‘A possible reason for the magnetism of this location is that a nearby spring has the “magical” effect of turning some types of flint to a bright pink or fuchsia color. This is caused by certain algae but it must have appeared miraculous to ancient peoples.’
Over the last few years I’ve been increasingly using Flint for a variety of purposes. As a portal stone for journeying, as a ‘scraper’ to cleanse the aura, and as a grounding stone. I’d become aware of its magical possibilities when visiting my local farmer and amateur archaeologist Martin Green’s museum. Martin has the most striking banded Flint on show, recovered from excavation of a barrow. He also has literally hundreds of beautiful Flint artefacts, many of them ritual rather than practical. His farm is on the Dorset cursus, the longest and oldest ritual way in England, it predates the one at Stonehenge. I can’t help feeling there is much more to be discovered here. All the Flints I use for workshops come off the cursus. It’s just up the road so gathering them is a pleasure. But although I’ve found beautiful blue ones, so far no pink have appeared. (But watch this space.) Why am I looking for pink? Well………
It looks like a quiet backwater now, sitting beside the A303 along which traffic thunders to Stonehenge, carrying over one million visitors a year (despite the various authorities best efforts to foil access to the site!). But wooded Blick Mead may well have been sacred even before the much better known monument was built. Carbon dating shows that the settlement dates back more than 10 millennia to 8,820BC. Blick Mead, between Amesbury and Stonehenge is now officially the oldest continually inhabited site in England and has been dubbed ‘the London of the Mesolithic’. Teaming with multicultural tourists, it even had its own visitor centre. It shows that Stonehenge was part of a much wider site, with accompanying settlements rather than the lone monument archaeologists have for so long supposed. I so wish I’d known that when I was writing Crystals and Sacred Sites, which features Stonehenge and the Preseli Bluestones, but it took a lecture at Salisbury museum to open my eyes.
And then oh boy did they pop open. Day-glo pink Flints!
We’ll come back to them in a moment. Why it’s taken so long to discover this site is no mystery: huge amounts of soil from the widening of the A303 were dumped on top of the site and the local Amesbury archaeology group, who were at the time the only people excavating, were seriously lacking in funds. They could only uncover a tiny portion of the site each year – until television and then the University of Buckingham got involved.
I remember the frisson of excitement that went through the Museum’s lecture hall when atmospheric pictures were shown of the seven sacred springs and the surrounding settlement area – and the archaeologist in charge of local excavation efforts put out a plea for help. They were, at the time, so strapped for cash that they couldn’t even afford £250 for carbon dating a bone. But that soon changed as other archaeologists began to realise the significance of the find.
A dig, funded by the University of Buckingham, has since unearthed ‘the largest haul of Mesolithic worked flints ever found. In 40-odd days a staggering 31,000 were discovered in a 16 metre square area and more than 2,000 were found in a square metre – the largest concentration of such finds in Europe.’ (16 m.sq. is the equivalent of the goal post area on a football pitch.)One of the excavators said: ‘The River Avon would have been the “A” Road – people would have come down on their log boats. They would have had the equivalent of tour guides and there would have been feasting. We have found remains of big game animals, such as aurochs and red deer, and an enormous amount of burnt flint from their feasting fires. There’s also evidence for a multi-cultural population at the site. Tool types suggest people were coming to it from far to the west of Stonehenge and from the east.’ The ‘Amesbury Archer’ found nearby came from the Alps (see Crystals and Sacred Sites) a thousand or more years later. If you want the yucky details, they even ate frogs’ legs. Sounds like quite a party!
And now for the really exciting part. Day-glo pink Flints. Really! Bright fuschia pink. Quite extraordinary. Oh boy did I quiver when I saw these. I so want to get my hands on one but it’s private land and so far I haven’t managed it. But I will! I saw one on Etsy today, beautiful jewellery but the price means it will have to wait until I can find my own and ask Jeni to wire wrap it.
‘One could easily suggest that possession of a vivid pink coloured flint source could be of considerable prestige and even mystique. Superb for making items that transcended the merely practical?’
These striking bright pink Flints aren’t found anywhere else in the country. According to Professor David John of the Natural History Museum, the colouring is caused by Hildenbrandia rivularis, an algae, and it is due to a combination of dappled light and the unusually warm spring water in the area – 10 to 15 degrees. As if by magic it transforms a normal looking flint placed in spring water into a bright pink one after the flint has been taken out of the water for about five hours. They haven’t found any ritual objects in this pink yet, but being buried underground would negate the effect so the suggestion is that the flints should be tested for the presence of the algae.
erroneously named ‘Vespasian’s camp’, which amongst other suggestions has been linked to Camelot. It’s easy to see why. It really is a magical spot.
This particular pink is exceptionally vibrant. While pink is the colour of unconditional love and harmony – and pink stones are usually gentle and kind – this particular brilliant day-glo pink really wakes you up. In my experience it’s close to the colour of the causal vortex chakra, and of the soul star chakra which is often described as magenta. I’ve written about these chakras extensively in Crystal Prescriptions volume 4. This is what one colour site tells us about magenta:
MAGENTA is bridge to Spirit, connection with Divine Love, caring in the little things, Love from above, beyond passion into compassion, abundance that is always there. Magenta connects us to what it is like to exist out of our physical bodies as pure Spirit. It is the bardo state, when we have left our physical shells and before we incarnate into a new physical lifetime. MAGENTA is that in-between place, the place beyond the veil of physical illusion. MAGENTA resonates above the Crown Chakra at the Transpersonal or Soul Star Chakra. (www.energyandvibration.com)
Sounds appropriate! The springs are an in-between place. The veil of illusion is very thin. Is the find telling us something? Something that our ancient ancestors instinctively understood? I believe so. It’s time to wake up our higher connections.
The springs at Blick Mead are liminal spaces. Spaces that bridge the worlds. Again something our shamanic ancestors understood very well. ‘Enchanted places…Do they choose their own time in which to reveal their secrets?’ (See http://www.silentearth.org/vespasians-camp-mondus-absconditus-stonehenge/ for a fascinating glimpse into the history of this extraordinary place.)
From above to below
And while we’re talking about higher connections, how about this beauty that is currently on show at Salisbury museum. It certainly stopped me in my tracks.
This is a 30,000-year-old meteorite, thought to be the largest rock ever to have landed in Britain (Credit: The Open University/PR.)
The meteorite, which weighs 90kg, fell to Earth some 30,000 years ago and is thought to have survived almost whole because it was preserved firstly in the frozen conditions of the last ice age and then in chalk after being built into a local burial mound. After being excavated from the mound above the house, in the 19th century it lay for at least 80 years on the front doorstep of Lake House near Salisbury, latterly the home of rock star Sting. Then it languished in a store room at the Natural History Museum until Professor Pillinger tracked its origins, with the help of photos in old copies of Country Life which showed it in situ at Lake House.
How about this for a doorstop? It’s colossal and takes four people to lift it. If you want to get some sense of the scale here it is with Professor Colin Pillinger who gave a fascinating lecture at the museum. He’d tracked where it had lain hidden for several thousand years in a burial mound to where it eventually rocked up – Sting eat your heart out, this monster was removed just before you bought the house!
In close up parts of it look like this:
Professor Pillinger said he had begun to explore the history of the Lake House stone while he researched another smaller meteorite that was buried at an iron age fort in Hampshire. “That’s the great thing about science,” he said. “You often start off with one thing and then end up with a different story altogether.”
As Adrian Green, director of Salisbury museum, said: ‘It’s not uncommon for exotic rocks to be built into burial mounds.’ Did our ancestors know that these magical stones came from outer space? Did they see them as some kind of visitation? Oh and did I mention that Stonehenge is just a stone’s throw away:
Meteorites were clearly regarded as sacred stones and were built into many sites around the world – see Crystals and Sacred Sites for the origins of the one at Mecca which way predates its present setting in the Kaaba. Abraham is said to have stood in it. Having peeked under the skirts of several Islamic sacred burials, I can tell you that they all had a piece of meteorite secreted in the tomb. The Prophet Mohammed’s auntie had the misfortune to fall off her donkey and break her neck in Cyprus. With serendipitious synchronicitys she is buried next to what is now an airport. With a beautiful meteorite to keep her company.
Imagine seeing something like this in the heavens. You would think the gods had come to earth. But the one at Lake House was much too old to have been seen by Bronze Age people. It would have hung around for thousands of years before someone chose it to be interred in their burial mound. Collective memory? Or was the stone itself worshipped? We’ll never know.
Due to its extra terrestrial origin, Tektite (meteorite) is believed to enhance communication with other worlds and to encourage spiritual growth through absorption and retention of higher knowledge. It forms a link between the creative energy and matter. Tektite helps to let go of undesirable experiences, remembering lessons learned, and concentrating on those things that are conducive to spiritual growth. It takes you deep into the heart of a matter, promoting insight into the true cause and necessary action.
Closeup showing numerous pits and grooves. The radial lines were formed when the tektite hit the ground upon landing. Photo: Bob King – See more at: http://astrobob.areavoices.com/2012/06/12/tektites-black-rocks-of-catastrophe/#sthash.H4ZQYu80.dpuf
Does this remind you of anything? It does me! Egyptologists have always attributed the Aten religion to the sun disk. Blinding when witnessed in the desert. Yes. But did it have the same power as a tektite burning up and hitting earth? Did Akhenaten actually witness a meteorite fall? Especially if the light fell on his third eye. That would have been enough to give him mystical visions – and start a new religion.
Akhenaten as a sphinx. Receiving the new religion?
Just a thought!
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