Archive for the ‘Spiritual Growth’ Category

This forthcoming Dark (New) Moon on the 13th December is the final marker as we approach the winter solstice.

On this day too, Uranus, the planet representing brotherhood, community, breaking of old patterns and fast communication is stationary in its orbit from the Earth’s viewpoint. Sometime on the 13th  Uranus’ energy changes from representing internalised energies (when retrograde) to outward expression (when direct). Uranus is the last of the outer planets to go into ‘direct mode’ at this time. This would suggest that this is a final release prior to the winter solstice.

The Mayans confirm this time as the end of Macha – the time of selfish-interest and the beginning of Pasha – the time for humanity to pull together.

Events of the last eighteen months or so have highlighted corruption, selfishness and narrow-self-serving practices that marginalise the majority of humankind. This is indeed a chance for mankind to begin to make changes in the world that benefit the majority and not just the select few.

Many people have asked – what should they be doing at this time?

You have everything YOU need within you. You chose to be born to experience this shift so you do not have to DO anything to prepare for it. Your DNA does not need upgrading nor do you need to “ascend”.

You already have what you need.

It is probably true for most of us, that we need to actually realise that we are perfect as we are… ….we are where we should be…….. we are who we should be……..

We simply need to be aware, be awake.

We need to trust that if any changes are needed, they will happen when and where it is appropriate.

Westerman Isles and Surtsey

Iceland – Westerman Isles and Surtsey – new lands ….

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I have always has an ‘interesting’ relationship with snakes.

My initial difficulties stem from an early age. We lived in a street called ‘Adderbury’ and I was aware that in the summer there were lots of adders (the only poisonous snake native to the UK) at the bottom of our garden.

I can clearly remember walking down a narrow alley, near where I used to leave my bike whilst at school and having to jump over a small coiled snake. I was really scared and never used that short cut again. I know now that the snake I saw was a female adder, often more brown than the striking and classically marked male.

An episode at a Girl Guide camp in the New Forest did nothing to ease my fears. Whilst walking in the woods quite close to the camp I saw a huge grass snake (non-poisonous), with a body about 20cms diameter, curled up, sunning itself on a tree stump. I ran like hell!

My next significant encounter was during a visualisation/meditation as part of my yoga-teacher training in the late 1970s. Part of the visualisation was set beside a lake and we were asked to meet a creature that was to be your helper. Immediately a snake appeared. We were instructed to walk with the creature down to the water’s edge….. Yeah! Right!   The snake curled up my lower leg and I limped down to the lakeside, thinking to myself ‘this is stupid’! The next instruction was to pick up a bucket and full it with water. Then to let your creature carry the bucket back to the clearing……. Oh Yes! My imagination is now working overtime with various cartoon images of snakes carrying buckets with handles in their mouths; me limping away from the lake….. It was all too much and I started to giggle. At the end when the tutor checked with everyone he was at a loss to explain ‘why a snake?’ He had never encountered this before and I wasn’t the only person with a snake as a helper that day.

A short while later I had a lucid dream where I was bitten by a snake. I woke up sweating and in panic.

A year or two after that I had a similar dream. This time there was no panic. The thought was ‘no problem, there is a homeopathic remedy for that’.

Sometime later there was yet another similar lucid dream. By this time I had started to understand what the dreams meant for me.  This time the reaction was  “Oh b****r! That means another big spiritual transformation and shift! Damn!’.

The fear left over from my childhood has evaporated and replaced by fascination and curiosity – I even managed to touch a python about ten years ago at Paignton Zoo. I have seen snakes in the wild in the UK, Nepal and Japan,  in situations where they are seen as a blessing and signs of good fortune.

Dragons and nagas (serpent-like earth guardians) are now very close to my heart and are one of the main personal links I have to the subtle energies of Nature.

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During one of our earlier visits to Japan, as a break from our teaching schedule, our hosts took us to the Shinto Shrine of the Sun Goddess Amaterasu at Ise.

The name ‘Amaterasu’ can be translated as ‘shining in heaven’. The story goes that she had two brothers – Susano (Mmm ….interesting link there!!), the summer storm god and Tsukuyomi, the god of the Moon and night. (Another fascinating note that the idea of the Sun as female and the Moon as male has its roots in several ancient systems including Tibetan and Norse.)  Amaterasu split with her brother Tsukuyomi after he killed the goddess of food, the break-up giving rise to the division of night and day. She had problems with Susano too, which led to her retreating into a cave, effectively removing the life-giving Sun from the earth. The other gods did all they could to lure her out and when eventually she did emerge, she returned to the sky.

Japan has a long tradition of being linked to the sun. Historically referred to as ‘The Land of the Rising Sun’ Japan continues its link to Amaterasu through its national flag and the items linked to her – the mirror, jewel and sword – that comprise the Japanese Imperial regalia.

We arrived after dark at our hotel for our first night’s stay. I was not at my strongest as I was recovering from the Noro stomach virus. As I rested before going to sleep and probably because of my weakened condition, I slipped into ‘other’ awareness very easily.

I found myself gasping for air. I was up to my neck in water and the ceiling was just above my head. The water was continuing to rise and I knew I was about to drown. There was no panic. I focused on where and who I was. I knew that I held a religious post with many responsibilities and that at least one person I am close to now, was a colleague, and they had already died. I realised too, this was a tsunami and with that I simply let go.

The following day we visited the famous shrine of Amaterasu. There was a familiarity about the place that was a little unsettling, even to being able to find small hidden shrine, tucked away down a narrow pathway. We were rewarded by a gentle breeze that moved the shrine curtains, a sure sign that our presence was noted. We went from there to Mikimoto Pearl Island to learn about pearls and to watch the amazing ‘ama’ the lady pearl-divers, do a demonstration on how pearls used to be collected. How fit are they!

That night, as my consciousness slipped, I became aware of a huge pearl. Apt, I thought, given where we had been that day! I then realised that there was a claw holding that pearl. The pearl then raced away from me, down and down into the earth. I followed it until I came face to face with an enormous dragon. It scared me, it was so BIG. Nevertheless I stood there, holding my ground and now holding the pearl. The dragon roared and flames engulfed me. But I was OK. Shaken, cleansed but definitely OK. I then jolted back into full consciousness.

The next day we went to Meoto Iwa where the famous ‘husband and wife’ or ‘loved-one and loved-one’ stones are found just offshore, joined together by a heavy rope of rice-straw. We were there at low tide (as you can see by the image below), as at high tide the sea fills the gap between the rocks.

In the summer the sun rises between these stones and aligns them with Mt Fuji, in the distance. Whilst fondling the bronze sculpture of the huge frog and looking to the stones, my awareness slipped again.  This view was SO familiar, yet from long ago. I could also see people doing ritual bathing in front of the rocks. Later, I discovered the ritual bathing still happens here.

I thought little more about this until my return to the UK. As an astrologer I was very aware that my natal chart was ‘active’ at this time with transiting Pluto conjunct my natal Mars. On a whim I looked up the correspondences to the Mars placement in (A T Mann) Tad Mann’s book ‘Divine Plot’ (available from Amazon as pre-owned). In this book Tad Mann correlates natal planetary placements to past- life/other-life timings. My Mars placement correspondes to around 1707 AD. To quell my curiosity I googled for tsunamis in Japan at that time.


On 28th October 1707 at 2pm the largest earthquake at 8.6 (until the recent one in 2011) occured At Hoei. The subsequent tsunami caused thousands of deaths. The landfall of the wave would have included  the Toba/Ise/Meoto Iwa area. It is also thought that it may have triggered the last-known eruption of Mt Fuji in mid-December that year!

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Episode 3

During my first experience of ‘shakipat’ in the 1970s (see previous blog), I was very aware of a point in the process when I realised that I may have to give up that which was most precious to me, at some point in the future. As a young mother my ‘precious’s’ were my two children. It never occured to me that it would actually happen. Eleven years later, following the break-up of my first marriage, my three children went to live with their Dad. This was mainly because I didn’t want them to grow up in a household short of money. I wanted them to have the school trips, treats and clothes that I never had in my teenage years.

A different ‘price was paid’ in the few weeks following my encounter with the Goddess energy of Maat, but before I left the group. We had another exhibition at a stately home. After a busy day of readings a small group of us were wandering through the grounds in the early evening, following a pathway around a lake. I started to feel very faint and dizzy and fell onto my hands and knees near the edge of the water. As I refocused my eyes I found myself looking at somebody’s ornate golden slippers. I tried to lift my head to see more, but the golden light was too bright. Sudddenly I felt a hand on my head and a pulse of strong energy travelling down my spine. Years of yoga had left the central energy channel of my spine relatively empty and I was conscious of the energy passing through me and out to the other members of the group.

It was all over very quickly.

We tried to talk about it but were too spaced out. I was used to dealing with energy but over the coming weeks it took everything I knew to keep myself together. Clairvoyant friends said I looked like a christmas tree with all its lights on! Having a young family helped. It gave me physical things to do and routines to follow. Gradually I integrated and absorbed the energy. Nevertheless the stress on my physical body was considerable and I lost a lot of weight. My thyroid function has never fully recovered.

The others in the group had emotional crises and minor health problems for a while. One of the group though, was completely unbalanced by the incident and was sectioned (admitted to a mental health facility).

Looking back I recognise this as an encounter with a Lady of the Lake, an aspect of Sovereignty.

It is a salutory reminder of the damage that can be done by incidents like these. I never sought these out and yet they arrived (maybe that is why they arrived!). This lakeside encounter up-ended my life and that of those close to me. Though to some, these events early in my life might seem to be glamorous and exciting, the immediate effects were shattering.

Revisiting the experience now, I can see the logic, the years of preparation and the somewhat scary inevitability of the changes that were created and the work those changes have led me into.

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The question becomes ‘where did it all start?’

As a child I always felt like ‘the odd one out’, the ‘square peg in a round hole’ for a myriad of reasons. Some people found this ‘unusual-ness’ attractive, but most found it irksome. On many occassions I got blamed for what others had done or because I was an easy scape-goat and as a loner there was seldom anyone to stick up for me.

Circumstances in my teenage years did little to help me develop a sense of belonging to my peer group. Trying to balance the personal need for security and conformity with an aptitude for unusual skills and interest in weird topics was a difficult juggling act to pull off. It was almost inevitable that something would have to ‘give way’ at some point. In my mid-20s I took up yoga and qualified as a yoga teacher in 1979. This introduced me to the philosophy of the Himalayas. This also brought my first encounter with Goddess energies through the experience of ‘shakipat’, or descent of grace. This came through links to Siddha Yoga and working as a co-leader of a meditation centre. Life immediately started to change, I started to change.

Fellow students on my yoga teachers’ course introduced me to crystals, colour and astrology. Astrology really caught my interest and I took my studies further to qualify as a teacher with a local group. Study of astrology and subsequently the tarot, introduced me to the Kabbalah, the Hebrew esoteric tradition. The group was quite large with many gifted clairvoyants, mediums and pathworkers. The group leaders planned a collective pathworking (ritual) to link to the energy of the Egyptian goddess Maat *. As a very junior member I had been given a small role. It took me a while to settle myself to doing this small part. I was uneasy as I was out of my comfort zone as a yoga teacher and meditator. In the end I took part for the sake of the group. As far as I was concerned I did ‘my bit’ and not being (at that time) particularly clairvoyant, I hadn’t a clue how things had gone.

The following weekend the group has a stand at a local exhibition and I dutifully attended to do astrology charts. The afternoon before the opening was spent setting the stand up and I noticed there was dissention within the group. I didn’t know why, there was gossip about irregularities with funds, but something else had upset some of the key personnel.

That night as I started to fall asleep, the room got very cold. The rest of the family were fast asleep, but the air was getting colder and colder. Then I saw her – with my physical eyes. Standing at the foot of the bed was Maat! She was not blindfold, she was exceptionally beautiful and stood there in all her finery.

She said to me ‘You know something is not as it should be within the group’.

‘Yes’, I said.

‘Here’, she said, ‘take my sword and use it to cut away what you know needs to be removed.’

I replied that, ‘I can’t as I don’t have the detachment to to use the sword’. (For all I knew there could be lots of other factors that I had no knowledge of, which made it unclear of what action was really needed.)

She smiled.

Then she said ‘The sword is here for you to use when it is needed.’ And then she vanished.

The next day I eventually told someone in the group what had happened. They then told the people in charge. They were furious! ‘How come she came to you?’, ‘She should have come to us!’, ‘You must have done something to make her come to you!’ etc etc….

Oh Boy!

I left the group a few weeks later.

The sword? Do I have it when I need it? Yes.

Have I used it? Yes.

I have used it twice in 30 years. Once to protect a student about 28 years ago and once to protect myself in 2007.

* Maat is the Egyptian Goddess of harmony, justice, and truth represented as a young woman. She signifies the underlying equilibrium of the universe, the passing of the seasons, the movement of the planets and stars, being fair in any dealings with others, honesty and truth.

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