Taking a leaf from Kal’s book I will summarise my year in terms of the quests that I have been involved with. The year had many more facets than this, but I think the quests are the important factors, as they form a developmental framework for my druidry work. They show the progress of my spiritual quest. Ultimately, for me, that’s what this blog is about.
I will put the quests into a chronological order, but also show how they relate to the tarot reading that I did at the start of the year. I quickly lost sight of this as I began to work, but now I have re-visited it to see just how the reading relates to the activities of the year.
TAROT FOR THE YEAR
My tarot reading for the year was done using the Tree Angel Oracle deck. This seems appropriate, as the sacred trees of the druids match the lunar cycles. The cards were drawn to show either a sign or a challenge – something that would guide me onwards, or that I would have to overcome in order to progress.
Here are the cards listed against their positions in the Celtic Wheel of the Year:-
- IMBOLC – Ivy (sign)
- SPRING EQUINOX – Rowan (sign)
- BELTANE – Blackthorn (sign)
- SUMMER SOLSTICE – Almond (sign) + Elder (challenge)
- LAMMAS – Hawthorn (sign)
- AUTUMN EQUINOX – Elm (sign) + Lime (sign)
- SAMHAIN – Juniper (challenge)
- WINTER SOLSTICE – Birch (sign)
What follows is the detail of the year’s work. See whether it coincides with any of your own work this year – if it does, let us know!
Discover everything about Henbane – it’s an asthma cure!
- Needed to make an essence of its flower in the latter half of the year, but didn’t, as I was somewhat put off by its toxicity!
- Nevertheless, I did research its properties extensively [posts]
Release the elementals. The IVY tarot card showed the sign for this quest. At Imbolc I was to release the elemental spirits that I had worked with for years. New spirits would come afterwards in a different form.
- Said goodbye at Imbolc to the current set of elemental spirits at four sites in North Wales [post].
- I got a set of Elemental Angels instead – a fitting replacement [Air post; Water post; Earth & Fire post].
- The nature of the IVY tarot card meant that I was prepared with gifts to offer the elemental angels, and the transfer was successful.
YEW TREE KNOWLEDGE
Learn about the yew tree, so that I can become one with the yew staff, and bring our its powers in myself and in the staff too.
- Researched the yew tree (see “Yew: A History“, “A Brief History of Yew“, “Yew (botanical)“, “The Yew Trees of Britain and Ireland“, “Trees of the Celtic Saints” and “The God Tree“)
- Charged the staff with healing rays taken from The Hoarstones stone circle [post].
- Looking back I see that the association with Brigid was related to her being a patroness of healing.
THE TALIESIN AWEN ENERGY
Gather the Awen of Taliesin from three sites. Then release the energy into the Carnac engine at Beltane.
The ROWAN tarot card was a sign of inspiration of a creative nature, and so it proved to be in this quest [post].
- Collected awen (inspirational creativity) energy from various sites in Wales that are associated with the bard Taliesin [posts]
- Released the energy into the fields of standing stones at Carnac in France at Beltane [post]
CREATING SACRED SITES
Discover why The Giant throws The Stone from one stone circle to another.
The BLACKTHORN tarot card indicates that this task will be “thorny”:
“”…the blackthorn shows us that our very best fruits sometimes come after trials, setbacks and tribulations. We would do well to keep this in mind as we are in the midst of our challenges. We will come out on the other side better and sweeter than we were before.” (source: What’s Your Sign)”
- Given the quest at Kercado passage grave in Brittany, but then find it difficult to get more information when back in Albion [post]
- Discovered the importance of The Key Stone of a stone circle or ancient monument. This was the stone that The Giant in my vision was throwing from one site to another. Without it, the site would not work.
- Found out about energetic seals placed on sites in order to protect their special energies [post]
- Finally, in one huge download, I discovered the 12 steps to creating a sacred site whilst at Mitchell’s Fold stone circle [post]
THE MICHAEL ENERGY & THE GOLDEN DRAGON
Reclaim Llanfihangel church for Archangel Michael. Also, re-integrate The Golden Dragon energy encountered at Brittany.
ALMOND and ELDER were the cards governing this period. Almond was a sign card, and it signified a spiritual awakening (almost as though something is being held back and then is released).
“Almond: Tree of Clairvoyance – Symbolic of an ‘Awakening’, a ‘Stirring of Spirit’ ” (source: Spirit Lodge)
The ELDER tree was a challenge. Well, what a challenge! Elder is associated with this symbolism:
“Judgment, Transformation, Death & Regeneration, Fate, The Inevitable” (source: The Goddess Tree)
- At Kenmare in Ireland I get a glimpse of how Summer to Lammas will be a process of integration as I move from Blackthorn to Hawthorn (via Almond and Elder) in terms of tarot cards [post]
- I am guided by a set of divine coincidences to follow a rainbow to its destination – a church dedicated to Archangel Michael [post]
- I find the church in the village of Llanfihangel-yng-Ngwynfa and work with Magic Mike to acquire the Michael energies and reclaim the church in the angel’s name [post]
- I began healing forests – part of my move into healing; and I re-integrated The Golden Dragon [post]
THE REBIRTHING PROCESS
“Kill Gwas!” I was told. A process covering the festival of Lammas to Samhain (encompassing Autumn Equinox).
At first I ignored it, but then accepted it. Then all hell broke loose! I was offered an opportunity that was too good to be true – it was a chance to integrate my shadow and real self. To do this I had to kill off my alter-ego “Gwas Myrddyn” – the Vassal of Merlin.
I was no longer a “slave” and in my life I would emerge from the shadows of an organisation to take control of my spiritual and everyday life. I went freelance. It was the death of my “normal” job, and my rebirth into my druidry as a profession, rather than a hobby.
There was a certain inevitability about the process, which I accepted completely and without struggle [ELDER tree influence going through HAWTHORN].
“The hawthorn is to be respected in all its diversity and duality. It is a symbol of union of opposites, and serves as a message for us to be more accepting of the unconventional.” (source: What’s Your Sign)
ELM and LIME were part of this process. Elm is associated with communication and relationships. Let’s just say that this was a recurring theme during this tumultuous time, and I have my wonderful wife to thank for supporting me through the process. We stand firmer then ever after it.
The Lime (or Linden tree) has these associations:
“The linden tree spirit holds the knowledge to life, death and transformation – and the true beauty and sweetness in those processes, no matter what form they take for the individual.” (source: Spirit Lodge)
- I transformed myself from “Gwas” as an alter ego to simply Chris – an integrated and unabashed druid out in the world and telling everyone so! [post]
Become more proficient as an energy healer (because a friend is seriously ill). Samhain to Winter Solstice.
The influence of the JUNIPER tree’s challenge was prevalent at this time.
“The Juniper is a fabled symbol of a great journey, having taken many twists and turns but being capable of staying true to yourself, never compromising your integrity.” (source: Universe of Symbolism)
- I had not envisaged energy healing becoming a large part of my work, but when a friend took seriously ill I had to step in with an offer of help. [posts to come soon]
- This friend has indeed gone on a tremendous and complex journey from the depths of sickness back to health, we hope.
Release the Michael Energy at Winter Solstice. Turned into a quest to create a necklace of items from 10 different trees and gift them to relatives.
The BIRCH tarot card influences this period as I go into the new year. Birch talks about new beginnings – almost coming around full circle to begin at the start again.
- The Michael energy was offered, but left with me to continue to use. I suspect it forms part of the healing process and learning that I am still undergoing with my friend.
- My recent experience at St Michael’s Church in Yorkshire at the Solstice invited me to create a necklace of wooden symbols – a loop! That journey from tree to tree started with an oak and ended with IVY. Back to the beginning! [post]
- I have recently gone back into employment. I have learned a lot about what I can offer as a druid, and now have come full circle back around this particular loop.
- Of course, the trick with any cycle is to move upwards to the next level and turn the circle into a spiral of progression!
Like Kal said, this year has seen more turmoil and upheaval than I could have imagined. My life has been turned on its head, and then re-integrated. I’ve gone one full turn around a very strong spiral, and I’ve been changed in the process. Looking back now with a bit of perspective I can see that it was necessary for my growth. I have grown quickly and strongly because of it – gaining confidence in myself and my abilities. I have met a lot of really beautiful people who encourage me to stand in my own energy and give back as much as I take.
If I said that I am looking forward to 2015 it would be a major understatement. I think I’m looking forward to an easier, less intense, more easy-going year. Do you think that’s what will happen? You’ll have to keep reading to find out!
Thank you all for your support.