A man on his way to Feakle fair was passing Biddy’s house, he called in to light his pipe and she bade him be seated as usual. He sat down, and they began to discuss various topics, and during the conversation the man himself drew down about the ‘black art’. When he said this, Biddy said to him, “I suppose you drew down this because you hear people talking about me, and they say that I am working in the power of the devil. But I tell you that I am not, my power comes from ‘the good people’ who are rightly named Good. It’s the priests are the cause of my unpopularity with many people.”
In this excerpt from Meda Ryan’s book Biddy is characteristically assertive. But in fact Biddy likely was working with the devil, just not the Church’s devil. By this time in history the Church had imposed a demonic aspect on Earth and Spirit energies and in this transformation the natural world Green Man became the Devil, other spirits became faery, known popularly as the Good People.
As a child Biddy spent many reclusive years in the gardens and woods around her mother’s cottage and some speculate that during this time she went away with the faeries for seven years. Her mother’s teachings and a deep connection with the Earth would be the true source of her healing powers, an alliance with Otherworld entities would be the source of her omnipotent knowing. Which was considerable as in the story for the next post….