As I mentioned in my post about an update to the Sacred Sites page recently here is a more detailed account of my recent visit to the rather small but beautifully formed site that is The Bridestones. By some accounts what remains is but a small part of an originally much larger collection of stones and chambers. Here is a quote from the Unknown Phenomena Investigation Association’s web site:
“The site is very different to its original structure; many tons of stone were taken from the cairn by the builders of the nearby turnpike road in 1764. Other stones were used to build the adjacent house and farm, and more were recycled into an ornamental garden in Tunstall Park.
However, before this large scale ransacking occurred, it appears that the Bridestones was an incredible monument, perhaps unique in England. Evidence from a variety of sources indicates that it was a chambered tomb of massive proportions with a paved crescent forecourt and a port-holed stone dividing the main chamber. The complex was supposedly 110 metres in length with the horned cairn being 11 metres wide. A report from the 18th Century notes that in addition to the main chamber which still stands today, a further two subsidiary ones were located at a distance of 55 yards. No traces of these have ever been found, but there is much debate as to whether they are located east of the surviving chamber, or west. The latter seems more likely as they were probably covered by the same cairn as the main chamber.” (source: UPIA web site)
My task on this visit was not to investigate the former scale of the site, but to map the remaining energies in detail. I set about the task with some vigour as there was a cool wind and the sky was thickly clouded – not a day to be hanging around sun-bathing!
Luckily for my work the site was empty and there was little passing traffic from Dial Lane – the road passing the site across the adjacent field. The field contained a small group of young bullocks, though, and brought to mind several dowsing visits where cows had curtailed such dowsing endeavours. This spurred me into action all the quicker!
Yet I couldn’t start dowsing just yet. I had to have a good look around and get “into attunement” with the site, which is simply a question of being there, without thought, tuning into one’s senses and taking in everything at once without analysis. Moments later I felt myself blend into the site much better, and then I was ready to start dowsing its energies.
I started at the entrance and worked inwards to the chamber. Once I found a connection to the chamber I stayed in there for a while finding its power centres, denoted by terminating spirals. The alignment of the power centres seemed beautifully balanced – a male here, then a female, then a male and female centre combined. It felt lovely to be dowsing here – some sites feel ‘difficult’ or complex, but this site was beautiful in its simplicity and balance.
Inside the chamber
I stepped into the chamber by the right-hand edge’s gap and felt a compulsion to light a stick of incense in there. These days I go with such feelings, so I lit one and it scented the air nicely as I dowsed the rest of the chamber. Were the remains of the dividing wall between the two parts of the chamber the place where there was a hole that could fit a man, allowing access between the two when there had been a roof? It was hard to tell. The dowsing rods indicated that possibility, but were not conclusive about it.
Re-emerging from the chamber an intriguing lone pointed (male) stone caught my attention and I found that it had a connection to an energy that formed a ritual path into the nearby chamber. I was finding this feature almost every time I dowse a site now, and am beginning to think that Stone Dowser may have been on to something with his ‘ritual paths’. It does indeed seem like there was a specific way to enter some sites, irrespective of simply finding entrances.
The bullocks begin to take an interest and come over to see what’s happening. We have a short one-way conversation where I quiz them about why they might be interested in my dowsing. When questioned they move away as though they had never been interested after all.
I followed the spirals I had found to their termination points. Where did they go? Were they self-contained or did they link to other sites, I wondered? The female-to-female spirals I knew were self-contained, as was the male energy around the outlying male stone. It was the male/female power centre that needed to be explained. I followed the female energy to a large spiral a few feet outside the entrance to the chamber. The male energy flowed through a gap at the back of the chamber to sinew its way out of the back of the site but I couldn’t follow it far through the thick rhododendrons, brambles and assorted other obstacles that sealed off the rear of the site.
Some sort of rambler’s club began to make their presence known by gabbling loudly as they walked up the lane to the site. I decided this would be a good time to retire to consider what I wanted to do next, and leave the site to them for a few minutes. In my experience visitors to ancient sites are usually frequent, but fleeting. And so it proved. Minutes later your anti-social Hedge Druid had devised a set of questions to ask at the site and was back on the job without distractions – even the curious bulls had retreated faced with the retirement party.
I made a more respectful entrance, introducing myself to the guardian of the site, stating my name and purpose, and asking for permission to enter. A curious ritual, but one which I have learned from reading about and trying to understand the mind of The Druids. It was at this stage that things began to take a mystical turn!
I’ve posted recently on the strange phenomenon of the sun making an appearance when Kal and I meditate at sacred sites. Standing on the power centre in front of the tall stones outside the chamber I felt a gradual warmth penetrate my eyelids. I opened my eyes to see the whole site, and only the site, bathed in the spotlight of sunbeams the were radiating through a gap in the thick cloud cover that had been the constant feature of the day’s weather. This was highly improbable, but certainly very welcome!
I smiled. I felt integrated with the site’s energies, and in response the sun was smiling down on me. Of course, it’s pure coincidence, but when it happens like this you feel something special is happening. I felt this was a good time to get the rest of my questions answered.
Here are the questions I asked the dowsing rods to help me answer about this site:-
- Is this site still capable of performing its original function? YES.
- Is the site still energetically active? NOT RIGHT NOW. (3:50pm on 3rd October 2009)
- Can the site be activated? YES. AT SAMHAIN.
- Can the site be used for education, revelation, healing, transformation, communication or something else? EDUCATION by nature spirits, REVELATION, HEALING, and TRANSFORMATION.
- Does the site need restoring, healing or balancing? NO to all.
- Is there a genius loci present at this site? YES. FEMALE.
- Does this site respond to human interaction, the position of the sun, moon or stars? YES to all. Specifically the FULL moon, and the sun at NOON. Stars, less so.
- Is the site an observatory, a calendar, an initiation chamber or a burial place? OBSERVATORY, CALENDAR, INITIATION CHAMBER.
- Is there underground water at this site? YES.
With that information in mind I went back to do some quick dowsing for where water might be present at the site to see if it had any obvious significance in terms of where it might flow. As you can see from my sketch below there were two main flows of underground water crossing the site, and indeed they did tally with significant places for energy – namely the female spiral links just behind the entrance to the chamber, and the other, wider stream being marked by an outlying stone.
As I drove away from the site back towards Congleton I saw the group of bullocks react. They saw me driving away and began to gallop as a tight group stalking the car from across the field. I watched in a kind of amused shock. What were they doing? Then they turned like a flock of starlings straight towards me as they approached the end wall of the field. Now they were galloping towards me with a speed I could never have supposed a bovine to be capable of! I waved to them and wished them a cheery good day as my car dipped down the hill and beyond the confines of the field. Very strange behaviour!
From the information gleaned from this site I can see that there might be more to be learned, but that the next interaction would need to be a much more spiritual affair, guided by the information that I have obtained from dowsing. I think this clearly demonstrates the way in which dowsing can be used as a powerful investigative tool that can lead one quickly to understand qualities of a site, and the times when these qualities can best be utilised for the purposes that the site was designed for. We shall see!