Dorothy granted indefinite UK residency

Dorothy Maclean has been granted UK residency that could see her through to her 105th birthday and beyond.


Dorothy Maclean with her residence permit

More than a half century after co-founding the Findhorn-based spiritual community that continues to attract thousands of visitors and seekers to north-eastern Scotland, the 95-year-old author and spiritual teacher has received a letter from the Home Office awarding her residency until 2025.

And a comment on her plastic residency card, which is known as a biometric residence permit, adds: “Indefinite leave to remain.”

A delighted Dorothy, who is a Canadian citizen, joked that she was ‘legal’ for another 10 years and recalled the challenges a few days earlier when she had needed to have her thumb and fingerprints electronically recorded in Inverness.

Although each human fingerprint is unique, detailed and surprisingly durable, there was difficulty getting hers to register clearly and her long-time friend John Willoner helped by applying gentle pressure on her hand.

John is a schoolteacher who first came to the Findhorn Bay Caravan Park in 1967 to join founders Dorothy, Peter and Eileen Caddy and their three young boys at the nucleus of what became the Findhorn Foundation community. He is one of an enthusiastic team of carers who help in whatever way they can, some community members accompanying her on her daily walks around The Park.


Dorothy and long-time friend John Willoner

Regardless of the weather she can be seen walking, using the support of two sticks, and is quick to explain that wintry conditions hold no fears for her. “I’m a Canadian. I love the snow.”

Her presence is an inspiration to many of us, as is her enduring legacy of connection with the intelligence of nature.

“As I grow older, or more experienced shall we say, I realise the power of love. It can make anything happen. And it’s appropriate in any situation. When nothing else works, it works.

“Love? To me it’s the founding energy … and it’s like the white light that is split into all the colours. Only love is split into everything that is. Light and dark are polar opposites but love contains the dark – it contains everything, it embraces everything.”

Her wisdom and pioneering history of co-creation with nature find expression in a number of her books including her autobiography, Memoirs of an Ordinary Mystic.

Geoff Dalglish

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