In the first of my seven Summer Solstice stories I will tell you about how I encountered an ancestral spirit who would work with my Spirit Self to bring about a culmination of my ancestral work on this weekend’s journeying. This was only realised through the two days work, so the stories piece into each other like fragments of a mirror revealing a full picture towards the end.
In order to pull all the stories together I have used the tag Ireland solstice 2015.
Sunset to Sunrise
I was asleep at sunset and then awake again at sunrise. Seems like a long time, but actually it was only a few hours. On arrival, tired by excited, we zoomed off in the hire car heading for the first destination. It was a place I had heard of by reputation, but we hadn’t visited it yet – Loughcrew. We know nothing about it.
The car park has space for a few coaches and about 20 cars. This was clearly an important site, and we weren’t used to such “hospitality”. I noticed a memorial to a guy called “Mick Tobin“. The dowsing rods said that paying our respects was a useful starting point for the day’s work, so we acknowledged the gentleman – this “Child of the Solstice” as he was poetically named. It seemed fitting to our Solstice outing!
I walked up the steps a few minutes after Kal. At the top of the steps, before the path went into the foot of the hill, there was an interesting triangle of green grass and young trees that caught my eye and made me stop. It was a place of preparation. I dowsed to the correct spot, and got energetically cleansed and prepared. Cailleach appeared offering me the protection of her Black Dragon once again (see previous Ireland visit). I gratefully accepted this, and as the dragon’s wings enfolded me I felt a surge of power, and felt that wave burst out like a blast across the countryside around, sending a warning message to all the potentially mischievous spirits. “Be warned” – it signalled – “this one’s with The Dark Lady!”
I drew in the powers of the four elements from their respective cardinal points, and with that felt that I had offered something in return to Cailleach for my protection – the energy formed by the union of the elements that is the singularity of my self.
Kal was waiting by the gate with a grin on his face as he watched me. What, I asked? “A place of preparation?” he inquired? I nodded. “That was the same spot as I was used.” We laughed. Such synchronicities already! What next?
The dowsing rods were given a simple instruction – “Take to the place where I need to be to advance my spiritual quest”. They swung off to the right along a sinewy snaking path, sometimes upwards, sometimes across. Kal was going in roughly the same path. More synchronicity. Soon we found ourselves walking up what can only be described as a “spine”. The spine of the mountain. I felt it was a dragon’s spine, but I was in a poetical frame of mind. It’s the land over there – that’s what it does to you!
Plays on the name Loughcrew
As Kal advanced almost directly towards the mound on the summit I was taken round the outside, a tantalising distance away. There was something I was required to do before I entered, I presumed. I was taken from outlying stone to stone, always a few hundred yards away from my intended target. At each stone I was invited to be calm, meditate and connect. Once I had done that at a few I began to ask questions – why was I being required to do this?
The response was again poetic, and a play on the name “Loughcrew” (pronounced “Lock crew”). I was told that this process of moving from stone to stone would “Unlock my crew“.
At each stone I was adding different forms of energy together. Firstly a connection with the spirit of the hill, then with the wider land, then specific sky and earth connections at a third outlier ston. I realised that each connection was a kind of spacial co-ordinate, adding greater definition until I was a pinpoint in a vast three-dimensional sphere, criss-crossed with planes and lines. A multi-dimensional energetic skeleton key!
By the fourth stone I was wondering if I would ever actually reach the “main attraction”. The unlocking process continued however, but this time instead of a spacial co-ordinate I was invited to discover the correct attitude. I needed to find patience and stillness at the next big outlier stone. Sitting on it I could smell beautiful fragrant smoke. I looked around to see where Kal was – it must be his incense. Kal was nowhere in view, yet I could see a few hundred yards in every direction. Then, where was this smell coming from. I scanned the middle distance – nothing nearby either – no plumes of smoke.
In the far distance I could see smoke rising, but that was miles away. Surely I couldn’t be smelling that? Anyway – not only would the smell never reach me, but the smoke was drifting in the opposite direction of the prevailing wind. This wasn’t a wood fire smell, either. It was scented, but not like any of Kal’s incense, whose smell I knew well. It was simply fragrant FIRE! Today’s element delivered in a continuous smoky meadowsweet aroma. I simply sat and enjoyed it for a few minutes. It was heavenly. The song of thee larks, the sweet smell of the meadow, the pure clean air…. it was reward for my patience, I felt.
I was taken a bit closer now, to a small cairn of stones. I stand in a power spot and bring the four elements, the sky and the land together – all the energies I had been piecing together on the way up. I felt a spectral presence arise as my attention culminated in my very heart space. I felt a shade of some ancestor from this place rising up beside me. Then my phone pings loudly! I had forgotten to turn it off, but this was the first time it had made a noise all morning. Just at this moment.
Before I did anything else I wanted to mark the moment. I lit some incense, and placed a few sticks around me. As the smoke rose to join to meadowsweet smell I began to whistle a tune that I learned from the Faery race. It was my call to them, and if they were here then I was requesting their presence to guide me to be able to interact with this new spirit presence.
I meditated in the middle of the cairn, open to the connection, but still under the protection of the black dragon wings and guided by the faery folk. The shade reveals himself to me – he is “Aengus Roe“. The name if recognisable to me inasmuch as the surname is familiar from my ancestral quest in 2012. I tie us together in an energetic tether for the rest of the journey. The faery folk are my guides for this space, but once I leave the hill I feel that Aengus will be with me for the rest of the Irish journey.
Of course that evening I wanted to know more about this Aengus Roe character. Luckily I found out a reference that might explain why I was feeling so poetic on that hill:
“1351: Aengus Roe O’Daly, the most learned of the poets of Ireland, and Aengus O’Hosey, a good poet, died.” (Annals of the Four Masters).
A Gift In Return
People often talk of interaction with the Faery Folk as being a potentially dangerous encounter for mortals. Pacts and exchanging gifts is seen as an affair fraught with pitfalls for the unwary. Over the years I have had a very strict edit which I enforce upon myself. When dealing with the Faery Folk any gift I should wish to offer must be either naturally available, or else a gift that can be energetically crafted. I must say, my dealings in this respect have always been honest and properly intended. When I give an energetic gift it is the finest I can craft. When I offer a story I offer a full-blooded copy complete with the emotions and consequences built into the tale. There is nothing half-hearted about this, and so far it has always been received very well.
I was guided to move from the ancestral cairn into the iron fenced enclosure. Now I could see the mound up close. Of course it was closed, locked and otherwise unavailable, in case anyone with a spiritual intent had wanted to use it for its original purpose. Luckily I was able to work elsewhere, and I was directed to sit on the lintel. Taboo, of course. There was a sign saying that I couldn’t do that. So I did.
On the lintel of the mound I faced each of the cardinal positions in turn, drawing in the four elements and pinning them to the axis of earth and sky, a spinning vortex into which the elemental forces screwed and twined. I felt I should offer my energetic gift, so I began to empty myself of some of the wisdom I have accumulated on my travels. I donated this to the ancestral memory bank, and as I drew it out of myself I could feel it flow into the gap below, filling the mound like a pile of dumped library books.
I faced the sun, lifting my face once I felt that deposit was made. I held my hands out, and was surprised to find that I was receiving a gift in return. I was filling up on Solstice energy.
Was there anywhere else to go, I wondered? I felt like there couldn’t possibly be more! I was taken to another of the cairns, but this time one very close to the main mound. In this cairn kist I was instructed to kneel in a small space. I didn’t like the ‘feel’ of that request. I felt like I was being too obeiscent.
I didn’t kneel, but I did crouch and bow my head. It was amusing then that I was told to stop bowing to and being afraid of authority. In this land “I have the authority”, I was told. Authority of what sort I didn’t know. All I know of my ancestry is that we once used to be Kings of Moylurg in Roscommon, in an area known as Connaught. There is no real authority remaining these days, but in these ancient places the name still resonates, it seems.
Loughcrew is a place of authority. As I stood with my hands on The Hag’s Chair – a stone altar built into the side of the mound, I felt an incredible sense of placement. This was more than a homecoming – it was a realisation of a coming into ancestral power.
I had given and in return received. I had unlocked an ancient memory, and had fed my modern stories and energies into it, re-awakening it inside me. I had come seeking my ancestors and had awoken a guiding spirit. Now, the question arose, what was I going to do with it?