The first week of July and there’s a feint scent of Autumn in the air this morning.
The morning brings a quiet and gentle beginning to the day, untouched by the continuing perplexities of man.
“Man has drawn artificial lines on the chest of the Mother Earth, which have no significance, except for the sake of war and clashes between countries. The soil seems to be the same, the trees the same, the grass the same, and the fragrance of the air, the smell of the earth the same.”
~ Girdhar Joshi
Yes it is…all the same…at most times hard to believe when one watches the circus of life on MSM.
Bread and circuses, but we all know and recognise real life.
It has a colour and fragrance all of its own.
“The earth is a mosaic, and most fail to notice the gossamer tesserae floating down from the realm of the mind that form its images of beauty and horror.”
~ Lawren Leo
My daughter, Cara, was driving, so we stopped by the shores of the Lough, made famous by W.B.Yeats in his poetry.
Birthdays come and go and I have enjoyed sixty of them, all in the month of October, near Samhain…so this, along with a second ring as yet unfinished, marked my sixty Summers on this precious, beautiful Earth.
I had deliberated for some time over what I should spend my birthday money on…have always loved silver and, very importantly, dearly wanted to place a much maligned symbol of the Goddess where I would always see it!
The story of the snakes being banished from Ireland represents a dark place in the history of this land…for it was the Goddess who was banned, to be replaced with an image dominated by Patriarchy… that of Virgin Mother Mary.The Great Goddess often had snakes as her symbol—sometimes twining around her sacred staff, as in ancient Crete—and they were worshiped as guardians of her mysteries of birth and regeneration.
Bealtaine Cottage encapsulates those two energies…birth and regeneration…of Mother Earth herself, in all her wild, unstoppable beauty.
Wildheart was the place I had to go…
The journey back was auspicious, in that we got lost.
And so, driving along a quiet road, we were led to an ancient Holy Well…much older than any religion…
Tobernalt Holy Well is a place of reflection and nurturing serenity.
It predates the advent of Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century.
Its importance as a meeting place and a sustainer of life predates even our Celtic ancestors.
Tobernalt is a natural spring well that established itself in a primeval forest.
It is situated at the South West corner of Lough Gill in the North Sligo Barony of Carbury.
This was where I blessed my ring, submerging it in the Spring Water that flowed from the hill, away into the mystical depths of Lough Gill and the Lake Isle of Inishfree.
Today is an exciting and very uplifting day for Bealtaine Cottage and me! For the past year or so it’s been utterly frustrating not being able to share on this website.
Restrictions were placed upon me in relation to upload space for photographs, as I had used up virtually all of the allocated space of 13GB, which is that allowed on the Premium Plan from WordPress.
Well, today I paid for an upgrade which allows me unlimited upload space…a treat for myself and, I’m hoping one for you too!
As I type there is a lovely soft rain falling outside, refreshing and renewing the earth.
The same has happened here for me on the website…I feel a sense of renewal and excitement!
To be honest, writing and photographing Bealtaine Cottage and Mother Earth constitutes my first love!
Much as I love the interaction on social media, it can be very time-consuming and ultimately takes away from the work I do here!
The payment of an extra 200 Euros was necessary for the extended plan, but this liberates me from the strictures of what I can put out there for everyone to enjoy.
I will continue with the Bealtaine Cottage Good Life website and am working on a plan to do a sort of “joined-up”daily blog…watch this space! And so the story of Bealtaine Cottage continues, moving onwards and upwards!
“Country things are the necessary root of our life – and that remains true even of a rootless and tragically urban civilization. To live permanently away from the country is a form of slow death.”
― Esther Meynell
And so I hope to continue bringing the country to you!
Sharing this little sacred space in the west of Ireland, with the world…
The seasonal changes, garden, wildlife and Mother Earth…
The song of the Goddess and her inspired Permaculture…
I continue to clear out spaces in my cottage and renew many aspects of my life…always a good preparation for Imbolc!
Happy Imbolc to you all!
I’m happy to write, photograph, podcast, Youtube and Facebook on behalf of Mother Earth…it would be great if you could take a second or two to press the LIKE button, leave a comment, or even subscribe to Bealtaine Cottage Good Life…thanks for the appreciation! X
The greatest concern of our times is happening on a daily basis and affecting every one of us.
Weather volatility is real and happening and the Ostriches in power appear impotent against the great forces of Nature.
The gabbling media assault our senses with celebrity highs and lows, sport and highly edited titbits of what is happening internationally…all the while keeping away from any real conversation about the chaos that is the weather all around us and those dreaded words: Climate Change.
However it is not Climate Change any more…the media have completely missed out on that conversation!
It has evolved rapidly into Climate Chaos!
I would like to offer words of comfort and reassurance, but that’s not possible, for I live in the real world and events are happening too fast for me to be able to offer predictions that will reassure!
Last night I slept with both windows open in my bedroom, bathed in warmth from the wind that blew all night from the south.
The wind chimes on the veranda played ceaselessly…something that has never happened before.
I use all my senses to try to build a picture of what the media refuses to inform me about.
The big news is that the Jet Stream is out of control!
Imagine a Spinning Top, rotating smoothly at first…well that is how the Jet Stream SHOULD be!
Now picture the same Spinning Top as it slows, rotating wildly…that is what is happening to the Jet Stream and causing the wild fluctuations in weather across the globe.
All the information about this is out there on the internet…make Google your friend and inform yourself…that’s if you can bear it!
I have gone past the need to research, for I witness the changes, log them, keep a record of temperatures and rainfall patterns…and have done so for all the time I have worked on the Bealtaine project.
So, what is the point in telling you this bad news?
I have nothing to gain.
In fact, there is a strong possibility that I will lose subscribers.
The old adage of “shoot the messenger”pertains to what I have written here…so be it!
So, let me tell you about the people I hope to reach with this news…
People who care for the future.
Those who have awakened to what it means to live a compassionate life.
Especially those who are unafraid of change and to implement change in their own lives.
If there is a Universal Consciousness…give it the name Goddess, God, Divine, Mother Earth…whatever you know it by…then that consciousness must surely want us to care as deeply for our planet as we care for ourselves.
Adapting is the way forward and should be at the top of all political agendas and policies.
Here in Ireland we are headed into a general election.
Farmers appear to be ill-informed in relation to Climate Change and as they hold much power in the outcome of elections, there will not be much informed debate on the doorstep!
Meat production is now at an all-time high in Ireland and there are few, if any, politicians who are prepared to risk the fury of farmers in regards to changing that!
The relationship between meat production, consumption and climate change is there for all to Google and Youtube.
The complacency regarding our habitat and climate change disturbs me.
I shall be quizzing each and every politician who knocks on my door…but as for intelligent, informed answers, well, I won’t be holding my breath!
Feel free to share this post…
And…I had to add this wonderful interview with Jane Goodall…
“The symbol of Goddess gives us permission. She teaches us to embrace the holiness of every natural, ordinary, sensual dying moment. Patriarchy may try to negate body and flee earth with its constant heartbeat of death, but Goddess forces us back to embrace them, to take our human life in our arms and clasp it for the divine life it is – the nice, sanitary, harmonious moment as well as the painful, dark, splintered ones.
If such a consciousness truly is set loose in the world, nothing will be the same. It will free us to be in a sacred body, on a sacred planet, in sacred communion with all of it. It will infect the universe with holiness. We will discover the Divine deep within the earth and the cells of our bodies, and we will lover her there with all our hearts and all our souls and all our minds.”
― Sue Monk Kidd, The Dance of the Dissident Daughter
This quote from Sue Monk Kidd has served as a wonderful source of inspiration for me, as I move slowly on my journey through this world.
In working so closely with the land over the past years, I have come to understand the meaning of the holiness of every single living thing.
Last summer, for example, I came across a beautiful Wasp nest in one of the trees.
When I put the photo of it onto my Facebook site I was immediately alerted by several people to destroy the nest and kill the wasps.
Why, I thought, must this thing of beauty be destroyed if it not causing harm to me?
Wasps are pollinators and help keep a balance among pests too, such as aphids.
In the eleven years working the land here, I have never been stung, by bee or wasp. Creatures only attack when under threat!
“If such a consciousness truly is set loose in the world, nothing will be the same.”…and nothing has been the same in this little three acre plot since becoming aware of the deep connectivity between myself and Mother Earth…call her the Goddess if you will…but the Divine presence for me is compassion itself.
“Yet rather than calling the earliest religions, which embraced such an open acceptance of all human sexuality, ‘fertility cults,’ we might consider the religions of today as strange in that they seem to associate shame and even sin with the very process of conceiving new human life. Perhaps centuries from now scholars and historians will be classifying them as ‘sterility cults.”
― Merlin Stone, When God Was a Woman
Much of my journey has involved stripping away layers of religious and cultural imposed identity.
This is a hard task, as one tries not to alienate others.
At times this journey has felt like one is walking on eggshells, attempting to negotiate a path between questioning/understanding and simply being part of family and community.
In search of an understanding of soul… a communion with the sacred…and being unafraid of where that takes me.
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A wide selection of Permaculture produced, open pollinated seeds are available from Bealtaine Cottage…
The chill of early mornings and the ripening of hedgerow fruit.
Blackbirds swooping low over woodland paths that wind out from the cottage.
Grass, wet with early morning dew and mist rising from the valley, wisping skyward towards Kilronan Mountain.
The morning bridges late Summer and early Autumn in an ethereal, almost magical way.
There is nothing for it but to step into the gardens and be amazed at the gentle progression of the season, for we are, in essence, seasonal beings, dependent on the cyclical nature of the Earth.
Marija Gimbutas frames this beautifully, eloquently in concluding her book, “The Language of the Goddess,” writing: “The Goddess gradually retreated into the depths of forests or onto mountain-tops, where she remains to this day in beliefs and fairy stories.
Human alienation from the vital roots of earthly life ensued, the results of which are clear in our contemporary society.
But the cycles never stop turning, and now we find the Goddess reemerging from the forests and mountains, bringing us hope for the future, returning us to our most ancient human roots.”
Maria Gimbutas, a foremost archaeologist of her time, in this most brilliantly researched book, goes on to conclude, “The Goddess in all her manifestations was a symbol of the unity of all life in Nature.
Her power was in water and stone, in tomb and cave, in animals and birds, snakes and fish, hills, trees and flowers. hence the holistic and mythopoeic perception of the sacredness and mystery of all there is on Earth.”
Joseph Campbell, who introduces the book, writes; “One cannot but feel that in the appearance of this volume at just this turn of the century there is an evident relevance to the universally recognized need in our time for a general transformation of consciousness.
The message here is of an actual age of harmony and peace in accord with the creative energies of Nature which for a spell of some four thousand prehistoric years anteceded the five thousand of what James Joyce has termed the “nightmare” (of contending tribal and national interests) from which it is certainly now time for this planet to wake.”
Last night, as I walked around the barn, I noticed the New Moon in the clear skies above the cottage, a beautiful prelude to the storm that swept in from the Atlantic in the early hours of this morning.
This is the time before Midwinter, when clear skies above this small cottage, adds a magical touch to the darkest time of the year.
The sky at dusk revealed the waxing crescent moon, mystical and delightful alongside the ever brilliant Venus.
There, high above me in the eastern sky, was the Dog Star, Sirius.
The dark skies of Winter hold a special fascination for me and perfect star-gazing conditions.
Looking into the eastern sky in the early evening, I saw mythological Orion’s belt and the three stars that make it up.
Just below this was the Dog Star, Sirius.
Sirius is one of the brightest stars in the night sky, as it is the closest to Earth.
According the the Ancient Egyptians, Sirius is the celestial representation of the Goddess, Isis.
Isis was the foremost goddess in all of Egyptian Mythology.
Clannad produced an album entitled “Sirius” and here is the title track…one of my all time favourite pieces of music…