A passageway worthy of Tolkien
(remember to click on the photos for better images)
An image that I used in my post on June 18th bears a striking resemblance to a crop circle that appeared on June 17th.
To be sure, the potential significance of the crop circle itself is far more interesting than its connection to my writing; but of course I can’t help but wonder what personal meaning it might have, given the “temporal proximity” of its formation and my subsequent post. : )
I’m not the one that put these two images together. I never would have seen it. This was done by the folks over at http://www.cropcircleconnector.com.
Here’s a link to my blog post from that day:
In that post about doing sacred journeys into the sacred directions, I mentioned the necessity of having a reference point from which to anchor those journeys. For my reference point I choose to use the island located at the confluence of the Mississippi and Minnesota rivers, which the Dakota’s called “Bdote”, and which they considered to lay directly over the center of the Earth and immediately below the center of the Heavens. Thus, it was their axis mundi…and in that discussion used this image of Yggdrasil, the world tree from Norse Mythology:
Another image of the crop circle, which is located by the ancient hillfort called Badbury Rings, which can be seen in the background of this photo by Lucy Pringle, also from the website www.cropcircleconnector.com
Another photo by Lucy Pringle of the rings themselves. [I trust that it’s okay that I’m posting these]
One also wonders about the significance of this proximity, as if the crop circle were identifying the “fort” as an axis mundi. The earthen rings seem to ripple through the three dimensions of the lower world, middle world, and upper world, and resemble all three as depicted on the Yggdrasil image.
Interesting enough, the “fort” has an Arthurian Connection. Badbury Rings is one of the sites that is considered as a possible location for the Battle of Mount Baden, the site of the first decisive victory of King Arthur. Which of course connects to my series of Grail and Quest of the Knight Errant posts.
If this crop circle is authentic, in some sense of that term, (whether of other-worldly or inspired-human origin) does it point to Badbury Rings as a portal to other dimensions? If so, does my connection to this through use of the Yggdrasil image, point to Bdote as also a portal to other dimensions?
Mysteries to Explore…
Another depiction of Yggdrasil (note the rings in the middle world):
Of the world tree, Joseph Campbell says in The Power of Myth:
…. The center of the world is the axis mundi, the central point the pole around which all revolves. The central point of the world is the point where stillness and movement are together. Movement is time, but stillness is eternity. Realizing how this moment of your life is actually a moment of eternity, and the experiencing the eternal aspect of what you’re doing in the experiences – this the mythological experience.”
In The Hero With a Thousand Faces, Campbell writes about The World Navel (and world tree):
“The effect of the successful adventure of the hero is the unlocking and release again of the flow of life into the body of the world….
The torrent pours from an invisible source, the point of entry being the center of the symbolic circle of the universe… around which the world may be said to revolve. Beneath this spot is the earth-supporting head of the cosmic serpent, the dragon, symbolical of the waters of the abyss, which are the divine life-creative energy and substance of the demiurge, the world-generative aspect of immortal being. The tree of life, i.e., the universe itself, grows from this point. It is rooted in the supporting darkness; the golden sun bird perches on its peak; a spring, the inexhaustible well, bubbles at its foot. Or the figure may be of a cosmic mountain, with the city of the gods, like a lotus of light, upon its summit….Thus the World Navel is the symbol of the continuous creation: the mystery of the maintenance of the world through that continuous miracle of the vivification which wells within all things.”
Two WordPress sites that have info on the archeology and history of the Bradbury Rings site:
You can see more beautiful images (even a video) of the crop circle here:
And additional interpretations of the glyph here:
A special thanks to Anne over at http://www.exopermaculture.com , whose WordPress blog brought this image to my attention.
Check out her post about the crop circles of 2014,
which leads you to this site: http://augureye.blogspot.com/2014/08/2014-crop-circle-gallery.html
another wordpress blogger that posted info on the crop circle:
Beside the shore of the hallowed lake, there has dwelt a kindhearted Elf for nigh unto 20 years. A shy emissary from the lands of enchantment, on spring’s first day he returns to his dwelling by the water. Politely knock on his door and peer inside to see piles of candy and slips of paper, little notes written by the hands of children. The young ones leave him treats and letters, with sincere greetings or serious queries, to which Mr. Elf kindly replies. Upon their return a child will find a note addressed to them by name, neatly typed in the smallest of print. So many to rifle through, but they always find a merry reply, with the closing salutation, “I believe in You.”
Then when summer is done and fall in is in the air, it is time for the Elf to vacate his tree once more. He hangs a plaque announcing that he has departed and returned to his castle in the west for the winter.
Thanks to my exchange with Laura Bruno, who reblogged this on her blog, I recalled an additional piece of information that I’d like to add to this post ~
This tree is located on the shores of Lake Harriet in Minneapolis. The lake was named by an army colonel who was stationed in the area in the early 1800′s. He found the lake so beautiful that it reminded him of his cherished fiancé, Harriet, who was far away in the east. So he christened it in her honor. Harriet’s last name was…Lovejoy!
[the name “Harriet” is derived from “Henry”, derived from Henrik, derived from Germanic Heimrich: heim = home & ric = ruler…and thus means “ruler of the home”, otherwise rendered as “keeper of the hearth”. ]
When the mind is troubled, how does one successfully shift to a place of peace? Perhaps the magical number 3 offers a hint.
On my walk this morning I was brooding over angry thoughts. I’d push them away, turn my attention to the world around me, and very quickly the thoughts would return. There was nothing that could be done in the moment to address the issue that was causing the anger, so it was a matter of dealing with the emotions and not the situation.
Since I was so uninspired I decided to make it a short walk and returned to my door. But, second-thoughts stalled me in the entryway. I was giving up too soon, I realized; a longer walk, not shorter one, was what I needed.
Not much changed in my mood, as I stared at my feet walking down the sidewalk, lost in my thoughts. But, as frequently happens, I lifted my head just in time; the sight I found before me was this wonderful peace sign embedded in someone’s lawn:
Struck by its beauty and the intention of those who created it, I was immediately uplifted. With my mood lightened, my head no long bowed in thought, and my pace quickened, I turned the corner. A few houses down that block I encountered – another peace sign…
So, now I’m laughing. I love how the universe works.
But, I say to myself, “the third time’s a charm – let’s see if I encounter a third peace sign” – rather playfully challenging the universe to bring me another one.
A bit further down the street I stopped to admire this bit of landscaping. As I gazed upon it I realized that, intentional or not, the plantings within the brick circle took the form of the peace sign. The picture doesn’t capture it, (and I didn’t want to step into their yard to get a better shot) but the tall plants to the left form the top spoke and the feathery plants to the right fanned out like the bottom spokes of the peace sign, encircled by the bricks:
Now, I’m no longer laughing, but feeling a reverent gratitude, and a deep sense of peace.
The three peace signs caused me to consider the three layers of the mind, the conscious, the subconscious, and the unconscious. Briefly defined, these are 1) one’s awareness at the present moment, 2) stored memories that are readily accessible, and 3) instinctual drives, buried memories, psychological conditioning, and emotional wounds that can drive our behaviors.
To intentionally quell a turbulent mind and attain a state of equanimity requires more than just working on the first level. If necessary, we can push away or replace thoughts to stay present with other matters, but we are essentially suppressing what’s churning underneath. And as long as it’s still churning, it can repeatedly bubble up into to our thoughts, no matter how many times we try to put them on the back burner.
Through one technique or another, one can bring peace to each of these levels, until it resonates at the core of one’s being.
Shanti, Shanti, Shanti
Continuing with the Egyptian theme from yesterday’s post, the story of Isis searching the land of Egypt for the dismembered parts of her slain husband, Osiris, gives form to some thoughts that I’ve been having about my experience since I began my Sunrise Sadhana.
Through the experiences that I’ve written about, and other encounters that I haven’t, I have often felt that I was in the process of re-collecting parts of myself that I had for various reasons left behind or neglected or forgotten. My experience yesterday with the sun and moon and the resulting re-animation of my past experiences with Horus brought that sensation into exceptionally high relief, again, appropriate relative to the myth of Osiris.
My experience also brings to mind the short story by Margret Atwood, “Isis in Darkness”, in which an aging poetry professor who has lost his way makes it his life’s purpose to search out and assemble the life and works of one of his former students, Selena, whose poetry he admired. Selena lived her life as a poet but became disillusioned, succumbs to alcoholism, and dies before her time.
While the story movingly reverses the male-female roles of the myth, it is also clear that in reconstructing Selena’s life, he is also redeeming, and reconnecting with, his own soul. This student’s paper puts it very well:
By undertaking this project, he accomplishes two things: First, he takes on the role of Isis, transforming Selena into an immortal author by bringing together the pieces of her life, and second, he transforms himself into an author in his own right. Just as Isis reconstructs herself while she reconstructs Osiris, Richard builds himself into the author he has always wanted to be as he pieces together the note cards that contain the facts he has learned about Selena.
Both the original myth and Atwood’s story hint at this profound process that we are all capable of doing for ourselves. While the process is always poignant, whether one’s story ends in tragedy or beatitude depends upon the undertaking.
For the third month in a row, as part of my Sunrise Sadhana, I made a brief sojourn to an undisclosed hilltop location this morning to watch the full moon set in the west as the sun rose in the east. I did not at all expect that this morning’s observance would revivify my past experiences with the Egyptian God Horus…
The sun and moon are frequently in the sky together, but it is only for a moment each month that the full moon (from our earthly perspective) is in the sky with the sun. For only a moment each month our two orbs balance each other, poised in opposite directions, one rising in the east as the other sets in the west.
Yesterday evening I was sharing this at a small gathering and as I described this celestial event I was going to observe in the morning, I unconsciously outstretched my arms, palms facing upward, to gesture their antipodal positions. To which someone quipped, “And you’ll be holding one in each hand.” I responded with an unabashed “Yes!” and we all shared a good-natured laugh at the prospect.
So this morning, standing on my hilltop as a fulcrum between the two orbs, I decided to do just as my friend had teased. Without thinking, I turned toward the north, and stretched my right hand out to the sun and my left hand out to the moon. As I imagined holding these two heavenly spheres, a couple of things happened. On the one hand (pun intended), I was flooded with a wonderful sensation of these two energies flowing into me, converging within me, uplifting me.
On the other hand (pun also intended), I was flooded with memories that brought a deeper meaning to the experience…which requires briefly recounting a couple of stories…
First ~ Years ago, when I was still a relative newcomer to the spiritual quest, I was asked to help lead a meditation service at the interfaith church I was attending. Just before the service the main facilitator and I closed our eyes in silent prayer, asking for some divine assistance with the information we were about to deliver. When I opened my eyes – and I want to stress that, with my eyes open, what I next saw was not something I saw in my imagination, it was something I saw with my eyes – there was an apparition of the Egyptian God Horus across the room from me. At the time, I had no idea who he was – a muscular male figure with the head of a falcon, wearing a loin cloth that was clearly Egyptian. Once I described what I had seen to others, they quickly surmised that it was Horus, and subsequent research and experience proved this to be so.
Second ~ Some months later, while sitting in the sanctuary of that same church, this time with eyes closed in meditation, another completely unbidden image came to me. In my mind’s eye I saw an Eagle swoop out of the sky and land on my right shoulder while at the same time an Owl swooped out of the sky and landed on my left shoulder. They both perched for but a moment and then simultaneously reached over and plucked out my eyes, the Eagle taking the right eye and the Owl taking the left. I remember my body tensing in shock as this unsettling image played out. Without pausing however, the two birds then replaced my old eyes with new ones – the eye of the Eagle in the right and the eye of Owl in the left.
Once again, I could write at length some explanatory and interpretive notes, but, for the moment, I will just provide a few details and allow the reader’s mind to flesh out the significance…
Those familiar with Egyptian lore know that the right eye of Horus is associated with the sun and his left eye is associated with the moon. For those not familiar with Horus, his story is well worth researching – you’ll find a fuller account quite fascinating.
As for the Owl and the Eagle, the Owl is of course a lunar animal and the Eagle is its solar counterpart.
So in my unconscious gesture last night, which elicited an intuitive response from a friend, and in my following that leading through assuming an unconscious posture (turning north rather than south) this morning, holding the sun in my right hand and holding the moon in my left, quite a profound event was activated. It is striking how there is a perfect congruency between these three experiences of the sun and moon, the yang and yin, the masculine and feminine, the intellect and intuition, of Horus, and of the Eagle and the Owl.
Four times over the past month on my morning walks I have encountered a red fox. Each time it has felt as though there were some import to the encounter, but in this last meeting the fox stopped, faced me, and barked at me. Repeatedly. I guess I haven’t been paying attention. And it has been impressed upon me that I should write a blog post about it.
Four sightings may not be so unusual in a rural landscape, but in the urban environment in which I walk, it feels quite striking. I believe I must be walking near its (or their) den, and thus the multiple encounters.
As with any animal, there are various interpretations of if symbolic significance, or the energy it carries, when it comes into one’s life. Here is one that resonates with me at this moment:
The ancient Celts considered the Fox an expert on the layout of the forest and held this particular animal in high esteem for it’s wisdom. They also relied upon the Fox with his intuitive sense of direction to be their guide on the path to the spirit world. In China the Fox has a symbolic association with the afterlife and in Persia it is thought to assist dead human spirits to move on to the next life. This connection with the mysteries of otherworldly time and space makes the Fox Amulet capable of tuning in to metaphysical energies. This can be especially useful when amulets are acquired and used for the attainment of goals, the granting of wishes or to attract love.
In reading up on the natural history of the fox, I found that it is truly an astounding animal with many characteristics worthy of note, characteristics that provide the substance behind its many various interpretations.
For me, right now, it was the fox that led me to a portal, so its function as a guide to the spirit world feels especially significant. “Follow me”, it seemed to be calling. And so I will….
the picture at top is from:
Once again exploring the theme of the Holy Grail as a metaphor for the Human Soul…
Watching the sun rise this morning…
While standing upon this dock….
I began going through the Qi Gong series of movements called “Harmony of Universal Energy”
~ at one stage of the series, one is standing with legs spread, gathering energy as one slowly raises one’s arms, pausing for a moment at the apex with hands fully upraised to the sky, forming a Vee with one’s arms ~
as I was going through these motions I realized that I was standing in the form of a chalice, in the form of the Grail, which was mirrored by the rising sun and its reflection upon water…
and felt the sublime experience of being the individual Grail, face to face with the Universal Grail, of being the individual Spirit face to face with the Absolute Spirit, of being the Microcosm face to face with the Macrocosm…. a moment of Universal Harmony.
the picture at top is from the website: http://www.albahealingarts.com/spring-forst-qigong/
Apotheosis: from Late Latin apotheosis “deification,” from Greek apotheosis, from apotheoun “deify, make (someone) a god,” from apo- special use of this prefix, meaning, here, “change” + theos “god” (see theo-).
In his book, The Hero With A Thousand Faces, Joseph Campbell writes that the Hero must pass through a stage of Apotheosis. According to Campbell, apotheosis is the expansion of consciousness that the hero experiences after defeating his foe.
To continue using the Grail as a metaphor for the Soul, as it was given to me in the dream that I recounted in my post, “The Quest for the Holy Grail”, to drink from the Grail would be to heal the divide between one’s ego and one’s Soul. To be languishing in the wasteland is to be separated from one’s divinity; to drink from the Grail is to experience the divinity of one’s Soul. To be healed would be to put aside the inauthentic life one was living and to embark upon the true purpose of one’s Soul.
How does this divide between the ego and the soul arise? Presumably it could arise from a variety of causes, but perhaps the spilt is engendered by the very foe that must be defeated. In my case, which is likely not that unusual, it arose from the treatment I received from my father. The inherent abilities I possessed, my interests, my values, and areas in which I lacked ability, these were all constantly disparaged. This degrading treatment caused an internal estrangement of me from my own higher self. I disowned and discounted what was devalued by those around me. Over the years I have sought healing for this in many forms, with varying success.
Recently, another person has entered one sphere of my life whose attitude toward life and whose treatment of me is remarkably similar to that of my father’s. Though it is painful to experience being treated in such a demeaning fashion again, this time around it also easier to not take it personally as one unavoidably does as a child. And it is also easy to see the pain that this man carries that causes him to approach life as he does. Rather than causing me to become angry, he elicits sympathy. Rather than causing me to divorce my own self, he gives me an opportunity to dive in more deeply to maintain my center.
Campbell also writes that an integral part of the apotheosis process is to achieve atonement with the father.
So it is clear that this troubled person who has entered my life is a purposeful part of my present quest to connect more fully to my Soul and to live out my Soul’s purpose. Through my encounter with him I can heal the old wounds from my father, reconcile the estrangement from my Soul, and thus experience apotheosis. May it be that I drink deeply from the Holy Grail.