(I wrote this article for AXIS MUNDI, Vol 3 Issue 1 – Autumn, March 2010)
I felt the cool air on my skin as a white, swirling mist completely surrounded my body. I was then guided to imagine the powers of the underworld being available to me, deep beneath the surface of the earth, for spiritual taproots to drink up as they undulate across the earth to seep through my feet. The energy spiraled up through my body like a calming, healing and gentle wave of water from the earth’s sacred wells and rivers, holding the potential for rejuvenation and transformation.
I lifted up my hands, fingers outstretched, to the sky – the upper world – where I could feel the heat of the sun and the stars shooting through my body in a second wave of energy. I felt the connection with both worlds and now stood with one foot in each.
A vision of a stone column started to take shape in front of me. The column was upside down, which was at first quite puzzling until I realised that I was looking at its reflection in the water which had now also appeared in front of me and had begun to ripple and transform from a small pond into a great ocean. The vision grew to reveal the column looking very much like an ancient Greek or maybe Roman column. The main body of the column was plain rather than fluted and the cap looked like a cross between the Greek “Ionic” and “Corinthian” styles. The way the cap flared out from the top of the column reminded me of the letter “V”. A crescent moon appeared under the cap, also reflected in the water below. The column had no visible base as the top image blended with its watery reflection at a horizon, over which there was an image of the full moon.
I felt that this symbolism represented the upper and lower worlds with the moon in the middle world – a part of both worlds, yet separate, as it had no reflection. The two crescent moons were shown either side of the full moon, in the orientation seen in the southern hemisphere for the maiden, mother and crone and I believe the column represented the masculine aspect of deity.
Vesta and Vulcan appeared and I sought their guidance on some personal issues. Vulcan gave me a sword with a highly polished golden blade and a silver hilt. The guard was engraved but I was unable to read it, the hand grip was tightly wound with fine silver wire, and the pommel was a circle of silver enclosing a smaller, circular gold centre piece. There were no jewels on this sword, only silver and gold. These two metals could be symbolic of the sun and the moon, day and night, masculine and feminine, perhaps even the upper and lower worlds and the blending or overlap of the two. I graciously and thankfully accepted Vulcan’s gift.
Vesta’s gift to me was the eternal flame to spark the inspiration in my life. She slowly walked towards me, holding out the flame in her hands. As she approached I could see that the flame was contained in an open-topped, clear glass bowl, but as she grew closer and placed the flame inside my heart the glass bowl dissolved, leaving the flame held only by her hands. I watched, quizzically as her hands disappeared inside my chest for an instant then were withdrawn empty. The flame in my heart felt warm and comforting and I was very reluctant to leave the meditation once we were called back to the reality of our mundane surroundings.