Gillian Monks

'Making Fairytales Come True'

Merry Midsummer!

As a child I was always confused by the Summer Solstice and Midsummer. One is a solar event and scientifically predicted and observed; the other is more nebulous and coincides with St. John’s Day (John the Baptist) a few days later on the 24th June. This then places the magical Midsummer’s Eve (that one and the same wild event as in the woodland shenanigans of Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s dream’) on the 23rd of the month… which is today.

I find it easier to understand the meaning of the dates and unfolding progression of the planets and the natural world around the time of the Winter Solstice, with the shortest day and longest night around the 21st December, followed by several days of dark stillness until the morning of the 25th December (Christmas Day) when the the Sun (or Son) is seen to be reborn and when the length of daylight might actually be measured as longer once more.

The same applies to Midsummer but in reverse: the Summer Solstice marks the time when the Sun is closest to the Earth and we experience the longest amount of daylight and the shortest amount of darkness – indeed, even in the United Kingdom if the sky is clear on this night, the sky never fully darkens at all.

Then we pass through several days when the literal meaning of the word Solstice (‘sun stands still’) becomes apparent as days and nights appear to remain the same length, before the days inexorably and measurably begin to grow shorter once more from the 24th June onwards. Just as the Sun is seen to be reborn a few days after the Winter Solstice and we anticipate the lighter half of the year, so on the 24th June, we begin to witness the reverse effects of this solar event and the Darkness is reborn once more as we turn our faces to the encroaching dark half of the year.

In some pagan circles, the two halves of the year are represented by the Oak King who rules from Midwinter and represents the Light, and his bother the Holly King, who ules from Midsummer and represents the Darkness.

The significance of the Light and Dark, Jesus and St. John, the Oak King and the Holly King celebrating these two pivotal occasions in out calendar are all too obvious. Whatever one’s beliefs or method of interpreting or explaining them, the fact remains that these solar events are absolutely key to the continuation of life on this planet and have been – and are still – celebrated by many people of all religious persuasions and beliefs around the globe from time immemorial.

The evening of the 23rd of June is Midsummer’s Eve. and mirrors the magic and sanctity of Mother’s Night which coincides with Christmas Eve at Midwinter.

This is one of those times during our year when the veils between the many levels of existence thins enabling us to peer through into other times and places, and, in this particular instance and most importantly, into what is to come… into what we would like to become our future… an opportunity not just to view it but to drift and dream and decide what we would like to create our future to be.

There are many myths and stories, beliefs and traditions associated with Midsummer’s Eve. It is a night populated by the Fae and the Faerie, and by all manner of beings from other dimensions who are temporarily able to engage with us – a time when you may appeal to and seek the assistance of such wondrous beings.

I shall show my respect for our local Tylwyth Teg by honouring them with some gifts – crusty home-baked bread, local honey fragrant with the scent of last summer’s flowers, creamy cheese, and the rich amber of whisky. these shall be served on fine porcelain and crystal on the front lawn under the holly tree at dusk.

Personally, I like to sit with the evening shadows in the cool of the garden, surrounded by the peaceful valley and silent mountains. A high place or the beach are also good places to tune into this magical night.

Wherever you are and whatever you are doing, I wish you a very merry Midsummer, and many wonderful things to come your way in the second half of your year!

 

Greetings for a Glorious Solstice!

Our tiny circle, basking in the sunshine, and all ready for this evening.

After all the rain, grey cloud and chilly temperatures, here in Snowdonia we have woken to the most perfect Summer Solstice weather – blue skies and golden sunshine!

And what a perfect time to celebrate… we have made it out of the darkness of winter and all the negative events which are occurring around the world, but we are all still here. Time to celebrate, to feel the joy of high summer and the power of the Sun at his most potent.

However, Neptune is exerting a strong influence at present – which doesn’t surprise me at all as my darling husband has just rushed in to tell me that the cold water pipe under the sink in the back kitchen is gushing water…

So, I shall draw this message to a premature halt and go and play at mudlarks!

But we shall be in circle this evening to honour the time of year and the new dawn which it is heralding.

Wishing you all much love, joy and laughter,
Have a wonderful Solstice!
With my love.

Just the Little Things

I chose to experience the time of the solar eclipse yesterday sitting out in my little stone circle. For us, here in North West Wales, it was early evening. Not much chance of actually seeing anything, as we have had rain and high winds for several days now. The skies were dark and lowering with heavy grey cloud, yet thankfully, the gales had calmed to a warm if boisterous breeze and only a soft drizzle fell fitfully.

The new moon and solar eclipse of the 8th April 2024 is a pivotal event in the progress of the human race and the Earth as a whole. As a Theosophist, we refer to the energetic changes we are all experiencing as Shamballa, which culminate in 2025. The effects of the current solar flares and magnetic storms upon our planet are just one contribution to the many challenges and difficulties we are all feeling and reeling from at present.

And it is not just we humans who are being subjected to such inter-stellar effects. Everything upon the earth and the Earth herself are being shaken up, stripped and renewed, hence all the earthquakes, floods and extreme weather this past few weeks – the earth is having quite a time of it too.

For years now, we have been impressed by the dire results of our careless, thoughtless way of life and have been made to view the bigger picture, globally, universally, and take responsibility collectively for our actions as members of the human race. While it is extremely important that we don’t lose sight of this bigger picture, it has been made clear to me that right now, we all need to focus on the little things in our lives… the myriad tiny occasions when ordinary life lifts our spirits with some of the millions of miracles which constitute our day-to-day lives, and which we are frequently oblivious to. The comforting sensation of hot water on your skin; the soft caress of clean clothes or a favourite jumper; that first mouthful of tea or coffee in the morning which is so good; the sight of a fuzzy bumble bee buzzing about it’s all-important business; the deep blue of a forget-me-not flower growing in the cracks of a path.

We need to take particular joy in all that we have to be thankful for and focus on our blessings, not our problems and woes. As humans, it is all too easy to only acknowledge what is wrong or missing in our lives, and not actually see all that we actually have. Now is the time to change all that, and to revel in every tiny moment of beauty, of comfort, of good fortune, no matter how transient, and to laugh… we really do need to laugh more and truly begin to feel the exuberant joy of being alive. After all, we are tremendously privileged to be alive today, at this crucial time in the history of our World.

What I am suggesting goes a little beyond the Mindfulness so many of us aspire to. I am trying to convey the feeling of living one’s life in actively positive joy and gratitude for everything, no matter how microscopic or insignificant. From these infinitesimal moments, we can birth a new and much more loving, peaceful and beautiful world. This is what is being asked of us. Our success is in the detail… the minutiae of our own everyday life.

Please share this message – by reposting links or sharing on Facebook, or whatever, but mainly by your own actions – amazingly, our collective future is in your hands, and the level to which you are prepared to allow yourself to be happy – set aside the habitual emotions of guilt and unworthiness which we all tend to suffer. This is your birthright!  Try it. What is not to like? After all, you are hardly being asked to participate in something unpleasant.

And if, every time you celebrate a moments joy, you can send out a flash of loving gratitude, think how, when multiplied millions of times, this could change everything. 

Have an absolutely brilliant day, and many days to come – smile, love, laugh, and enjoy life… your life.

Happy Easter!

Joyous greetings!

Easter is a good time to celebrate renewal. The egg has long been a symbol of rebirth and new beginnings… it signifies potential for the coming new seasons. This year, especially, when we are all finding life more challenging, difficult, problematical or just plain heavy, Easter provides a golden opportunity to mark the ending of the old order and a fresh start – literally a brave new world.

And don’t forget the Easter Bunny, who isn’t really a rabbit at all but originally a depiction of the magical hare, recognised the world over as the incarnate connection between humanity and the natural world, the quirky, tricksy, endearing messenger between the moon and the earth, the link between our ordinary everyday life and our spiritual existence, planting the seeds of new life (eggs) around our gardens and green spaces as the natural world bursts into buds and blossoms.

Whatever your religion or spiritual beliefs, cherish and enjoy this very special and sacred time.

From my home to yours, great good wishes for a very happy day!

 

Get Involved – Your Choice!

Easter and the Vernal Equinox are a time of new beginnings, of rebirth, regeneration and the upsurge of spring and the new cycle of the growing season… of the light, bright, active half f our year. Here is a gentle suggestion as to how we can all become involved in creating a new world truly fit for our children and grandchildren to inhabit.

(To work your way through this journey of deep love and understanding, you will have to suspend all judgement… this journey is not in criticism of all the peacekeeping work many armed forces undertake around the world… it is aimed at any human living on the planet who is currently engaged in nationally sponsored active violence. Nor does this journey involve forgiveness, for that also implies judgement and the taking of moral high ground on the part of the forgiver. No matter how difficult, try and stay with this journey to the end – I promise you that it will be worth it, both in how it might beneficially affect current hostilities, but even more so in how it will affect you yourself.

See a person standing in front of you… They are someone you know well and are close to – a brother, sister, friend. They are struggling with life’s ordinary challenges. Place your arm gently around their shoulders… Tell them that you trust them to do the right thing… and tenderly hold them in safety, understanding and love…

See a person, a man or woman, in front of you…

They are a soldier, and they are about to commit a violent act…

Read More

Do It Today – Don’t Wait Until Tomorrow

All last year I watched in admiration as a friend underwent serious surgery and fought to regain general mobility and specifically the use of her arm.  All her friends marvelled at her tenacity and courage. Every time I saw her, we discussed how she was progressing and what new achievements she had accomplished. We laughed and hugged and aimed to remain very positive.

Last November, I saw her in the distance at a meeting but, unusually, I didn’t get to speak to her or share our usual long, warm, hug. It was a busy afternoon and there were lots of people requiring attention and it was only when I saw my friend disappearing out the door that I realised that, for once, I had missed her. My first instinct was to run after her and give her a big hug… but then, I have been experiencing problems with arthritis in my knee again this winter and realised that attempting to ‘run’ anywhere probably wasn’t such a good idea. After all, when I next saw her I would be able to give her a double hug and no damage done.

I never did see my friend again. She quickly became ill, was admitted to hospital and diagnosed with stage four cancer which had somehow managed to slip beneath the radar of all her other treatments and procedures.

She died in February.

The moral of this little story is obvious. Never put off ’til tomorrow what you can do today. In other words, don’t hold back… do it NOW! Give your hugs and love freely and generously – tell your dear ones how much you love them and convey it with your warm and welcoming embraces – or in any other way you can think of.

We can’t live every day as if it was our last, but we can fill every day with joy and gratitude for what we have in the here and now, and share our positive emotions with those we care about.

Think about it… with my love.

Peace in Our Time?

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I look out of my window; the sun is shining, the grass is regreening after winter, snowdrops, crocus and daffodils are all blooming simultaneously, birds are singing and spring is definitely on the way. The village is quiet and peaceful. Already, the first lock-down of the Covid pandemic is four years in the past; a global catastrophe which we have survived and many of us hoped would herald the dawn of a new, interconnected, co-operative, global community.

Yet, where do we find ourselves now? Russia and Ukraine are slogging out a multinational war by proxy and Israel is tasting what it is like to be the oppressors in its infliction of genocide upon the Palestinian people, while the rest of us struggle with our feelings of fear, impotence, sadness and horror. Worse, the sabre-rattling is spreading and the drums of all-out war are beginning to reverberate around the globe.

How do we deal with this? You and I, sitting in our safe cosy homes, what can we do to combat the fear, violence and misery?

I feel that the key word here is ‘fear’. We tend to fear what we do not know. Humanity has always reacted to the unknown with suspicion and blind aggression. However, there is a world of difference between personal ignorance and fear and the global woes generated by commerce and national governments for their own nefarious purposes.

When I was a child, I travelled quite a lot with my mother who was keen for me to learn about other peoples, places and cultures. Even as a young child, I loved writing letters and kept in touch with any children (and sometimes adults!) that I came across on my travels. Once I entered my teens I joined a penfriend organisation and developed relationships with other youngsters  around the world.

My personal connections completely coloured my perspective of and feelings for other nations. I first noticed this when watching the Eurovision Song Contest. I was more interested in the entries of other countries and didn’t care so much about how well the U.K. did so long as my pal’s countries were receiving recognition and appreciation too. It was no longer France but Jacqueline’s people, not Italy, but Domenico and his friends.

I developed friendships all across Europe into Eastern Europe, Greece, Turkey, North and South America, Sri Lanka and Hong Kong. It was huge fun and the whole family would wait with baited breath for the morning post to arrive and the next instalment of juvenile news from abroad.

By my mid teens, some of my penfriends were coming to stay with us in the school holidays and by the time I was in my late teens, it was not unusual to find boys and girls from several different nations sitting around our table. As these also covered widely disparate cultures and religions, my poor mother was sometimes hard put to accommodate and feed everyone without causing a minor diplomatic incident. Trust had to be worked at.

“Mummy! Julie has bacon for breakfast… did you cook my eggs in the same pan?”
“Now, Mehmet, you know I would never do such a thing,” my mother would reply patiently as she produced two separate frying pans from the kitchen.

Wenche from Norway was like a sister to me… Harsha from Sri Lanka was the peacemaker in everything… Kathleen from America thought that English boys were ‘perfectly obnoxious’ in their ‘good manners’ which she viewed as patronising and anti-feminist… but we all got on together and laughed and learned about each other – my slightly harassed father used to refer to us as the ‘United Nations’.

Amusingly, everyone referred to my parents as ‘Mummy’, and ‘Daddy’, and when we paid return visits, as many other people (especially in the East) found the ‘J’ of Joan difficult to get their tongues around, my mother was startled to discover that everyone else referred to her as ‘Mummy’ too! Even in my late forties, I would still take phone calls when the caller asked how ‘Mummy’ was, or receive letters where the writer asked if  ‘Daddy’ was still playing his drums in the dance band.

As I grew older I joined a larger penfriend community which for a single very reasonable fee offered sixteen potential penfriends in countries, ages and interests of my choice. (International Pen Friends https://www.ipfworld.com/index.html) Inevitably, more serious questions arose in our correspondence, especially when I began writing to a meteorologist in former East Germany who wished to improve his English… but I ended up marrying him so we obviously got that right!

The way I see it now, we have options.

One: that we reach out in any way possible and befriend/make a relationship with someone from another country(s). In this case, familiarity potentially breeds mutual fondness, knowledge, trust and support. It suddenly becomes personal and is no longer ‘me’ and ‘them’ but ‘us’.

Two: in our modern multicultural, multi-gender society, we strive to get to know our neighbours… the people who breath the same air, drink the same water, walk the same roads and sleep only metres away from us. They are our local community and by wider definition, their people and country/place of origin become ours, too. I have a very dear Nigerian friend living a mile away in the next village – now every Nigerian I see is a part of her, and her land and people are dear to me and matter because of my friendship and love for her. My heart goes out to her – and to them – I have ‘adopted’ them… and that relationship sticks.

Similarly, some of my neighbours come from other parts of the U.K. which I know nothing about, but I have ‘adopted’ them as well and they are also dear to me now. Having said that, I no less value and appreciate my next-door-neighbour who was born and bred in this valley, or the people up the road who also hale from the town where I was born.

I feel that I am in the right place here in Wales for this to be understood – a society where first names are always used rather than surnames and titles, everyone is seen as equal, and community connection is of paramount importance, only topped by the sacred act of hospitality to strangers… For, of course, once someone has lived with you, (no matter how briefly), eaten at your table, laughed with you, possibly shared their concerns and commiserated with you too, they are no longer strangers but also members of your wider family, and their people are no longer ‘aliens’ or ‘strangers’ either but extended family, brothers and sisters of your new-found family member. So our ‘family’ grows.

Yes, family members frequently disagree or fall out, but if they have also shared the good times and genuine friendship and respect has been previously developed, it makes it easier to find one’s way back to talking and sorting out the problems. You certainly stand a much better chance than if you have to deal with a total stranger, with no comprehension of their culture, their thoughts and feelings or perspective on life.

For the bottom line is that we are all connected, all one with each other and all a part of our planet Earth, we simply express our perception of life as befits our geographical area and the way we have developed in it. This need not lead to division and descension but can, instead, enrich the vitality, vibrancy and texture of our shared lives. The key words here are equality and love.

Think about it. Who is in your extended family? How do you interact with them? How might you bring these disparate members closer together? How might you reach out further afield?

Just my own thoughts on a sunny February afternoon… and I would love to hear your own thoughts and opinions, for we too, are connected and I care what you think and feel.

With my love.

 

“If I Ruled the World…”

Who remembers this popular song from the musical ‘Oliver’ back in the 1960’s? Harry Secombe belting out “Every day would be the first day of spring…”

What would you do if you ruled the world? Or even just your own little part of it? What is the first thing that you would do? How would you go about easing some of the worst injustices and difficulties of our society? How would you bring comfort and healing to our broken world and the suffering of the natural world all around the planet?

People are very quick to criticise those in government – to say that the mythical ‘they’ should magically do something about ‘it’, but I rarely hear any answers or practical suggestions being offered.

I think that the first thing I would do is declare each Monday to be weekly ‘Hug Each Other Day’ when everyone is encouraged to give lovely warm hugs. Now don’t laugh! It has been scientifically proved that the physical, mental and emotional benefits of a regular, prolonged, twenty second hug are quite staggering. Let’s boost the health of the entire nation by hugging!

Next, fair wages for all – a lot less for a few and a great deal more for many – and decent working hours and conditions for all – something which our forebears fought so hard to achieve and which, in our ‘enlightened’ Twenty-First Century society seems to have completed disintegrated.

I would organise communal facilities for people of all ages who wanted/needed them – especially meals, but possibly go on to include living accommodation and practical training as well. These would be run and maintained by volunteers from all sectors of society who would be awarded points for each job (the more unpleasant or arduous, the more points) which could then be exchanged for money or other benefits. The doors of these centres would be open to all and if more facilities were required, the community would come together to organise and/or build it, using public money and resources. There would be no need for anyone to be on the streets or sitting alone at home in isolated loneliness or desperation.

I am not suggesting a communist state, just accepted and widespread facilities where everyone could go and be accepted, receive what they need, give what they can.

There would be few laws, just encouragement, rewards, and bonuses.

Wrong-doers would be helped, healed and remain as useful members of society.

How about a national day of ‘Unconditional Love’? I think we’d have at least two a month of those. Any suggestions as to how it could be put into active practice?

Of course, I am being a bit silly! Or am I?

We certainly can’t continue as we are at present.

And if we heal ourselves, both individually and collectively, we will also be in a much better position to treat everything else around us with kindness and consideration. We can integrate a policy of walking more lightly on the land, of working with nature not against it, of practices which harmonise with the rest of the world rather than conflict.

Pie in the sky? Really? Why can’t we change things for the better and do it differently? Are we really all so set in our ways, so uncaring, selfish or just plain scared that we daren’t even consider a new order? And we have to do something. Life on this planet cannot go on as it is – we all know that.

Rather, this is a golden opportunity to take life and do something amazing with it. We can all begin now, today. Light a candle in the metaphorical darkness and bring some love and goodwill into the life around you.

So, if I ruled the world, Monday – today – would definitely be the weekly ‘Hug Day’… so please hug as many people as you can today and see what a difference it makes already.!

What would you do?

The Joy of January

love January! Yes, Midwinter/Christmas is past, but this month has SO much to offer.

It is the very fact that the winter holidays are over that makes this month so special. Clear rooms, empty of all the seasonal colour and clutter. A clear garden/natural world as vegetation has died away and animals are sheltering, sleeping. A clear diary with no long lists of social commitments. In fact, a gloriously blank canvas on which to indulge in spontaneous activity! What could be better? many of us spent most of November and December bemoaning the fact that we hadn’t enough time… well, now we have!

I like to spend this blessedly still time after Christmas resting, contemplating the year to come and planning my goals and wishes with which I want to fill it.

I love the weather: drab, washed out, dark and wet enough to justify curling up indoors, providing breathing space, or brilliantly clear, sunny and cold with the beauty which frost and snow can mantle the land.

We have removed most of our Midwinter decorations but candles are still favoured and white lights now illuminate jugs of greenery and dark windows.

These days are spent in early spring cleaning, sorting, clearing, bringing into order before the longer, lighter days call us away. Evenings are time for shared discussion, listening to or watching programmes or podcasts, music and games, or quiet reading and the little projects our hands were too busy for in the past few months.

This is also a time for looking forward; for dreaming and decoding how to bring those dreams into being

Think about it. Don’t waste these precious ’empty’ days merely wishing them gone; use them, fill them, enjoy them.

A very happy January to you all!

News-Blog Instead of Newsletter

Greetings! I wish you all a joyful adventure for the  new year!

Thank you to all you readers who have sent me the seasons greetings and all the kind souls who have enquired if all is well with me.

You probably know me quite well by now. I believe in telling it like it is and speaking the plain truth.

Many people, both at home and across the globe – including myself – are experiencing ill health. The symptoms are chest infection, a hacking cough, disrupted sleep patterns and utter weariness (among others) which drags on unremittingly for months. (This is NOT Covid-19.) Recently, I have heard that it is actually an adult form of Whooping Cough, also known as the Hundred Days Cough… and I can well understand that particular description!

I have been ill since the beginning of November. My publisher has been ill for even longer. Courses of antibiotics have helped temporarily, but it stays with us with the temerity of super glue! I am not sure if I am gradually recovering or simply beginning to learn to live with it.

I had hoped to send out a newsletter for Midwinter, but due to on-going ill health, severe storms which succeeded in severing our telephone cable, (depriving us of the internet for nearly a fortnight), and various other mishaps, it simply never happened.

In desperation, I have decided to send out a simplified newsletter in a blog post to bring you up to date. This will be the third time that I have deleted much of what I had previously written… but you know what they say, third time lucky!

WALKING WITH THE GODDESS

I am amazed to realise that it is nearly four years since I last had a book published! (Except for my two ‘Eat Cheap’ booklets which I feel don’t really count.) ‘Spring In Your Step’, the sequel to ‘Merry Midwinter’ came out while all the world was devolving into chaos at the beginning of the pandemic. Apart from that, 2020 was an amazing year for me because I could stay at home and simply write, write, write, with absolutely nothing to distract me – it was crazily wonderful! I wrote three books!!!

Since then, the aftermath of Covid has been much harder to deal with and life has taken many odd twists and turns. In fact, as far as getting anything into print is concerned, it has stalled quite dramatically.

Now, I happily feel that I am back on track again.

I am NOT going to commit myself to a date when ‘Walking With the Goddess’ might be officially published, but you can depend on me letting you know when it is finalised. It will definitely be out some time in the next month or so, more than that I cannot say. It has already been to the printers once and now needs any corrections making before it goes off to print.

This is a wonderful book to start the spring season with. ‘Walking With the Goddess’ contains simple authentic suggestions and practices appropriate for people of all religions and spiritual beliefs. The ‘Goddess’ is the Earth itself, and readers will learn to literally walk not on her, or against her, or in spite of her, but WITH her.

‘Walking With the Goddess’ is a practical and experiential book covering a twelve-month cycle which the reader can pick up at any point throughout the year. In conjunction with some of the old Welsh deities and archetypes, (ten female and six male) readers will learn to work with elemental and healing energies using a variety of mediums including the specific energies of stones and trees, the development of intuition and the power of intention and thought forms. Readers will also learn how to access their own genetic coding and memory, step into – and out of – the Cauldron of Rejuvenation and Rebirth, and much, much more.

For each month, there is a guided meditation to follow – a journey to make – which will trigger new understanding, introduce new possibilities, and guide you to re-evaluate your path so far.  (Links embedded in the book take the reader to recordings of myself talking you through each journey – easy to click on for a really in-depth experience.) All the content has been freshly inspired and channelled and contains activities appropriate and necessary for our unique times.

Just as importantly it encourages the reader to become proactive in working on and with the land, growing things, wild seeding and planting, getting involved in charitable projects, and eliminating harmful domestic substances from our homes, agricultural land and public spaces. It will help readers to becoming more intimately and actively aware of the seasons and encourage them to celebrate them in their thoughts as well as openly acknowledging them in their daily places and life.

With freezing weather and winter storms, this time of year is dominated by water. As disrupted and intensified weather systems lash our planet, I offer this brief exert from ‘Walking With the Goddess’ for you to follow – one that will help to calm and heal the extreme effects of water when unleashed upon our world:

JOURNEY TO HEAL WATER

Science has now proved that we can change the structure of water molecules by our thoughts. Begin positive practice with the element of water today.

Bring a large glass or jug of water and an empty bowl into your healing space.

Settle yourself comfortably… close your eyes, take three deep breaths and allow all the hurly-burly of your day to melt away… and relax…

Open your eyes again.

Place your hands around the container of water for a couple of minutes and feel your love flowing out of your hands and through the glass into the water.

Take a few sips of the water in the glass. What does it really taste of? How does it feel in your mouth and as it slips down your throat?

Slowly pour the water from the glass into the bowl. As you do so, watch how the light catches the stream of liquid. Listen carefully to the sound of the water as it runs… falls… splashes…

Bend over the bowl and breath in the moist scent of the water.

Plunge your hands into the water and swirl them about in it… then simply rest them, submerged and still… What does water feel like?

Lift the bowl up onto your knee and wrap both your arms around it. Draw it to you as you would a small animal or child.

Look deeply into its depths and imagine a beam of softly glowing light above your head. This is the light of conscious energetic healing. Imagine it flowing down through the top of your head… down your spine… and back up through the front of your body to the crown of your head… and then back down your spine and up the front… and back down your spine… only this time, as the light surges up the front of your body, sense and see that you are also drawing healing earth energies up through the soles of your feet… up through your legs and into your body to join the upper healing energy as it travels back towards your crown…

When both energies have reached your head, feel or see them flowing back down through your neck… and into your arms and chest (where they also collect your own loving wishes of gratitude and healing) and sense them spilling out of your heart and the palms of your hands which you now hold over the surface of the water…

Stay in this position and activity for as long as you wish – for as long as feels right to you…

When you are ready to stop, feel the energies withdraw from the water and return back up your arms, through your chest and into your head – the higher energies disappear up out of the top of your head and the lower energies flow back down your body… into your legs and out through your feet into the earth.

Give loving thanks to All That Is for allowing and supporting you to do this loving, healing act.

Breathe deeply… open your eyes… move your feet… fully return to your present time and place.

Set the bowl of water down. When you are ready to leave your healing space, take the bowl of water with you. You need to carefully, gently and mindfully pour it away onto the earth, or into some other water source, preferably onto a garden – but even down the drain will do – knowing that the love and gratitude with which you have instilled that water will then connect with any other water it comes into contact with and communicate your loving intentions – and so your message will spread.

If you wish, now is the time to draw or write down anything from the experiences you have just had.

 

LOOKING AHEAD TO SPRING AND CAE NON

Another casualty of the pandemic and being confined to home or five-mile limits for travelling was our land and the spiritual retreat which we are slowly growing at Cae Non. The site is seventeen miles from our home, and we were unable to legally go there for quite a long time. I also had problems with arthritis in my knee and couldn’t have walked about on the land even if I had been able to travel there. And then there was also the little matter of cows from the neighbouring farm crossing the stream and breaking through the fence onto our land, leaving new growth stripped bare and the ground a miry mess of hoof-sized potholes.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the land has been busy doing its own thing throughout the past three years of relative neglect and all is absolutely blooming! This has also been greatly facilitated by two very dear friends who were able to spend time on the land in our place and have kept everything well maintained. They have even built a little log store round the back of the Hafod and erected a tool store which was kindly donated to us by a neighbour back in the village.

Now, a temporary electric fence has been erected to keep the cows at bay and work is moving ahead once more.

It has been an absolute joy to spend time at Cae Non again; it is such a deeply peaceful spot.

The path up the field to the Hafod, a corner of which can just be glimpsed in the distance.

I have always wanted to plant a proper hedge around the perimeter of our land. Apart from being a good investment as a barrier, it is also an excellent ecosystem for flora and fauna.  However, it is a very long stretch, even just to complete the side the cows have been coming through, so the task might require spreading out over two or three winters. At this stage we are also still debating what trees to order for the best, most effective stock proof hedge which will also thrive in wet, clay land.

Most of the existing herb beds will have to be completely replanted, but my son, (who is a medical herbalist) is planning on extensive extension of our cultivated area, and a functional but decorative ground plan of rectangular and circular raised beds has emerged. Coupled to clearing more land to plant a medicinal arboretum and pruning hundreds of metres of willow fedging, we have more than enough to be getting on with.

The days may be short at present, but there is always a cosy welcome inside our little Hafod, where the wood burning stove glows with warmth, the candle-light falls softly, and the kettle is always singing, ready to make the next round of hot drinks.

Even in these darkest days which I adore, there is a little part of me which is looking eagerly forward to being able to get out in the winter air.

And then, there is always the joy of looking ahead towards the coming spring. it really isn’t that far ahead now…

IN THE MEANTIME….

I wish you all a wonderful New Year for 2024. Create as much joy and feel as much love as is humanly possible and treasure each moment.

More from me soon,
With my love,

Gillian.

 

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