Ancient Sites | Dowsing

A new low for Arbor Low

October 3, 2011

This is a brief and largely unexciting account of a recent visit to Arbor Low. Unless you’re specifically interested in this site I’d skip it because it doesn’t reveal much of interest outside of those who would visit the site. I’m posting it for completeness’ sake, and for those who have an unhealthy interest in Arbor Low.

It was a damp and windy September day when I arrived at my friend Michael’s house. The usual crew of our psychic friends were there, plus a new addition whom Michael had been wanting to introduce me to for ages. I was introduced to Janet and immediately I liked her. She was robust, earthy, plain-speaking and no-nonsense. Being a Yorkshire lad I felt right at home with that. We chatted for a while and Janet offered to let me read a copy of “The Eye of Fire” by Graham Philips – the sequel to the astonishing book “The Green Stone“. I had read The Green Stone recently and had been fascinated by it. I was going to buy the book and its sequel second-hand but prices were starting at £20 each and rising quickly to ridiculous figures! Luckily, Janet had a copy and was willing to lend it to me. I devoured its contents the next weekend! Now I am busy working my way through Andrew Collins‘ account of the same events in his book “The Seventh Sword“.

The Eye of Fire

We didn’t hold out much hope for a break in the rain as we wended our way past some of the places mentioned in the Green Stone book, particularly Biddulph Grange. The discussions about the books passed the time on the way to Arbor Low. I was liking Janet even more, her ready smile, her chuckle, and her immediate warmth.


A Typical Arbor Low Greeting

On the walk up to Arbor Low we were greeted by a cheeky urchin – one of the boys who lived at the farmhouse that governs the  £1 entrance fee. He was ensuring that all the weekend visitors paid their way. We were sure we’d get our money’s worth.

As we approached the site I made my customary announcement that as I was moon-aligned I would be going in via the top entrance, and began to walk around to the right of the raised earthwork. As we reconvened inside the circle I asked what everyone’s first impressions were. The uniform response was “we don’t like this place”. Oh! Honestly, I didn’t care for it much either, but only because it was never clement enough for me to feel that I could spend enough time here to get to attune to the place. Clearly other felt the same way, but the response still startled me in that it was so un-hesitantly delivered by everyone.

Attempts at work

Mike and I got together to discuss whether we felt there was any healing work to be done at the site. After taking a psychic reading and doing some dowsing our conclusion was that there might be work to do, but that we couldn’t do anything until Spring Equinox next year (2012). We both concluded that it was the wrong thing to attempt at this time, and that the site was going to shut itself down for the next six months, and doing any energetic work at all would be futile.

As if the weather hadn’t put enough of a damper on the occasion, now we had no-one liking the site and nothing to do here. We ambled around randomly like American tourists. Until we overheard an American tourist talking about one of the central stones (the “sacrificial stone” , as the tourist called it). A quick dowsed confirmed my thoughts – that stone had never been used for sacrifice, and it was certainly never designed or positioned for that purpose.

Arbor Low's central 'sacrifice' stone

I decided to check whether it had any power centres or energy spiral around it. I dowsed a small negative spiral (negative in the sense that I was not compatible with it, and that it was detrimental to my energy field). I checked if it was linked to anything else. It was. Nearby and still close to the stone was another negative spiral. And another. Then another. And they kept on coming! In all I counted NINE negative energy spirals surrounding the central stone. No wonder we all felt psychically that the site was not welcoming!

Yet there was nothing we could do about it at this time. We checked and checked again. This was the way it was and there was nothing we could or should do to influence it.

Psychic Ruth from Navan Fort

As I stood chatting to one of our group Maddy introduced me to a young lady with a Northern Irish accent. She was called Ruth and said she was from Navan Fort, in County Armagh. I didn’t know Navan Fort, but like many people I got it confused with Navan, which I knew from when Kal and I visited County Meath a year or so ago. We visited the Hill of Tara then, and that was close to Navan. [ed. correction courtesy of Nora – see comments for details]

Maddy had felt we might get along because Ruth had just pendulum-dowsed the same nine spirals that I had found, but she had gone further. She said she could see them too, and she could also see the larger spiral (“a spirit line”, as she called it) that connected them all to the radial lines emanating from the central stone. Aha – now that was pure confirmation of our findings on previous occasions! I was now very interested in what Ruth had to say about the site, and we continued to swap findings.

After our conversation I set about dowsing for the Genius Loci. I found the Genius Loci just off the Moon Entrance path, very much in the path that I had dowsed it took on a previous visit, and that made me pleased that my dowsing was consistent over time. I came back to chat with Janet, and we got into a chat about what the site could have been used for, and whether the stones were always recumbent. I felt that they were always like that, and that they may be star maps. I certainly felt that the site as a whole was a place of learning, like a sort of neolithic observatory-cum-university. Janet went misty-eyed and then wistfully agreed that she felt that I might be right.

Retreat to Gib Hill

(c) Twenty Trees Photography

The weather turned even less inviting. In an effort to escape the unrelenting wind and driving rain we made our way to nearby Gib Hill – a mound with no known archaeological purpose. Really?

As I climbed the twenty-feet high mound I asked the dowsing rods to locate anything on the hill that was of energetic interest. The rods led me very directly to the only stone on the top of the mound. It was vaguely rectangular, tending towards square. The dowsing rods went mad on top of it – twirling strongly. I began to investigate further. I felt it was an entrance stone – a stone placed on top of the entrance to the mound to seal it off. Just as I was contemplating how I could possible zoom into this idea in more detail and was formulating some questions other people began to gather around it with their own ideas. And Ruth had joined us again.

Ruth called the mound a “beacon fire”. She said that there was a strong bright yellow and orange fire emanating from this stone in particular, which made the whole mound glow from a distance. No-one else saw this, however, except her. Still she pressed her point home, expressing how warm the stone was – couldn’t everyone else feel it? We all knelt down to feel how warm the entrance stone was. Some got a tingle. I didn’t. I feel that if you hold your hand a few millimetres away from any surface you will feel the reflected warmth of your hand! I think that’s what was being felt. When I felt the stone it felt cold – as cold as the air on this chilly late Summer day.

Michael suggested that the word “Gib” might suggest a hanging site, perhaps linked to the work “gibbet“? I dowsed to see whether Gib had ever seen any such events – none. Others confirmed this too, although I liked the idea that “gibbet” also meant a forked stick. This reminded me of the traditional dowsing rod – a forked twig.

Goodbye Arbor Low – see you in the Summer

We retreated back to the car, saying our farewells to Ruth and her boyfriend. Before I left her I scribbled down a list of nearby sacred sites that she might like to visit if she had a few days in the area. Our hands were now so cold that it was difficult to write even, and no-one was interested in dowsing or anything else except to find warm shelter. Besides we were hungry. We had brought a picnic but this was definitely not picnic weather. A new low for Arbor Low. I don’t think I have ever left the place so disappointed at the visit. A sad day. I think I will only go back there if there is something that specifically leads me to the place, and if the day is guaranteed to be warm and sunny.


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  1. Hi Gwas & Kal,

    My spiritual partner in crime & I visited Arbor Low last week & while it was windy, it was a beautifully sunny day. We felt pretty good there & spent some time in the centre, walking the perimeter, Gibb hill etc. When we returned through the “Moon entrance” my friend stood in the centre & I stood outside the circle with the sun behind me. She saw my aura very clearly extending out at least a foot. At the same location, looking into the circle we both saw jumping energy “fireflies” in the atmosphere so I would suggest that the site has opened up again after it’s winter break!

    1. We think you’re right! You’ve kind of pre-empted our up-coming posts! There’s one coming very soon on Arbor Low. Hang on – I’ll just go post it now!!

      – There – done. What a coincidence!


  2. I have read your entries on Arbor Low with interest, I would like to pass on an experiences of mine at this site
    Before I go further I should mention I don’t believe in any religious belief system although I respect others who do.

    I was at the site on the night leading up to the summer solstice, something I have done many times with friends. I was going back to my car to fetch something I had forgotten and was walking through the circle. I stumbled and automatically reached out with my hand for the nearest thing available, which in this case was one of the stones.
    Just before my hand made contact with the stone I saw what can only be described as a jolt of electricity, a vivid electric blue flash, it felt identical to the few times I have experienced minor shocks when working on ignition systems of vehicles.
    I still wonder to this day what it actually was, at the time it gave me a minor ‘lack of faith’ crisis.
    You probably receive plenty of trolling but in this case it is the truth

    1. Hi Steve,

      That’s an interesting story and one with which I can associate. A good friend of mine had a similar experience at a standing stone near to his home. When he first visited it he received what he described as a “jolt of energy” that flashed through his hand as he touched the stone. He claims that this was the moment that began his dowsing career, and that since that time he has been able to sense earth energies. I wonder if you have noticed any particular new “talents” that may have developed as a consequence of your own experience?


  3. Really enjoy your posts. Thanks for the efforts of putting them up. I visited Arbor Low regularly over many years and would confirm that sometimes it welcomes you with open arms and other times definitely wants to be left alone – like many ancient sites. You might get the call to go but never knew what mood it was in when you got there – often reflected your own mood as so often happens at sites. Also a group of people would get very variable experiences at the same time, again reflecting their own ‘stuff’ possibly. Not a productive site you say – we often learn most from our challenges! As an aside you mention a lady from Navan with a Northern Ireland accent. Wondering if she was from the area of Navan Fort (Emain Macha) near Armagh, which is in the North, rather than Navan near Tara in Meath. The two are often confused.

    1. Aha! Navan Fort! You’re right – that’s exactly where she said she was from. It was me who mixed the two up and now that I remember she did indeed put me straight at the time, but I had forgotten that bit. Thanks for that. Phew – feel better now that you pointed that out. I will amend the post accordingly.

      Hi Nora,

      Very good point about the way ancient sites can reflect moods, or have their own moods change “with the weather”. I suspect, but haven’t yet convinced myself, that there is a relationship between the position of celestial bodies and the feeling of a site, and yet the way that a site is treated is often reflected in the welcome provided by any resident spirits too. This means that there is sometimes a trade-off between the energies of the site itself and the influence of the spirits at the site at any particular time. Tricky to judge, and then as you say, there are our own individual and collective energies and moods that we bring to the site too. Who can possibly process all these variables to make any real judgement or rules about how this works? Surely too much for a small human brain to compute?

      Thanks so much for your eagle-eyes and knowledgeable input. It is greatly appreciated.


      1. Yes, energies at these sites all very complicated! When exchanging with you was reminded about the times when camera refused to work at Arbor Low. Next day I was in Newgrange ‘Passage Tomb’ in Ireland with friends and one of their cameras refused to photograph one of the stones. Just kept going blank screen. All the other stones were fine. You really do wonder sometimes…

        1. I have had similar instances. In my cases it has been two primary effects – a picture of a tree will come out blurred no matter how still I stand, and even though my camera has got image stabilisation built in. The second thing that happens is that my phone shuts down despite having loads of battery life. This happened to me while standing on one of the ley lines coming out from Arbor Low that travels to Caerleon in South Wales.
          All very peculiar, and possibly indicative of subtle energy effects, electromagnetic interference or maybe something else like spirits?

  4. Hi – I was very interested to read the comments about Arbor Low not feeling welcoming. I visited the site back in the ’90s and felt very uncomfortable there. Some time later I joined a dowsing course and mentioned this to the tutor and another woman said exactly the same – she’d visited, felt very uncomfortable and she’d also fallen over, for no reason that she could see. Our tutor suggested that in future we always ask the 3 questions before entering ancient sites – and abide by the answer! I’ve never visited Arbor Low since though.

    Anyway, I love reading your blog – I’ve learnt so much.

    1. Good day Alicea,
      Gwas and I have visited Arbor Low on many occasions and have learned so much about
      energy there. I love the site. It makes you work to learn stuff, but the learning is well worth the effort.

      As far as un-welcoming. For us, it is that Arbor Low has only once had favourable weather. It is always
      windy, rainy and generally miserable. But as noted that never stops us. And the one time it had favourable
      weather was when we wern’t intended to visit the site and was passing by and saw that the sun was up and
      rushed there to take advantage of it. We kind-of surprised the site.

      Kal Malik

    2. Hi Alicea,

      I suspect the “3 questions” you are referring to are Sig Lonegren’s rule of asking “Can I”, “Should I” and “May I”? They work as a guide for determining whether it is a suitable time to perform dowsing, and to know whether you are going to be successful. I am aware of those rules, but I didn’t employ them on this visit. In fact, I rarely employ them because I am usually “called” to a site, so I am already at the request of the resident spirit or guardian, which I always feel takes care of the three etiquette questions before I arrive. On this occasion I did ask permission to enter, as I always do, and got a favourable response.

      Sig’s three questions are a good guideline, but I have rarely felt the need to use them. On this occasion I felt that the lack of anything welcoming was more due to the absence of any compatible energy forms. That was something that both Mike and I “felt” when we were there, so that was our way of asking those questions via a different route. Our answer was essentially, “You will get nothing from here today”. Other people simply disliked the site. I don’t dislike it – I just don’t get anything useful from it, and from what I could gather I wasn’t going to be able to do anything at the site until Spring anyway.

      Kal just seems very aligned to this site, so he always gets something worthwhile from it. I rarely do. That’s just the way it is, and I already knew that before I got there. My conclusion is that there are many other sites with which I am much more aligned, and so in future I won’t continue to flog a dead site! I will go where I can get more benefit. That’s my new golden rule! Time’s too short to waste your time on sites that you don’t feel productive at.


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