Imbolc 2017 – P1 – Bright beginnings

Imbolc 2017 – P1 – Bright beginnings

And so the year comes around again. Imbolc is the start of the fire festivals of the old calendar, and for me it is the start of Spring and the end of Winter. It’s when we see the first glimmers of new growth and it marks the start of the lambing season. I decided to go out by myself this time. I much prefer working alone on some of these special days, and especially when I want to be truly open to the possibilities. I sometimes feel that when two or more people are involved the full significance of events and the branch options which are available can be constricted, and so valuable lessons may be lost. Certainly when I look back at the events of this Imbolc, that is most definitely the case. I doubt whether Kal or anyone else I know would have gone with...

2016 Summary of the Year

2016 Summary of the Year

In this post I want to bring together some of the themes of the year, and associate key posts with those themes. Together they forms a description of my spiritual year for 2016. THEME 1 – Taliesin: bardic work, light, awen and courage. IMBOLC: Brigid at Derbyshire sites such as Gawton’s Well. I experienced the re-kindling of my spiritual flame. I felt the bursting of an embryonic bag of light using the awen of Taliesin – this powered me to begin to write my first book. I discovered the courage to get back into spiritual work after Kal’s death. Imbolc 2016 P1 Bursting the Bag of Light AUTUMN: Taliesin and the Uneasy Chair or Cadair Idris. This was another ‘bardic episode’ where the awen flowed, and poetry emerged. Not for a long...

The Mad Sculptor of Meifod – P4 Winter 2016

The Mad Sculptor of Meifod – P4 Winter 2016

Druids visiting churches? Well, it’s more a case of visiting a site which contains something interesting. In this case M and I were at the end of our Winter Solstice day. As the light began to fade we headed to our final destination – St Tysilio & St Mary church in Meifod, The attraction? A sculpted stone of unusual origins. The church stands in large grounds with several older trees flanking the building and lining the approach. The building itself is larger than the town would seem to warrant, but that’s often the case for places which were once hugely significant, but which have now fallen into obscurity. We found the church to be open and welcoming, and were not surprised to find that a clergy-lady was its custodian. Along with a...

The Broken Beacon – P3 Winter 2016

The Broken Beacon – P3 Winter 2016

Beacon Hill, or Caer Digoll, is accessible either from a short walk up a path used to access the nearby radio masts, or it can be reached by following Offa’s Dyke Path. We approached from the nearby road because it’s Winter and the shortest day of light in the year. It would be nice to see it in Summer though, approaching by the ancient track. Before we even arrived M had felt the pull of the place, and the sense that we were expected. “Something“, she said, “is excited about our visit.” I tuned in and felt that it was the community of elemental spirits which inhabited the hill who were excited about our imminent arrival. Nice to feel wanted, right? I felt the hill needed a spiritual fire re-lighting even before we got there....

Myllin’s Magic – P2 Winter 2016

Myllin’s Magic – P2 Winter 2016

The second stop on our tour of the North Powys area brought us to the lovely town of Llanfyllin. The town has still got some of the traditional shops that you associated with the older market towns, including a delightful trinket shop selling crystals and incense and the like. There was just enough time for me to grab some more incense and crystals (only clear quartz was suitable, for some reason) and to buy a picture of a robin for a pound, before we made the steep walk up the back of the town towards Myllin’s Well. On the way up a strange event happened. The path is only just about wide enough for a car, or two people walking abreast. M and I were walking up the path, past all the low houses embedded into the hillside, when a car pulled out of one of the...

Illog The Well – P1 Winter 2016

Illog The Well – P1 Winter 2016

For the Winter Solstice I asked my spirit guides where I should go. In a dream I was given the name of a place to look for – “Llansantffraid“. Now, this seemed like a clear message, but Wales has a few options when it comes to places named in that way. The first option was the area close to where I had previously visited for the Autumn Equinox – the source of the River Wye near Rhyader. Dowsing revealed that this was not the one I was looking for this time. I have to admit I was surprised. When I looked for another candidate I found one close to the town of Oswestry. This WAS the area I needed to visit, and so I began to use the Megalithic Portal to see what was around that area. I found several sites (mainly wells) that I could visit, and...

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...

Surrey 5 – Catherine’s Hill and Artington Well

Surrey 5 – Catherine’s Hill and Artington Well

Having been unable to locate St Catherine’s Well using my phone app, I was now heading for the next site of the day – Artington Well. Which, unsurprisingly, was in the town of Artington, Surrey. As I drove into Artington I was looking for a place to park up which was close to the river alongside which I hoped to locate the well. The town is on a hill, and I went down into the centre of the town and up the other side. Nope – couldn’t find anywhere suitable to park. I went back along the same road and this time I was two perfect parking spots just off the road, so I pulled in and parked. As I got out of the car and got my stuff I noticed a lovely path up a small hill. Looked interesting, so I went to the foot of the path and looked at the...

Surrey 4 – The Matron and The Ancient Yew

Surrey 4 – The Matron and The Ancient Yew

On a bright clear morning I made my way south and west of the M25 ring road around London, and down into the heart of Surrey’s scenic surroundings. I saw signs for Bognor Regis and Worthing and realised that I was closer to the South Downs National Park then I had imagined. Yet it felt like the very heartlands of England – pretty narrow roads with passing places; rustic detached houses with plenty of land; beautiful villages with quaint pubs; and avenues of deciduous trees in the full flourish of autumn colour. Every mile was a delight. I stopped at what I have to day is one of the prettiest villages I have ever seen. Dunsfold is a collection of a few large houses with delightfully landscaped gardens, a kempt village green, and a valley view to top it...

Surrey 3- The Well of Anu

Surrey 3- The Well of Anu

Overlooking the ever-expanding amusement theme park that is Thorpe Park is a beautiful hill which is inhabited largely by dog walkers. I pulled off the B388 and headed up the hill, parking at the lower car park on the side facing the theme park. I had a choice of paths – top, middle or bottom. As I was in search of a St. Anne’s Well I made an educated guess at the bottom path. Experience now tells me that I should have taken the middle path.  The mid-afternoon sun was glinting dreamily through the beech branches as I kicked leaves all the way down the hill and dodged small brown piles that may have been mud but probably weren’t. Some of the small brown piles had been conveniently tied in small black plastic bags and then left hanging from low...