Leaving Orkney: Going Home With Peace

I’m doing an early blog today. Tonight I am leaving Orkney so I may not get chance to be online on the ferry. It’s been an interesting process of discovery. Discovering a deeper peace.

Visiting the ancient sites has reminded me very forcefully how little human beings have actually changed. What I want out of my life seems to be the same as the people from so long ago. To live peacefully a full life. To enjoy the fruits of my work. And to see my child grow up to a life of her own. Leaving aside the natural challenges of life – illness, times of famine, lack of water and shelter – the people here seem to have lived that peaceful exsistence. Until it was time for these people to leave their sites. There is no information as to why. But in leaving they also gave us some interesting puzzles to unlock.

I wonder what people will think of our exsistence in a couple of thousand years. Will my legacy to my daughter’s children be lost somewhere down the line? Will I and everyone alive now become a puzzle to the humans of the future? Especially if technology fails and records perish. Leaving behind the drinks cans, plastic bags and remains of the steel in our skyscrapers. What will be made of this time? I hope my desire for peace for all will be delivered. Because that ensures humanity continues. I believe it may also help us to evolve beyond the point we are currently at. How would it be to be peaceable for a thousand years?

That’s the hope I have been reminded of this week. Leaving Orkney I’m taking with me a sense of continuity. Life really does continue no matter what.

That thought has also been challenging my inner world. I feel I will be leaving behind something else when I go. Watching the cruise ships and ferrys dock and leave I’ve been thinking about the way I transport my fear around with me. I know it’s hard to admit, even when on holiday, that I might still be worrying something over in my mind. But it’s true. I feel it’s what most of us do. My conditioning about what is ok or not ok keeps tripping me up. Letting myself relax when there are future bills to be paid keeps catching me. How strange. Because I have no need of this pattern. One thing I do know is that my life will go on bills or no.

Yet it seemed, when I was chatting to others, that we all seem to share the challenge of stepping back. Some of the people from the cruise ships wanted to pack in as much as they could. They didn’t want to waste time or money. Because taking time out seems like shirking a responsibility. Leaving everything aside seemed to be hard for them to do. Yet they told me that they enjoyed rushing from place to place. Taking photos for when they got home. Half and hour for this place. An hour for that. I felt their pace was fast and furious. Not at all peaceful. What will they really remember? Would it be peace?

Our ancestors in the Neolithic times worked when they had to and rested in the seasons when they couldn’t. Will the people of the future go back to that pattern? I’ve been working on inner peace. Stripping away another layer of conditioning. Leaving behind more fear.

Day 604 of my blogging challenge 

Six Hundred Days: It’s Been A Real Challenge

I’ve been very aware today that I have to write my six hundredth blog tonight. A long way from the thirty days I originally challenged myself. As each day has ticked by I’ve been surprised how I’ve stuck at it.

That got me thinking this afternoon as I stood on Stromness harbour. I watched six sail boats out in the wet weather practicing manoeuvres in the bay. Much more of a physical challenge than my writing. Then to visit the home of Eliza Fraser who was shipwrecked after travelling to Australia. Captured by aborigines she turned her challenge into a media show (or what passed for one in eighteen thirty six) and had an island named after her. A life full of all sorts of challenges then. Not least when it seemed she had really been rescued rather than captured.

I also found Login’s Well where many explorers took their drinking water on board before setting off. Arctic challenges, Hudson Bay Company ships sailing with trade goods, Caprain Cook off to discover new lands. Lots of brave people taking on the challenges of the sea. Now those places are as familiar to us as our own towns. Because of the words written about them. Also now because of the wide reach of the internet. I wondered what those pioneers would make of my life. Of most of our lives. I can take a large ferry across those seas. Big tankers ply their trade. My biggest challenge getting here has been to get on the right trains.

Better still I can fly across the world to any continent I wish. Is that six or seven? It depends on how you define them. That’s true about challenges too.

My challenge with my blogs is wrapped around words. It’s not particularly physical. But I’ve found it has stretched my emotions. Especially with my determination to stick with it on the days when my thoughts went into hiding. Or I felt like there was nothing noteworthy to write about. When I felt like no one could possibly be reading the blogs. And when I was working on my book as an extension of my blogs. Some days my writer’s block was overpowering. Yet I needed to keep going.

This evening I stood in the late evening sunshine and watched a Pipe Band. I thought about all of the discipline required to make bagpipes sound good. The hours of practice and gradual progression. Six drummers stepped forward and gave a display of timing, teamwork and passion. Their challenge had kept them going until they could work in unison. My writing has challenged my discipline and my passion. I’ve also had to learn to work in unison with my words. We are a team. Describing my life. Exploring my experiences. And giving me space to work out my next step on my spiritual journey.

I have learned to love my writing enough to keep going. That’s important. Because I still have four hundred and one more blogs to write. Plus a book or six. What will your next six challenges be?

Day 600 of my blogging challenge 

How Far Have I Come? Thoughts On Ancient Days

Looking around the buildings of Kirkwall today I started to think about ancient times. Not only the lives of people in Orkney five hundred years ago but also of three thousand years ago.

This chain of islands has so much history to offer. Of course so have many places all over the world. It’s just that sometimes I forget to stop and notice. I guess it’s the same for everyone. Living takes up all the time and space I have. Busy going here, doing that, meeting them. Finding a way to keep a roof over my head. Wanting to ensure my daughter and I can eat, be safe, or warm and dry. Looking for a purpose and meaning in my life. Was it the same in ancient times?

I looked around the Cathedral today. There were plenty of grave stones with memento mori inscriptions. The reminder that death comes to us all. At the Earl’s Palace the shell of the building remained. The Earl himself only enjoyed it for a few years as he was forced to give it up in 1609. To the Archbishop who had a palace already. The Earl was later executed for rebellion. Surrounding these monuments are a network of small streets made up of little terraced houses lining the harbour. Two big cruise ships had docked at the ferry port. So the streets were also full of visitors being shepherded around the town by the  tour guides.

All of us taking in the ancient buildings. The quirky town. Trying to get a feel for a life gone by. Photographing the graves of the long dead.

I wondered what people in those burial plots thought about the Afterlife. Certainly there had been a shift from the Viking tradition of many gods and goddesses to Christianity which focused one one god alone. Then in later centuries the disputes between Catholic and Protestant factions. But I was thinking much further back. What about the people who had a Neolithic existence on these islands? Our ancient ancestors may have had a goddess tradition. The purpose or meaning of their lives could have been from a different perspective than mine.

But I am sure that they also lived with the same focus as me. Keeping a roof over their heads, finding food and warmth, sharing with others. So I know they also had to work to make these things happen. And they also died. Their lives had an ending too. I find that the most grounding of all thoughts. We are continuing a basic pattern that has lasted for many thousands of years. I doubt that it will be destroyed overnight. Whatever happens the remains of ancient times remind us of the enduring human experience. To live, to love, to reproduce and to die. And to pass something on for the next generation.

Because we endure. What ancient monuments show is that we survive. They are a powerful reminder to me of the hope I have for humanity. We can overcome anything.

Day 599 of my blogging challenge 

Travelling ever northward: in search of a new land!

I’ve been up and about since five am this morning. Taking a series of trains to get over to the Orkney isles. Further north than I’ve ever been. Heading northward to discover a new land.

Yet I also feel called to this place. Perhaps I’m about to discover one of my past lives? Before heading northward I’ve had several days of a niggling anxiety. Everything has been planned. But I couldn’t help feeling that something was going to go wrong. The fact that everything has gone so smoothly today has been a great delight. After all what could really go wrong? What was I imagining? I’m not even sure I know now I’m nearing the end off this all day journey. We have even been blessed with a calm sea. Great for someone like me who suffers sea sickness if the waves look like they are going to be higher than three inches.

So what is the journey northward about? It started when I watched a TV programme about an archeological dig on Orkney.

At a place called the Ness of Brodgar. A site that apparently pre dates the pyramids and Stonehenge. Older than Ggantija in Malta. That caught my attention. I’ve been to Malta to the temple several times. And visited the Hypogeum temple too. The sense of Divine Feminine energy was very strong in Malta. I wondered if it would be the same in Orkney. Then they suggested that the stone circles, like the one called the Ring of Brodgar, were the first known monuments of this kind in the country. The circles spread from Orkney down the rest of the UK.

Of course it made perfect sense that I wanted to see and sense for myself if there was any Goddess energy still left in these places. The waves of energy around us at the moment are returning out focus to our own feminine energy. As human beings we have both feminine and masculine energy in all of us. A part to create and a part to make that creation real. I know we have been stuck in the ‘making it real’ part for far too long. For thousands of years creativity has been hedged about with structures that hinder the intuitive leaps forward that are at the very heart of that creativity. It’s become very hard to think the unthinkable. Let alone make sure it happens.

This northward journey can help me connect back to a different point of creativity. If I can step into that ancient energy.

That is the key. If there is a past life connection of any kind I hope to release any karmic patterns that prevent me from accessing my creativity. I’d also like to tune into the background energy to understand where these more northward peoples came from. What their history and heritage was. That’s why I’m excited about going to see the dig site. And I never know what else I might be asked to do. The fact that I’m going tells me that the Spirit World will most likely have a bit of work for me to do too. Probably on myself. But I never know. I might be there for service to someone else too.

Yes it is a holiday. Some time out for me. But I love my work with my Guides. They are taking me northward because they know I will enjoy it. And if they feel they can kill two birds with one stone, so to speak, they will certainly do do. I feel like this long journey is all part of the process. We could have flown here. Or had an overnight stop. But when I was planning the trip I thought about the journey our ancestors must have made. In boats on the open and uncertain North Sea. No power but the wind in the sails and oars if becalmed. It must have been a much more epic journey than today.

Northward it is then. Adventure awaits. I’m ready to explore.

Day 598 of my blogging challenge