Earlier this summer I sat with my father looking at the map of Scotland, as I explained to him our travel plans, and suddenly he started going over each area naming it, as if it was a map of Russia, specifically Siberia. He gets it, ‘I thought’, and it meant so much to me. Some deep felt understanding between us, even when often unspoken, always produces a connection, which holds answers and links to what we are together, separate and where we come from. He knows what I mean when I talk about the land. He knows the feeling I speak so much of as if he feels it too and, I think, he does, in his own way, as we both had separated from our land a long time ago yet the yearning had never gone away. Does it ever leave you? Not if it is part of your soul’s tapestry.
Only this morning looking at pictures of Siberian nature it really landed for me that Scotland is as close to my ‘home land’ as I am ever going to get. I feel so at ease and comfortable there. I have called it home on many occasions and there are things that just make sense to me when I am there. Love makes sense, intense grief makes sense and tears of sorrow and joy that come every time I arrive and leave make sense. Within me there had always been a sense of separation from home, although well-hidden, which when young had not been processed and felt and this is what I have been feeling for the last few years. It is not simply a case of loving visiting a place, it is a case of ‘this is where I want to live and die’. There is nowhere else for me. It feels like an obligation to my soul and I now get what many immigrants had felt before me and many still do. I get what I have been doing the last few years in awakening my connection to a home once lost and never to be regained. My deep love for Scotland is my love for home.
Here are some pictures of Siberian nature. Perhaps, you can see what I see. It has always been about lakes and pine forests for me, deer, mountains and rivers, small villages and community living. As I write this, my heart aches. Ever since I came back to my house in the South, I have been in physical and emotional turmoil. It hurts being here and the feeling is so real like a culture shock and a need to acclimatise and fit back into the order of things that is here and not where I belong. I am left once again bereft, confused and heartbroken that gets harder to bare each year.
Eagerly anticipated trip to the Isle of Mull, Scotland, where spaciousness and quiet are of the sacred quality. You notice the space through the senses of transpersonal as if your heart expands to beyond possible. It is very quiet there. Each sound is sharp and defined, momentary and fleeting and then silence clear and pure. Each movement of the wind is felt on the skin like it’s meant to be there, like your body knows it, recognises it. A sense of merging with the land takes your breath away and for a moment you can’t imagine ever living apart from it. Intoxicating, yes, incredibly natural, yes like the flow of water whether it’s the sea, a loch or a small brook amidst trees belongs to your blood. It is as one with everything you are and the world beyond its shores seems non-existent. You are unreachable, a place to be wild and raw just like the land. It is free and itself at all times. The land makes one feel like otherworldly thoughts are as part of you as your soul’s calling. It knows you and you know it intimately. The place felt incredibly safe to me from the first sight as the ferry approached its shores and as I stepped on the island again I felt like I arrived. I really arrived and slotted into a comfortable, supportive vessel that I knew would gently lull me into falling in love with it all over again. It is more than love though, trust and faith are possible here, effortless even. Listening and being still is natural here. It is innate.
Scotland is a very spiritual place and in different ways depending on where one goes there. Each area visited brings its own joy, transformations and experiences. The land allows you to explore the whole you by talking the language my soul understands. The land is alive and one can’t help but be touched by it. It is overwhelming and all-consuming, raw and unspoilt that makes you feel like you are born again or rather having lived a life in glory that is achieved through merging with the land. Divinity within is reflected by the divine beauty of the place and how can it be otherwise as in the moment of merging all is revealed and all is possible and the land and I are one entity seeking ecstasy of being. Leaving the land is heartbreaking, truly… every time…
Anger, physicality, sensate expression of instincts, body merging with the earth in its full expression – that’s what June is all about as we are building up to Litha. Swimming, walking barefoot, lying on mountain tops, communing with wildlife, beasts, bugs and plants alike are all the activities that feed the body and awake the soul.
There’s danger, however, when summer is fully alive in its wilderness. Night and day both carry life within and it can feel unsafe. This resonate with my overwhelm of the forest and feeling apprehensive about venturing out during the explosion of life in the land during summer. I tend to withdraw, hence I like the quietness and sleepiness of winter. It is safer. However, by withdrawing a part of me remains enclosed, hidden and that’s what needs to change this year.
Wild-self calls and roars pushing boundaries of a self-created seclusion. It needs expressing and breathing with the rhythms of the season.
A safe place for wild spirit for me is the Highlands of Scotland. There my wild-self is contented, it is allowed to be in its full majesty. It scares me always yet I thirst for it at the same time. There my whole aligns with the wild nature around me. I eagerly drink it into my cells, I merge with it like it is home and my spirit sours into endless skies daily and consumes my whole being with a sense of raw, complete, real and natural. It often manifests with anger, emotional cries and outward expression of raw things. It is unable to hide and sit still. It needs to run, fly, crawl and swim all at the same time. It can feel and look scary and crazy uncontainable and vicious, but it all makes sense and, perhaps, in embracing and allowing that for myself a bit more will also relax others in joining me and not being afraid of a strong bite and a loud screech that it often comes with.
Summer is truly a time for letting go and letting be. It is a time to fly higher and swimming further. Last summer I remember wanting to go on the water in a kayak and the fear that gripped me was so irrational yet it immobilized me. Someone said to me ‘go for it, we only live once, might as well’ and so I did. The freedom of releasing the urge to glide through vast waters released the excitement I had ever felt before. With each push across the lake I went further and further and with each minute I wanted to do more and more.
When I am faced with the mountains of the Highlands I can hear the scream within me telling me to run, scream, be in its fullest. The impulse in me to merge with the land is so strong that I know if I don’t I could easily just stagnate and die through my own fear and a loss of the potentially ecstatic experience. It is like choosing to drink poison and staying in a position of never knowing what it’s like to live fully. When I step on that mountain trail my heart and spirit sour, I want to run and cry and scream, the feeling I have of being as one with the land, a place I never want to leave for as long as I live.
I break my heart every time I have to leave the wilderness behind, because it means my wild-self has to go back into a safe enclosure of my other life, which is managed, contained and often unexciting.
I heard the call back in 2013 when stepping upon the earth of the soul land my heart exploded. I was tossed and turned inside out with internal screaming bursting into tears of joy and confusion. I was stuck by sheer magic and meaning of what it was like to belong to a place I never knew existed.
It took me a few years to work out what happened back then when I first visited Scotland and every year since then I couldn’t bare be parted from it. It hasn’t been easy going back and stepping into the land that knew my soul so well again and again and having to leave it behind every time with a feeling of deep grief within.
I am still in that place of neither here nor there, desperately wanting to go and needing to stay, having to live the life I have here, which is glorious in many ways. I am content yet yearning never leaves me for the place that stole my utter being and grabbed hold of me so tightly.
With each passing year the pull of the land hasn’t stopped, in fact, it has intensified with each summer when I would make the same journey and every winter when my heart would pine for it. I fought against it and even tried to convince myself it wasn’t real or happening just to test yet the answer was always the same. It is in my bones so deep I can’t be separated from it physically or spiritually.
I lived there before a long time ago and died a gruesome death with my blood spilling directly on the earth and penetrating its cells. I was of the land like a native animal that recognised smells, sounds and colours of every season the land had dressed itself in. I am still of that land, I am still that animal. I can taste it and its distinctive smell never leaves my senses. It is a particular sensation instantly recognisable by me. I can reach it at any moment yet physical separation remains too much to bear.
I live with my heart open and always listen carefully and intentionally to what the next step might be…
The mystery of my emotions holds me tight in its grip. It feels like it will drown and overpower me any minute I will run out of air. I am walking on the edge of an experience bigger than myself. It is present in my lungs and chest in particular and tears break out of me in uncontrollable sobs. It is grief. After years of wondering I am in great need to seek answers to my experience of the land I call spiritual home. So far no explanation offer itself to me and I continue to be tormented by some energy I can’t contain without losing myself.
Past lives is an idea that had been coming into my reality again and again yet I have always dismissed it. I do seem to understand the idea behind it yet I would say I haven’t experienced it, but how would one know, I wonder… Answers are not easily in front of us when we need them and with this, in particular, things that happen to us in our present are hard to explain. Are some of the things that we feel and experience now connected to lives we had lived before? This time I allowed a possibility of it strongly being an experience from my past life or several of them.
I reached out to my trusted Highland Witch I go to at least once a year seeking answers. What she came back with not only touched me deeply, but like nothing else ever did before provided a big relief and a welcome release. As I was reading my story from the past I was thrown into a life of hardship, love, loss, grief and violence. It was dark and felt very real. I could see that young woman with a child unborn inside of her, who had to endure immeasurable pain losing her young husband and being killed herself with the child inside of her. Her blood was spilt on the land itself and never in my spiritual experience had I felt something so strongly. I could smell the air on that murky damp day in the Highlands of Scotland and saw the blood running onto the soft moss and rock beneath my feet. It explains not only the feelings I have been experiencing for years while on the land, but also my responses to trauma and most of all my character. This reading I must say enriched my life and reaffirmed things I have struggled to place into context.
I am to take a specially designed ritual to the land of my sorrow to release the grip of my past and cleanse my soul in order to merge with the land in joy. Everything is finally clear and calm within me just like death was to that young woman. I feel peaceful for the first time in years and getting ready to take that emotional pilgrimage to the place of my calling.
Past lives readings and guidance, or regression, can provide many answers. I see it as one way to access material that needs healing and processing just like many other psycho-spiritual therapeutic techniques. land