Sunday, August 27, 2017

Sacred Sites Update--High Tor's Ledges, Our Survey Continues

We were back surveying the Ledges at High Tor. We were joined by Helen Ellis and Joscelyn Godwin. Helen has been to the Ledges on several occasions before; It was Joscelyn's first.

Welcome Circle
Those of you familiar with my work know that I am a big advocate for having a Welcome Circle, or Welcome Area, at a sacred site. It acts like the entryway, or foyer, of your home. Like a foyer this is where you greet your guests, hang up your coat, take off your boots and prepare for your visit. 

The function and purpose of a Welcome Circle is very similar.

  • Remove your spiritual debris/clutter. Instead of taking off your shoes, or dirty boots, as you do when you enter a house you smudge yourself, or have someone smudge you. Smudging is a cleansing process. It removes negative attachments, or thought forms, that might be clinging to you.
  • Offering. Janice Carr brought two flowers. One of which she left at the Welcome Circle as she said a prayer. She also spread tobacco and said a prayer as we stood around. An offering is a gesture of respect and reverence for a space. It helps put you in the proper state of mind for your upcoming experience. Bringing an offering will better help you act in a sacred manner when you are in the sacred space. An offering could be something simple as tobacco, a flower, a piece of fruit. It should be something simple and small and something that will not attract attention. For example, you don't want to put down tons of fruit which attracts deer which then get shot during hunting season.  It is not so much what you bring, but rather than you bring something.
  • Prayer. Within the Welcome Circle we held hands and formed a circle as I said a prayer.
  • Permission. Asking permission to enter a sacred space is always good idea. You are announcing your arrival and telling everyone in the unseen world in the immediate area, remember the veil is thin here, that you would like permission to enter.
  • Meditating. You should always meditate in a Welcome Circle if you have time. It helps raise the vibe of the space and hastens the formation of a natural vortex, or energy vortex. It also puts you in a contemplative mind and further removes any more negative thought forms you might have attached to your subtle body.
  • Developing a strong imprint, or samskara. Over time as people keep doing these actions the imprint, or samskara, gets stronger and stronger. So the effects of smudging gets more pronounced--the cleansing gets deeper and pulls off more and more attachments. Meditations get deeper and deeper. Over time as we have seen at the original Welcome Circle at Gossamer Woods, a natural vortex, or energy vortex forms. A powerful imprints particularly helps when people that are not reverent or don't have time enter the sacred site and don't bother to smudge. The imprint will automatically look to cleanse them and put them in a more contemplative mind.
From the left Janice Carr, Joselyn Godwin and Peter Shell with Pepper on his lap meditating in the Welcome Circle. You can see stones marking the boundary of the Welcome Circle.

Still Intricate

We continued working on the far end of the highest ledge where we had previously found the area to have a very thin veil with powerful imprints and numerous vortices.

The highest ledge of the Ledges abutted a steep embankment and ridge above. The challenge was to determine were there any stone mounds covering Earth Chakras.

Peter Shell climbed up the embankment. In the picture he is crouching looking to see if there are any stone mounds. Given the steepness of the embankment any stone mounds would have been belted with running rain water and stones over the centuries.

We found a few stone mounds, but lots and lots of stones marking Energy Lines.

Many of the stone mounds continued to be very intricate marking Earth Chakras and Energy Lines. In the pictures below staffs mark Energy Lines.

Sunken/Dimpled Center, or Decomposed Tree Stump
We found a stone mound, or better said, a large hole with several stones around it marking Energy Lines, it is pictured below. Was it created by people? Arguably it is a stretch to say it is a stone mound. But, our criteria was to include any stone structure covering Earth Chakras--and it does. The yellow tape breaking from the blue and white staff marks an Earth Chakra.

The standing staff shows the hole to be about 2 feet in depth.

What made the hole? Usually trees fall over and create earthen mounds; you would think the same would happen when a tree rots.

The second challenge was should the circle even be considered part of a stone mound? It is not close to the circle. Many stone mounds contained dimpled centers and were very thick to mark energy lines. So arguably this is a larger stone mound that had many stones removed by rushing rain water because it was at the base of the embankment.

These are some of the challenges we have faced on our survey.

A Great and Fun Day

We finished up the highest ledge--a big accomplishment. It was heartening to see our friends and have them share in our experience and to meditate in places. We thank them for that. Sacred Space like a muscle needs to be exercised lest it atrophies, and it does this through prayer/meditation/ceremony.

It looks like we will finish some time this fall--Famous Last Words.

All said it was a fun and great day.


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Sacred Sites Update--High Tor's The Ledges, A Thin Veil, A Powerful Spot Found

Wow. Last week in our continuing effort to catalogue the stone structures at the Ledges (pages 304-308 of Sacred Sites in North Star Country) we came upon a particularly powerful place on the far end of the upper Ledge. A place where people must have prayed, done cermony and vision quested with great intensity for centuries. A place that has fortunately maintained its spiritual integrity over the millennia.

It is an open doorway to altered states of consciousness, other realities, a place to get great insights, have visions, have mystical and hallucinogenic experiences....Some would say it has a thin veil, others might call it a portal, others might just feel it has a great vibe. I still don't know what to make of it.

The Area of the Thin Veil.  There are 5 staffs marking the 5 stone mounds in the area. Janice Carr is in the front holding one staff. Behind her to the right is a staff by itself and I am in the distance holding another. Behind her to the right next to the trees is a staff by itself, marking another stone mound. Photographer, Peter Shell, is holding a staff marking another stone mound. There are three energy vortices marked by the black dog(Jaeda Bear), white dog(Pepper) and the white paper/orange cushion. There are several other  mounds close by going the other way.

The three energy vortices are a testament to the power of the place and that spiritual activities took place there. Sensations for the three of us ranged  from feeling very charged to being in another place/dimension while there. One assumes that this place was intentionally created to have pilgrims experience altered states of consciousness. It certainly is conducive to pilgrims having visions or hallucinogenic experiences. I cannot imagine what it was like in its peak.

What is notable is that, while being in the space certainly enlightens/charges you up, those sensation do not linger as profoundly as with other aspects of Mother Earth. It seems that when you enter the space after some time you go into an altered state of consciousness, but once you step out things are significantly reduced.

What you experience can vary. You may feel little, or nothing at at all. You may just feel an energy burst. Or you have a profound mystical experience....What you feel depends upon your connection to Mother Earth, your spiritual acumen.....

It can take some time before you experience, or feel, the affects of the space. So give it some time before it works its magic.

What is It? 
There appears to be something more of Mother Earth there besides Earth Chakras. Some other aspect of Her subtle body. I did find something. But....I think that the real power of the place rests in the imprints left there by visiting pilgrims from their spiritual practices over thousands of years. The three natural vortices (energy vortices) tell you that serious spiritual activities took place there and certainly add to the feeling of the place.

A thin veil? Certainly the veil to higher realities, certainly exists there. Traditionally I have found them to be very small pockets--nothing of this size.

I wonder if we have discovered some other new co-creation beyond natural vortices (energy vortices) with Mother Earth? Something on the next rung of the ladder in our co-creating with Mother Earth. As I  noted in my dedication of Vortices and Spirals and in other writings when you, "Love, give, heal, do unto others, practice ahimsa, pray, meditate and Mother Earth may bless you with a vortex." So a natural vortex is one of the first rungs on the ladder of co-creation with Mother Earth, have we just discovered the next rung up?

I have no idea. This is only one of the questions I have been asking myself since. I certainly feel blessed to have this spot revealed to us.

Powerful Imprints
As I noted in my intro to High Tor in Sacred Sites in North Star Country,
“Imagine if you could go back in time 2,000, or even 3,000 years, or more, to when the mound builders inhabited much of the Eastern United States. Imagine if you could visit one of their sacred sites and feel the charged atmosphere of their spiritual practices as you sat next to one of their mounds. Can you feel the chills running up and down your spine as you cry for a vision and tap into the collective consciousness of the thousands that have been here centuries before you? Feel their thoughts, as they help elevate your consciousness, bring you closer to the Great Spirit, open up lines of communication to other worlds, and give you visions while healing you.”  Page (292-293)
This is probably one of the best places to have such an experience.

If You Visit
Make sure to spend some time in the Welcome Circle as noted on Page 306 of Sacred Sites in North Star Country. This is critical, otherwise you may diminish the vibe; and it is the vibe, and not the all the stone structures that are what makes the Ledges so precious.

Smudge yourself, say a prayer, meditate for a while in the Welcome Circle.

Bring a small offering, a flower...Spread some tobacco. It's not so much what you bring, as it is that you show reverence and respect.

Act in a Sacred Manner while there--Keep your thoughts positive, focus on the divine.....Do not bring your cell phone or other electronic devices harmful to our Mother. Limit your picture taking, or balance them with a prayer.

If you have to go to the bathroom do so far from the holy area.

Make sure you can drive after you leave. Bring some food, preferably root vegetables to ground you if necessary. Generally people maintain mental acuity. Just make sure if is safe for you to drive.

This is an incredible find. I share this with you because I want you to be able to experience it as well. It is a gift to us from the pilgrims that have visited before. A gift for you to experience. A gift that you can share with others that will follow by acting in a sacred manner when visiting and praying and meditating while you are there.

Remember it's all about the Vibe


PS I encourage you to visit soon. I have written about this for several articles and I imagine over time people will begin to frequent the Ledges. Enjoy before the chances for solitude are reduced.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Sacred Sites Update--High Tor NYS DEC Forest and Bears

We were at High Tor (Middle Sex, Naples NY) today working on our survey of the Ledges when we ran into a local land owner who said was having troubles with a bear raiding his bee hives.  I have been going to High Tor for over 10 years and have never seen a bear.

I mention this not to scare you but, to give you a heads up. I always have bear bells on my dogs so that I know where they are and they alert other animals as well. The chances of seeing a bear are extremely remote. 

If you know me well, you know I always say "a good day in the woods is when I don't see anything" (animal--bear, deer, coyote, raccoon......)  


Black Bear Encounters
If you Encounter a Bear:
Never Approach, Surround, or Corner a Bear - Bears aggressively defend themselves when they feel threatened. Be especially cautious around cubs as mother bears are very protective.

Never Run from a Bear- stay calm, speak in a loud and calm voice, slowly back away and leave the area.

Use Noise to Scare away Bears from Your Campsite- yell, clap, or bang pots immediately upon sighting a bear near your campsite.

Do Not Throw Your Backpack or Food Bag at an Approaching Bear

Doing so will only encourage bears to approach and "bully" people to get food.

By teaching a bear to approach humans for food, you are endangering yourself, other campers/residents, and the bears.