from gods or dwarves and determine the fate of humans. According to tradition, the Norns live at the root of the world ash tree Yggdrasil, at the source of Urd, the source of the fate of all people.

Originally there was probably only one Norne called Urd, but later three of them are mentioned by name: Urd (fate), Verdandi (the becoming) and Skuld (guilt), they thus correspond to the trinity that runs through many cultures, mythologies and religions, or they correspond to past, present and future.

The Norns are often called upon in matters of fate, during trance journeys or special rituals.


The term leprechaun comes from Irish mythology and in Ireland they are as numerous as they are – for the sighted – real. Leprechauns are elemental creatures and are most comparable to goblins.

They are generally friendly and also seek closeness to people. They like to be noticed and are very helpful. They support personal development, give advice and want to learn from people.

Especially how to create things, because this ability fascinates them, but they lack it. Of course, this is also due to the lack of material form. If you get involved with Ireland and open your mind, you will soon come into contact with entire leprechaun families.

What do I mean by that?

Go for it! Read everything you can find about nature beings, but you can only make real contact with them on a spiritual level. The journey there is worthwhile, because there is an incredible amount to learn from them.

If you have any questions, would like to be accompanied or need help with a specific being, please write me an email or use the contact form.

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