Monthly Archives: June 2018

The Rock of Brentor…

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‘…A church, full bleak, and weather beaten, all alone, as it were forsaken…’

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“St Michael de Rupe?”

“St Michael the Rock.”

“I thought St Peter was supposed to be the ‘Rock’?”

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“The rock referred to here, is volcanic.”

“Nice.”

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“Though you would never know it now…”

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“…The church-tower can still serve as a beacon.”

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“Curioser and curioser…”

“Wait till we get inside, Alice.”

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Weathering?…

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If Giants…

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Could construct…

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Balance-Stones…

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They would look a little like this…

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And for those still in need of perspective…

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‘TAKE A LOOK AT THESE HANDS’…

If these stone structures are produced by ‘nature’s hand’,

it may be salutory to consider ‘modern man’s hand’ in contrast,

which has, by quarrying, made a ‘bit of a mess’ of what was once

a ‘hill-fort’ possessing as much beauty as that of Carn les Boel or Carl Wark.

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The Giant and the Sun – Going off at a tangent

The Silent Eye

Every workshop needs a place to start, and with companions arriving from as far apart as Cumbria, London and America, you need to meet somewhere that is easily found. We knew full well that if we converged on the village pub and started talking we would never have time to visit the place we had come to see, but instead of meeting at one of the most intriguing places, where mystery, history and legend come together, we decided to meet at the church.

Old churches are interesting places. They provide not only a window on the social history of an area, but a snapshot of the growth of their community. You can get a real feel for a place by visiting these little churches that have grown with their congregation over the centuries, and often they reveal glimpses of a far distant past, much more ancient than Christianity.

The setting…

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Patterned in Dorset (3)

Sun in Gemini

It is said that a chapel dedicated to St Catherine once stood on this hill, looking down at the little town of Cerne Abbas, below.

The original St Catherine was a pre-Christian figure about whom very little is known. She was associated with the symbol of an eight-armed wheel – the famous ‘Catherine wheel’, remembered now in the name of a firework….

Those visiting hadn’t known of the site’s link to St Catherine when the plans for the Silent Eye’s pre-solstice weekend were created by Stuart and Sue. But the presence of symbols related to St Catherine only added to the power of what would unfold in a hidden enclave, below.

Above: the hidden path down to The Silver Well

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Two women wait in the green-kissed shadows of a path leading down to a holy well. They are both recent graduates of the Silent Eye’s three-year course in Self-knowledge…

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Weather!…

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Getting to the Hurlers proved easy enough…

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Clustered, as they were, around the extremities of Bodmin Moor…

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But the weather closed in…

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Almost as soon as we set foot to turf…

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Which made the prospect of a climb up to the Cheesewring, and Stowe’s Pound, a decidely unlikely event…

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We walked as far as we could before caution proved the better part of valour…

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And then, the sun came out…

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Somebody, somewhere, muttered something about stones and humour.

Our next event…

The Silent Eye

Castles of the Mind

Seahouses, Northumberland

Friday 14th – Sunday 16th September 2018

Bamburgh Castle smaller

Do we have ‘castles of the mind’?

Traditionally, ancient castles were build where there was trouble… Do we have the equivalent in our minds and emotions? Have we, over the course of our lives, built up strong fortifications with which to repel those intrusions which, as children, we considered frightening?

Our ‘walk and talk’ events are friendly and informal. We ask those attending to bring one or two readings from their favourite books, poems, or other sources of inspiration. We listen and talk… and share. If someone is ready to enter their personal borderlands, we hold their hand and walk with them.

The cost per attendee is £50.00. This is an administrative cost, only. All personal costs and bookings, such as hotels and meals, are the responsibility of those attending. Meals are generally shared in a local…

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Citadel of the Sun II…

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… We had been at the mercy of the tides before.

At Lindisfarne we were stranded on the ‘island’ for eight hours.

This time we were ‘stranded’ on the mainland…

There is something about causewayed isles that speaks to the soul.

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We wonder why anyone would choose to sail over.

Our fellow ‘pilgrims’ have, for the most part, dressed for the sun and they set off over the causeway before the tide has fully receded.

They appear largely unaware of the ‘why’ of their presence there…

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So we watch the birds instead.

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The ‘line’ does not pass through the castle.

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A thousand miles of history II – The Templar Head

Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

Heading towards the location of our weekend workshop, we had found a route south that avoided the inevitable delays around Stonehenge. Traffic passing the great circle is always slow, although it does give you a chance to see the stones, but with the summer solstice so close, there was every chance that the road would be even busier than usual and we had no time to be caught in traffic jams.

Apart from the irresistible lure of freshly picked strawberries and cherries on sale in every layby, we were not planning on stopping until we were much closer to our destination, and even managed to resist Avebury… but only because we knew we would be going home that way at the end of our odyssey.

St Mary’s Church, Templecombe

So it was with time to spare that we arrived at the village of Templecombe in Somerset, where we wanted to…

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Citadel of the Sun…

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‘There is a certain atmosphere about the place,

an echo of a life that is hidden deep in the recesses of the mind.’

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“Brown Sign!”

The Green Goddess lurched violently as she swung around the almost impossible corner, before her steady growl returned, and then a roar of satisfaction as she contemplated yet another ‘worm-hole’ through the space-time continuum…

“What is Carn Euny anyway?”

“It’s a prehistoric village.”

Forthe first time that day the mist which had descended with our arrival began to show signs of lifting.

And beyond it, the sun…

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It was hard to believe that anyone else could have found the place but in amongst the well positioned stones and wild grasses, a lone baseball cap bobbed.

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Patience can be key but when patience fails a well turned chant usually does the trick.

We did have a date with the tides to consider, after-all…

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“And the Fogou?”

“Is up for grabs.”

“Grain storage?”

Snort

“Last line of defence?”

Snort again.

“I’d say this was a sweat lodge. Bring in hot stones. Pour on water…”

“…And journey to the Spirit World.”

“It still retains its air of sanctity.”

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And just as we started to chant the sun shone in…

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Priest of the Sun II…

The Silent Eye

Giant Hill, Cerne-Abbas

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…We stop, looking out across the processional way… as the torchlight approaches.

The sky is clear, and the Hunter’s Moon illuminates the white outline of the giant.

From the Trendle comes the sound of drum beats… soft and insistent, an echoed heartbeat of earth… the truncated scream of a stag pierces the night as the drumbeats increase their rhythm…pounding like blood through the temples…then dying down to a soft thrumming which waits….

She watches from the hilltop.

There will be blood tomorrow too… for vengeance, for betrayal… for a kingdom…many will fight for her… many will die…but she holds the power.

They will come, over the hilltop, through the valley… and they will be caught.

She has the high ground and those who serve her know its ways…But tonight she watches and waits… there is another service… she watches the dark forms approach from the enclosure…The…

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