I have said before, and I will say it again the difference between spiritual adventure and vacation comes down to comfort. On vacation we are looking to relax, get a bit of pampering, and taste of the good life. For those seeking spiritual adventure, the accommodations are often not as cushy, there is little time for pampering, and one can generally expect to be pushed out of their comfort zone. I returned to Ireland, knowing as a spiritual adventurer, seeking a deep connection with the sacred, and in doing so I knew that I would be enveloped by the experience and most likely spit out a different person.
I did not expect the transformation to start so quickly.
I have been preparing for this trip for some time now, knowing that it would be deep, and powerful, after all I was returning to Ireland by the good graces of the Celtic goddess, the Morrighan. The Morrighan is a Celtic warrior goddess of death, magic, prophesy. When I say I have returned on her graces, I am not at all exaggerating. For when I was here in 2013, I visited Owenygat, a hole in the ground cave, under an apple tree in County Roscommon. It is a place sacred to the Morrighan, and my visit there was intentional. After climbing into the wet, rocky cave I left offerings of my hair and rose petals, and asked that she work through me and then I began to cry for my love of her lands and country. I then spoke of how I wanted to return one day, or more honestly, how I wanted to return again, and again. Her answer was simple and to the point, ringing loud and clear in my mind…”And so you shall”.
As I began planning my return trip, I knew that she would be an intricate part of the voyage, and that my return meant doing her work.
Yesterday I went to Blarney Castle. It is well known, and famous for the legend held around kissing the Blarney Stone. It is said that any who kiss the stone will be granted with the gift of Blarney (speech filled with charm & wit). To kiss the stone, one must climb to the top of the castle, lay down on a the stone ground covered by a mat (for traction & easy movement) and slowly do a back bend, over the edge of a drop that’s a straight shot to the ground many floors below. The kiss must be placed on the bottom of the stone, which is kind of intimidating. In olden times it was simply a hole, now there is a cast iron grate beneath the stone so no one falls to their demise. That being said, it is still an adrenaline dump, and many people cannot do it.
In short, I kissed the stone…The long story though is much more involved.
First and foremost, Blarney Castle is much more then a castle with a stone to kiss. It is a large expanse of land that holds a stone circle (the seven sisters stone circle), a dolman, a druids cave, forest sanctuary; that has trees from all over the world (with similar climates), a poisonous plant garden, waterfall, fern garden and much more. It was truly a wonderful experience, and I would recommend it to anyone, for there is something for everyone there.
I stepped into the sacred as soon as I walked through the gate, for a few minutes walk into the park there is a crossing of rivers. The crossing of rivers is a remarkable thing, as most often when rivers come together they converge. At Blarney, one river goes under the other, staying as two separate water ways…it is a place of wishes, and I made a point of offering my American coin to the mass of glittering change that sparkled in the water at the rivers crossing.
As I meandered through the park, I sang to the land at the Seven Sisters stone circle, before heading into the forest…taking the path least traveled. Where most people go first to the castle, my husband and I headed for the trees, and I was greatly thankful.
One of my most remarkable experiences happened with a ancient cedar tree. Coming from Vermont, I am use to cedar trees being a couple of stories high, but this beauty was far bigger then that. In fact a limb shooting off the side of it, was much bigger in circumference than any cedar I had ever seen. I was in awe, as I could feel the energy coming off of the giant cedar, as I walked around behind it, in search of a foot hold to climb onto the limb. When I got onto the limb, I almost fell off the other side, the energy of the tree setting me off balance with its intensity. When I settled onto it; lying with my back against the limb, I took a deep breath, preparing for sacred song. Then I clearly heard the tree speaking to me….
Now I have been spoken to by trees before, in fact, trees are quite social. But this was a command. The tree was putting me in my place, showing me that it also had something to offer. It was deeply humbling, and I was overwhelmed as energy from the tree started coursing through my body, my kundalini (chakra system) lighting up. It lasted but a few moments, but it is still working on me as I write this, over 24 hours later.
I did get a chance to sing to the tree, and instead of offering healing energy, I found myself singing out of thanks and honor. It was obvious how well taken care of the tree was, and how self aware it was.
We eventually made our way out of the forest, and after a round about walk, we headed to the castle. My husband is afraid of heights, and did not make it to the top. He did not kiss the stone. I went on alone, and was surprised at how easy it was to get there. During tourist season (beginning of June-end of August), it can be an hours wait to get to the stone. An hour of slow moving up steep, winding stone stairs, that have been worn down by time and usage. I was able to walk to the top, and was 4th in line to kiss the stone, when I got there. The people behind me were Americans, form Texas, and California. I asked Kyle from Texas if he would take my picture, and he suggested a video. One many of you have seen already on my Facebook page.
As I lay on my back, with an old Irishmen-attendant encouraging me to lower myself further and further down, I felt my intention deeply present. My hands; gripping the cast iron bars, held my focus as I slid further and further down, until my face was close to the bottom of the stone. I kissed the stone with meaning, knowing that for me, there was real magic to be had. I did not kiss the stone as a gimmick, I kissed the stone with purpose…giving my voice over to the powers that be, that I may use my voice to help others wake up, and become more aware. That my charm, and wit be a catalyst, nudging people to become truly conscious.
When I was lifted up from the stone, I felt a dump of adrenaline, my legs were wobbly, and my mind was keenly aware. I had just added another notch in my magical day. I had just put in motion something that would be carried out for the rest of my life.
The way in and out of the castle was specific, as the stairwells are very narrow. That being said, I was at the bottom of the castle for a good 20 minutes before my husband, who was meandering around, exploring the castle to find his way out. As I stood outside the castle entrance I heard the voice of the Morrighan speaking to me. She is very direct and not particularly gentle.
Her words were powerful. She told me that she had a gift for me, that she wanted to alter my prophetic ability, to enhance it. She also told me that it would be hard, that I would have to accept the difficulty of such a gift. I knew without words what she meant. She meant that to have my gifts enhanced I would have to once again adjust to the emotions involved opening my awareness. She then told me I had to repeat her verbatim. I will not repeat the vow here, but in summery I had to agree that I accepted the good and bad of the gift I was given, knowing that my agreement would hold the power of sacred contract.
The effects were almost instantaneous, and I have spent most of today dealing with my emotions being through the roof, as my empathy and telepathy has been heightened. I know that I will adjust, but for today I have been working through it, being gentle and patient with myself.
I do not know where this will lead, but I do know that this is just the lead up. I have felt since the planning of this trip, that my real work takes place in Northern Ireland. So for now, I am just preparing. I still have 3-4 days before Northern Ireland.
I am humbled, and ever grateful for the work of the sacred in my life. It is not always easy, but it is always worth it. Thanks for reading folks.