A recent warm Sunday afternoon found a number of us gathering outside the community centre to honour Sara Marriott (a member from 1972-82) and to rededicate and reenergise the herb garden. A magnificent oak bench was placed at the edge of the herb garden at The Park in Sara’s memory. A brass plaque on the leg of the bench has the word ‘marvellous’ engraved upon it, a word she used frequently, clearly expressing her joi de vivre. Sara served in the Core Group as well as Personnel and various other administrative, governing, and advising bodies in addition to being a vibrant healer and counsellor whose guidance aided many members and helped to shape the community in those days.
Sara left Findhorn to co-found the Nazare Paulista Community near Sao Paolo, Brazil in 1982. She also authored nearly a dozen books on the inner life, only one of which has been published in English, From the Centre, by Findhorn Publications. Sara passed away after a brief illness in New Hampshire USA in November 2001.
During the ceremony, Elizabeth Marriott, Sara’s great niece, recollected that few could keep up with Sara’s busy day which started at 4 a.m. with exercise and meditation. She did personal correspondence until 8 am sanctuary, then a full day’s work. She rarely missed an evening meeting or sharing but often nodded off!
Brian Nobbs spoke of his friendship with Sara when she worked with him in the pottery. He offered blessings for the herb garden and thanks for the continuing clean up and revitalisation. He also acknowledged the continued presence of Merlando, an elf with a long standing connection to the Findhorn gardens, and the need to bless, affirm and reenergise the herb garden as a sacred place of healing, joyous communication and co-creation with nature.
Someone reading a message from the Herb Deva reminded us that the intent and purpose of the herbs originally planted were to bring calming and peaceful feelings to anyone who added the herbs to their food or spent time in the herb garden. The bench shares that intention and purpose, so it is hoped that many will make time to sit and take in the lovely energies that are re-emerging in the herb garden.
Elizabeth shared an ancient Scottish prayer tradition where a wish for someone or something (such as world peace) is written on a strip of cloth and tied to a tree usually near a sacred well. Water from the ancient sacred Clootie Well on Black Isle was sprinkled around the base of the Bay Laurel tree which stands at the centre of the herb garden and is now aflutter with brightly-coloured prayer banners.
Sara’s bench was commissioned by Elizabeth Marriott and purpose-made by the Coach House Trust in Glasgow out of a 100-year-old oak tree from Dalmally, Scotland. Marvellous!