by Dawn Marie Clare
Stone circles and other prehistoric sacred sites of Britain have long captured our hearts and imaginations. They represent impressive feats of engineering, astronomical knowledge, and evolved levels of community and tradition. The function of these sites have been hypothesized based on early pagan religious structures or hinted at through the passing down of oral traditions. For example, a Gaelic phrase commonly used by Scots, asking if one was going to church translates as “are you going to the stones.”1 These places of pilgrimage are important for both the Seen and the Unseen, the physical and the metaphysical,2 the community level and the individual level, and specifically for the internal transformation they initiate. One summer morning in 1999 at a stone circle in Britain, a link to the past was forged simply through a prayer of petition, and I became a participant and witness of the consciousness and power that still resides at these sites.
My first glimpse of the stone circle was a mixture of relief and delight. Relief because it was not easy to find and the visit had been delayed due to pounding rain of the previous afternoon. This morning was clear and crisp and, with my mother and sister in tow, we eventually found the signs that led to Long Meg and Her Daughters, a large stone circle near Penrith in northern England, on our way to Scotland and the primary goal of our journey in August of 1999. As it turned out, we had arrived at the circle five days before a total solar eclipse (most visible in Cornwall on August 11), which might account for the high level of activity encountered at the circle.
Once we reached the circle, I was enchanted to find so many of the stones still upright and Long Meg standing like a sentinel over her Daughters. The circle stands in open pasture on a gentle slope. It dates to the late Neolithic period (approximately 3200-2000 bce.)3 and is composed of Long Meg, a 12-foot-tall red sandstone standing stone, and a circle formed of 59 gray granite boulders, of which 27 still stand in an oval measuring over 350 feet in length.4 Long Meg stands outside and southwest of the circle and in front of an entrance to the circle, bounded by two large stones, with the alignment marking midwinter sunset. Petroglyph designs of spirals, cup marks, and concentric circles adorn Long Meg, and at the time of my visit there was a fresh offering (several plant twigs tied in a bunch) on the ground in front of the stone.
Many pictures were taken of Long Meg and Her Daughters, but thinking that there might be more I should see or do while there, and knowing how precious little time we had to spare on our trip, I laid my hands on Long Meg and said a silent prayer for clarity on knowing what to do while there. I don’t know why I touched the stone as I prayed, but I became a little lightheaded as I did so. The combination of the stone and the prayer sent me into a meditative state, and I turned and walked slowly toward the entrance of the circle. It was here that I began to receive telepathic communications from the stones. Normally I would have found this unbelievable and, possibly, upsetting, but I had passed into an altered state of consciousness and the communication I was receiving seemed, then, to be a normal state. Perhaps also because there were only two other people at the site during our visit I felt less burdened by social conformity.
As I stood at the entrance of the circle the stone on the right welcomed me and told me to greet each stone in the circle and then to go to the center. I followed the instructions of the “gate stone,” greeting each stone respectfully as I went. Walking around the circle clockwise, it seemed to me that each stone had a different atmosphere about it, as individualistic as each person’s personality. When I reached the northwest end I received another communication; this time one of the stones cautioned me that the large stone opposite Long Meg was very powerful and that I might need protection as I drew near. Having practiced daily meditation for several years, I was familiar with the visualization process of surrounding oneself with protective white light, which I did prior to the encounter with the powerful stone. The stone in question threw a shadow into the circle, unlike most of the other boulders (it was between 10:00 and 10:30 a.m.), and it did feel powerful indeed.
After walking a circuit around the inner circle, greeting every stone, I made my way to the center and cleared my mind. Immediately, an electric type of pulse entered my head and travelled the length of my body and through my feet. As soon as the energy passed out of my body, I knew with a certainty that the experience was over. When I pondered the experience later on, trying to understand what had happened, the concept that came immediately to mind was “activation.” A local psychic concurred, and since that time I have heard of other, similar experiences, some of individual activations and some regarding individuals activating circles that had become dysfunctional. As it turned out, the remainder of my trip during early August of 1999 consisted of a number of experiences accessing deeper levels of awareness,5 possibly assisted by an activation of other senses or areas of the brain at Long Meg and Her Daughters.
Entering altered states of awareness at stone circles and other sacred sites is not unusual and has been well-documented by numerous sources and folklore;6 however, my contention here is that, in addition to an altered state of awareness, communication occurred between myself and individual stones and that there was intent in that communication. Three separate communications occurred: the first was a greeting of welcome, the second was instruction on how to conduct myself within the circle, and the third communication was a warning that I should invoke protection because of a powerful, possible menace ahead. Explicit instructions were relayed that included two specific steps to be taken in a specific order: step one was to greet each stone, and step two was to go to the center of the circle after the first step was complete. These steps were not embodied with emotion, although the initial communication of welcome invoked an atmosphere of respect and the third communication implied that there was concern for my well-being. The third communication also indicated intelligence, as information was exchanged based on an evolving situation, an interactive event. The combination of communication, intention, intelligence, and interactivity suggests that the stones have consciousness.
Although there have been many individual experiences of electric shocks at sacred sites, particularly from dowsers, these are unlike this experience at Long Meg and Her Daughters. Dowsers and others have described their encounters as electric shocks that occurred when a stone was touched. Contrary to these reports, my experience was neither an electric shock nor due to contact with a stone. Prior to the experience I did touch Long Meg, but it was at least ten to fifteen minutes after that contact that I felt the energy of the circle, and when the energy passed through me I was in the center of the circle and not close to any of the stones. Also, the energy from the circle was not an electric shock. It felt electrical, but it was unlike any shock I have ever received (and I have had many static electricity shocks to compare to this experience). It traveled through my body as a strong, consistent, pulsing charge and as a definite physical sensation from the top of my head through the feet; however, it did not hurt in any way!
Although not provable according to our current state of scientific inquiry, it is my belief that the stones possess an intelligence, capable of storing memory and information, communicating that information, and intentionally affecting the material world around them. The question that we should be asking is how to measure and record telepathic communication. To date, through the inspired and diligent efforts of a small number of people,7 quite a bit of data have been gathered and are still being gathered at stone circles and other sacred sites by measuring forces and elements (ultrasound, radiation, magnetic anomalies, etc.), and this information has helped us to understand some of the physical properties of the atmospheres at these sites. However, these instruments are only measuring the atmosphere and effects at a single level and range of materiality. It’s possible one must operate at a different level in order to access some data that are present, but hidden, at stone circles. All major religions incorporate some psi events into their belief system8 and there is evidence of the existence of telepathy and other psi phenomena, but the usual methods of rigorous hypothesis testing are not often applicable to these data. Rupert Sheldrake, biochemist and cell biologist, however, has conducted numerous experiments under controlled conditions that illustrate and verify telepathic communication by canines.9 He has also successfully proven that the human field of perception extends beyond the physical body;10other experiments, conducted by the HeartMath institute, have corroborated these findings. Their studies show that electromagnetic fields extending several feet from the human body are generated by the heart and that these fields can be detected by other people.11
The recently proposed string theory, and the variant M-theory in physics have gained much popularity. Their strength lies in that they provide a framework for explaining all fundamentals of the universe, but in doing so they also describe the universe as having more than four dimensions (as many as seven or ten) of space and time.12 String theory is based on the idea that all matter and forces in the universe are made up of tiny vibrating strings and the difference among them is the resonant pattern or vibrational frequency of each string. Everything in the universe is vibrating, from the electrons around the nucleus of an atom to the solar systems revolving around in the galaxy. If this is true, then consciousness is also movement, and, like the water of a stream, unless one is able to “see” or experience its pattern of motion, then one will not know its origin or destination or sense the nature of its action.
Just as humans can only hear a certain range of frequencies (16 – 25,000 hz)13 and utilize only a small portion of our potential senses, our instruments are also limited in the ranges and types of forces, frequencies, or elements that they can measure. Perhaps one day we will be able to transcend some of these limits to observe fields, waves, and interactions that are currently unobservable and only felt. Until that day, we should not ignore data derived only from perception, as perception is the core of our experience on earth, and perhaps we should begin to explore the possibility that the sense of perception is actually occurring between two conscious beings; therefore, the “brain waves” of the observed should also be considered. We are on the threshold of a new understanding of the nature of the universe and new potentials for understanding the nature of consciousness. As we pay attention to the subtle world around us, we have the potential to learn from the past and unlock the wisdom of our ancestors. As Long Meg and Her Daughters have shown, the key lies within us.
1. Evan Haddingham. Circles and Standing Stones: An Illustrated Exploration of the Megalith Mysteries of Early Britain, 182. New York: Walker and Company, 1975.
2. Martin Palmer and Nigel Palmer. Spiritual Traveler: England, Scotland, Wales: The Guide to Sacred Sites and Pilgrim Routes in Britain, x. Mahwah, New Jersey: Hidden Spring, 2000.
3. Rodney Castleden. The Stonehenge People: An Exploration of Life in Neolithic Britain, 4700-2000 B.C., 141. New York: Routledge & Kegan Paul Inc., 1987.
4. Janet Bord and Colin Bord. A Guide to Ancient Sites in Britain. New York: Granada Publishing Limited, 1979.
5. Dawn Marie Clare. Journey Into the Past: A Scotland Tale. Tularosa, New Mexico: Dawn Clare, 2004.
6. For example, see David Cowan and Chris Arnold, Ley Lines and Earth Energies (Kempton, Illinois: Adventures Unlimited Press, 2003), Paul Devereux, Places of Power: Secret Energies at Ancient Sites (London: Blandford, 1990), and Tom Graves, Needles of Stone (On-line edition: http://www.isleofavalon.co.uk/GlastonburyArchive/ndlstone/, 1998).
7. The Dragon Project, founded in 1977, has been investigating energies at sacred sites using a wide range of techniques and instruments (Paul Devereux, Places of Power). Acoustical research at sacred sites by the International Consciousness Research Laboratories (Paul Devereux. Stone Age Soundtracks: The Acoustic Archaeology of Ancient Sites, 75-89. [London:Vega, 2001]), which began in 1994, have made remarkable headway, as have others, including John Reid, “Appendix 6: Egyptian Sonics.” In In the Name of the Gods: The Mystery of Resonance and the Prehistoric Messiah, by David Elkington and Paul Howard Ellson, 416-427. (Dorset, England: Green Man Press, 2001), and Aaron Watson and David Keating, “Architecture and Sound: An Acoustic Analysis of Megalithic Monuments in Prehistoric Britain” (Antiquity 73, no. 260 (1999): 325-336.
8. Charles T. Tart. “Parapsychology and Transpersonal Psychology,” In Testbook of Transpersonal Psychiatry and Psychology, edited by Bruce W. Scotton, Allan B. Chinen, and John R. Battista, pp 186-194. New York:BasicBooks, 1996.
9. Rupert Sheldrake. “Extended Mind Research”, 14. Light of Consciousness, Spring/Summer, 2005, 10-15.
10. Ibid.,11″The Energetic Heart: Bioelectromagnetic Communication Within and Between People,” In Clinical Applications of Bioelectromagnetic Medicine, edited by P.J. Rosch and M.S. Markov, 541-562. New York: Marcel Dekker, 2004.
12. John D. Barrow and John K. Webb, “Inconstant Constants: Do the Inner Workings of Nature Change with Time?” (Scientific American, June, 2005, 56-63); and Rick Groleau, “Imagining Other Dimensions” and “Resonance In Strings.” (Elegant Universe web site, http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/elegant/. Accessed April 25, 2005).
13. Jonathan Goldman, Healing Sounds: The Power of Harmonics. Boston: Element Books Limited, 1992.
Copyright 2005 by Dawn Marie Clare
About the author:
Dawn Clare, M.A., C.H., is a professional archaeologist, as well as a sound healer and hypnotherapist. In addition to her full-time occupation and 26-year career as a professional archaeologist, she works with groups and individual clients to promote global and personal healing, which she describes as “archaeology of the soul,” and leads sacred site, archaeological and historical tours to Britain and the Southwest U.S. She is also the author of Journey Into the Past: A Scotland Tale. Dawn resides in New Mexico and can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit her web site at http://www.dawnclare.com.