In the beginning…

I have worked, energetically, with stone circles for twenty years, but it was on a trip to the remains of a stone circle in Cumbria, deep in a forest plantation, that I was granted a wonderful insight into one way in which our Bronze age ancestors used the circles.

From that experience, I understood that some circles were associated with maintaining fertility. They were used ritually at certain points of the year, (solstices, equinoxes, etc) and at that time priests, priestesses, and the entire community channelled the energy of the solar light into the circle to fertilise the wheat they had harvested the previous season, and to fertilise the waiting earth beneath; the masculine creative force of the sun, fertilising the female earth.

At the end of the Mesolithic period, ancient communities moved from hunting and gathering, to growing and tending. Their focus was on the growing of food, so taking care of both the physical landscape and the energetic landscape meant they had a better chance of survival. Their awareness of the Oneness of life was a part of them. They did not simply live on the planet, separate to it as we do, but they understood they were an integral part of it.

But how did the Early Neolithic farmers begin to use stone to contain and hold the energies they built in the landscape? How did they learn that particular form of energy-work in the first place? I have found no evidence of fertility work of this nature in the earlier Mesolithic hunter-gatherers. It seemed to arrive with people who grew their food on a large scale and who needed specific energetic help to accomplish that.

Before agriculture, hunters worked shamanically to connect to the spirit of the animal they were about to hunt, communicating with it before the hunt and asking for, and acknowledging, the creature’s sacrifice to feed them. But, with the advent of agriculture, some of these practices changed. To the ancestor, everything was energy. Every living thing, including apparently inert objects, such as stone, soil, etc, had a spirit and therefore deserved respect and acknowledgement. (You only have to look at the current indigenous people of the world to see how our ancestors might have lived).

It has always been a mystery to me how practices changed, from hunting and gathering, to include the growing of crops. Once you begin to grow food, the process and focus changes. But when did they begin to associate stone circles with corn-energising rituals?

It was only while reading Home by Francis Pryor, that I found a possible answer. Francis had been working on a Neolithic causewayed enclosure site in Etton along with his wife. The enclosure was part of a complex of enclosures, like Salisbury Plain, and comprised a single circuit of interrupted ditches. They discovered, at the end of each ditch segment, objects which had been carefully placed there. The deposits in the segmented ditches were laid in layers, each protected by a birchbark mat, which would have been naturally waterproof. Intact pottery vessels, turned upside-down, skulls, and broken quern stones, for the grinding of grain into flour, were also placed in layers in the ditches.

Upright Saddle Quern Deposit.

According to Prior, the objects placed within the ditches were crafts traditionally carried out by women: pottery, weaving, bread-making, etc. That makes me wonder why they deposited these particular objects in the ditches? Was the site traditionally viewed as female? Just as with the Cumbrian circle? The female energy was believed to reside in the earth, so it makes sense that if they wanted to ensure the positive flow of energy into their own home and tribe they would make offerings of gratitude for the resources already received and the petition for that flow to continue for the coming year.

Quern stones at each side of causeway.

Within the henge, there were also multiple pits filled with ritual deposits, but the most striking thing for me was that in the ditches on either side of the causeways, quern stones had been placed on their sides, so that they stood upright. Stones were placed on either side of the causeway, of which there were possibly four, oriented North, South, East and West, although the South entrance was subsequently destroyed. The deposits seem to have been placed, on separate occasions, but in the same place each time, in layers, perhaps during large gatherings, and by kin groups. Each time they gathered, they carried out ceremonies and a new stone was placed there; again on its side so that it stood upright, but above the buried layer of the previous celebrations.

Grain was an important part of their survival and the excavators of Etton discovered evidence that “cereal crops were both grown and processed within the immediate vicinity, perhaps within the enclosure.”

Datchet causeway. Example of how ditches were spaced.

When I read this for the first time, it immediately reminded me of my visit to Cumbria. and the importance of the stone circle in charging the wheat for the following growing season. The deposition of saddle querns, upright in the ditches, signalled for me the mental leap made by the Neolithic communities from ritual deposits of stones for wheat-grinding to standing stones. Wheat was such an important part of their survival that it stood to reason that the objects associated with grain processing should be held in such sacred esteem. I imagine, through the deposition of these stones, each family was both manifesting their food for the coming year but also giving something back to the Mother, in gratitude for feeding them; for taking care of them. And, as the quote above suggests, if the site was used for the processing of wheat, then corn rituals might well have been carried out in the centre too, creating what later became, the stone circles.

Knowth Basin.

In Knowth, there is the huge concave stone in one of the recesses within the burial mound. Burial mounds represent the womb of the Mother. Knowth is part of the Newgrange complex, where the sun enters the chamber at Midwinter, to light up the darkness within. Again the solar rays fertilising the Mother. The large concave stone is like a huge ceremonial saddle quern and may well symbolise the fertilising of the grain. A gift to the mother and holder of the ashes of people who may have been the ones who carried out the sacred ceremonies.

The carving inside the stone is interesting too: To me, it looks like an energetic representation of the solar rays fertilising the seed within the womb of Mother Earth.

Knowth Inner carving.

Of course, it may have had multiple meanings. As modern humans, we see symbols as representing things we only have understanding of ‘in the present’. We see things one-dimensionally. Our ancestors may have had access to knowledge we can only imagine, or re-learn, as we work in the energetic landscapes of the Mother.

The positioning of the saddle querns in the site in Etton also made me think of Mecca, where before Islam, tribal communities gathered there yearly. Each tribe had its own stone statue representing the energy of their tribe, their over-ruling deity, part of a circle of stones around the sacred site. Only with the coming of Islam was this practice destroyed and now only the ruling family have their ‘stone’, contained in the Kaaba. (Mecca had been a sacred site for many centuries, sacred to a triple goddess. One of these goddesses, Al-Uzzah, was a grain goddess).

Old Mecca.

As I was writing this, I found this very interesting article: https://www.hunebednieuwscafe.nl/2017/10/british-stone-circles-were-used-for-parties/ The article states: The research into the Ring of Brodgar also showed that each stone comes from a different part of the Orkney Islands. Apparently, each of the diverse groups of people brought its own stone and placed it in the monument. Remarkably, Professor Bayliss’ research also found evidence that people travelled to the Orkneys from as far away as Belgium. This fits very well with the idea of family groups/tribes having their quernstone in the circle.

Many ancient Mother/Goddess sites were symbolic womb; places where, at certain times of the year, the energies of fertility were strongest. The midwinter ritual of the sun piercing the darkest recesses of burial mounds, and temples, were fertility processes: the male sun sending his fertilising principle into the dark womb of the Mother to activate the egg waiting there. These were no empty rituals, however. Our ancestors understood the active energies that revitalised the energy lines in the earth, that brought new vitality after the dark of winter, warming the earth; bringing new growth. Where energy flows, so too does life.

There are naturally powerful places on earth where the energy is palpable, such as volcanos, places where crystals have formed, and deep underground caves. Places too where elemental energies are strong: rivers, lakes, mountains, and forests. But energy is also built through ritual and intention. I have never been a ‘ritual’ worker. I never really understood the purpose of ritual except as a focus for creating and for intention. But, I recently had an experience in a Cathedral Church in Arundel where I saw the result of ritual actions on the energy of a place over time.

We were working on making a triangular connection between the sea and the river Arun. I wasn’t sure where this connection was supposed to be anchored but we went into the cathedral, just in case. I had been given water energy by a wonderfully loving sea elemental on Littlehampton beach and although I knew I had to put it somewhere; I didn’t know where, until it happened. As I approached the altar, which was built on top of an ancient spring, I saw the blue column of light behind it, which had been built up over the years by the priests doing the bread and wine ritual. This was a surprise to me. The energy had built up over so many years and had created a healing channel in the cathedral. This is also where the water energy gift was anchored, which was also a huge surprise. (One of the important things to remember when doing energywork is that religious belief plays no part. It is the positive intentions to help humanity which are important. Although saying that, the ancientness of the catholic ritual contains an energy that I have not found in other, more modern religious rituals).

But this ritual also involves the energising of bread, just as the ancient ritual in the stone circle Cumbria showed. (I think the energising of the wine might have been Roman in origin and added later as patriarchal religions became more prominent. The wine is energised from ‘above’ whereas the bread should be energised by the mother-energy ‘below’).

So that brings us back to the quernstones. We know that causewayed enclosures were the forerunners of stone circles so if the quernstones were placed as sacred objects and connected to a particular kin-group, (as in old Mecca, and Orkney), then it is not such a stretch to see that the later ‘standing stones’/quernstones in a circle came to represent each kin-family’s offerings to the Mother Goddess. The rituals building up over time gave these places their sanctity but there may well have been an extant ‘energy’ that told them where to build these sites in the first place.

The alignments of the main causeways appear to be directional, and the east/west entrances align with the sun. (We have often found main energylines crossing over in these sites, although not necessarily NSEW aligned). The astrological alignment aspects of stone circles might have come into play as a way for them to be sure about the timing of important events. I’m sure the simple beginning of the ritual circles became more complicated over time.

A very good book which explains how Glastonbury abbey was created is: The Gate of Remembrance by Frederick Bligh Bond, F.R.I.B.A. It is a book about the discovery of The Edgar Chapel through automatic writing and gives very interesting energetic information on how a sacred site is created.

Here are some more links for information.

https://www.historyscotland.com/exploring-scotland/stone-circles-and-henges-c-3500-1000-bc-history-map/

https://www.lakedistrict.gov.uk/visiting/things-to-do/historical-places-to-visit/stone-circles

The Bread of The Mother.

Yesterday morning, Sunday, (I wrote this a few years ago) I was listening to the Radio 4 church service (not something I often listen to, but it was an impulse I followed). The teaching was ‘The loaves and the Fishes’. You know, the one where Jesus miraculously fed the 5.000 people with only 5 loaves and 2 fishes after the death of his friend and teacher John the Baptist? Finishing up a beading project, the fact struck me that people never question this story. They relate it as though it is an absolute truth. But to me, they are missing an important point. Jesus was a spiritual teacher, teaching people something important. There was a deeper meaning to this story.

People, such as Dr Marcellino D’Ambrosio,  have looked into certain Judaic meanings behind the symbolism, such as the five loaves representing the Mosaic teachings in the Torah. There are 5 books in the Torah.  So perhaps, on one level, Jesus was expanding on the teachings and inner story of Moses, who was also a prophet, and a teacher.

But he was also quoted as saying that he was the ‘Bread of Life’. To my mind, this was a misinterpretation. He was also known as the ‘Water of Life’ which felt more appropriate. Could he be both bread and water? All spiritual nourishment? To many he was/is, but I have experienced a completely different awareness of what the bread represents. Over the past twenty years of doing energy healing, at many sacred sites around the world, I have found that the Bread represents the Bread of the Mother, of the earth.

My first experience of this came in 2006, in Cumbria, at a stone circle complex in the Broomrigg Plantation. One of my psychic gifts is the ability to tap into ancient knowledge and experience it in the present. It is psychometry; I suppose. Tapping into objects or places and opening doorways into past lives.

Broomrigg Stone Circle

On this occasion, standing on an ancient stone which had once formed part of a stone circle, I went back to the Bronze Age and found myself watching an ancient winter solstice ritual. Within the circle, a priest stood, and around the inside of the circle also stood containers of wheat which had been harvested the previous autumn. A priestess, who personified Artemis (I was a little surprised at that) drew down the energy of the sun and brought it into the earth, which opened like a womb to accept the solar energy. This fertilised a giant ovum and filled the womb with golden light. The priest had strewn wheat grains around the inside of the circle petitioning the Goddess Artemis, within whose hands he had placed a sheaf of corn. As this happened, the wheat in the containers was also ‘charged’, which effectively imbued the seeds with life, so that when they planted them again in the spring the resulting crop would be abundant. At the end of the ritual, the priest sprinkled water around the inside of the circle, because, without rain, the wheat could not grow.

Once the ‘ritual’ was complete, some of the grain was taken from the containers, ground into flour and made into bread. Each household in the tribe was given a portion of this ‘charged’ bread in order to bring fertility to the entire tribe over the coming year. Everyone was equal and everyone was fed. No-one was left out.

This experience prompted many questions. Over the past few years, some of these questions have found answers. I had, on occasion, to travel back to Ireland for Catholic funerals or memorial services, and noticed during the consecration of the bread and wine, during Mass, that all the energy from ‘Above’ seemed to charge the wine but not the bread. I also thought it was significant that only the priest drank the wine, (things have changed since then!) thereby gaining the benefit of its charged energy. But the communication wafers, the Bread/Body of Christ had no energy and yet this was distributed to the people during the Mass. I found this very interesting Why was the bread not ‘charged’, and why was it only the priest who benefited from the spiritual energy which should have been shared? I wondered if it was to do with power dynamics within the early church? Communion is such an important part of the Catholic Mass ritual and I can remember, as a child, taking communion seriously, believing that I was eating part of Jesus’ body. When it stuck to the roof of my mouth and broke, and I tried to remove it with my tongue, it was a serious disaster. Jesus was real to me and I thought I was breaking him apart.

The word communion signifies a joining, a sharing of energy, but there was no energy in this communion. It was rice paper, nothing more. For years, I had wondered why this was (I only rarely have communion now. If I feel an impulse, I will take it, even though I know it contains nothing). However, this year, I experienced another teaching, through ‘psychic time-travel’, that explained more of the mystery. It was in St. Dogmaels’ Abbey in Wales, near Cardigan Bay and I was doing my usual energy work, as I do in many churches, (both ancient and those still in use), when I felt an impulse to stop at a point which was below ground level. In the past, the altar of the church would have stood above this room and as I stood in the centre of this ‘cellar’ I felt a powerful female earth energy, like a vortex. It was still active, and very strong. When I stood in it, I ‘saw’ a monk standing in front of the altar in the room above me. He was consecrating the wine and the bread, but as he focused on the bread, which was a round loaf, he drew the energy of this vortex into the bread, spiritualising it with the female energy of the Earth, the Mother. Next, he drew down the energy of the sun and consecrated the wine with that energy, the Male fertilising principle! Finally I understood! Somewhere along the line, this connection and honouring of the role of Mother Earth, in sacred ritual, had been lost.

The Abbey itself was built in the 12th Century and is a Trionian Abbey, founded by monks from France who were dissatisfied with the way things were going in the French Monasteries. They wanted to get back to a simpler way of living, and of serving. But they also knew that the balance depended on honouring both Mother and Father.

At one point during this exploration through time, I was also given the understanding of the Holy Trinity: The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The Father is obvious; he is the male principle, Solar, Christ Light. The Holy Spirit is the Mother, the Female principle: the Earth; and the son, is the priest /medium. The Son of both Mother and Father is the priest; he is the medium between the two; the one who can work with both energies and who is trained to materialise these energies in the bread and wine, thereby bringing succour to the community through their distribution. What is missing here, of course, is the female representative, the priestess. But, at least they still knew what they were doing, even though they were using both energies in a less earth-focused way than our ancestors at Broomrigg had done.

But, what I still did not know, was when this understanding disappeared. Perhaps during the dissolution of the monasteries, when the Divine Feminine, through Mary, was removed from the collective consciousness? Perhaps that understanding will come later.

So, back to the loaves and the fishes. Jesus (or someone) was trying to teach about the balance between the Masculine and the Feminine. The bread of Life comes from the earth, from the Mother. The fish is a male symbol, and one which I also have experienced in the course of my work, and which I know to be a symbol of life in the Ancient Solar priesthoods of Egypt, Greece and Western Europe. The symbol of Christianity is the Fish. The fish swims in water; water is life. The fish is a symbol for the fertility that comes from water, the abundance of a masculine god.  

Jesus was teaching the multitudes about Honouring the Mother and Father, just as the commandments told them to. Not just your physical, earthly Mother and father, but all of life through the Earth Mother and Solar Father. I believe the story tells us that nourishment comes from Mother and Father. What comes from the sky is Masculine, sun and rain, which fertilises the earth, the feminine, so that all her people can live. You cannot exist without both. What can you create with sun alone? Without the mixture of earth, what is it? If you honour both, you can feed thousands.

Maybe we need to get back to that. We need to relearn these ways of thinking about the earth, or Gaia, and her relationship with the Father, in order for us to live sustainable and fulfilling lives. It’s really not that hard. We just have to change our core beliefs. It might take years but at least the world of the future will be one worth living in again! And I wonder what would happen if we started to do these rituals in the way they were intended? That would be an interesting experiment.

PS. When I was in the Hare Krsnas, back in the seventies in Dublin, they cooked their food and blessed it before sharing it with people so that everyone could eat the sacred prasadam of the god of love, Krishna. Even one meal was enough to give you Krsna’s mercy. Blessing food is an ancient tradition.

A more modern story is the story of the foundation of Findhorn, one of my favourites.

An Invitation.

“Down through the centuries, man has attempted to outwit the forces of nature. Now, it falls to them to be the custodians of those same forces. It is no longer enough to live on the world; now it is necessary to live in it.

The time has come for all men (we include women here but it is more expedient to use one term only) to unite against the destructive beliefs of those who seek to destroy the natural world. It is time to unite against the forces of humankind who would seek to eliminate the wealth of the natural world in order to line their own pockets.

But how can we accomplish such a task, we hear you ask?

From your perspective, it appears to be an insurmountable task, but from ours, it is relatively simple. Those of you who work with the natural forces, i.e., the trees; the elemental spirits, the Ancient Ones, the dragons, etc., already have it within your means to help stem the tide of destruction.

All you have to do, and we will assist all those willing to give of their time and skills, is to focus daily on the energies that surround you, your gardens, your parks, your woodlands. Focus on your own area, then contact, mentally, the elementals of that area. Commune with them. Concentrate on their essence, see their forms, and hear their songs.

Once you have accomplished this, create centres of learning so that others can go there and learn to commune with them. Create your own Nature Elemental Universities, where students can visit when they feel called, to connect with the Elemental energies that wish to work with them.

There is still time to change the tides, but you must not tarry.”

I received this a couple of weeks ago and wondered how to connect with the Elementals as they suggested. It usually takes me a few weeks to process what they have given me but then I remembered something that happened at my friend’s house a few months ago. She lives just a few miles outside Winchester, surrounded by fields, ancient trackways and woodland. Having a cup of tea, and looking out her window at apple trees, roses, and the pheasant who comes for feeding daily, I saw images of a thin, gaunt giant striding slowly across the landscape in the field opposite her house. He was the Elemental energy of the area, the one who took care of what used to be the old estate. He is the one who maintains the balance and looks after all the other energies who live there, both seen and unseen. I hadn’t called him, but he came of his own volition, inviting my friend to connect with him.

Estate Elemental.

He was not what I expected from an Elemental, but his energy was calm, slow and peaceful. He exuded love and care which was a joy to feel. My friend saw a different image of him, one that had meaning to her. (We all see the Elementals according to our beliefs so however they appear to you is the right way for you).

I remember too, at another friend’s house in Dorset, seeing another Elemental. At the time I didn’t quite understand what he was doing as he was peering at me, rather grumpily I thought, through a triangular portal I had anchored there. He looked like a Sulamith Wulfing illustration. (She could see the elementals clearly). I knew the triangle allowed communication between humans and the Elementals but didn’t quite realise why they were created there. The channelling above explains why.

Elemental by Sulamith Wulfing

A few weeks back, I created a triangle portal on the site of an old Roman villa, in Sparsholt. When I opened the portal, I didn’t understand why they placed it there. The roman villa was not a sacred place, I thought. But my thinking was limited. I was only seeing what used to be there, not what is there now. I was thinking of the past, not the present.

When anchoring the triangle at that place, I did not know its purpose, but on a return trip, after receiving this channelling, we went back up, passing the bronze age burial mound on the way, to connect with the elemental energy there. As soon as we entered the woods, the wind started rising, moving through the branches of the beech trees. We walked around the edge of the woods, listening to the wind rise and fall. I had the impression that the elemental communicated like that, through wind in the trees and I remembered a similar experience many years ago after trying and failing to find the villa site.

Hopelessly lost, after half a day of searching the woods, I gave in and asked the energies of the woods to please help me. Almost as soon as I uttered the words, a wind moved through the trees on my left as if they were saying, ‘follow me’. So, I followed what seemed like a wave of wind as it moved the tree branches. I followed this wave of softly moving branches, walking in a straight line through brambles and undergrowth, until five minutes later, I found myself in a square clearing. A feeling settled in my stomach as I heard the energies, through the wind and trees, say ‘Welcome.’ The voice was low and airy and I was both amazed, and overjoyed at having finally found the place. I was also fascinated by how the energies there communicated with me and how they had helped me locate what I had spent ten years trying to find.

That was my first experience. I didn’t know it at the time but I had connected with the elemental guardian there but on this last visit I understood more. Because I knew it was there. Placing the triangle of energy told me that. After walking the old paths, we came to the site of the villa and the winds stopped, completely. There was a stark difference between this clear space and the surrounding trees. Outside the space, the wind moved strongly, rustling the branches, but inside the space, there was no movement, at all. It was completely still, peaceful, like the eye of a storm.

Sitting on the wooden bench, I mentally called to the elemental telling him(?) of my intention and I waited. I noticed a wind come up again, to my left, and saw a man taller than the trees, striding through them, moving the branches aside as if they were tall grass. To my mind, he looked like the BFG. Gentle and caring. But he did not enter the villa site. He moved in the trees surrounding it. I was curious about this so as we walked back I asked him how we could help, based on what the channelling had suggested. I also wanted to know more about him.

This is his area. It even looks like an elemental.

I heard, as words in my head, ‘This is my kingdom.’ And he showed me the entire woodland and a red line drawn around the boundaries. As the elemental ‘King’ he strode around these boundaries, holding within them his trees, as though he was a tree-shepherd. This sounded familiar and I remembered Tolkien talking about Tree-shepherds. But Tolkien’s shepherds were trees. This elemental was not. He was distinct from them. A being in his own right. Trees are rooted. They cannot move. But he can, and does, caring for and protecting everything within his red line. Looking at the map of over 130 years, I can see that he has done a pretty good job as the woods are still there and have been added to, not diminished.  

Farley Mount 1894-1910

We passed an old beech tree that had been planted as a boundary tree to separate arable land from woodland. I looked up into its branches and was reminded of Enid Blyton’s The Magic Faraway Tree with its ‘lands’ at the top that changed all the time so you never knew what land was going to be there next time you climbed it. This reminded me of what my guides had said about how to access inspiration, by moving along the branch of a tree and connecting with the story/poem/painting there; an interdimensional tree.

That, it seemed, was the answer. Write stories. Let the stories be about them. At least for me. For you it might be different, based on your life’s work.

During the previous week, while anchoring a red dragon line on the south coast which will eventually stretch from Worthing to Portland Bill, I opened a triangle portal at Littlehampton. Once it was open, I contacted the most beautiful sea elemental I have ever connected to. The triangle goes from Littlehampton to Arundel, making it a water portal as it follows the river, Arun. I had never opened a water portal before, not like this anyway.

And I have also never experienced such loving elemental energy. I wanted to stay in this place forever. Usually, when I do energy work, once I have completed the work, I have no more desire to be there, but this place was different. I didn’t want to leave! The elemental appeared as a large brown boulder covered with barnacles and mussels, like a rock you would see beside the sea when the tide has gone out. It looked bulbous, rounded and swollen, with a wide, round nose and large, large lips that stretched around its face, like a cleft in the rock. Its eyes were closed and its face turned towards the surface, absorbing the sunlight that filtered through the water. He didn’t move around, this elemental, but remained in this place doing his job as elemental balancer. But he did give me a gift that would allow me to share his energy as an attunement.

I am not a beachy person; I don’t enjoy lying on a beach all day but prefer to be walking, picking up fossils and stones and feathers and taking photos. But I could quite happily have stayed on this beach, within his loving, nurturing energy.

Putting all these things together, I assume that triangle portals open up places to be used as Elemental Universities. Visiting these places and having the intention to learn from these elementals will teach you what they want you to learn.  

Perhaps too, a human will be a guardian of a particular portal. Someone who feels drawn to being there. Each place has one. Someone who can communicate with the Elemental guardians and help keep the balance, and can share the knowledge of these wonderful guardians, passing on their teachings through the written word, music or art.

For now, I will share the places where portals exist, which is also the reason for this post, so you can go yourself and connect to them and see what they want you to do.

There is still time, as they say. But do not tarry…

If you wish to work with the Elementals in this way, you can receive the Elemental Portal Attunement. which will attune you to their energies and which will allow you to install the portals where you are guided to.

Header image: Copyright © Ted Nasmith Tree shepherd image.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sparsholt_Roman_Villa

https://www.greatbritishlife.co.uk/things-to-do/walks/walk-around-farley-mount-7246968

Durrington Walls and the Cuckoo Stone.

On the 2nd of January, we felt an impulse to drive to Durrington Walls, near Stonehenge. It was our first trip to do energy-work in months and it felt really good to connect to the ancestors again. I had been weighed down by the darkness of winter, and the constant rain, and felt permanently rooted in modern life and its stresses having been in the UK for far longer than originally intended. As result, I had lost my focus, so the trip to Durrington felt like a positive step and as we drove there, feeling the intention, I remembered how much I loved doing this work.

Durrington Walls, Wiltshire.

When we arrived, we walked into the henge, looking with archaeological eyes at how the settlement had been constructed. We then tried to find the site of the two circles that originally lay within it. It felt very Avebury-ish and we thought about how close the settlement had been built to the river Avon that passed just below.

Having spent time discussing the possible thinking of the original settlers, we wandered back, but as I crossed what would have been one of the entranceways to the river, I felt the urge to connect. In my mind, I raised my arms to the sun, or to where the sun would have been, had it been a cloudless day. (I am far too self-conscious to do physical arm-raising in public so I see myself doing it in my mind). I raised up and connected to the sun. As I did so, two ancient people, one male, one female, appeared. The man held a brown book which he handed to me. It felt like a bible, and he explained that it was the spiritual and historical beliefs of his people; the two being connected, just like the Old Testament is both the history, and spiritual beliefs, of the Israelites.

Avon River from the settlement.

I began to get an understanding of what had brought these people here and why they had left. I was told that they had originally come from the north – it felt like Orkney – and they came to create a new colony down south, where they had people they were connected to. They had been told that it was warm here and that the land was fertile, good for crop growing. This felt like the beginnings of agriculture when they were learning how to work with the fertility in the landscape in a new way. At first, it was good, and they were successful enough but then the climate changed. It became wetter and there was less sun to ripen the corn.

The bad weather continued for several years and they could not survive, forcing them to go back to an older way of life – more a foraging and hunting lifestyle. There was a feeling, that in their fear, they focussed more on learning how to work with the earth’s energy-field, and the serpent lines, and less on the more physical aspects of survival. In the past, hunting and gathering had been their way. It was a shamanic way of living. In order to survive, rituals were performed before the hunt, rituals that connected them to the essence of the animal, ensuring the creature’s participation in the hunt. They had no real control over the animals. All they could do was connect with their essence, communicating on subtle levels their intention and need to feed themselves. We are familiar with the Nat. American way of life. Our ancestors were no different.

Transitioning to agriculture took a long time. Not only were they learning how to farm, and how to tame animals that originally roamed free, they were also learning how to work with the earth’s forces differently. It was an entirely new world for them.

However, the efforts of the early people of Durrington Walls were not successful. With the change in weather patterns, food supplies ran out and their people dwindled in number until eventually, they decided to return to where they had come from. They knew there would be food there. Fish was always plentiful, as were mammals, so they had to go backwards for a time. This feels like an important message for us in our time too. Climates have cycles, they change. We are currently in one such change. There may come a time when we too have to go ‘backwards’ for a time, back to an older way of doing things. But it is a temporary going backwards. Things will move forward again and things will progress.

The Ring of Brodgar

Some of the tribe did not want to return, telling the others that if they only waited the weather would get better. But they did not know how long it would remain like this so they opted to leave. Before they left, before it got too bad, they had tried to improve the fertility of the soil by working energetically in the landscape but all their work was for nothing. They spent too much time doing that without realising that they could not control the world’s weather pattern changes. They could only improve the earth’s fertility in the soil. (This also answered a question I have had for years! You can improve the soil and growing conditions but not the global weather).

After receiving this information, which continued coming in as we walked and explored, we next made our way to The Cuckoo Stone. Before we had left the house, we had been instructed to take a bottle of water to make an essence and as soon as we got to the stone, ( which I never knew about), I understood why.

The Cuckoo Stone

Our first impulse was to walk three times around it sun-wise, (clockwise). This meant that it was a masculine sun-stone. (At feminine sites, you usually walk anti-clockwise. When you walk around a stone, or site, it energetically opens it, creating a doorway into its energies and functions.) Walking around this stone made me feel dizzy on the third pass, which I thought I was imagining, until Chris said it was making him dizzy too. It’s always good to have confirmation. Again, this dizziness is something I have experienced before at the stones at Avebury. Years ago, a friend and I were at that circle. It was my first visit, and I felt so excited to be there having wanted to see it since I was a teenager in Dublin watching Children of the Stones on TV. Coming close to the circle at Avebury then was like coming home after many years away.

At that time, my friend and I walked around the stones but experienced a dizziness as we did so. It was as if each stone was a battery with both positive/negative energies. Each stone too was either male or female making a huge force-field around the circle. The entire Avebury complex was a giant male-female balancing in the landscape.

This Cuckoo stone also had a magnetic field, even though it no longer occupied the same site it had originally, and was only half the size of what it once had been. But it was close enough.

Once we had activated the stone, we sat on it and tuned in. Almost immediately, we saw a youngish woman with dark, curly hair and wearing a band of flowers around her head. Behind her stood a male priest dressed in a creamy white robe. He was older than her and seemed to be her mentor. He remained behind her while she carried out the ritual. This felt to be a later time than had our previous Durrington information.

While we sat on the stone it was as if we were both the stone, and ourselves. The young woman placed a garland of flowers around our shoulders but she was really dressing the stone, just as they still do in Ireland at holy wells. The ritual was to welcome the sun from the east after the long winter. It was an acknowledgement of the life it brings and in recognition of the stone and its importance to the vitality that flowed from the sun, through the stone, and into the earth’s energy-circuit. The couple placed the garlands facing Woodhenge, where the sun came up, but we did not feel that Woodhenge was significant to the ritual. Chris was aware of a Mayday reference to this too, so perhaps the stone was dressed at more than one time of year.

West Kennet Long Barrow. What our Long Barrow might have looked like.

Once they had finished at the stone, I saw the woman, followed by the priest, carrying a shallow, pottery, bowl of water with flowers in it, over to where the Neolithic long barrow once stood, meters away from the them. The bowl had been at the foot of the monolith while she did the ritual dressing and the water in the bowl was charged by stone and sun. The barrow was still there in their time and we could see it’s energy clearly. The woman laid the bowl at the entrance, as a gift to the ancestors and an acknowledgement to them. Their line of kinship was still intact and important. If it hadn’t been for the lessons learned by their ancestors, these people would not have survived and thrived, so they offered their gratitude. Death and life were One, the two sides of life. The ancestors still lived, but in another form, their presence still recognised.

(This reminded me of the St. Mullin’s Pattern when I was young. At the feast day of St. Moling, all the locals from local towns came to the ruins of St. Moling’s monastery and his holy well. Traditionally, the people walked three times around the well, sun-wise – called ‘Doing the Rounds’ – in their bare feet. They then dressed the graves of their family; ancestors who had been buried there for generations, and some more recently. There were certain other traditions associated with the day, namely that of spending a number of hours in the only pub in St. Mullins and spending money on the stalls. The water of the holy well was reputed to cure all manner of illnesses and everyone in my town had a bottle).

St. Moling’s Well.

Next we were instructed to make the essence. I put the bottle on the stone and saw the dark-haired woman place a garland of flowers around it, as if the bottle of water was also the stone. Next, to my surprise, she put a fat earthworm in it then told me to close the bottle quickly. The worm had to do with the fertility of the soil as though there had to be a combination of both energy-work and physical work to ensure fertility. Energy alone cannot grow things.

Next, we were told to bring some of that blessed water to the site of the long barrow. As we walked towards it, I felt a sudden powerful flowing in of energy that made my whole body tingle. I love that feeling! I poured the water onto where the barrow once stood, connecting to the ancestors and sending our gratitude to them and once we were finished we began to walk back to the car, towards Woodhenge. As I did, I became aware of an image of the long Barrow behind me and I stopped walking. It was as if we were walking out of the darkness of the winter/death and into the light of a new phase and I had to walk with that intention.

It was a very welcome ending to a very satisfying day’s work.

Magdalene Down Male Mysteries

After our first day’s information about the Female Mysteries of Spring, we went back the following week to learn about the Male Mysteries.

Magdalene Hill Burial Mounds.

This time we stood on the second largest barrow, where we had seen the Elder the previous week. As soon as we tuned in, he appeared and he instructed us to sit.

I felt as though I was in a class, as it would have been held centuries ago, but I was male. There were five or six of us being trained. The elder explained about our role in the Spring festival. We were a new cohort, and this was the start of our training. The Elder would instruct us on how to serve the Mother, both in what we did, as priests in training, and for the rest of our lives. What we were being shown was male priest training, rather than simply something for the festival rituals.

He explained that male fertility was connected to the waterways: the rivers and to the sea. I saw the Itchen river in my mind, running around he base of St. Catherine’s hill. As we were being shown the connection between the river and the hill, an image of Silbury Hill, near Avebury, with the water all around the base, popped into my head. I wondered if, in ancient times, the waters also rose at certain times of the year and flooded around the base of St. Catherine’s; the mound a pregnant belly that emerged from the waters of life.

Water carries fertility, like seminal fluid carries sperm. This is how they understood it. Because many female fertility sites were connected with waterways i.e., Stonehenge, Stanton Drew, etc., it fell to men to hold the energy of water-fertility. They were the active principle and the female was the receptive.  

River-tumbled pebble

The Elder, having explained about the importance of water to these young men, then went on in a more serious tone. He handed each one a rounded, river pebble. He told them that the water had shaped these stones, tumbled and smoothed them over many years. The water had the power to shape the hardest material, BUT, the stone was of the earth and the river ran THROUGH the earth. The water, on its own, was simply water. The Mother, Earth, was the channel/river-bed through which the water ran, it ran through her body. She was the foundation of all.

This teaching was to curb feelings of power the young men might harbour, believing that because they held the power to fertilise, this meant they were more powerful than the earth itself.  

At that point, to continue the lesson, the Elder told us all that we would now go to the other side of the hill, but to bring our stone with us. This was a couple of miles across the land for them, but necessitated a car-ride for us. From last week, we knew the men had their training by the river and that by the time of the Spring rites, they would proceed from there to the top of St. Catherine’s.

We drove around to the other side of Winchester, and tried to find a car-parking space close to the river. That proved tricky, as now everyone goes for coffee and a walk beside the canal! Because we could not find a space, we went to the water-meadows at. St Cross Hospital, where we had access to the river. This was better as it was the more natural part of the river; the part currently flowing alongside St. Catherine’s Hill is the navigation canal built in the late 17th Century.

We stood by the river bank and waited for the Elder to tell us what to do. We still held the stone. Because the Elder was not physically real, the stone he gave us wasn’t either. But, I had one in my pocket I had picked up somewhere. I’m always picking up stones! It didn’t have to be physical, of course, but it made it feel more real.

Itchen River, St. Cross Hospital, Winchester.

Standing by the river’s edge, the Elder told us that we had to throw this stone into the water. But, in throwing it in, we were handing over our ego, or sense of power and personal Will to the Mother. We were acknowledging that we, as men, served her. We were not master over her. In order to serve, we had to let go of all our attachments to power over others, over the tribe, over the land. We were making a commitment to serve her as she wished to be served.

It was a very solemn, and thought-provoking exercise. If we, as young priests were unable to let go of our male ego, our need for control, then we would be unable to serve in a fertility capacity and therefore would not be able to officiate at the Sacred Fertility Rituals, such as the Spring rites.

Because I was, effectively, a young man in this experience, I felt the seriousness of what I was doing and when I felt I was ready to give up my need for control and power, I threw my stone into the water, giving it back to the Mother, from whence it came. I accepted that she was more important than me and that I willingly sacrificed my need for power and control.

I was aware of the other young men in my group. Some were reluctant to let go, not fully understanding how it would impact on their lives. They were not ready. Some might never be and would go on to do other work within the tribes. But, for those, who were not quite ready, they would be given the chance to continue their training and repeat the exercise the following year. But that also meant, they could not be chosen to be a candidate in the current year’s Spring Festival. There was no judgement around this from the Elder, as they were only human and he understood the challenge of the sacrifice.

Spring Violets in the dew.

This experience, and the previous week’s one, was an amazing glimpse into how our ancestors worked with the very potent Spring fertility rites. The exercise, by the river and on the barrows, was quite a powerful one for the young men; the fear of letting go of personal power was palpable.

By contrast, the women’s rites felt free and joyful. There was such excitement and light-heartedness as they began the rites. But the men’s seemed quite serious, as if they had more to learn, more to let go of. But all were young. From late teens to early twenties. An appropriate age for Spring.

Next week, we’ll be up on St. Catherine’s Hill. It’s the culmination of the Spring festivities, the joining of the male and female energies, the festival that ensures fertility for the coming year. I am looking forward to seeing what we experience then. All we have to do is avoid the coffee-crowds.

Queen of the May.

It has been an interesting few months. The winter has been long and I really did not feel like going out much. Winter is never my time, energetically anyway, my time begins at Imbolc, the beginning of February. This is the time of female fertility, when plants emerge once more from the womb of winter and begin their growth towards the sun. 
This February, we explored a part of Winchester that has always beckoned but never quite seemed to be the right time. Because there are now so many people walking the places we usually frequent, we wanted to explore some place quieter. We found ourselves on Magdalene Hill Down and the five Bronze Age burial mounds there. 

It took two days, a week apart, to receive this information, so I will focus for this entry, on the first visit to the burial mounds.

Magdalene Down Barrow Cemetery.

On the slope of the Down, there are five Bronze Age burial mounds. Three are still intact, albeit with dips in the centre. The other two are barely discernible. We stood on the first large one in the row and tuned in as usual. This brought me back to the past in a wonderful way. The story is a female story.

Moving into the past is like re-experiencing past events in a physical way. I become part of it. Standing on the barrow, I am in the distant past and I am aware of being a woman, wearing white. There is a huge sense of joy and celebration and I am calling to the clans from the settlements to the east of the barrows. Many women and girls hear the call and they come, joyously, dressed in white, to join me. There is much excitement and I am aware of how important these sites are for the women. They are not merely places to bury their dead, but sites of great significance, of birth, of renewal, of life.

They come from their settlements with a sense of urgency. This is the time they have been waiting for. It has to be now – today! They connect with each other on a telepathic level so they are all working together with one mind. There is no separation here. Together, all holding hands, while I remain on the mound, the women dance around the barrow. Collectively, we call in an energy, which I recognise as dragon-energy, but they identify as something else, a creative-force, a tangible thing, alive. To me, with my modern mind, it is the white-dragon, which is highly creative and inspirational and feminine. To them it is a living energy, the same energy but we each have our own ways, through time, of experiencing it.

St. Catherine’s Hill from the barrows.

When the women call in this beautiful, creative force, it rises from the barrow and travels along an energetic path to St. Catherine’s Hill. They watch it, holding its energy with their Will and hearts until it reaches the summit of the hill, where it then encircles the top.

The process they are initiating will culminate in May. There is a corridor of time and energy between the beginning of Feb and the beginning of May in which to do this work.

On the second barrow, there was a distinctly masculine energy. It comes in the form of an Elder, with grey hair and beard and he is dressed in a grey robe. This energy is about male fertility, symbolised by the fish. It feels hot here, and a spring flame, which I call Brigit’s flame, is burning.

(We didn’t get any more on the male energy rituals until the next time we visited.)

Next, we stand on the third barrow, which after the heat of the previous one, feels really cold. This one is female again. I can see the women who had joined in celebration but now they are creating a tunnel of Blackthorn boughs in blossom, holding them in an arched corridor above their heads. Each girl takes her turn, like a dance, going through the blossom arch and as they travel, the energy of the blossom permeates them so they become the same energy. It is a fertility dance and they are being imparted with the fertile energy of the Spring Blossom which makes them fertile too. It is an energetic process, not a simply ritual one. They absorb the fertile energy of the blossom into their bodies, by osmosis until they and the energy of the Blackthorn are One.

Individually, they dance through, until the ones at the beginning of the archway, are now at the end, until each has had her turn. When Mayday, in their calendar, arrives they will process to St. Catherine’s Hill to complete the ritual. Everything they do is in preparation for that day and it all takes time. They know how to wait for the processes of nature and nothing is rushed.

When May arrives, one woman is chosen to be the representative of the earth’s creative energies and one man is chosen to represent the fertility aspects of water and sun. Together, each holding their respective energy, they reign until the following year, when a new couple is chosen. The couple chosen do not know who they were going to be paired with until the day of choosing, and the two are chosen because they showed the right qualities of dedication and learning over the preceding year. 

The newly crowned couple hold the energies for the surrounding areas for a year, enacting rituals that ensure the fertility of the area around the hill. They know their work will ensure the continuance of life for everyone and that the Mother and father will continue to care for them, providing them with food and shelter for another year.

This was a beautiful thing to witness. The Queen and King of the May are such an ancient tradition but it was interesting to see just how far this tradition went back. In modern times, the ritual is a re-enactment, but in times past it played an important role and was very real. The female group in the ritual were young women that appeared to be part of a group of women who trained to play this part. Only they were trained to hold the energy and to work with the necessary energies.

(The same applied to the young men, who had their own training, which we discovered when we returned the following week. But on this visit, we were shown the female aspect).

In May, they joined together, each representing, and holding, the masculine and feminine forces of creation.  

This entire experience seemed to be a process through time, where the celebrations and calling happened first, followed by the blossom-archway and then the celebration on St. Catherine’s.

On the fourth barrow, we were given the same information about the Queen’s awakening. Between February and May, she awakened, life returned. This was her time. Perhaps this is also about the Queen’s representative awakening to her role. The fact that this all happened around St. Catherine’s Hill was also magical. Maybe we should reinstate it?

On the Importance of Heresy…

If we have no heretics we must invent them, for heresy is essential to health and growth. ― Yevgeny Zamyatin

This morning’s on-awakening message was about the importance of heresy and heretics. Changes in deep-seated religious beliefs cannot happen without the heretics challenging the rigid status quo of beliefs about God, or society.

I’ve been thinking about that all morning, and I went online to check out some famous heretics. Living here in Egypt, we have our own famous heretic, Pharoah Akhenaten, who tried to change the spiritual beliefs of the entire country, failing, but only somewhat. His spiritual beliefs became part of the Jewish tradition.

The world is kept alive only by heretics: the heretic Christ, the heretic Copernicus, the heretic Tolstoy. Our symbol of faith is heresy. ― Yevgeny Zamyatin

Yes, Jesus was a heretic, as was Mary Magdalene, the first Christian. So was Mohammed, and his first wife, Khadija. She too was the first Muslim.  And Moses? Well… not that that is any consolation to fundamentalists of our three main western religions, all of which originated in the Middle East. Or perhaps I am being heretical?

Anway, hopefully you get my point. These heretics came to change the way humanity was doing things, none of them really succeeded, but they tried. Some got the real message and used it to base their life on, but most just used the beliefs to prop themselves up with. They are still doing it now.

I’m not sure why ‘upstairs’ are giving me this info at this time?   I am searching my inner and outer world to see why it applies. Are they reassuring me? Are some old Irish Catholic beliefs being stirred up internally? That’s probable. I do struggle with some issues of the Gaia Method system, especially when talking to men about it. It gives me a hot flush; being menopausal really shows me where my anxieties lie!

Working with the Gaia Method is a challenge because it really does challenge some unconscious beliefs around God, the Father! Because it is divinely Feminine in nature, and not Masculine, like our three main western religions, I suppose the fear is always there that it will end badly! Or that our Divine feminine energy will be suppressed etc. Not that I am putting myself on a par with the Moses, Jesus and Mohammed, but you get the idea. I believe too, that without the wives of these men, they could not have come as far as they did. The women played a vital role in their ability to teach their new ideas and to live them. Akhenaten was not an exception; if it wasn’t for Nefertiti’s strength he might never have gotten to Akhetaten in the first place. If it wasn’t for Khadija, Mohammed would have been too terrified to pass on his channelled information and if it wasn’t for Mary Magdalene, Jesus would not have learned about the rights of women to be free. Moses too learned his stuff from a Bedouin woman, who became his wife!

I believe too, that without the wives of these men, they would not have come as far as they did. The women played a vital role in their ability to teach their new ideas and to live them. Akhenaten was not an exception; if it wasn’t for Nefertiti’s strength he might never have gotten to Akhetaten in the first place. If it wasn’t for Khadija, Mohammed would have been too terrified to pass on his channelled information and if it wasn’t for Mary Magdalene, Jesus would not have learned about the rights of women to be free. Moses too learned his stuff from a Bedouin woman, who then became his wife! All of these men had female teachers, who taught them self-trust and awareness. Without those female teachers, our three main religions might never have come to be. It’s a shame that the rest of the population could not accept the teachings, but the seeds are still there.

Perhaps my own fear of what it means to be a heretic, especially after dying rather horribly having been accused of being one in the USA a few centuries ago, as a young Quaker girl, is triggered. Yes, even writing about it brings on a hot flush. I came in with that lifetime very close to the surface, and obviously, I chose that for a reason. Even though I know I am ‘safe’ enough in this lifetime, the fears still remain, although I know I can move past them. I know rationally that they don’t apply this time around, so I need to have an inner conversation with myself.

I’ll let you know what happens!