I love nymphs. I love not only the ancient ideas of nymphs, those divine, mysterious creatures that inhabit difference parts of the natural world, such as woods, lakes, rivers, mountains, ect, but I love the real life nymphs of our present day world, those wonderful and lovely feminine beauties I see wandering about each day.
But what is a nymph? I suppose there are many different interpretations. In its most basic form, a nymph is a divine female creature from Greek mythology. Let me quote Wikipedia for the best description:
A nymph in Greek mythology is a minor female nature deity typically associated with a particular location or landform. There are 5 different types of nymphs, Celestial Nymphs, Sea Nymphs, Land Nymphs, Wood Nymphs and Underworld Nymphs. Different from goddesses, nymphs are generally regarded as divine spirits who animate nature, and are usually depicted as beautiful, young nubile maidens who love to dance and sing; their amorous freedom sets them apart from the restricted and chaste wives and daughters of the Greek polis. They are believed to dwell in mountains and groves, by springs and rivers, and also in trees and in valleys and cool grottoes. Although they would never die of old age nor illness, and could give birth to fully immortal children if mated to a god, they themselves were not necessarily immortal, and could be beholden to death in various forms.
Even in modern day Greece, much folklore, especially rural, still accepts the existence of nymphs. Ah, how difficult it is to wipe away the more delightful stories of ancient pagan world!
What is most fascinating about nymphs is not only their capricious beauty and dangerous sexuality, but also their deep and primal association with the nature and the natural world. There is a wonderful earthy beauty to the whole phenomenon of nymphs, just as their a wonderful earthy beauty to the essence of sexuality. Nature, earth and sex: life does not get more basic than that. But nymphs are not mere playthings. Like nature itself, they must be respected. Like nature, they are both beautiful and dangerous. These are beautiful creatures who will destroy men in their (the nymph’s) pursuit of sexual pleasure. Given the rather cloistered lives that most women led in the ancient world, this is a rather frank and unusual depiction of female sexual desire. It seems to suggest the danger that many men felt in the presence of unbridled female sexuality. The manosphere often talks about the feral nature of a woman’s sexuality, and usually in a tone that suggests great danger and apprehension. Nymphs are a reflection of male desire, but also the fear that many men have of the willing and sexually open female. In many ways much of female sexuality makes men uncomfortable. Not only can they not understand it, which makes them uneasy, but they fear the consequences of being drawn into a sexually aggressive woman. Nymphs are the Greek world’s imaginative acceptance of the many sided and hard to understand nature of the female sex drive, at least from the male perspective. Even today, the phrase “nymphomaniac” is a pejorative description of a highly sexed woman.
One of the most famous stories of sexually dangerous nymphs is that of Hylas. Hylas was a figure in Greek mythology who was a companion of Hercules. There are many different stories of Hylas, but one of the most famous is that on a journey with Jason and Argonauts he met a band of water nymphs, became enamored with them, and was forever lost and never seen again. Whether he died, or spent the rest of his life in sexual bliss with these beautiful creatures, is not known. I would like to imagine the later. After all, when it comes to the imagination, I do love to let my mind wander.
I like my own images of women posted here to be somewhat nymph like. What I try to capture in these photos is the beauty, mystery, and allure of women. Nymphs always possessed those qualities. As I said earlier, I love nymphs, whether of the mythological kind, or the kind that still exist today. As a matter fact, I think I will start a new series, a series on nymphs. I look forward to posting various photos of various types of nymphs, whether wood nymphs, water nymphs, mountain nymphs, or any other type of nymph I can find. Yes, the world is still filled with such beauties, beauties ever ancient and ever new (to paraphrase St. Augustine)! I enjoy celebrating that.
So let beauty reign! I love it all.