Surrey 6 – The Pilgrim’s Way to Gatton Park

Surrey 6 – The Pilgrim’s Way to Gatton Park
There may not be any ancient stone circles left in Surrey, but I was about to visit my second modern circle of the trip. Gatton Park, close to the M25 Junction 8, is the siting for a stone circle constructed in 2000 to mark the millennium, and was commissioned with a theological motivation. I was interested to see whether the mere act of consecrating the space with stone would have created and retained any energy. Time to go find out!
I drove through the traffic madness that is the area around the M25. The vehicular levels were just beginning to rise in response to approach the end of the school day. There were still a few hours of daylight left, but this was likely to be my last megalithic visit before the sunset.
I had been dancing around and criss-crossing The Pilgrim’s Way – a route which stretches from Canterbury in the far east to Winchester near to the south coast in the middle of the country. Two undoubtedly powerful points from a Christian perspective, but along the way I had been encountering all sort of much older places whose spirituality was more embedded into the land itself, rather than transported and imposed from Rome.
A Section of The Pilgrim's Way

A Section of The Pilgrim’s Way

From Artington past Mugswell, and now on the Reigate Hill and Gatton Park I had been encountering this fascinating route. I parked on Reigate Hill at a beautiful car park with stunning views down towards the Redhill area. Given the way this area feels so built up, it was a momentary clear view, and many people seemed to be taking time to experience this too.
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As though to mimic a pilgrimage I set off with only a vague compass bearing in my head, and I wanted just to walk. To walk wherever I might be led. Hopefully, this would include the stone circle. I began what was to become a wide circulatory route around the Gatton Park estate.

I found The Millennium Circle near some housing and a car park at the edges of the estate, and at the bottom of the hill from the car park. It was not the best siting for a circle that I’ve ever seen!! There seemed little artistry in its choice of setting, and this was another reminder about how our ancestors has uncompromisingly chosen spaces with a natural beauty and connection to the surrounding features. No such judiciousness existed here.

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Pattern of a Modern Circle’s Energy

Nevertheless, I was determined to see whether the creation of a stone-defined space could encourage energies to flow and remain in place. There was energy in circle when I dowsed for it. It was human-derived, not Earth Energy. It was present and created by the intent of the circle’s creator. There were power centres at the cardinal points which seemed to be an expected feature of a modern construction. However, then the energy formed a strange route inside, flicking in unnatural peaks and waves around the edges, and finally heading into the centre of the circle where it congregated and stopped.

I did not enjoy the journey, as I usually did when I walked those which had been created many thousands of years ago. The creator of this circle may indeed have intended energy to flow, but it had not been maintained or reinforced through ritual, and now the energy was beginning to become disrupted a mere sixteen years after it has been generated.

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Setting Intention Through Inscription

I stood in the centre. I didn’t want to dowse any more. Instead I began to look at the various stone slabs that surrounded me. In the mid-afternoon sunlight I could make out only some of the inscriptions on the stones, almost as though I was not meant to read them all, just some.

Hmmm.. was it important that I was only able to see some of them, I wondered. A quick use of the dowsing rods confirmed my suspicion. Indeed, this was something worth investigating. Time to get to work. I stood int he centre and began to get into a meditative mindset. The world around began to fade into a totality with no sharp definition, except for where I felt my focus was guided to move.

I began to walk. I walked the path of the energies in the circle, which took me to each of the four cardinal points. At each of the stopping points – a power centre – I asked to know myself through this circle. My gaze was moved around the circle finally to a single inscription and the energy trail ended at that stone.

A soul is known by its acts” (St Thomas AquinasDe Veritate‘)

That had a deep impact for me. It was a shock and something to take with me for the rest of the walk around the estate – something to contemplate. It resonated for a long time.

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I felt the weight of service, of the feeling that I needed to be offering more tuition whilst continuing to learn myself. There was more to do to improve my soul, my connection with Nature, and in staying true to my reason for being.

My walk began to rise up another hill and slingshot me back towards my starting point. At the top of this second hill I found a swathe of recently felled young beech trees, and the feel of the space contrasted sharply with the beautiful leaf-lined path through the lower-down, older beech trees.

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The feel of the place was so awful that I felt I needed to do something. Whoever had been felling the trees had left a small fire burning. This would be my opportunity to reduce the negative impact.

I reached into my bag and pulled out a small pouch of yellow sand. It was the sand I had taken from Catherine’s Hill earlier. Now I threw it into the fire with a blessing to placate the energies of the space, to register the horror and the sadness, and to ask for the forgiveness on the person who had been directed to perform the butchery. So it was done, and there was a feeling of slight healing permeating the space instead of a wave of resentment. A small token, but part of what a modern druid can do to re-balance the endless plunder of natural resources.

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