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W.Y. Evans-Wentz - The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries - The Three Circles of Existence



Type of Spiritual Experience






The three circles coincide with the three stages of the Mysteries.

Evans-Wentz used the term Individuality to mean Higher spirit or Immortal soul.





A description of the experience


The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries, by W.Y. Evans-Wentz, [1911]

Mr. David Williams, J.P., of Carmarthen, … offers valuable information about the 'Three Circles of Existence' and the Druidic scheme of soul-evolution, as follows:--

'According to the Druids, there are three Circles through which souls must pass. The first is Cylch y Ceugant, the second Cylch Abred, the third Cylch y Gwynfyd. The name of each circle refers to a special kind of spiritual training, and if in reaching the second circle you do not gain its perfection by completing all its provisions [probably in due order and time], you must begin again in Circle One; but if you reach the perfection of Circle Two you go on to Circle Three.

  • In Circle One, which is unlocated, the soul has no condition of bodily existence as in Circle Two.
  • The second Circle appears to be a state something like the one we are in now--a mixture of good and evil.
  • The third Circle is a state of perfection and blessedness. In it the soul's environments correspond to all its wishes and desires, and there is contact with God.'

At this point I asked if there was loss of Individuality in Circle Three, and Mr. Williams replied:--'No, there is not loss of individuality.'

Hence, as we suggest, Cylch y Gwynfyd is the Druidic parallel to the Nirvana of Indian metaphysics--being like it, a state of perfect and unlimited self-consciousness which man never knows in earth-life.






The source of the experience


Concepts, symbols and science items

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps