lunedì 11 settembre 2017

Glastonbury - Part II


One of the biggest mysteries of Glastonbury are the two different water sources which flow under the Glastonbury Tor, gushing a few meters apart:  a red one (due to the high iron content) and a white one (due to the high calcite content); both renowned for centuries for their healing qualities. 

THE CHALICE WELL




The Chalice Well is a place out of time, sacred and eternal, rich of arcane symbology; a place where you can be influenced by the palpable energy that lingers in the air.
Walking along the path, under the arches of twisted plants, there is a feeling of being out of the ordinary world and entering an enchanted place. This place has been a pilgrimage site for thousands of years, and only by visiting it one will understand why.
Since the dawn of time, water sources were considered sacred: they flow underground like the veins of the human body and become a gift of Mother Earth to us, nourishing our body and soul.


The Chalice Well is in fact a source of natural origin and it never stopped flowing; it is a symbol of eternal force of nature. Archaeological findings have suggested that the well has been in use for at least two thousand years: in the vicinity of the source, numerous spearheads dating back to the Paleolithic, pottery from the Stone Age and from the Roman era have been found. 
Our ancestors saw the pits as portals to the spiritual world, where the veil between the human existence and the spirit one disappears, where it was possible to communicate with the gods and the spirits of nature.

Adjacent to the well, there is a pentagonal room of irregular shape that most likely dates back to the sixteenth - seventeenth century. Its purpose is still a mystery, its geometric proportions are related to units of measurement used in Ancient Egypt, suggesting that perhaps it was used in some initiation ceremony. 
Nowadays it is not accessible, but its entry can be seen looking inside the cavity of the well.


The lid, made in English oak, is surmounted by a wrought iron structure in the shape of vesica piscis: a symbol of ogival shape, obtained by two circles of the same radius  intersecting in such a way that the center of each circle lies on the other circumference. 
The name literally means “fish bladder” in Latin. As intersection of two circles, it represents the communication between two worlds, two different dimensions, the union of heaven and earth, spirit and matter, conscious and subconscious, male and female. 
The geometry of this figure form the basis of harmony that is found in balance in the natural world.
The figure is crossed by a spear. Based on a medieval design, it is a gift by the famous archaeologist, Frederick Bligh Bond, in 1919. He was very interested in sacred geometry, which can be seen in many places of spiritual importance in the world. 

The union of two symbols, the lance and the cup (the well itself), again represent the union of male and female. The shaft also represents the Holy Lance, soaked with the blood of Christ. That same blood which, according to legend, was collected in the Holy Grail and then immersed in the Red Spring, donating the healing properties and the its characteristic reddish colour. 

The union of the masculine and feminine is a recurring theme in Glastonbury, as we mentioned before. The same well, a cavity coming from the bowels of Mother Earth and with its scarlet waters, is a representation of the blood and at the yoni. A short distance away from the Tor, which is - with its tower - the sacred masculine par excellence, on the intersection of the lines of St. Michael and St. Mary. 

In addition to the famous Chalice Well, one can see a series of other sacred symbols, full of esoteric meaning, set like jewels in the maze of lush vegetation (here the map). 


The Vescica Pool




The theme of the vescica piscis recurs in Vescica Pool, where the waters of the garden are collected, guarded by two magnificent Yews. These two trees were probably part of an ancient path or a ceremonial grove, being yews sacred trees in the Druidic tradition.

Yews are trees charged with a deep esoteric meaning: influenced by Saturn, they are considered sacred in many Northern and Celtic cults, in Ireland are one of five sacred trees (Ross Tree or Eo Ruis). Guardian of our graveyards also nowadays, it is a tree associated with death and rebirth, divination, astral travel, and anything related to communication between worlds. Its wood is indicated to make Runes, Ogham, scrying mirrors and ouija boards. I take the opportunity to specify that Yew is toxic if ingested, so it should not be used to manufacture chalices, cups etc.


The Healing Pool



Following the path that leads to the Well (the climax of this initiatory path),  the next stop is the Healing Pool: built in the 18th century, one can clearly see the ferrous deposit of the water, pouring in the basin from a waterfall. 




One of the junctions of the two ley lines is in the proximity of this point of the garden: as suggested by the railings, you can soak in the pool to fully absorb the regenerative properties of the spring or recharge your magical tools.



The Lion's Head  


Continuing along the path, you will come across another fountain: the Lion's Head, the only spot in the garden where the spring water can be drunk. The lion is not a random choice: this feline, sacred to the Egyptians, marked the beginning of a new kemetic year. 

Not only the Leo constellation was showing in the sky the hottest period of the year (which was marking the beginning of summer for some ancient tribes), the lions themselves used to leave the desert to look for a cool place in the shade nearby the Nile - which overflowed, setting a new agricultural cycle. The kemetic people used to carve a lion's head on their bridges, to celebrate the appearance of this sacred animal. A symbol that we still see today on our fountains.


Ludna & Unornya♄
click here to read the first part.
clicca qui per leggere in Italiano.

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