Newgrange is the most famous prehistoric monument in Ireland, but its precise purpose is not certain. Some say it was a burial site, while others believe it was a ceremonial site used for initiation rites. In his book “Tommy Makem’s Secret Ireland,” the late Irish folksinger wrote:
According to some ancient manuscripts, the builders of Newgrange and their descendants used to communicate with the spirits of the dead in religious rites. They would enter the tumulus and fast for three days and three nights, lying or squatting on the stone troughs in complete darkness. After the fast, communication would be achieved and the initiates would emerge into the light.
What is known is that Newgrange was originally built about 3100 BC. In 1669 it was accidentally discovered, and between 1962 and 1975 it was extensively restored.
There is a window box above the entrance aligned perfectly to the sunrise on the Winter Solstice. On December 21st, the golden rays of the rising sun move inwards and shine on the back wall, remaining for about 17 minutes. Some say this penetration of Mother Earth by Father Sun is a fertility symbol, reminding us of the return of the light and the renewal of life that comes with it.
A tour of sacred sites in Ireland that includes a visit to Newgrange has recently been announced by Body Mind Spirit Journeys. The group tour, May 20 through June 2, 2013 features meditations and rituals in stone circles. In addition to Newgrange, the group will go to Loughcrew, the Hill of Tara and the Dromberg stone circle. For more information, please follow this link.read more
Was Jesus married to Mary Magdalene? Last month news media were buzzing about a report that a Harvard Divinity School historian was in posession of an ancient papyrus fragment that refers to Jesus’ wife and Mary. Of course, this is the theory that “The da Vinci Code” was based on, and Dan Brown got a lot of his information from the earlier “Holy Blood Holy Grail” by Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh, and Henry Lincoln.
Both books speak about a mystery that remains unsolved. What did Father Bérenger Saunière find in Rennes-le-Château that brought him sudden wealth? And what clues are yet to be decoded in the bizarre renovations he ordered done in the village church dedicated to Saint Mary Magdalene? Many believe he found proof that Jesus and Magdalene were married, and their bloodline became the Merovingian dynasty. The source of his wealth, it is said, came from him blackmailing the Vatican.
Two people who are very interested in these mysteries are Philip Coppens and Kathleen McGowan. Coppens, known for his appearances on the Ancient Aliens television program, is the author of a bestselling book about Rennes-le-Chateau. McGowan has written several books about Mary Magdalene. Together, they will lead a “Sacred France” tour that explores Rennes-le-Chateau, Carcassonne, Mas Cabardes, Lastours, Montségur and other locations associated with the Cathars, Black Madonnas and Mary Magdalene. The tour dates are May 14 – 21, 2013, and you can see full itinerary and pricing details at http://bodymindspiritjourneys.com/cathars-13.html.
For more details about the recently revealed fragment of papyrus, go to http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/19/us/historian-says-piece-of-papyrus-refers-to-jesus-wife.html?_r=2&
Update: Philip Coppens passed away suddenly at the end of December, 2012. His widow, Kathleen McGowan, plans to continue with the tours, as was his wish.read more
It is hard to imagine anywhere on earth that is richer in ancient sacred sites than Cornwall. Stonehenge, Avebury and Glastonbury may be more famous, but anyone who restricted their visit to the U.K. to the most well known sites would be missing out on some profoundly rewarding experiences, just as it would be a serious mistake to visit Machu Picchu without also going to Sacsayhuaman and the many other sacred places near Cusco.
Cornwall has a variety of different kinds of sites, including quoits (the Cornish word for dolmen) fogous (underground chambers), holy wells, and stone circles. But one unique formation stands in a class by itself. Men-an-Tol is an arrangement of three stones. Two uprights on either end, and in the center is a round stone with a hole in the middle. When you view them from one particular angle, they seem to form a 3-D “101.” The name, in Cornish, means “the hole stone,” and there are numerous myths and legends associated with it. Here are a few…
It is guarded by a piskie (the Cornish version of a fairy or piksie) who has the power to cure illnesses. When a mother discovered that her baby had turned into a Changeling, she passed it through the stone and it turned back into her real child. If a woman climbs through the hole in the stone seven times during the full moon she will become pregnant. Passing a child, naked, nine times through the stone will cure rickets.
Many visitors to the various power places in Cornwall say the energy is tangible. Ross Nichols, writing in The Book of Druidry, said that the reason why stone circles were built was to store the energy generated by dancing inside them. Starhawk has written that ancient sacred sites were created in order to store power created during rituals in order to step through the veil between the worlds.
Men-an-Tol, Lanyon Quoit, the Carn Euny Fogou and the Boscawen-un stone circle are just a few of the powerful places the Body Mind Spirit Journeys tour of Southwest England will visit in July, 2013. And yes, the small group will also go to Glastonbury, Avebury and Stonehenge.read more
I was looking through some old travel photos recently and came across pictures I took in Fiji more than a dozen years ago. One really brought back memories. I took it in the Hindu temple, Naag Mandir, near the village of Nagigi on the island of Vanua Levu.
Entrance to the temple is restricted to those who have not eaten meat or consumed alcohol and are not wearing leather. I left my shoes outside before going in. The priest led me to a huge stone around which the temple seemed to have been built. It was in the shape of a cobra’s head and draped with garlands of flowers. There were many offerings on a shelf in front — fruit, flowers, incense, ghee and a box of milk.
I was told that the stone was very small 120 years ago, but it grew so that it now almost touches the ceiling. When it was feared that a new, larger roof would have to be built to accommodate the growing stone, the priests decided to pray for it to stop growing, and so far it has.
The priest also told me there were other supernatural occurrences associated with the stone. Once there were plans to build a new road, and the initial proposal required the temple and the stone to be moved. However, all the members of the crew that was supposed to move the stone got sick, It was not until plans to move it were cancelled that they recovered from their mysterious illness.
The feeling I got from the temple and its legendary growing stone was the presence of an enormous and powerful spirit.
There are several other sacred sites and powerful places in Fiji. If there were enough interest in forming a group tour, Body Mind Spirit Journeys could doubtless put one together. Are you interested?read more
Aramu Muru’s Portal (or Doorway) near Lake Titicaca in Peru is without a doubt one of the strangest and most powerfully eerie places I have ever visited. According to legend, this sacred site is associated with the founder of the Inca empire, Aramu Muru, who became known later as Manco Kapac. He escaped from the sinking continent of Mu, bringing with him a wondrous solar disk.
The area is near the city of Puno, near Peru’s border with Bolivia, and it abounds with rock formations that look like a puma, caterpillar, butterfly and other creatures from legends. Just before we arrived at the Portal, we passed the Valley of Spirits. We were told this place is associated with shamans, and the locals are afraid to venture into its depths.
Of the portal itself, it is said a band of musicians once managed to find their way through it and went into another dimension, never to be seen again. It is associated with the “Monastery of the Seven Rays” written about by George Hunt Williamson.
There are some who say the shaped rocks were fashioned by nature eroding the stones. Others believe the area was an ancient Mystery School more than 10,000 years ago, much like Marcahuasi north of Lima, where there are stone sculptures resembling dinosaurs, faces of people of many different races, and animals that are not native to Peru.
My tour group was fortunate to be led by Jorge Luis Delgado, who re-discovered the portal after being guided by a series of visions. And it is Jorge who will be leading a new tour of the Portal and other sacred sites and power places in Peru on the 12th of December. Yes, that date is 12-12-12!
Body Mind Spirit Journeys yesterday announced details of the 12-12-12 Peru tour. The main body of the tour features the Lake Titicaca area and the Portal Conference that culminates on December 12, 2012. There is also a post-Conference extension that goes to Machu Picchu, Cuzco, Pisac, and Ollyantaytambo — some of the most powerful sacred sites on the planet.
Simply to visit these places of power is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but to be led by an expert in ancient wisdom such as Jorge Luis can make such a journey a truly life-changing event.
Here is a link to the Peru Portal 12-12-12 itinerary.
Lisa Tully, the leader of the Dalai Lama Tibetan Buddhist meditation tour of India coming up in March, has just sent us a video that gives you a taste of her program. It even shows a brief glimpse of His Holiness the Dalai Lama waving from a car that is passing by. (Don’t worry, he was not driving. In India, the driver’s side is on the right side of the vehicle, and they drive on the left side of the road.)
McLeod Ganj is located in the foothills of the Himalayas, and the scenery is truly inspiring. But even more importantly, this tour is an opportunity to attend a personal teaching by the Dalai Lama, something that is growing increasingly rare.
After you have watched the video, you can get more details about this Buddhist Meditation retreat and tour, including the full itinerary and pricing, on the Body Mind Spirit Journeys website at http://bodymindspiritjourneys.com/dalai-lama-india-meditation-2012.htmlread more