Sign of the Serpent: Travel Curiosities

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mati-foto, Pixabay

Another day and another town, such is the lot of the traveller passing through, glimpsing places preserved in aspic and showered with sweet almond pastries.

Sunrise bathes all in gold and sparks of flame, catches breath in throat. Church bells ring, announce the time of prayer and silent contemplation.

You wonder what lies beneath, how true its heart is and how deep the well of memories plunges. You ask to sip its waters, wait hesitantly for permission.

The silence flows endlessly, gives no indication, and gives no quarter. “Tell me” you urge and yet like a lover engaged in games of intrigue it answers not.

Eyes peer curiously from windows and doorways, mutter in tongues unfamiliar and offer yet more silence. Dare you engage? Dare you invite responses?

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StockSnap, Pixabay

Words drop like pearls from your mouth and smiles banish the last of darkness. Welcomes unfold, hospitality ensues.

They ask what your journey entails and what you seek. Dare you enlighten them and reveal the plan? The Serpent calls, beckons and promises. Knowledge awaits, initiates yet more journeys.

They reveal the way, tell of the Sign of Infinity, of Serpent poised above the portal. They point the way, deep into the heart of this city it lies, hidden in narrow, mysterious streets. No map is given, they only say “follow the voice of the wind. No guidebook will furnish you more.”

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doggerel, Pixabay

So the adventure continues, the labyrinthine streets bear witness to pilgrimages past and to be undertaken. You stand bewildered, silhouetted against stone and wood, bereft of purpose. Silence cascades like a mountain stream, stretches into infinity. So long it seems, so long, and then, the wind rises, gives voice to what you seek.

The shadows vanish, melt into gold and then it emerges. The Sign of Infinity, the Sign of the Serpent. You glance at your guide-book, page after page of blankness, of histories yet to be written. The first and not the last of travel curiosities.

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Graham-H, Pixabay

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Deep and Personal | The Silent Eye

Deep and Personal - 1

Another thought provoking post from the Silent Eye about the mystical journey.

https://thesilenteye.co.uk/2018/01/04/deep-and-personal/

The School – The correspondence course, what it is and how it works

Another path that I walk on apart from the ancient Egyptian Mysteries. This being the Silent Eye Mystery School, one many of you may be familiar with. I’ve certainly written about my experiences of the annual workshops.

 

Source: The School – The correspondence course, what it is and how it works

Whispers of Ancestral Voices

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Image: Pixabay

Fellow bloggers and old friends who attended the recent Silent Eye workshop, The Feathered Seer, have written far more eloquently than I of their experiences.  This is my attempt at making sense of the weekend’s events, my guide Anubis will walk beside me as I recall all and perhaps nothing. I ask my Muse and Guide, The Opener and Walker between the Worlds what he makes of this tapestry woven from our histories. He gives me an inscrutable look (haven’t seen that one before) and whispers:

We carry in our DNA the sum of all existence and memory, from before time existed and beyond the ending of worlds. Linking with others to form gigantic DNA chains in the body of something beyond comprehension. Purposefully flying towards evolution and completion. Harmonious and beauteous in all ways. All return to the point of origin, from whence they came. Then there is no-one and no-thing, we just ARE but our conscious minds are unable to understand this concept except only in dreams and moments of true insight. Continue reading

Visions of Love (Guest Blog)

A mystic’s vision of Love.

Booknvolume

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Image: Pixabay

This is a story birthed as a result of two visionary and powerful poems written by Rabindranath Tagore, winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913. He is an individual I admire much for his creative talents and ideals. The breadth of his work ranged from fiction, poetry, songs, dramas, stories, literary criticism, philosophy and social issues. An extensive list it has to be said! Tagore was awarded the Prize for the following reasons, which I would like to quote in full:

Prize motivation: “because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words, a part of the literature of the West”

Field: poetry

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The Dream (Guest Blog for BnV)

Booknvolume

graphics-1329065_1280.jpg Image: Pixabay

Things of beauty, gossamer fancies and rainbow dreams. The Dreamer weaves. The Great Emptiness gives a knowing look. Stardust flows from her hands and wondrous mysteries from her thoughts.

Billions upon billions of stars, diamond bright and filled with unceasing fire sing their songs of praise. They know what it is to be born from the depths of the furnace. They live with a passion untouched by doubt. There is no death, only immortality. There is no sadness, only joy.

She is the eternal mercy, compassion and love. These gifts she weaves into matter, flesh and blood. To dream is her gift, an act of creation and regeneration. She is the Mother and the Father. She is the beginning and the end. Such gifts She passes to Her twin. The Universe thus continues its cycle of being.

She has knowledge of all in the Great Dream, memories vanishing…

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The Wizard of Odd

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Image: Pixabay

I can’t explain myself, I’m afraid, sir, said Alice, because I’m not myself, you see.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll

Alice has a point, I consider myself a fellow sufferer. What’s happened recently to bring about this state of affairs? The time of year is an important factor in this identity crisis. It’s a season combining aspects of death, regeneration and resurrection. Our departed loved ones, including the Ancestors gather near the thinning veils to grace us with their presence. The Shaman senses and sees all between the worlds, viewing the interplay of Light and Dark unfold. The iconic Star Wars theme is playing in the background whilst I reveal the workings of my inner life. Geek alert, geek alert. Most of my recent posts have been related to mythic journeys taken to the Underworld. For those of us sensitive to the nuances of Nature and the mysteries of veiled realities it is a time of change and reflection. Accordingly my writing has echoed such themes. Sounds heavy going, please stay with me. Not sure whether I can due to having a grotty cold. To be honest I’m sporting a hairstyle that says ‘dragged through a hedge backwards’ rather than stylish; wearing white, rose patterned jammies and furry slippers reminiscent of yeti feet. ‘What a terrible fashion sense’ my alter ego remarks, dabbing her nose delicately with a scented hanky. Apologies in advance for these, these cavalier interruptions. Since the Shed altered its admission policies all manner of ruffians have wandered in. Where is the Force when you need it?

Such unseemly digression, time to get back on track. The absence of silence is noticeable in a world filled with discordant and at times frightening noise. When we enter into a state of silence the voice of the Universe can be heard in all its beauty and simplicity. The Mystic, Poet and Writer are familiar with its rhythms; we offer our prayers within that space. Prayer is attuning yourself to the life of the world, to love, the force that moves the sun and the moon and the stars (Music of Silence, David Steindl-Rast & Sharon Lebell, 1998). How right they are! Mystics aren’t restricted to just the main spiritual and religious traditions. Our paths are varied and we are many, all united in a search for meaning and illumination in an often mysterious Universe.

‘I’ve not heard from you in a while Jan’, a voice comments from the sidelines, ‘sounds like it’s been busy.’

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Image: Anubis, Jan Malique

His Nibs. I turn to look at Him. The Wizard of Odd makes another appearance. For all those unfamiliar with my relationship with this entity, you may know him as Anubis. It’s been a while since we had a chat. I look at him tiredly; he lifts an eyebrow and suggests we take a seat. The silence flows around us for a while. He clears his throat and makes a remark about the weather, then shudders in shock. Spending too much time in temperate climes. How do I tell him that there is another one waiting in the shadows, someone I’ll have to share my affections with. He has a bright and utterly mischievous gleam in his eyes. The god’s face rearranges itself into a semblance of pathos. It isn’t working; I’m immune to such dastardly tactics.

‘When is Anubis number three coming? I’m a little upset understandably but will try to cope,’ his voice breaks on the last word.

Is he joking? His Nibs leans forward and starts laughing. This light-hearted banter vanishes the previously heavy atmosphere. He reiterates the importance of trusting my intuition and self-belief. The power of the mind and soul are immense he reminds me. Attune to the flow of the greater Consciousness, see  how it permeates and infuses matter in all its glory, including myself. It speaks clearly and resonantly within the silence, it hears my prayers, it hears my heart.

The Universe is manifest in his eyes, he steps aside and shows me the extent of the silence that is available for the Mystic to immerse themselves in. It is a liminal place, mighty like the Ocean breaking upon the shores of our dreams. A strange and luminous space. Charles Panati offers us one viewpoint of this creature named the ‘Mystic’ in his book ‘Sacred Origins of Profound Things’:

‘Mystic: A person who professes to undergo enigmatic experiences, occult or parasensory, not always pleasant, often unpredictable, by which he or she intuitively comprehends truths that lie beyond ordinary human understanding. The moniker is from the Greek mystes, “one who is initiated”. Mystics have always been regarded with a certain degree of suspicion.’

Hm. That explains a lot. Why are words necessary when the heart can understand things most profound and seemingly incomprehensible? My exposition is meandering down paths that appear random, they are not. I look across at the Great Silence and wait. He waits with me.  A Hare appears at my side.

The Gathering #writephoto

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Photo: Sue Vincent

My response to Sue Vincent’s Thursday photo prompt, Beacon #writephoto.

Once again something stirs deep within my mind. I see images of things past, images of things held dear. The great mage, prophet and madman Merlin was going to feature in my offering but his visit has been rescheduled to another day. The High Priestess in this tale is one that has visited the shores of ancient Britain before. She and I are known to each other…Her story is intimately linked with my past history you could say. I had a clear picture in my mind of the story and how it would unfold. This Beacon offers a light through often dark and choppy waters, both on the inner and outer. It acts as symbol of the triumph of Light over Chaos and Darkness. It also acts as a herald, bringing with it news of much importance. Like the High Priestess we can sometimes find ourselves waiting on distant summits, waiting for a glimpse of something which will bring us hope and healing. Our world is in much disarray as hers, nothing much changes in the long and troubled history of humanity! Yet, we must find the strength and courage, as well as humility to stand against things which seek to destroy our spirit and compassion. Above all we must hold fast to our Soul’s mission. Continue reading

Master of the Hidden Self

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The Mystic begins another journey, this time as an observer outside the circle of Knowing and Being. They perceive patterns within patterns in the sacred dance, yet unable to penetrate the mystery at its heart. The visit to the holy well in North Wales was only one aspect of the face of the numinous, there were other roads to explore. Rumi had laid the foundations of this particular path, so what to do but follow it to its destination of course. Sufism continues to hold a strong fascination for many in this modern age, in particular the activities of the Mevlevi Order (or Whirling Dervishes) in the performance of the Sema Ceremony or Ritual Dance. To express the beauty and mystique of the Ceremony in words is difficult, more so for an outsider. What is the Mystic searching for? Perhaps Gurdjieff’s insightful words may provide one answer:

“Man is asleep, he has no real consciousness or will. He is not free; to him everything ‘happens’. He can become conscious and find his true place as a human being in the creation, but this requires a profound transformation.” Continue reading

I’m off to Mystics Anonymous, call you later

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Here I am preparing for another journey into the unknown, taking a moment of rest to replenish the soul. I suspect my last foray into the heart of the Collective Unconscious was either mere illusion or a glimpse into a world behind a world. Talking in riddles again. It helps keep the mind agile, or so I like think!

Let me ask you a question, please humour me, there is a point to this. Have you ever had random encounters with strangers which have left you feeling the Universe is rather like a Russian doll? One hidden inside another, another and another, retreating into infinity. One such encounter occurred a few days ago. I was attending a course at work with other colleagues across our business, nothing unusual about either the course content or attendees. Until I was paired with one of the course facilitators in a communication exercise, the point being to express honestly what we felt about our hopes, loves and fears with another. The tone of the conversation veered into mystical waters, which resonated with both of us. A strange state of affairs and rather surprising. With apologies to Casablanca, “Of all the seminar rooms, in all the towns, in all the world, he walks into mine…”.

Continue reading