I am excited as I make my way to The Park this morning, knowing that we will start today with an attunement dance led by Susanne Anders Bartholomäi. We join hands and walk slowly to the rhythm of a medieval song, gradually forming several circles around the candle centrepiece. To the music of Mozart, and through graceful gestures with which we connect heaven and earth through the opening of our hearts, we each find our way into a place of blissful peace. Ahhhhhh…
On the first day of this gathering, we went through a process of what Philip Roderick referred to as kenosis – emptying ourselves, becoming ready to receive. Yesterday we were filled with as much Christ Consciousness as we individually, and collectively, could hold. Today we turn our attention out towards the world, to planetary transformation.
We spend the morning with William Meader, who talks with us of spiritual purpose, crisis, initiation, soul infusion and the Seven Rays. He explains that we are in a time of enormous transition, not just the astrological shift from Pisces to Aquarius, but from the Sixth Ray Age to the Seventh Ray Age. In the Alice Bailey tradition, from which William comes, we are approaching the First Initiation, the birth of Christ within the heart. Crisis is a prelude to all initiations, all expansions of consciousness. We each have to walk across the burning ground. William speaks of the people who stand in the middle of that ground, who are the bridge between those who intuitively know that dew-laden grass lies on the other side and are going for it, and those who are turning around to go back because their feet weren’t burning when they were back there. Those in the middle know that because we are all one, we can’t leave the others behind.
William goes on to talk about the soul as an agent of Christ, and about soul purpose. To know your soul ray is to know your purpose. There are seven rays, each with qualities, colours and musical notes associated with them. And there is an ashram associated with each ray, which is home for all the souls of that type. In the guided meditation that follows, William helps us to align with our ashram so that a seed can be planted for the manifestation of our soul’s purpose. Whether or not I truly aligned with my ashram, I’m not sure, but in the quiet time afterwards walking in the Original Garden, I am drawn to a Lady’s Mantle. A few days earlier, my partner had spoken about how the Lady’s Mantle still holds the dew long after it has disappeared from other plants. As I stand looking at the droplets of water on the leaves, I feel that something has landed in me and I trust that, in time, more will be revealed.
Another theme running through this gathering is the balancing of the polarities, in particular that of the male and the female, the masculine and the feminine. Because I have been looking at this within myself for quite some time now, it is only natural that I choose Fay Barratt’s workshop, She Speaks Through Us, a Magdalene Gathering. Just to say, there are many interesting, thought provoking and heart opening workshops on offer, and had the choice not been so clear for me, I can see myself wanting to be in several of them at the same time!
The centre table in the room in which we meet is decorated with a white candle, yellow and blue flowers, shimmering gold and purple fabrics, painted images of the Magdalene, and a pottery shell with a mixture of spikenard and rose essential oils. Divination cards, face down, create a border of soft orange roses around the table.
Fay talks of her relationship with the Magdalene and how she came to be doing these workshops. Each of us then shares what, if any, relationship we have with Mary Magdalene. And as we sit there, we become increasingly aware of the incredible energy in the room for which I have no words to describe. All I can say is that I’d happily stay in that energy forever.
Fay takes the oil mixture and anoints our right and left hands with it, the right hand representing the masculine and the left, the feminine. We are asked to sense each hand separately and note how they feel. Does one feel heavier than the other? Is the energy stronger in one than in the other? Starting with our hands apart, we ever so slowly bring them together, being aware of how their energies eventually blend. A symbol of the sacred marriage between the masculine and feminine. We then bless each other in whatever way feels appropriate, giving and receiving love as we go along.
The divination cards eventually play their part in deepening our understanding of ourselves and of connecting with another as we share our cards with a partner. We end the afternoon with a chant:
Power, power, your love is our power.
Power, power, our love is your power.
Oh Shekina, hear us calling, your children need healing.
Oh Shekina, hear us calling, your children need healing.
Tonight is Matthew Fox. Though I haven’t read any of his books, I have read articles he’s written, so I am thrilled that he is with us. The Universal Hall is packed. He has titled his talk, Our Emergence into Christ Consciousness: An Imperative for Our time. He muses about the similarity between the words emerging and emergency and makes the point that humans change when they have to – when there is an emergency. The current crisis we are in is causing us to tap into our divine nature.
Matthew speaks of Christ Consciousness as existing in every being and reads us a poem by Mary Oliver, The River Clarion. Through the words she has written, Mary tells us that if you want to know who the Christ Consciousness is, go sit by the river and listen. It is the flowing water, the stone at the water’s edge, the soft green moss covering the stone.
Christ Consciousness energy can be translated into generosity – love for the sake of loving, service for the sake of serving, work for the sake of working. In the dark night of the soul that our species is currently going through, we will undergo a purification of our desires. Consumerism will start to lose its grip on us.
Very inspiring is the work that Matthew is doing with young people who have left school before graduating. He has created what he calls his Doctor of Ministry programme. Based on the ten Cs, of which courage, compassion, creativity, critical thinking and contemplation are a part, he educates these young people in a way that is true to the meaning of the word education – he draws out the Christ Consciousness that is already there in each one of them. Matthew points out that through this type of education, adults too can be woken up.
Not surprisingly, Matthew is given a standing ovation when he finishes.