Posted in celebrations, Celtic Mythology, Celts, Folklore, Inspiration, Ireland, Life, Nature, New Year, Spirituality, Thoughts

The Consciousness of All Things

There is a stillness in the air tonight…a preamble towards Imbolc.

These last days of the Winter in the Celtic Cycle are a time of reflection…

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Spirals fascinate me, as they fascinate so many people.

We are drawn towards them.

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They mean something to us, something we have forgotten.

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My Celtic ancestors carved Sacred Spirals on stones…and so they appear to us today, a message from the past, but we have lost the key to understand their meanings.

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They, too, would have gazed up at the night sky and tried to understand their world.

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They, too, would have intuited a connectivity in all life…we continue to subconsciously embrace all life, yet we struggle against great odds, for we have been told for millennia that we are superior, and so removed from that life force.

And so we try to make our way back to where we can, once more, connect to life.

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For we now know, on a deeply spiritual, non-religious level, that we are one.

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We are one, as the spiral depicts an eternal connection, we are one.

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Spirals are full of symbolism.

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The spiral is found all over the natural world and indeed is also the symbol of life itself, as represented in the famous double helix, the molecular structure of life.

April 2011 Bealtaine 013The belief among the Celts, was that communication with nature was the chief priority in their lives, and the sound, immovable belief in the consciousness of all things.

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They did not fear death as we do in this present time.

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Everything was connected, there was no beginning and no end.

Every single thing upon and in the earth had a consciousness and was a part of, a fragment of, the one cosmic entity.

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The sacred spiral, I believe, was a representation of this belief.

Stones were considered to be old before time itself…a fascinating thought and a manifestation of a deep spiritual understanding, if not connection.

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The Winter is almost at a close…just another fifteen days left.

The joy of Spring awaits to be welcomed in on the first day of February…Imbolc!

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As in the nature of the Sacred Spiral, we move inexorably along the path of our life, but not alone, for we are one with the Universe…

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We now know we are made of that oneness, stardust itself!

The Celts recognized the great sight held by someone who was physically blind.

That person had the greatest sight…inner sight.

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Perhaps it’s time for us to connect with our own inner sight and begin to see with our intuition.

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Posted in Celtic Mythology, Celts, Country Living, Folklore, Garden, History, Inspiration, Ireland, Life, Lifestyle, Permaculture, Samhain, Spirituality, Vegan

A Way of Living in Circular Time

Hazel nuts ripen on small trees near the orchard at Bealtaine Cottage.

Many of the Hazel trees were planted at the beginning of the land conversion to Permaculture and some have been planted on a fairly continuous basis since, being eight years in total.

As a Vegan, nuts are important in my diet, and as Hazel Nuts are indigenous to Ireland, these would be the most compatible to the diet.

Nuts are easily added to food and form a tasty part of any home-made burgers and roasts.

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The Hazel is a small, deciduous tree and is native to Ireland.

They take up little space and are suitable for coppicing, as the wood can be used in different projects, especially for pea supports and woven fencing.

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Hazel has always been regarded as a ‘magical’ wood, with the stems used historically as ‘wands’.

William Butler Yeats used the Hazel as imagery in some of his poetry and writing.

“I went down to the hazel wood, because a fire was in my head…cut and peeled a hazel wand…”

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The hazel tree in Celtic Mythology is associated with wisdom, intuition and creative energy.

It is no surprise then that the Hazel Wand has such magical connotations!

Permaculture…living in harmony, understanding our natural environment and helping it all to come together…a way of living, of looking at our world as our paradise of plenty.

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I have been trying to explain all this to a visitor today who came to see permaculture in action, but, sometimes it’s best not to go seeking, instead stopping to look…

After heavy rains here in the west of Ireland, the sky has cleared to reveal a beautiful sun rising in the East.

The colours of Autumn are like a technicolour display of Nature at her best.

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As the moon wanes in the evening sky and the earth cools, mists encroach on the morning air.

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The past nights have been clear and bright and very cold.

Even the waning moon has shone bright.

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The Celts respected the moon and rather than speak openly of it, alluded to it instead, calling it ‘gealach’, meaning ‘brightness’.

The Celtic calendar was based on the lunar cycles, in that a month began with the full moon.

The Celts believed in circular, not linear, time.

Maybe, just maybe, that is where we have gone astray…

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Earth, Gaia, Life, Permaculture, Uncategorized

A Life in the Country ~ A Permaculture Landscape under a Full Moon

Full moon rises over Bealtaine Cottage. The night air is clear, so the moon lights up the land as in a fairy landscape.

Understanding Permaculture…

“The only basic and comprehensive answer to the colossal harm that our present industrial system is causing to the global environment – harm that could lead to the extermination of all life on earth – is to replace it with a sustainable system – geared largely to the non-polluting, life-enhancing products of the living world”
Robert A de J Hart ‘Forest Gardening’

“It is our collective responsibility to protect and nurture the global family, to support its weaker members and to preserve and tend to the environment in which we all live”
Dalai Lama

Have you ever gone for a walk in the light of the full moon?

 

“Is it all worth it? If we do our best to heal the Earth and make our place in her a sustainable one, is there a good chance that we will succeed?…to my mind that’s the wrong question. Even if we could answer it – and we can never know anything about the future for certain, it would beg the question How do I want to live my life? So my answer to the question..is that I want to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem”.
Patrick Whitefield ‘Earth Care Manual’

“It is time for all of us to make changes about how we live our lives and to follow a path of the heart. By following our intuition and inspiration we encourage our own acts of heartfelt genius and boldness. This makes us feel alive and vital, gives us a great purpose and harnesses parts of ourselves we may have neglected or didn’t even know we had. We no longer feel overwhelmed by the way the Earth’s resources are managed, but recognise that change is in our hands, yours and mine, the hands of extraordinary people who have made a leap of understanding and are determined to make a difference. We become part of the change by becoming part of the solution.”
Glennie Kindred ‘Earth Wisdom’

“Permaculture, a design system that reconciles human communities with the ecological imperatives of a living planet.”
Ben Haggard
Walking in the gardens it is possible to feel the strength of the full moon…it’s awesome!

“Permaculture is a design system for creating sustainable human environments. The word itself is a contraction not only of permanent and agriculture but also of permanent culture, as cultures cannot survive for long without a sustainable agricultural base and landuse ethic. On one level, permaculture deals with plants, animals, buildings, and infrastructures (water, energy, communications). However, permaculture is not about these elements themselves, but rather about the relationships we can create between them by the way we place them in the landscape.  ~ Bill Mollison

Under such a sky the air is chilled.

“Permaculture is also a world wide network and movement of individuals and groups working in both rich and poor countries on all continents. Largely unsupported by government or business, these people are contributing to a sustainable future by reorganizing their life and work around permaculture design principles. In this way they are creating small local changes but ones which are directly and indirectly influencing action in the wider environment, organic agriculture, appropriate technology, communities and other movements for a sustainable world. After 20 years Permaculture may rank as one of Australia’s most significant ‘intellectual exports’.”
~David Holmgren

“Adopting permaculture in your garden could be the first step towards limiting your personal consumption and planning your life to become more creative as time goes by”
Graham Bell, ‘The Permaculture Garden’