Stonehenge: The Summer Solstice 2008

For thousands of years people have gathered at Stonehenge to welcome the Sun on the Shortest and Longest days of the year. The most famous land zodiac, and a wonder of the world. A monument to our connection to the sky, and I was there! It was so great, and so powerful. I stood in the rain and cold UK night for 10 hours, and I wouldn’t trade this experience for the world- another dream come true!

I knew I had to wait until I went to Stonehenge for the summer solstice before I could write this month’s personal message. Perhaps I set up an expectation for myself, that it would be profound and moving, as I am sure it has been for many others over the thousands of years that this annual ritual has take place. It was certainly significant, but not in the ways I expected.

Before I even came to England for graduate studies, my friends in Toronto were insisting I attend this event. I knew I would. All spiritually minded people are aware of the significance of the solstice at Stonehenge. I knew before even coming here that it was something I had to do. It is the only time of the year when the stones are not behind a stiff rope, when a person can walk right up and touch the stones. It is the only time that one can go within the inner circle and feel the intersection of lay lines beneath one’s feet.

So after months of being in the UK, the time of the solstice grew near and my anticipation grew by the hour. I made the pilgrimage to the stones via public transit. 5 hours each way was part of the ritual. Meeting some truly amazing people from all over the world was another rite of passage that went successfully well. Walking 2 km to the site was also an important part of the process.

And then I got to the stones.

was there before the sun had set. I walked right up to them and into the inner circle. There were drums of all kinds playing. I closed my eyes, lost myself in their rhythm and moved. I felt my feet stamp and the lay lines in my heart, and I moved. I would open my eyes from time to time and look up at the stones and smile. It was a dream realized. Me, the stones, the night, the celebration of this monument to our connection to the cosmos.

With all the revellers and all the parties going on in different circles, I made my way around the site and found fellow celebrators to exchange the sacredness of this moment with, but I always returned to the circle and to the drums.

Just before sunrise I squeezed my way back to the centre. The Sun was behind a mask of clouds, mist, and rain, but the joy was immense. Rain or shine, the Sun is always there waiting to share its warmth and knowledge. The light within us is connected to the light that shines in the cosmos, and on this day, it got the kind of reception most fitting.

Before I left, I touched the stones one more time, thanking them for being here through all these millennia, to remind us that the world and every inhabitant is alive, breathing, beating, and wise.

Now, after a few days, I feel changed. I felt the power of the rocks. I felt the energy of the earth beneath my feet. I felt the joy of remembering that we are all intimately connected to our larger world. What is in me is the same stuff that the Universe, with all its love, purpose, and wisdom, is made of too.

I understand why I have always been an astrologer.

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