Drombeg stone circle, West Cork, Country Cork, Ireland.
Finally, we have arrived at the last of my posts in the Summer Solstice set (for all the series see this link). It has taken much longer than expected, not only due to the number of posts that the visit generated, but also due to issues with the blog stability that we have now hopefully traced and resolved. Thank you for bearing with us during this particularly extended period of disruption. Sometimes the Universe communicates to us in peculiar ways, and certainly for me the gremlins have struck at my very heart by disrupting this blog. However, re-alignment is taking place, and I am confident that soon you will see a more unified approach to the blog. You’ll see what I mean very soon. For now, let’s finish this set of stories.
Entrance Of The Initiate
After a steep and narrow descent around Drombeg we arrived at a startlingly spacious car park, and then proceeded along the hedge-lined path to the stone circle itself. Along the way we passed a couple who had camped in the circle the previous evening. They looked like they had had an interesting evening! Along the path the fuchsia bushes reminded me of the wonderful floral displays on Iona that we had seen in September 2012.
There were several things to see at the site. Obviously, the circle, but we’ll come to that. Elsewhere there were some smaller oval and circular enclaves which were labelled as “Fulachta Fiadh” - more ‘cooking pits’ it seems. Hmmm… As I sat on the ridge overlooking the site and connecting to the area I had a vision of how the structures were used. I saw a young man being escorted by a hooden and robed figure. He was led into the covered dome structure. Inside he was put through a ‘sweating’ process and then left alone for the night. During the night he emerged and walked into the stone circle to meditate. That relationship seemed to replicate the way I felt about the Dromagorteen circle too.
Now it was time for my own initiation into the circle mysteries!
Ardgroom stone circle, Kerry, Ireland
Somehow, in our travels up and down the coast road of the Breara Peninsula, we had missed the sign. The sign was small and so was the lane along which we had to travel. The day was coming close to an end, and the sun was beginning to drag the shadows into longer shapes. Heading now towards Ardgroom circle we found that the land ended in a car park suitable for three or four cars. There was one parked there already, and we slotted in next to it. The signs to the circle pointed towards some marsh reeds, showing us that at any other time of the year we would be walking through a marshland, but luckily at the height of summer the ground was rutted but hard.
As we approached the circle we could see that it was dominated by a group of people, most of whom were standing with their backs to a tall stone. One woman was sitting at the edge of the circle in the middle of the company. She seemed to be directing a ritual, so Kal and I moved off to one side of the site so as not to disturb them while they worked.
Kal wandered down to the circle, dowsing as he went, prowling around the outer edges. I kept my distance, taking photographs of the circle from various angles to pass the time while we waited to see if the group would finish their work any time soon. They looked bedded in for the day, and so I dowsed for a suitable place to work outside the circle instead. I was taken to a small hillock where there were several fairy rings in the grass. This seemed a good vantage point to do my own work from while I wanted to see what would happen inside the circle. I did a connection and soon I was feeling the flow of energy from the hills behind me, and the sweeping power of a ‘dark’ lady whom I was becoming familiar with on this trip.
The Summer Solstice Day was coming to a close and as you have read the last 10+ posts, it had been an amazing time. Gwas and I always consider the question…
- Can it get any better?
And then it does! Can you beat that kind of life? I doubt it. So here we were in the midst of mountains that rose up on all sides. The sacred site that we had arrived at was called, Shronebirran.
Upon our arrival we spent a considerable time trying to capture the glory of the surroundings. It was hopeless.
One of the things that Gwas and I strongly recommend to readers is Go Out There! What you read here, honestly, it pails to what we actually experience and see. Please…just go!
I was quite surprised by the answer of No, to my question of, ‘did I need to prepare’ It is rare when I get a No to this question and almost every time I have, it is because I had prepared at a previous place. No such thing had happened in this instance and so I was left with the understanding that I was ready.
Following the rods to a place of learning (or so I was informed). I was taken aback by the sudden appearance of Caileach. As seemed to be her Irish modus operandi, she flickered into existence as if she had been there all the time.
Again, I find it hard to get this concept across. Hmmmm…. imagine the wind blowing gently after a while you forget its even there and then, something gives your focus a nudge and you feel the wind…which has always been there. Does that make sense?
The goddess (for here in Ireland of all places she was possessed of that aura) stood in her majesty before me and I felt like a student at class. She made an encompassing gesture, taking in, what? Infinity?
- “Destiny has strands,” she said, “for each person. Some fall away incomplete, some are taken up and some are not chosen”
- “The only choice we have is that, choice”
I was about to question the “we”, did it mean that this was true of her too? But she hushed me, seriously she did.
- “There are Eleven strands to my destiny.”
That was a bit specific I thought and how did she know?
- “Four have been completed” She continued, “Two start today and Five lie in the future”
Which had been completed I blurted out before she could shush me.
- She gave me a stern look, “You have consciously connected with your double.” She gave me a piercing look, “You are Fay tainted.”
Mentally, I was leavering fingers off my fist…that was two, what of the other two.
- “You have fulfilled your mother’s prayer and…”
I am afraid I am going to have to keep that last one a secret. It is personal you understand? Having such a being reel of your destiny is a humbling and ego feeding feeling. Still, I had my wits about me. What had started today? I asked.
- “That cannot be said at this time, but in the future you will mark this day as their beginning.”
Why tell me any of it I wondered and the Goddess made a slashing movement.
- “A marker has to be drawn between what was, is and will be”
And with a twist in the fabric of reality she was gone. Leaving me with grand thoughts of destiny.
Shronebirrane stone circle, Kerry, Ireland
To find this circle you need to follow the brown signs inland from the R571 Beara peninsula coast road after passing through Lauragh village. More information can be found at the Isle of Albion site.
After wending our way along a single track road that snaked along a valley floor for what seemed like an eternity we end up at a small car park next to a long farmhouse. We are surrounded by beautiful and tall hills, yet the valley is wide enough for us to catch the remainder of the solstice day’s rays.
As we pass the farmhouse we are met by the owner who charges us a nominal fee to enter the site in what is effectively their back garden. Their sheep wander around the circle leaving small black deposits.
I begin my investigations outside of the circle, whilst Kal heads straight inside, as he often does. I dowse firstly for the Spirit of Place for the site and find that the circle has one. Good. I ask to be shown where the spirit is, and I am taken all around the outside of the circle, threading in and out of some of the stones. That’s unusual, but vaguely familiar! I’m sure I found the same energy form at Cerrig Pryfaid near Conwy years ago. After my third perambulation I am back on the same track again, so it would appear that the spirit forms three discernible circles of energy around the stones.
When I ask to connect with the spirit I am taken by the dowsing rods to stand at one of the stones which lie to one side of the circle. Here I can connect with the spirit, and I learn that she is born of the surrounding mountains and that she has been at this circle for thousands of years.
The name of the place was Uragh. Cool name right? It was set in an absolutely gorgeous valley that our pictures do no justice at all. With mountains surrounding us on pretty much all of the fronts, we arrived at this final site for the Solstice day.
As I wandered around the place introducing myself to the Genius Loci I got the feeling that Fay were around too. For once the rods agreed with me (they usually can’t detect Fay) and I was led to a portal to their demesne. As had happened before, I had to use three power centres to open the portal. This was done by intentionally placing incense at certain points and then turning the lock.
As seems to be consistently the case, the portal was not near the glen itself. In this instance I was taken to another hillock on the opposite side of the stones. As I approached, I felt that here was a place where I needed to offer an exchange of some kind. As seems popular with such folk, I offered tales and stories. Which was accepted. Browsing through my memories my focus landed on the story of my Knights Quest. The Fay readily accepted this and an exchange occurred.
Something that had been on my mind for a while now had been the notion of ancestral energies. So I put this to the assembled beings (I felt that there were definitely more than one).
- Can you tell me about Ancestral Energy? I asked, to which the answer was yes.
- Is it reincarnation energy I asked. To be quite honest, I wanted a No answer to this as it doesn’t fit my belief system. The Fay concurred in that ancestral energy has nothing to do with reincarnation. Wishful thinking? Maybe. I continued…
- Is it like D.N.A. energy? As you will know, we are connected to our ancestors in a biological sense through our D.N.A. So I wondered if this ancestral energy was somehow equivalent to a kind of Energy D.N.A. To my surprise the answer was a Yes.
If you have been with us (here at Hedge Druid) for a while, you will recall that Gwas had gone in search of (and to collec) his ancestral enegies in this very land of Ireland a couple of years ago.
- I asked whether it was beneficial to collect this energy. The Fay (and I felt a different one than had been communing with me before) said Yes.
- Did I have to go to the physical place to gather this energy (as Gwas had)? No.
- Would they tell me how I could get collect this energy? Through Dreaming they replied.
In my learnings I have come across many forms of dreaming from Native shamans of North America to Aboriginal shamans of Australia (and the vastness between, including some odd notions from supposedly Atlanteans).
- I listed the ones that I was aware of and the answer settled on a form of Dreaming that Carlos Castaneda talked about in the Art of Dreaming.
Fortunately I am very familiar with that form since I spent about two years putting the basics together a long time ago. It seems that those practices might have to be resurrected. Gosh! That kind of Dreaming is scary.
Whether because of the interaction or the lateness of the day, I was getting tired. From my end I was done and expecting a No, I asked whether there was anything else to learn here? Surprisingly the answer way Yes. Oh, okay.
I was informed (and again the communicator had switched) that the Fay are powerful healers. Okay, I thought. Why are they telling me this? Out of curiosity, I asked whether they would perform such a healing on me? They replied, Yes. But another exchange was required.
What would you like? I asked, mentally opening my storybook. No, not a story was the reply I received. Something else. What? I couldn’t determine what they wanted, but had the overwhelming (intuition) sense that the price being asked was way beyond what I should pay.
That, in and of itself was an incredible feeling. For once, listening to my intuition, I said, “no thanks, not this time.” I got the sense that the Fay shrugged your loss and we parted commune. As a by the way I hadn’t got any sense of entrapment as I have at other Fay groves.
I was about to close the portal when a thought occurred to me, did the Fay have anything to do with the sacred circle? I got a deep laugh in response. We have been here aeons before that place! It might be said that it is here because of Us! That was telling me!
I closed the portal, as I had opened it and felt that much had been learned.
We were lost or rather the sacred sites we were looking for were not where the map had indicated. We drove back and forth along several routes to no avail. I was reminded of a spell I had come across long ago.
Turn about – where a person is put into such a confusion that they cannot find their way out of the simplest of places. So it seemed for us. I know what you are thinking… Leprechauns. Well we wernt. One of the abilities of such odd beings is that of concealment. I don’t mean that they hide from you, but rather that they don’t let the thought that it might be them cross your mind. Ireland and Leprechaun energy is something we have come across on other occasions. But the thing is, the very thought that it might be a leprechaun is hidden from you. You just don’t think of it.
In hindsight I suspect that that is what had happened to us. Anyway, we were at a loss. Then we drove past a sign that indicated a sacred place in the woods. Cashelkeelty by name. Not seeing a way forward we decided to take a punt (pun intended).
So we set off on perhaps the lowest ebb of our whole Irish experience. We walked through the woods in hope, we clambered up half a mountain in faith and finally we trudged across a plain in pure damned determination. Yes, I know, all three of these should have screamed LEPRECHAUN!
Finally, we made it to the two sacred places that the sign had alluded to. We were shattered and frankly couldn’t care less. I left Gwas at the first of the sites and made the extra effort to get to the next one.
To say I was let down when I asked the question, is there anything for me to do here, is an understatement of gross preportions. Both of the places were useless to me. Confounded, I asked whether there was anything I could salvage from the climb. Fortunately the answer was yes.
Many, many questions later led me to the understanding that I would have to create my own temporary sacred place. The rods took me off towards the coast so I could see the sea and the sacred stones behind me.
I found four huge pieces of quartz and laid them in a pattern indicated by the rods. Four incense sticks followed. I wondered what the purpose of this would be and then it came to me. I could see into the depths of my Energy Double. Okay, now we are talking! I sat in the indicated place and looked out at the water in the distance, to connect with the element. I was just about to focus internally and on my double when it (my double) kicked in. I was stopped. Missing something, Of course! Caileach’s words came back to me. “I have to be with you” she had said. I looked around…Well, where are you? I asked out into the world. Then I got the sense of her gratitude energy…ah…use that? It was a rhetorical question.
I pulled energy from the Earth to anchor myself and knew that it was being dragged out of the sacred site behind me (see note at end). Heavily anchored, I reached out to the depths of the ocean. Taking a Water Element resonance from that, I brought into play the energy of gratitude from Caileach. Again, I felt the awe of that energy filling me. I was fulfilled and prepped. I began to scry my enegy double…
Stars…I thought for a moment that I was looking at the place where my Energy Double existed…Stars. Then I realised that the stars were what my double was made of. Wow! Stars?!? As I looked deeper, another realisation hit me. They were not stars… they were connections, portals, a term from science hit me, wormholes! These were junctures that led to impossible places. I was getting confused…was this my double or was this its playground? I couldn’t discern which or both. Feeling that I was losing my grip and vision. I picked one and looked deeper.
You have to get hold of this knowledge without knowing how concept. I knew that this portal led down a stream of ancestral energy. Asian…Pakistan…are the senses that I got. Along with another…I would have to connect with it to collect it. With that mysterious instruction, I was pulled back to myself and again saw the field of stars. I knew that these possibilities would be open to me when I was whole and after I had practiced seeing into the depth of things.
With a jolt, I was back to normal and my double had ejected itself too. I lay down on the ground and pulled in solstice energy to replenish myself. As my senses returned to normal, I heard my Totem, Bee, fluttering around me constantly…keeping watch?
It was a long time before I recovered. Gwas was patiently waiting when I finally rose and felt able for the journey back to the car. As I walked away from my temporary created sacred place, a whiff of Caileach appeared. Destroy this place!
I dismantled the stones and energy of the place and walked back to Gwas who had been measuring the energy of the stones. He informed me that all the rocks save the middle one were 8. The middle was 5. It had been the rock that I had drawn energy from. I asked him to check it again and he did. It was an 8 again.
Kal Malik – seeing things that few have seen.
Uragh stone circle, Kerry, Ireland
The solstice day is picking up in terms of weather. The sun comes out as we pick out way slowly down the narrow track which we hope ends at the picturesque stone circle of Uragh. We park when we can drive no further, and walk to a small rise between two lakes, and suddenly the view becomes amazing in all directions.
As Kal went straight into the circle I walked to the top of the rise to give myself an overview of the area. There was a large recumbent stone on top of the small hill, and this became my base from which to observe. I could see other people milling about in the area admiring the views and visiting the circle. I would wait until the place felt calmer before I descended.
When the coast was clear I came down to visit the circle. I waltzed around it seeing if I could sense the right place to approach it. There was a ritual creation on the grass a few feet away from an opening in the rib-like structure of the smaller set of standing stones. This was the entrance point that I felt was right for me. Clearly, it was right for someone else too, and they had got there before me. I approached the oval of stones, a shape typical of this region, and introduced myself to the site, hoping to catch the attention of the Spirit of Place.
I noticed that my black wings (see previous posts) once again gave me an unhindered access and an immediate welcome to the site. That is so refreshing! It was like having a calling card, or a free pass. I felt the Spirit of Place react to this and to my druid name. It would also seem that my family name has some resonance in these parts too, although not the same power as when I am farther north in this island. As I settled to lie down (the obvious thing to do in the slight depression) I felt comfortable, and the sun shone through breaks in the clouds to light the scene.
The Spirit of Place introduced himself as Igneorl. It sounded like it was based on the word “igneous” – a classification of rock. Now it was time to get to work.