Lughnassadh celebration in one of our Peak District Temples

October 22, 2013

nicola We had been guided to spend this festival at Robin Hoods Stride, an ancient sacred site deep within the Peak District National Park. It is believed by some that the story of Robin Hood was created to enable the Green Man to survive the spread of Christianity.

Certainly we sensed the presence of the Green Man at this beautiful place on this day. We were running a workshop, helping others use shamanic techniques to connect in with the Spirit of the Place and receive wisdom and guidance – something our ancestors would have done.

strydeAt sacred sites such as these, it’s easier to connect with the other realms, as the concentration of energy is greater.¬†Underground water and the energy lines merge at these points and the radiation alters our brainwaves.

This heightened energy provides a doorway or conduit between the material world and other realities, enabling us to have deeper shamanic experiences.

Guided by a previous journey, we created a beautiful circle using paper windmills, and placed lilies in the center along with the four-quarter representations. It was one of those perfect summer days, with unbroken sunshine rays softly kissing our bare skin.

Tourists walked around the rocks, wandering and staring, much like the tourists visiting St Paul’s Cathedral or the Taj Mahal. But we were in a very different space, observing this hallowed land, a sacred space.

greenmanWe journeyed to the guardian of Robin Hood’s Stride, before reflecting on the messages in quiet time out in nature. A visit to Hermit’s Cave, a shrine to Cernunnos, gave us a further connection and insights before moving on to our final place of the day, Nine Stones Close Circle. It was here that we celebrated Lughnassadh, when our ancestors would break the loaf baked from the first harvest.

We shared a local delicacy, Bakewell Pudding, giving some back to the land along with a slug of Hobgoblin beer, another favourite of ours. We energetically rebuilt the circle for the Spirit of the Place, a rather disgruntled Shrek look-a-like, and danced hand on hand along with him, before closing the quarters and heading back to the real world.

Or, is it the real world. I wonder often, as the madness of our modern society crumbles around us, which world is more real.yew

About the Author


Nicola Smalley is an edge-dweller, shamanic practitioner and writer living in Anglezarke on the edge of the West Pennine Moors in Lancashire, England.
Following a career in corporate sustainability, she now runs The Way of the Buzzard with her husband Jason. Her passion is anything connected to nature and the mysteries of the Earth.

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