I am sure that many of us have recently had a good laugh, or at least a secret smirk as regards some recent road work news coming out of Iceland.
After all, how many road building projects do we know of about which have been affected by the alleged presence of Elves.
Icelandic Elves, to be precise, and yes, it’s perfectly true that the Icelandic Highways Authority had to halt work on a highway because campaigners claimed that the Elves living on the course of the new road would be disturbed.
“Let’s get this straight before we start – I do not believe in elves,”
Stated one Petur Matthiasson, when he spoke to the BBC
“Ok,” he acknowledged wearily. “But it’s not every day in Iceland that we divert roads for elves. It’s just in this case we were warned that elves were living in some of the rocks in the path of the road – well, we have to respect that belief.”
Mercifully the matter has been resolved as, according to reports a local lady who claims to talk to elves, mediated and they agreed to the road so long as their chapel, a 12-foot-high jagged rock, was carefully moved and put elsewhere, but once, by my own admission, I had stopped chuckling and rejoicing at this triumph over hard nosed reality, a more interesting thought crept into my mind.
It is all very easy to laugh at such beliefs, and say that, in our modern informed world there is no place or role for such ancient superstitions, but do any of us, especially those of a religious nature, really have the right to shake our heads despairingly and maybe even sneer
I suspect that there are as there are as many faiths, beliefs, and creeds in the world as there are ideas of what constitutes a a human being and to demonstrate this I offer you a tabulated summation of major world faiths, at least 43 by my reckoning by clicking here . This is only the major faiths, and I am sure that thousands more exist, even if they only exist within the mind, but then what does that really matter
I’ve no problem with any belief system, so long as it doesn’t cause any harm by its teachings, and I respect all those who have found comfort or support through faith, but if we, either communally or individually, wish others to respect our faith or our beliefs, then what else can we do but respect theirs in return
Ok, I hear some theologians or academics protesting, what of centuries of tradition, the complex and learned teachings of those who have gone before us, and the holy books and temple sites that have stood the test of time.
What of the thousands of followers that such religions attract, and what of the unwilling or willing self sacrifice that so many have endured so as to keep such faiths alive.
My response to such comments is to simply say that all such things, once more prove nothing.
We may believe in what ever we want to believe in, but as regards actual proof, that is harder to find. Why I could just as easily claim that universal deity is to be found in a head of cabbage as is likely to be found elsewhere, for I have just as much proof as nay other believer.
I say why not embrace the beliefs of the Icelanders. After all are they not in tune with the land with the land that surrounds them, and by being in tune are they not they respecting nature and recognising the forces that lie all around them, so maybe they have a salutary lesson for us all
Long live the Elves of Iceland, I say, and the Little People of Ireland and the Good Fairies on the Isle of Man, and long live all other mystical forces and creatures that may be all around us. I suspect that, if they do exist, they have little interest in bothering us, and that all that really want is to be left alone so that they may live their “lives” to the full.
Let’s open our minds and embrace such creatures, and in doing so enrich our lives to the full.
There are more things in heaven and earth,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.
– Hamlet (1.5.167-8), Hamlet to Horatio
States William Shakespeare, but lets leave the last world to the Icelanders themselves, please enjoy the video’s below
You never now, you might actually start to believe!
Just a thought everyone, just a athought, that’s all
Categories: Just a thought