Why I visit England (annually) and why we are called to sacred lands

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I’ve been thinking about writing this post for awhile. To attempt to explain why we are sometimes drawn, mind, body, and soul to physical places as though we have no choice but to go there. The heart, leading the body back home.

I think many people I know are confused as to why I feel such a need to travel to England, over and over again. What may be viewed as a flight of fancy becomes, perhaps, seen as an excuse to get away in their minds. From the mundane. The roles we choose to play out in life that can feel old and weary.

It’s true. These roles can age us when we allow them to do so. The soul, mind, and body seeks replenishment from that which wears us down. But being drawn to a place on such a holistic level is a soul’s calling the body and mind to home. We live many lifetimes. Sometimes in one place. The location becomes an integral part of our being, woven into the memory of cells so deeply that it is brought with us through our lifetimes. We become, in essence, of that land.

We are all of the larger “land” that is Earth. Its elements have given us our body of life, but what I speak of is memory. Sometimes the call to a certain place feels as vital as breathing. It sustains us and enlivens us. It reseeds the sacred within.

I have tried to find this here, in New Hampshire and in its wider landscape of New England. I have had moments when I have felt the coming home, but this is not so much about place, but about surrendering to the union that connects all life. When I am in the ancient lands of England the sacred enfolds me and strips me bare. It opens the magic hidden within and I begin to remember fully and completely, through every cell of my being, the essence of Life.

There are certain places that hold memories for us to retrieve when we choose to open to them. Portals. Vortexes. The convergence of ley lines. Sacred temples. Stones placed upon the energy that feeds the body of Earth and in alignment to the stars…Long ago, all life lived in this union, but over time the ego took hold and dismantled union in a search for separation. We are still living the false ideal of separation, to our own imminent demise.

I believe there is that essence inside of  all of us that searches for that Light of union. To feel, once again, a part of the sacred whether we are consciously aware of it or not. We go to churches and temples to find it, and sometimes we go to the land. I am drawn to the land. It is here where the memories of home sweep through me in perfect union when I find that quiet space to surrender to it. Each time I travel to England another part of me is brought to life. Another piece of my soul retrieved and reunited.  The land speaks to me in a language I can understand. I am revived and filled with hope when I hear it whisper through my cells.

When I look at life through the eyes of the mundane I see a broken world. I see the ever-present quest for more. To be better. To divide and conquer. I see wars fought over this. I see violence because we are broken. Despair because we have forgotten. We rape and pillage ourselves and the land because we have become disconnected. We have forgotten that when we destroy another, we in essence, destroy ourselves.

Perhaps it is a fool’s quest, but I also travel to England not only so that I can remember, but so that I can somehow, through my words and experiences, stir the memories inside those we have lost and forgotten this sacred union. We are born remembering, but through modern ways of living we easily forget. Ceremony has been lost to the click of an icon to numb the searching brain. The temples of the past turned into playgrounds to capture selfies.

I don’t think it’s an accident that incredible work and care went into building these temples of stone so that they might stand thousands of years later. They are the physical keepers of our ancestral memories. Libraries set in Earth. And, it is quite likely when they were built they were built with this intention in mind. Knowing that one day we would enter, of our own free will, a long age of forgetting. And that we would, one day, also seek to remember as though our very lives depend upon it, because they do.

To place a hand on one of these stones and feel the flooding return of these memories is a testament to their sacred purpose. When I open to the ancient sites of England, the “I” and all its false needs and wants disappear. There is no I. There is only union. Union with the great stone. With Mother Earth. With the vast heavens above. And with all Life. Long ago, this is what our ancestors knew as Truth.

We are living, collectively, through the false ideals of the ego, lives of self-destruction. If we continue on this course, each individual “I” will perish collectively. In what is the utmost of irony in our striving to be better, different, and special from each other, we are making our “I” become extinct. Soon enough we will have depleted all the resources our planet has to offer and there will be no room for life to carry our “special” DNA onto future generations. There will be no living Earth to sustain progeny to live out or legacy, because our legacy will be extinct. Money cannot buy what we need for our survival. A bigger house will not spare us from disaster, no matter how much we fortify it with outer strength. Eventually the “I” dies.  Each “I” has the same destiny of death. Yet if we really cared about each individual “I” we’d collectively realize it takes the “we” to preserve it. To ensure life continues on, sustaining and enriching each other. We are now at that pivotal moment in time. That tipping point where we can choose to continue on towards imminent demise, or trade in the self(ish) for the betterment of the “we.”

Living immersed, as so many of us do, in cultures that strive for individual greatness, we become numb to the sacred within and without. We look at a tree and see a resource, not a fellow being whose breath feeds our own. We look at a body of water and see it as a fun medium for racing our boats, not seeing that our boats pollute the liquid that is meant to sustain us and the life it holds inside of it. We look at our neighbors and think, you have something I want…a bigger house, a nicer car, smarter kids…without realizing that our neighbor is an aspect of ourselves.

When we come into the world, newly born, we still remember. When an infant gazes around you and past you, smiling as though into thin air, they are seeing what you can probably no longer see.  Essence that dances around you as a sacred part of the light woven with all life. Sing the infant that cries to the overwhelm of this chaotic and foreign life we have brought it into, the sound of “Om,” and you will return to her the feeling of home. Of union. Stillness opens the eyes back to memory and the sacred returns in the moment of union.

We all have the doorways within us. We just need to find the keys that open them. England, in many ways, is my key. If you don’t know where your key(s) is hidden, its worth the search to find it. The life that sustains you depends upon it.

Winter Returns to Pull the Cells Inward

Two years ago the weather was the same. The New Hampshire climate is not so different from the Peak District of England. April can be sunny and warm, or it can return, in a moment, to the icy hands of winter. Today in New England it is raining sleet, which is collecting upon the ground in growing layers of white. I imagine the still unopened buds on the daffodils and crocuses are pulling inward.

 

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Nine Ladies Stone Circle, April 2016 

 

My own mind travels to the Nine Ladies Stone Circle in Derbyshire.  Recalling the same pounding sleet that challenged our four seeking forms on the second day my family and I ventured out to find the circle. Or should I say evening? We chose the impending arrival of the night both times we sought the vaguely marked landmark. I, much more urgently seeking than my husband and children, who seemed more to indulge me than feel the need. The body, though, remembers the past, even the past that extends beyond its lifetime. There is an imprint that is made deep within the cellular matrix that connects to the soul’s lifetimes and it behooves one to take note of the triggers that bring the memories back to life.

 

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My Daughter on the Moors in Derbyshire

 

I knew the land was testing me. Asking me what I was willing to remember. Asking me if I was ready to return to a time that pressed me beyond the brink of conscious memory. The forces that reside in these sacred sites of the moors are strong and very much alive, yet they are mostly unseen, serving as the haunting imprints of a past that was filled with a magic that we have mostly chosen to forget. Walking with the intention of awareness, though, one cannot help but feel it.

 

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The Land Beyond the Circle

 

Or hear it. On the first night, there was the cry. Like a woman calling for a lost child. My daughter heard it too, so I knew I wasn’t going insane. Put the pull inward was fierce, and I could see an emotion that approaches fear on the faces around me. We left as the darkness began to descend to reveal the shadows of the far distant past more acutely.  There are legends about people being lost in the moors and never returning. The elemental forces hold a rein here that is strong and often unrelenting. It serves to test your notion of survival as well as your willingness to remember what many have chosen to forget.

 

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The Path to The Nine Ladies

 

Winter is the season of dreaming. Of a hibernation that turns life inward toward the soul’s truths if we are willing to sleep with awareness. It seemed fitting, in many ways, that the sky chose to release winter’s return on our second venturing out to find the stone circle we never found on the first night. This time I was determined not to allow my body to be pulled to other landmarks, no doubt equally, if not more, significant for the journey. Yet, there was a reluctance, a fear, to venture into these shadowed lands that felt threatening. I was, simply, not ready to understand and to feel fully what it had to reveal. There is an initiation or re-initiation, that must occur, and I was not ready.  I also had my family with me. A family that was there because of my urgings. The fierce need to protect over-rode everything else.

 

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The Gaudy Tree Draped in Artificial Finery

 

Despite the unrelenting skies, we found the circle. It seemed so small, and in many ways insignificant, or rather forgotten. The tree that hovered beside it was draped in gaudy finery, which I found repulsive. A desecration of the sacred. I resisted the impulse to pull down ribbons and naked plastic bodies of miniaturized women. Who does this? I wondered. This was not the worship of the past my cells knew. A place visited often enough, perhaps, but forgotten.

 

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Me Standing inside the Circle

 

But still, the whispers of the past were there, haunting the sacred ground. They called through my body in a language I was trying hard to resist, but also to remember. It would take me another year to be ready. To willingly return to the moors (in a different area) and visit the sacred land with a memory fierce and very much alive. Thankfully, a year later, I walked back through time under the watchful eyes of those who are familiar with the forces of the land, lest I go too far astray.

 

 

The Weight of Cells

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I woke at 3am with my mind playing back a phrase that came to me several months ago during a meditation, Every cell has a weight and a memory. Instead of falling back to sleep, I kept thinking about this statement and how important it is in terms of healing the body. Even when the mind chooses not to remember, the body does.

Cells, by their very nature, are programed to remember. It is how they survive, dividing and propagating themselves through generations upon generations to carry out their designated functions, yet we don’t always think about the emotional weight that our bodies carry.

You may have heard stories about transplant patients who suddenly develop cravings for foods they never liked before. There are also cases where personalities have radically changed, particularly after a heart transplant. It may sound crazy on the surface, but it makes sense. Cells, by their very nature, are programed to remember, even when the mind chooses to forget. They do it to survive and thrive, but sometimes, when the weight of the memory they carry is too heavy, they turn sluggish and lethargic. Over time, disease can set it.

Pause in reading this, and close your eyes. Allow your body to show you where it is holding density. For some of you it might be obvious, you may have an excess of physical weight in one area more than another, or you might have a persistent ache or pain. Go to these places and ask them to remember the origin of their density.

Let me give you an example in myself. Although I am relatively slender, my body holds extra density in my belly, in particular in the abdominal areas of my 2nd and 3rd chakras. This is where, as a young child, I started burying my emotions. Having no real outlet for emotional release, I swallowed my turmoil, and as a result I often had frequent pains in my abdominal region. As an adult, I had chronic IBS for two years, and I would wake in the wee hours of the morning with a bloated belly filled with pain. When I began listening to my body, and allowing the stories it had stored to surface, along with the emotional weight they carried, I began to heal, and the bloating decreased along with the pain.

In my early twenties, I was diagnosed with thyroid disease. Although I do not have the physical weight of a goiter in my throat, I have the energetic density of hypothyroidism. In my 5th chakra, therefore, there is energetic density. Although my thyroid is gradually regaining health, when I enter this space of my body, I can feel its weight. There are emotions stored here, waiting to be released. My cells not only carry my own memories of  my voice and truth being silenced with physical and verbal restraints, they carry generations inside of their DNA. Thyroid disease runs in my family, as it often does. Proof, I believe, that cells carry memories. How can they not?

Why would one person get a disease and not another? Chance? I don’t tend to give much credence to chance. If you dig deep enough, you can likely find a cause; an origin. We can ask the same question another way. Why do some people heal, and not others? The answers are similar in either case. The weight of memory.

A healthy, vibrant cell does not get diseased. It thrives, and carries out the function for which it is designed. Destiny, though, is subject to events. The cell exposed to trauma suffers. It mutates, or fails to replicate in perfect form. Sometimes it dies before it can divide. Physical trauma to the cell will compromise its health, but so will emotional. When we receive a cut, we apply pressure to the source of the bleed. We try to stem the flow of loss. What happens, though, to the body that suffers emotional trauma? It grows dense with the weight it is trying to release.

The body is always striving to find balance, yet many of us are unwilling to listen to its memories. Its not always pleasant to stop and listen to our bodies. What they have to tell us is often of a memory we have tried to ignore or forget. Like a child, the body yearns to be heard and understood. When we allow this occur, we start to heal density and the discomfort it creates. We shed the weight of repression as we release the trapped stories. Health returns as the energy of the cells spin more freely, and we feel lighter and more vibrant.

Sometimes the stories aren’t ours, but we’ve agree to harbor them in our bodies. Memories passed down through DNA, or through the empathic matrix of one being to another. Listen. Allow. Remember. Release. Heal. The body, like the soul, is always trying to find the light inside the story.