I was at the Mysterious Earth Conference this year. The conference was held at the Village Hall in the village of Grimsargh near Preston in Lancashire, England. Kal had come up so that we could go to this event together, which was very nice of him to make the effort. There were four speakers lined up, but we only found three of them to be relevant to our studies and research, so I will concentrate on the positives and tell you about these three.
The three speakers of interest to me were:-
- Kevin Rowan-Drewitt – Neolithic Observatories
- Pete Knight – West Kennet Long Barrow: Ancestors, Landscape and the Cosmos
- Gary Biltcliffe – The Belinus Line & The Spine of Albion
Here is a run-down of their primary themes and some notes that I took about each of their lectures.
Neolithic observatories by Kevin Rowan-Drewitt
Kevin’s talk was informative and a feast of facts. Having read many books on the subject of Alexander Thom, his Megalithic Yard, and of his convincing argument that most if not all stone circles are designed as neolithic calendars to track the movements of the sun and moon, I didn’t find too many points that were new to me. However, Kevin’s lecture was clearly delivered, well structured and well-argued, even if he was simply relating other people’s theories. For those who may have been new to the concept of neolithic astrological observatories it would have been truly enlightening.
Some notes that I made that were particularly significant for me were:-
- Bryn Celli Ddu on Anglesey has in-built alignments for tracking Venus and the Summer Solstice. You may remember that I was called there in 2009 to observe Venus, even though at the time I had no idea what I was seeing.
- Mayburgh Henge in Cumbria is aligned to the eastern sunrise
- The book ‘Uriel’s Machine‘ by Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas contains the practical workings out of the theories of ancient astrological circle structure, and they based much of their work on the ‘Book Of Enoch‘, particularly the section ‘The Book of Courses of the Heavenly Luminaries’
- In the Book of Enoch the circle-makers are mentioned as The Watchers. Rowan-Dewitt interprets this as being the Beaker People.
Personally, I feel this Bronze Age Beaker culture only created some of the last generation of megalithic structures, not the first ones, even if their structures were the most sophisticated, impressive and enduring. The astrological know-how was already in existence and evidenced by timber and rudimentary stone circles before the arrival of the so-called Beaker culture, so this doesn’t hang together for me.
- Also in that ancient text, The Nephilim are mentioned as being from the Orion Constellation.
- Newgrange, in the Boyne Valley in Ireland is aligned with the Winter Solstice sunrise but also with Venus too, on an eight-year cycle.
- The line of ‘lozenge’ shapes or crosses on the lintel at Newgrange may denote the Venus cycle, as there are eight such symbols in a row.
- Thornborough Henge in Yorkshire is aligned to Orion.
- The Sun has a 32-year cycle until it rises at exactly the same spot on the horizon. This fact is used by Rowan-Dewitt to support the idea that astrological observances and star lore must have been passed down through the generations or preserved in some fashion because neolithic people had a relatively short life span.
- Most measurements of megalithic structures are in 0.5 Megalithic Yards, or 16.32 inches. The Megalithic Yard of 2.72 feet was used for convenience by Alexander Thom.
West Kennet Long Barrow by Peter Knight
Peter Knight is a well-practised and engaging speaker. His presentation was slick, precise and moved you from one concept to another easily and with a sense of passion. I am a fan of the West Kennet Long Barrow myself and have had many visits to the site mostly unaccompanied and without anyone else around, so I have been able to practise many of the things that Peter talked about in the shamanic parts of his talk. However, in the first part he went through the various alignments with the surrounding megalithic sites such as Avebury, Silbury Hill, East Kennet, and many of the lesser-known circles, tumuli and hills that form the rich Wiltshire megalithic landscape.
Some notes that I made on this talk were:-
- There are sun and moon rising or setting sight alignments from West Kennet to many of the surrounding features.
- Some of the lesser-known sites include Belas Knap chamber, Silbaby (or Woden Mound), Morgan’s Hill and Harestone stone circle.
- The long barrow itself is constructed with layers of large rubble, then fine rubble, turf, then a sarsen stone core. The layering is reminiscent of Wilhelm Reich’s Orgone Accumulator principle.
- There is an acoustic “hot spot” close to the stone called “The Skull Stone” which is considered to be a portal to the Underworld.
- Long barrows and chambers in the area are mainly aligned to the South-East (the Midwinter Solstice).
- East Kennet is aligned to the Orion constellation, West Kennet to the Gemini constellation.
- A cave was usually associated with a process of initiation or transformation.
PETER’S WEB SITE: Stoneseeker
The Spine of Albion by Gary Biltcliffe
I have been eagerly awaiting Gary’s book about this subject for over a year now. Hopefully it is due to be published soon. Gary has spent a lot of time, effort and money on travelling up and down the country in pursuit of a ley line that he is calling the Belinus Line, after the ancient Celtic god Baal or Bel. The name thereafter got associated with a king of England called King Belinus, who was supposedly one of the great road-building kings, although many believe that the lack of historical evidence suggests he may be a mythical figure rather than an actual king. Certainly, it is not uncommon for people in power to associate themselves with great engineering from lost generations, for example the Romans simply paved many of the existing spirit roads that were created as embankments by the druid culture and those before them too. We all now know these roads as ‘Roman Roads’ which is testament to the power of a written historical record, rather than to the feats of engineering.
For the talk in Preston Gary concentrated on those sites which were more local to us, rather than describe all the sites along the line. Given that it had taken him 20 years to follow them, he was unlikely to get through them all in an hour!
- Seven Barrows Down is the crossing point for the Belinus Line with the Michael/Mary Line.
- The village of Dunsop Bridge is the geographical centre of the Belinus Line
- North/South ley lines are associated with physical and East/West lines with the spiritual, thus the Belinus Line is mainly a physical line with very few spiritual centres on it.
- The line goes through various centres including Lichfield, Birmingham, Manchester and Carlisle.
- Dragon stories hint at the location of sacred sites such as caves, wells and mounds.
- The Belinus Line has twelve bands of energy – balanced with 6 male and 6 female.
- Guy Raglan Philips was the first to identify the line.
- The female lines are violet in colour and the male lines are gold/yellow
- The line goes through The Bridestones – formerly one of England’s largest long barrows.
- Marton church gives a unique view of the sunrise over The Cloud in Cheshire
- Shap has an avenue of stones similar to Avebury
- The Kemp Howe stone circle is on the line
- Other sites on the line are Merlindale, Knowlmere, Alderley Edge, Caverswall, The Rollright Stones, and Uffington Dragon Hill and White Horse
- In Carlisle Catherdral is a stone carving of kissing dragons
- Arthuret Church in Cumbria holds a familiar title of King Arthur’s burial place, and has a well called St.Michael’s running through it.
GARY’S WEB SITE: The Belinus Line
I hope those comments make some sense to you! They are slightly out of context, but they may be more relevant if you get to see them speak for yourselves.