Posts Tagged ‘stone circle’

Solstice 2013 – The Arthurian Cross Gets Crosser

Yet another stone circleTregeseal - was crammed in before we made our way north to Tintagel. We were both eagerly waiting to get to Tintagel, believing that it would be a very suitable site for learning about our respective quests. So, it was with mixed emotions that we drove up the rutted narrow track to the top of the hill to the north-east of the village of Tregeseal. Excitement at the prospect of a new circle, trepidation about the state of the circle and whether it would be worth the diversion. The circle had better be worth the delay and the threatening weather!

As it turned out, it was delightful, and judging by the gift of bright yellow flowers in the centre of the main circle (there are remnants of others nearby) then it was a circle that was visited often too. After taking some photos I began to think about what it was I wanted to learn at this circle. As I stood overlooking the site I felt a presence I had felt many times before – it was Merlin. My old friend and mentor. Hadn’t felt him in ages. What advice was he offering me this time?

  • I should be asking about the Arthurian Cross.
  • This was a suitable place to discover such information.

Well, I had been finding Arthurian energies at Glastonbury Abbey recently, so that tied in. “Follow me!” said Merlin and moved into the circle. I followed, dowsing to see where he had gone. Because he was invisible, a figment of my fevered imagination, and only my swinging two metal rods around in a random fashion could hope to locate such a being.

Tregeseal stone circle - Solstice 2013 (8)

The circle was nestled in the lee of some imposing stones on the adjacent hill, which offered a beautiful and intriguing backdrop to the site. Kal set off dowsing the circle, and I went about my dowsing business too. It was time to find Merlin, and then to see what it was he was trying to tell me about the Arthurian Cross – a collection of psychological archetypes, symbols, and stations that, as a concept, was becoming ever more complex by the week! Would Merlin be able to straighten it out for me? The rods found him, standing by one of the stones in the eastern side of the circle.

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Solstice 2013 – A Cautionary Tale about Attachment

Still the first day of our Summer Solstice outing in Cornwall. Dragging on a bit, isn’t it? Well, there are a lot of places to see in that area, and we had all day to see them in. Long warm days full of sunshine make us go a little bit crazy. However, this was our last site for this first day, and it would turn out to be the one that had the biggest impact on me personally because I would be taught a very strong lesson about attachment.

Death and the Maidens

Finding the Merry Maidens stone circle should have been easy. Kal had been there a few times before, and he told me “you can see it from the road“. Well, we scoured the road, passing by sights which Kal recognised and then we got into that grey area of “…and it’s somewhere around here.” Next thing you know Kal was putting the anchors on, “We’ve definitely gone past it.” We had been approaching from the Penzance end through Newlyn on the B3315, but if the site is approached from the other side, then it’s much easier to find. Soon we were parked up in a layby next to an information board, and then over the stile and up the slight hill through a green meadow towards the visible stones on the top of the slope.

As I parked myself by the outlying “heel” stone Kal zoomed off towards a stone which was seemingly embedded into the nearby hedgerow. I waited for a while and then couldn’t resist going over there too after he wandered off elsewhere. Something was inviting me to take a look, and the dowsing rods confirmed that the spot had some form of energy. But what? I peered into a circle of flattened grass – there was the corpse of a dead rabbit! It looked like a natural predatory death, but everything like this raises suspicions of peculiar rituals when they are close to stone circles.

Merry Maidens - Solstice 2013 (15)

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Solstice 2013 – Boscawen Un – A Switch of Staves

We started our Cornwall adventure on a sunny Summer Solstice morning by visiting the last stone circle of these Albion islands – Boscawen Un. Having just come from Glastonbury where I had been given the task of engineering a meeting with a faery I was eager to find out whether the next few sites would reveal any more information about this new quest. Bodmin Moor had then supplemented this concept – I found out that I could use water as a means of moving between this reality and The Otherworld. That was very promising too.

As we walked down the long secluded path towards Boscawen Un stone circle the air was humid and pungent with the aroma of foliage and flora bursting into full bloom and throbbing with chlorophyllic life.

Boscawen Un - Solstice 2013 (31)

At this time of year the path to the circle was lined with a stunning procession of colourful wild flowers – foxglove, cow parsley, sorrel and many others that I couldn’t name. In fact, I began buying books to help identify flowers and I am making it my mission this year to learn the names of as many as I can. This time of year is perfect for starting such an education, and Cornwall was my inspiration.

Boscawen Un - Solstice 2013 (24)

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Preparations for the Solstice

As a druid The Summer Solstice is an important time. For me, this importance derives wholly from the energetic aspects of this date, and has very little to do with its symbolic or cultural context. In previous years I have paid little attention to the Solstice event, preferring to take myself away to Glastonbury in an attempt to find some level of spiritual connection simply by being in this place at this time. However, this year the Solstice has a powerful energetic significance – it will be the fullest empowerment of the Sun, and also a Full Moon (Hay Moon).

In preparation for the Solstice weekend I reviewed the task I had been set between Beltane and now – to be able to create a Perfect Shield of energy. Yes, I could do that. It took a strong will, and focused intent, but in Thor’s Cave I had demonstrated to myself that it could be done. Was there anything else I could do in preparation? I decided to get Kal to come out with me to some sacred sites to check. He suggested Derbyshire, and so we went to some old favourites – Nine Ladies and Doll Tor.

The Stanton Circus Comes To Town

It’s not unusual to see people around the Nine Ladies stone circle. Around this time of the year, though, preparations are underway for an informal gathering of like-minded revellers and … well… let’s just say “pagans”. So we didn’t have the area to ourselves this evening, we were sharing it with a practising witch and a visiting couple with Midlands accents.

Nevertheless, one thing I have learned to do recently is to use the Sword of Will to really focus my intent upon my own work. Initially, however, I bimbled around taking photos, feeling the energies (nice) and speaking to various trees (loon). Today I was attracted to a bifurcating birch so I perched myself there and made it my base camp. No tent required!

Nine Ladies and Doll Tor - June 2013 2013-06-18 025 (Large)

When I felt ready I set my goal: to be taken to something that would prepare me for the Solstice.

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The Arthurian Earth Energies

In early June Kal and I visited The Druid’s Circle at Penmaenmawr near Conwy. We arrived there in time for sunset, and the western skies filled out with ever-deepening shades of red until the whole sky turned inky-blue as the sun retreated beneath the sea. Before the light around us completely faded I had some work to do. I was here to try to find out more about my spirit guide who was relatively new to me. My previous guide Theodora had been unfathomable, but honestly I had stopped trying to know more at the first hurdle, not wanting to upset her. Now I had Ash, and he seemed more amenable, so I felt it was incumbent upon me to make the effort to forge a strong relationship that could be mutually beneficial.

With that in mind I made my way towards the stone circle’s long teeth and stood poised at the edges while I worked out what I needed to do next. I needed somewhere to “be”, so I used the dowsing rods to find me a suitable location to make the connection. Surprisingly they led me not to my usual stone, but to one of the larger stones next to it. I hadn’t worked at this stone specifically before. I had worked at those on either side of it, but not this one. I stood in the lee of the stone, against the flat of its back. The stone was almost my height at its peak, and I’m tall.

The tall stone in Druid's Circle was my workplace

The big stone in the foreground was my workplace

It was time to get to know this guide of mine. I was eager to know whether the tarot reading I had done fitted with how he revealed himself through this spiritual connection, rather than through divination. What was he here for? What could we learn from each other? Time to find out.

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Elemental experiment at Nine Pins

In England one cannot fail to take advantage of sunny days. They are as scarce as hen’s teeth. So it was, on a Hen’s Tooth Day, Kal and I agreed to meet up to explore some places in Staffordshire that had been recommended to us. I had already been to Thor’s Cave myself, but the stone circle called Nine Pins was new to both of us, which is always an exciting prospect.

We drove past the Abbey Inn at Abbey Green village near Leek. Something tugged at me in a familiar way. I ignored it because I was “following a map”, however ten minutes later I was back at the pub parking in their car park. When will I learn to follow my intuition? Not only was the parking easier than the narrow hill road, but actually it turned out that the pub was the best place to walk to the circle from anyway. The helpful landlord of the pub directed us to the footpath to start us on our way. We would meet him again later when we sampled his excellent local ales.

On the way up the hill behind the pub you’ll pass the site dedicated to the memory of “Tony Squires“. This is a combination of a bench with a breath-taking view and a quaint fence whose posts are carved with Tony’s memorial details. A wonderful tribute.

Memorial to Tony Squires

Memorial to Tony Squires

His shade is hanging around on the bench. Maybe it’s admiring the view? Or maybe it’s pinned there by the intention of his family? I imagine that shades see our world like the landscape in the film Constantine:

Is this what our world looks like to a shade?

Is this what our world looks like to a shade?

On this occasion we left the shade to remain where he was. He wasn’t creating any energetic imbalance. On to the circle…

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Spring Equinox 2013 – Day of the Crow Part 4

In the fourth part of this Spring Equinox story I visit a new stone circle (or two), working with the energies and completing the sigil shape that I had been tracing in the Llangollen landscape.

Bryn Beddau cairn circle

Hidden in the murky depths of the Clocaenog Forest are two small cairn circles. One or maybe both of them are named Bryn Beddau. It’s difficult to tell from the Megalithic Portal article, because it shows both of them in the same description. They are very close to each other, though. One is accessible from one of the many compacted gravel forest roads, whereas the other is further inside the forest, accessible from a path linked to the first circle.

I was grateful that I had Ordnance Survey GPS and maps on my phone. Without that it would have been hard going. As it was I found the sites pretty easily, but first I had to traverse along the “new straight tracks” that Alfred Watkins would surely not have approved of. These long straight roads were not good for retaining energy! It was an effort not to lose all the energy I had gained so far while walking these uninspiring grey roads that vanished into the distance, then turned 90 degrees to get anywhere. A kind of Roman efficiency. I walked with a rapid stride and a musical rhythm.

Occasionally a scene of beauty emerged by the roadside as snow dripped from coniferous branches, water languished in near static pools and tall trees braced against the cold air. The only sounds were the occasional movement of birds in the treetops, signalling my presence to each other.

Bryn Beddau - Spring Equinox 2013 (6) (Medium)

The first circle I discovered by treading carefully down a deeply rutted track that veered off at an angle from a junction of two forest roads. I was glad to get into the trees and off the grey gravel road. After only thirty feet of careful walking a clearing opened up and I got my first sight of a new circle in ages.

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