Posts Tagged ‘barefoot’
It seems sort of fitting that this post is the 400th post on this blog. We have come a long way since we started in late 2008. All of that seems so long ago now, because so much has happened since then. We have grown. So I present the 400th post – a summary of the year’s work for 2010.
Like Kal I intend to do this summary in a single post. Last year it spread across about seven posts. I have learned to be more disciplined in this last year, and I will keep it to one. So, having sifted through all the millions of posts this year here are the absolute best bits. I didn’t believe that 2009 could be bettered, but I was wrong – 2010 was a vintage year that will live long in my memory, and below you will find out some of the reasons why.
Meeting and integrating with the spirit of Merlin
Things had been progressing towards this all year. Firstly I had met Arthur’s shade at Tintagel, and he tasked me with keeping Merlin’s legacy alive by connecting up and re-energising sacred sites. Then shades that I interacted with began to call me “Son of Merlin”, which I took to mean “follower” rather than literal progeny, or “spiritual inheritor” perhaps. Finally, at Dinas Emrys, it all came together and I descended into the Underworld to meet with Merlin’s shade, and as we emerged onto earth we merged in a kind of Rosicrucian marriage of male and female energies.
Of course, all of this can and perhaps should be seen symbolically, rather than literally. It works from any point of view – psychologically as the culmination of some form of inner desire, or as a desire to perpetuate a myth symbolically because it serves some psychological purpose. I’m sure it could be read many ways. For me, it was the fulfilment of my magical self. It was the integration of the intention with the delivery. It was the satisfaction of the edict “Make magick manifest”.
Meeting Brian Conquer and Feeling The Goddess in Glastonbury
Man, I almost forgot this. I was thinking about something completely unrelated and suddenly the whole experience came back to me and I had to add this bit into the post on 14th January 2011.
I remember being at the Chalice Well Gardens this year and meeting Brian Conquer, “Just a silly little Hedge Druid” as he described himself to some American tourists in search of free wisdom. I was intrigued by him - his eyes told me he knew many things and together we scolded those who leave Nature in a mess and praised those who make their own tools with love and care. That made me think of Oonagh.
Later, as I walked around the grounds he caught up with me and gave me a precious gift – a rugged clear quartz crystal. “Take that and go stand between the yew trees.” he instructed with a twinkle in his eye. “Call for the goddess.” I did what he said and minutes later she responded by visiting me – getting right inside me - expanding my aura to an incredible size and strength. So much so that a lady who was standing behind me went nuts, “Oh my God!” she kept screaming, “That’s AMAZING!“. I knew. I was feeling it. A stunning unforgettable moment for which I will repay Mr Conquer one day. 2011 is my year of service, after all.
WHAT I LEARNED
Here is a list of the twenty most valuable lessons that I learned from this year’s tasks, quests, encounters and experiences….
1. Sacred sites have an energetic imprint that can be dowsed. This imprint or sigil can reveal information about significant dates associated with the site. For example, the date when the site is most energetic, or the date when the site was created. Some reveal a sigil specific to the resident Genius Loci.
2. Most sacred sites have some form of astrological alignment – either they are oriented towards the Sun, Moon (as calendars), or they may be designed upon a sacred number that is associated with a particular planet, or they are imbued with (or resonate to) the frequency of energetic emanations from particular stars. Often particular entrances can be found that align to celestial bodies, or significant stones are aligned to these heavenly objects are particular times of the year. These then act as guides to the types and timings of subtle energies within that sacred space.
3. There is a fourth kind of subtle energy beyond the male, female and neutral forms – Primal Energy. This is energy without gender association, and which has yet to be shaped or transformed by any agency such as the sun, moon or human. We recognised it first in crop circles, but then realised that we had been dealing with it energetically for some time without knowing what it was. I do nto have a clear distinction in my mind between primal and neutral energy forms and this is something I will endeavour to clear up in next year’s work.
4. It is possible to imbue objects with energy such that they can retain that energy and it can be drawn out from the object at a later date by those who are aware of it. The energy imbued is in a primal energy form – neither male nor female until shaped after extraction. One one occasion I absorbed the remaining spirit energy from an ancient dying oak tree before it was lost completely.
5. It is important to have a purpose when visiting sacred spaces. Having a purpose means that the rewards from the visit are less random, and the information can be chained together over a period of time leading to pools of new insights, rather than just patches of new knowledge.
6. Spirits are real. Whether these be further sub-divided into spirit, shade or ghost I have come to learn that they have a real existence beyond my imagination. This has seen a complete reversal in my belief system on these subjects. Previously I imagined them to be something created by humans, or were simply an expression of Nature in her many forms. Now I know that they are sentient and purposeful in their own right, and only an expression of Nature insomuch as we are all an expression of Nature.
7. I have developed trust and lost a fear of the dark. By walking barefoot at sacred sites for much of the year, even at night, I have learned to overcome my fear of being hurt, and to place my trust in those spirits who are concerned with my welfare.
8. The earth’s energy grid is in need of healing. I have been led to this conclusion by many different experiences over the year. At the start of the year I was told to go and re-awaken some sites. Later I would re-energise and link sites up. After that I would create my own neutral energy bridge between sites after pledging to take this role on, in the spirit of Merlin. I suspect that we have simply demolished, destroyed, desecrated and saturated too many of our “earth acupuncture” points on the earth grid upon which our islands lay. I feel it is my task to make what efforts I can to re-energise these points, especially after the death of Hamish Miller this year.
9. Arbor Low is a hub for neutral energy lines. This finding sparked a deep investigation into the nature of neutral energy. We later found that this sacred site was particularly beneficial for learning. I spent a time tracing where these neutral radial lines went to and found some amazing correlations which all need further investigation.
10. Stimulating, cleansing and closing the Chakras are a means to controlling the flow of subtle energy between the human energy form and other energy repositories. I spent a long time this year working through these processes at various sites and found the whole process very mystical and beneficial to my understanding of how the human energy system can be controlled.
11. The sacred geometrical numbers five, six, seven, eleven and twelve kept cropping up this year. Particularly, ’5+7=12′ and ’5+6=11′ were important equations. The 12 equation represented the current order of things: five being man, seven being spirituality and twelve being civilisation. The 11 equation seemed to represent an alternative or older way of thinking: five being man again, six being magick, and eleven being a bridge between worlds. It was like I was being shown that there was an alternate route to a higher consciousness through other numbers than those which society currently enshrined.
12. My spirit guide can be communicated with via symbols of crosses, particularly ancient Celtic crosses. It took a visit to Ireland to discover this, but I have since found it useful in this country too. I haven’t found out why this is so yet.
13. Wounds from the past can be healed by acts of redemption in the present. I found this out when I was encouraged to clean up a local pond. I took a day off work to do it. No-one saw it, no-one helped me, but when I had finished I had healed a deep distant scar from yesteryear.
14. The Arthurian metaphor works best for me. The symbols of the dragon (spiritual energy), Merlin (celestial energy), Arthur (earth energy) and all those associated medieval concepts – these are the images that I work best to interpret and bring through into my magickal learning. There is no value in my spending time learning any other symbol system or lore.
15. The star Sirius has emerged as an important energetic influenceon many things – it affects fertility, offers protection from harmful radiation, is a facilitator of the enlightenment process, radiates a blue light that resonates with our throat chakra, and it provides a strong motivational energy.
16. Weather systems are very complex and shouldn’t be toyed with. It almost didn’t need saying, yet I learned a valuable lesson when I tried it.
17. Crystals and incense are valuable tools for creating the right atmosphere, and for taking the burden when performing magickal rituals. I am now well stocked with both and appreciate their value after extensive use this year.
18. Giving promotes the right state to receive. This year I have done a lot of energy healing on humans and sacred sites. I have also done more charitable work than ever. All of this has been done unbidden and I in return I feel that I have been offered more gifts than I can possibly take on board. I hope to continue with this form of work.
19. Using the proper respect when dealing with sentient entities has led to easier access to their knowledge and beneficence.
20. Coloured energy lines can be used to reveal a picture of the energy status of a site. For example, black lines indicate an unhealthy influence on the site, whereas white, gold and purple lines are very positive and healthy. This is an area that deserves a more detailed examination next year.
THE HARDEST LESSON
In amongst all of the good things that happened there were some hard lessons. If I were to resolve all of those lessons down to the one important factors that is going to change the way I view life then it would be this…
The leprechaun energies of Ireland taught me that. Now I pay special attention. Signs generally are more worthy of our attention, especially if we are following the ‘flow of the universe’ through the ‘wheel of the year’ (see glossary). The more in attunement with Nature, the more we should pay attention to her signs.
The consequences of ignoring signs deliberately can be dire and dramatic.
NEW PATHS STARTED
When the Wheel of the Year turns around to a new year it is very difficult to see where the rotation of the wheel will take you on that journey, or what wonder you will pass on the way. This year here are some of the new paths that I have ventured down, or threads that I have picked up from previous years’ work.
Spirits (including Siddha). Specifically I have become attuned to and aware of a spirit guide. Beyond that I have extended my awareness to include a spirit helper for healing, and have acknowledged a spirit guardian. Up until this year I would say that I was one of the last people who would have acknowledged these forces, yet they have graciously made their presence known when requested to do so, and I have received nothing but help and kindness from them.
Shades. I had no dealings at all with death energies of energy forms until Kal relinquished his dealings with them part way through this year. Then, from that moment on, I seemed to get requests to learn about and deal with shades. Shades, as we denote them, are the remnant energy forms of spirits that once inhabited human bodies. Having moved on they can leave a form behind unless this energy is grounded properly (as it was in earthen mounds in ancient times through ritual and right attitudes to death).
Ash staff. I have found and restored an ash staff this year. It is now one of the most treasured objects that I take with me to sacred sites. My interactions with the staff have been crucial this year, and it has become a powerful druidical tool for me to wield out in Nature.
OLD PATHS DISCARDED
Of course, no path is ever completely discarded – it is only passed by on this journey. Later in the journey the path may re-appear. However, these are the aspects of my spiritual journey that I have chosen not to pursue further unless I need to.
Crop circles. After finding that they were created by extra-terrestrial forces and then filtered through Siddha, we gave up trying to understand their relevance to us on our spiritual quest. They remain an interesting quirk that I predict will end by 2013.
Tarot. Although I have found a talent for using the cards I have found little use for them despite believing that I would. I am not discarding them completely, and I encourage anyone to use them if they would be of value, but for me they have little use compared to the inter-relationship with spirit forces. I think the cards are just a means to access this same information anyway, and I now prefer a direct spiritual connection rather than a symbolic one. Again, I re-iterate, they have their uses, but I don’t see much use for them myself. Watch next year be totally dominated by tarot now!!
There always seems to be something unexpected arising on my journey. This year I have been surprised by getting involved in the following things….
- Shades and spirits – thought they we a bit of nonsense, actually, but found I was very very wrong. Might all still be in my mind, but if that’s the case then my mind is very very wrong!
- Charity work – I wasn’t one for doing “good deeds” until this year. Then gradually I have been finding myself saying ‘yes’ to more and more events, and going off doing things just for the sake of it and without recognition or reward. Most unlike me! But I like the new me.
- Psychics – I met a psychic and listened to him rather than laughed at him. Well, I could hardly laugh at him now that I was talking to spirits myself! Anyway – turns out he made a great deal of sense, and has been very insightful. I am pleased that I was led along this path to meet him.
WHERE THIS LEADS ME
Looking back I think that all of this leads me to begin the next year by turning my attentions to the following areas:-
Sacred geometry – I kind of left this one hanging, but I mean to dowse for the sacred structure of stone circles and see if this has an astrological correspondence.
Earth energy grid – I want to determine why certain sacred sites seem to be linked together energetically, and if those links are damaged I want to set about repairing them, to restore the sites to their full working capacity where possible.
Book – yes, folks, I have been ‘advised’ that I should write a book. Never one to question the muses I will be putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) almost as soon as this post goes live. I don’t even know what it’s about yet, but I’m hoping ‘unseen forces’ can help there. I hope to post status updates through next year.
Of course next year I will continue to follow the seasons and the Wheel of the Year, but I suspect I will not be as keen to mark every full moon. Yet the full moon is definitely an indicator for me that the energies around that time can be put to good magickal use and I will continue to preference dates close to full moons as opposed to their strict calendrical dates.
This year has been the most remarkable year of my life so far. Thanks, as ever, to my faithful sidekick Kal for his courage, inspiration and motivation - he truly does make this all worth the effort. Thanks, too, to those who have helped me. That includes you. dear readers, who have have witnessed my remarkable year on these pages, and I hope that you too have been inspired to go out and make your life’s quest as meaningful and magickal as you can. I am looking forward to what next year will bring if only to see if it could possibly match the wonders of this year.
Happy New Year, folks.
It may be as a consequence of the long hot dry spring going into summer that we’ve had this year in this land of Albion, or it could be because I’m at a particularly hippy-ish point in my spiritual path, but recently I have begun to walk around in my bare feet. I’m sure there are other reasons for this too – the fact that my feet are Size 12 (46 continental size) and getting good-fitting shoes is proving particularly difficult at the moment. Or maybe it’s something to do with me wanting to put myself through some kind of a challenge – a challenge to society (what will your reaction be to me exposing my bare naked foot flesh? ooooh!) or a challenge in terms of overcoming the pain that often accompanies trying to walk over man-made materials.
I suspect it’s all of these things together and none in particular. There’s a philosophy of freedom that begins to manifest itself when you start down the path of druidry. Philip Carr-Gomm’s latest book – ‘A Brief History Of Nakedness‘ – is perhaps a timely reminder to me that the skin loves to breathe too, occasionally.
Those who know me would be surprised at me doing this, because I have always had a “thing” about having my feet covered up. Probably because they’re damned ugly! But all that is changing. Slowly. The start of this evolutionary process is a “small step” (pardon the pun) in a long process. I am really loving the touch of the earth, the feel of different natural textures under my feet, the coolness of grass even on a hot day, the massage of soft earth and sand….the effects are wonderful, liberating, reassuring and soothing.
I was hesitant at first. I have always been of the opinion that we invented footwear for a damned good reason, and I’m pretty sure – after having walked across a long hot tarmac road – that footwear has an indespensable place in the modern wardrobe. I even considered the half-way house of the Five Fingers shoes as a means of getting myself used to it before actually doing it. But there is no substitute for simply jumping right in there and getting rid of shoes and socks when in a suitably natural environment. The rubber-lined foot, no matter how realistic the feel, is simply defeating the purpose of reconnecting with Nature directly and without interference. There’s no halfway house to freedom.
Once one overcomes the initial panic of “how will I appear” and “what if I stand on something sharp” type of questions, and abandons oneself to the care and concern of a guiding force like Nature then She is truly kind to the barefoot initiate! Recent extended jaunts through fields of nettles, thistles and cowpats have been performed without a scratch or a hitch. A walk around Glastonbury Tor’s labyrinth path was similarly trouble-free. I suspect that, done with the right state of mind (i.e. tuned into Nature and trusting to Her) then the rewards are returned many-fold and go far beyond the simple pleasure of walking naturally on the earth.
My goal is now to begin to feel through my feet. To feel the pulse of the earth through my newly awakened land-based organs. I feel like having a t-shirt printed with the slogan “Go to work on your feet” emblazoned, but frankly I work 25 miles from home so I’d be being a bit of a hypocrite if I sported that slogan. Perhaps you could suggest something more appropriate? Amusing, insulting or ingenious – up to you!
June 19th, 2010 – Glastonbury, Somerset.
As we did last year, Kal and I travelled down to Glastonbury to enjoy the strong sun energies that seem particularly strong around that town at this time of year. Events had conspired to come to a point for me in particular. I have been finding out what each of the stages of the seasonal year mean for me (see this post for some background on that). The result of this progress meant that I had two tasks that I wanted to achieve: firstly, to conclude the ‘current’ eighth-part of the year, and secondly to determine what the next part would be about.
The first task was to conclude the current quest. The trail of information I had been following through meditations and dowsing at various sacred sites was as follows:-
- Beltane to Solstice was a period to learn about the chakras
- The chakras consisted of seven points within the human body, fed through five pathways from the aura through to the body
- There was a way of integrating the seven chakras with the five channels to form a fully-functioning twelve-fold energy form
By working through the chakras, energising them, cleansing them, balancing them, and getting to know how they worked, it should be possible for me to integrate that knowledge into a unity, a “twelve” that was both a sum and a symbolic reference to the totality of influences over the human etheric energy body. Of course, twelve also has astrological significance, but I will come back to all this in a later post when I want to tie that into some other information related to sacred number. For now, let’s just say that the first task was to discover how to integrate the seven and five into a twelve, whatever that meant physically or spiritually.
Walking the Tor Labyrinth
We would make three trips up The Tor during our stay in Glastonbury. On the first of the journeys I felt the urge to go up barefoot. This has been something that has been happening to me more and more lately. It’s a very hippy thing to do, I realise that! I really felt, however, that I should go up barefoot. Kal of course mocked me relentlessly and pointed out that the “connection with the land” thing would be totally ruined by the concrete steps set into the sides of the hill providing an easy walkway for tourists. What he hadn’t reckoned with was the way that the “urge” would circumvent this. As I began to walk up from the ‘back’ edge – the steepest side coming from Stone Down lane – I got to a decision point. I was letting one dowsing rod guide me with one instruction: “Show me a path with a heart“. This is a reference to a phrase used in the Carlos Castenada novels that both Kal and I have read avidly as a guide to shamanism. There may be some dispute over their anthropological accuracy, but there can be little debate over their usefulness or the impact they have had upon our work now. This directive to find a path with a heart was at the core of this shamanistic philosophy, and right now I couldn’t conceive of anything being more appropriate to my intentions.
The main path went up steeply, but as I tuned into the energy path I should walk I was feeling an urge to go along the right-hand side, along one of the Tor’s labyrinth paths that headed slightly down the hill along its flank. As Kal climbed upwards straight for the top the rod indicated that I should take an alternate route. I veered off along the side path, now beginning to sense an element of danger as I realised the path was laden with thistles and nettles. I put a plea out to be guided safely through the foliage and trusted to hope that I wouldn’t dearly regret my decision to walk ‘connected’.
In the picture above you can see the outline of the path I took. You can just make out two more ridge paths above, too. The interesting thing was that the “way” I had to walk was downwards, not upwards as one might expect. Having spent time walking labyrinths and mazes recently, especially energetic ones, I was familiar with the idea that to make progress one often has to go the long way around and away from the path the your rational mind insists is the most efficient. So, I carried on until my path curved suddenly upwards to meet the main path along the spine of The Tor – the main path from the Chalice Well end.
I hope for some relief by being able to climb the main path, but very soon I was taken around the quiet side of the Tor along its other flank. This time I was rising swiftly, following what seemed to be an animal trail. To my eyes the way was clear. To Kal, who was sitting high above me just down from the top I must have looked ridiculous and random. I climbed steeply at the end to quickly reach the top. Where would the path end, I wondered, now that I was on the top? I crossed the top pat of the path I had started on, curving slowly in a Fibonnaci-style curve until I ended at the eastern wall of the church building. It was exactly the same spot where I had ended my climb last year! For a moment I was stunned. Then I also realised that I had walked up the entire hill and not been stung or prickled once by the thistles or nettles. But how….?
Mouth agape I leaned back against the supporting wall – well, either I had done something right, or something was looking out for me!
Working with the heart chakra – The Sun and Sunset
Looking back now I realise that this walk was the first part of my work with my heart chakra. Standing on that spot at the top looking out across the Somerset Levels, feeling the powerful ley line running through me – these were the preparatory steps for what was to come. This was the stage of cleansing, and a test of “heart” – was I prepared to endure the hardship of the walk up the Tor in bare feet? Could I overcome the fear of being stabbed and stung? I did. I was ready. We walked down again (this time with shoes on) in search of some food. We would return later as the sun was setting for no reason we could discern.
Hours later, now with a fantastic meal in our bellies from the wonderful Hundred Monkeys cafe on the High Street. Intending to walk around the Tor and back to our accommodation for the night, instead we happened to follow a footpath that took us over fields and towards the Tor. Unintentionally we arrived at its slopes again and decided that, seeing as the sun was about to set and the moon was out too, wouldn’t it be delightful to watch it set on the horizon? Yeah, us and fifty other people!!
We climbed the Tor again, this time with shod feet and by the fastest route. Something magical was about to happen and we wanted to be part of it. Quickly – let’s get up there! We suddenly realised, without saying anything, that we were in the right place at the right time again. At the top we settled for the sunset. Gaggles of Spanish students gabbled relentlessly throughout, which somewhat took the sheen off the moment. However, someone had thoughtfully brought a drum and was beating out a hypnotic rhythm for us to meditate to. As the sun slipped away with its warmth Kal was on one side meditating with the Sun, whilst I was on the other, holding both the Sun and Moon in view and thinking about the integration of my heart chakra energies. All very esoteric and hippy-ish, for sure!
For me, the moment was about integration. Holding the two celestial objects in view required focus, but an un-focused focus, if you know what I mean. If I concentrated on either I would lose sight of both. If I didn’t hold them in view with an intention of mind then I would not be actually doing anything. It was a balance. The act itself was the meditation. I found the balance point between meditation and concentration, between sun and moon, light and dark, and at that moment something happened within me – the drum became my heartbeat, and my heart integrated sound, sight and site. All became one.
We descended to tell our respective tales to each other. This didn’t feel like then end of this work, but in one day two powerful episodes involving The Tor had shown me that I was in the right place, that it was the right time to be here, and that I was in the right frame of mind for this integration work with the heart chakra. Still, there was one more thing to do, I knew. Would it involve this incredible powerful place again tomorrow? Indeed it would.