I start my journey to day as I usually do, seated quietly at the bottom of the stairs in the Hallway of Beginnings. The elm chair I sit upon is similar to one I have at home, one which has been sat upon by several generations of women in my family. The carved spindles and slightly uneven feet describe the work of human hands rather than the cold teeth of machines, and the soft satin lustre of the wood glows like a dim lamp in the half gloom of the early morning.
As I build the energy for the journey, I draw up light from deep beneath me, the white molten heat of the earth welling up through the tunnels and catacombs of the realms of gnomes. I am aware of its intense power, its purity and the creativity of its nature, pure earth power, the essence of the world rising up to meet me. The iridescence of The Star also comes to me, her pure silver gaze, searing through the firmament from distant galaxies. She illuminates my mind, linking with the earth power from below to create a spiral vortex of light that anchors me in time and space, whilst I become a single bead of consciousness hanging like a dewdrop on the quivering web of the universe, glistening in a galaxy of stars.
When I have summoned the light I begin my journey, walking calmly up the stairs, drifting down the landing with the weightlessness of fire, and come to rest, standing before the Thoth. With a feeling of resolution, I turn the handle, and walk through the brave orange and charcoal pennant that proclaims the Four of Disks.
I immediately come face to face with a huge granite gateway, a maw of an opening, so stupendous and stultifying in its majesty that I am too afraid to pass through. I hover, uncertain as to what to do next, for the gateway is dark and oppressive with an omnipotent kind of power, that I feel that I cannot pass through. Realizing that I need to find an answer quickly before I lose my focus, I turn to look around me, and see off into the middle distance a woman standing in a field of extremely tall ripe wheat. I make my way over to her, and as I draw nearer, I begin to see her properly and discover that she is wearing a crown upon her head, a golden crown in the shape of a castle.
I ask her what she can tell me about the fortress behind me, the one that I was unable to enter, and she looks at me with kindly eyes. She tells me that it is my mind that has created the enormity of the entrance to the fort, and that the fort is made for defensive purposes in times of trouble; it is a protective structure, and not a place of fear and holding.
I ask her if I need to make the fort smaller, and she smiles, and says patiently that no, I merely need to make myself bigger!. She then tells me that it is my castle, my home, and to shine a light onto what I have achieved. She hands me a beautiful golden disc of beaten brass, a bright and shining Sun, and I turn towards my castle, hold the sun disk aloft over my head and allow its shining rays to cascade down over me.
I stand there, in the golden wheat field enveloped in shafts of glistening sunshine, the warmth of The Sun flowing down and around my tiny figure, standing dwarfed in the field of giant wheat. As I fill with the warmth of the sun I slowly begin to grow, on and on the sun shines, and taller and taller I grow, until at last the wheat seems to be the proper height, and I am no longer overwhelmed by the size of the fortress.
I thank the lady who wears the castle crown, and walk towards the fort, which now looks very beautiful, as I have become the proper size! Tall red sandstone walls tower above me as I draw closer, but this time I am not afraid and the grey gateway is no longer terrifying, but looks strong, dependable and serene…. The gates are standing open, and although there are soldiers on duty, they do not look overtly watchful or clothed in fear, they seem secure and understanding, wise and aware. I walk through and into the huge courtyard that stands within the walls. Things are busy here, the daily actions of the castle fort continue unabated. Soldiers practice their daily routines, marching up and down in the red dust of the dry ground, and horses are being led out of the stables for their daily exercise in the lands beyond the walls. There are also civilians coming and going, traders and farmers, carrying and fetching, continuing the work that brings them often to this place. The fort offers them safety and refuge in times of trouble and also gives reward and sustenance too for the wider community that relies on its strength and wealth.
I walk into a door in the castle walls, and explore the rooms that open up to me, and there are many, too many too recount, rooms for every purpose, from the humblest larder to the most opulent state room that one could imagine.
Eventually I climb to the top of one of the corner towers, and stand upon the parapet to look out over the landscape, where I see a vast valley of great beauty, spread before my eyes… Lush and verdant, the valley supports the strength of the fortress, and yet the fortress is pivotal in its support also of the land. I see a beacon alight on one of the towers, with men tending it, there is a fountain playing on another. The third tower houses a venerable and ancient looking tree, and the one I am standing on is home to a multitude of streaming pennants fluttering in the gentle breeze.
I love this fort, it is truly beautiful….. I could live here for a thousand years or more… and maybe in some place, I already have.
Loathe to tear my eyes away from the serenity and strength of my vision, I remind myself that this place is part of me, my inner source of power.
I hear the clarion call coming for me on the breeze, and hurry down the steps, for it is time to go again. I see the portal standing in the wheat field beyond the castle walls, and make my way towards it, and the last thing I see before I pass through the orange silk, is the lady with the castle crown on her head, and she is still smiling.
The Four of Disks
Sun in Capricorn
The Lord of Earthly Power