THE TOMB of the EAGLES, ORKNEY ISLANDS

An Experience in Intuitive Archaeology

This was first published in Mindscape Magazine, Vol.4….

Terror…longing…despair…the emotions ran amok through my confused body– what the hell was happening to me? My companions seemed delighted, even jubilant, as the ferry glided over unusually calm seas toward St. Margaret’s Hope – our landing point on the Orkney Islands. As Catherine, Judith and I stood braced to the wind on the deck, I tried to make sense of the turbulence that held me captive, rendering me unable to speak, numbed on the surface, weeping unexpectedly and uncontrollably. There came images of a cliff-side and sensations of unthinkable danger. What were we sailing into…?

The easy passage and tranquil port did nothing to assuage my agitated state. Catherine, familiar with the islands and guided by her inner Knowing, directed us southward over treeless fields of stone and grass, across the Churchill Barriers[i] to the Tomb of the Eagles. I began to feel like a caged animal, barely able to contain myself from bolting….

When we arrived at the Interpretive Centre to pay our admission fee and receive the obligatory orientation to the site, the woman with bright blue eyes at the counter took one look at the three of us and declared, “Oooo! Here’s a group of spiritual ladies coming to see us now!” I was unable to focus on the various and excellent reconstructions and other best-guess historical data presented, but at one point in the explanation we were allowed to hold some of the artifacts that farmer Ronnie Simison had unearthed as he explored and uncovered the tomb: arrowheads, a perfectly-formed button and a smooth black stone, shaped perfectly to mold into and between one’s hands. The blue-eyed woman – her badge identified her as Marion Sinclair – looked straight at me as I was handed the last exhibit; as soon as my hands locked into place around it, I could feel myself beginning to leave my body. “Maybe one of these ladies would care to tell us what they feel from this stone…?” I shook my head, not interested in exposing my thoughts to the dozen-or-so others in the orientation group – this was a traveling stone! I passed it to Judith, whose eyebrows arched as soon as she touched it as well….

The orientation over, Marion took us aside to say she felt it was no accident we had arrived on this day – the eve of the first of very few days of the year when the rising sun aligns with the Tomb’s passageway and lights up its back wall[ii]; she took us to Kathleen Simison, one of the daughters of Ronnie, to get permission to be on the site at sunrise the next day. All the people who care for this place seemed very aware that there is Something Else Going On and are open to the odd (!) visitors who have something to say about it…. I felt nonetheless that we were carefully sized up before being graciously received and given permission to arrive early the next morning for a sunrise ceremony.

We decided to visit the Tomb to get a feel for what was there for us to do. Skirting the cliffs – torte-like layers of rock that jutted out at strange angles and dropped abruptly to the sea – we came to an indentation where I became faint. I had felt a numbness install itself – as if a protective door had closed on something awful. Now, I felt myself slip into an other-dimensional state…

When we arrived at the Tomb of the Eagles, I made offerings and announced myself and my intentions to the Spirits of the place, asking to be allowed access to whatever information and energies would be for the highest good of All. Passing through the gate to the tomb, one finds two stones buried flat in the earth on each side of it: one pulled me through time and the other through space. I collapsed with vertigo. Catherine was by now sounding her gold-coated crystal bowl that resonates with what she calls the Higher Heart energies of Humanity and the Earth – an F# tone that sounds like gold and clears the space for the highest energies to be active in all present. Judith began channeling.…

The voice that came from her spoke of being priestess of a people who had lived there 7000 years ago – peaceful folk, existing harmoniously with the natural world and adept in what we would call magic… This place was a portal through which, once every “cycle”, the Sun Eagle would appear and take away a woman who had been selected and prepared for this all her life. She would return pregnant and become wife of the chief, who would adopt the baby into his family. The priestess explained that she had been the last woman to be selected before they learned that invaders she called “Man-eaters” were coming their way. The people were sent quickly away in boats, her child with them, leaving her and two others to close the portal, to protect this holy place with their magic as best they could, and to gain time for those who were escaping. Her guardians were killed by the interlopers and she was ritually sacrificed, thrown over the cliffs into the sea.

As the voice said “I have returned to open the portal once more”, Judith opened her eyes and stared at me. “It’s you, Dawn…You know this, don’t you?”  I nodded.

One great thing about working with Judith is that as she channels energies and describes their perceptions of a situation, I often go to the same place and see it through my own eyes. What I had experienced when the voice was describing the Sun Eagle’s arrival was a brilliant light and a whirring sound that my modern ears defined as mechanical. An imposing figure was silhouetted, arms outstretched and beckoning. My vision cut out at that point… I was trembling, but felt the relief of greater clarity. At the same time, my mind balked at the implication of what we had just seen – that off-planet genetic material had been seeded into humanity was an idea that I had been exposed to but had not yet been able to embrace wholly. I felt I was being given another piece to fit into a puzzle.

In the car-park as we left, we crossed paths with John, a fellow who had been introduced to us at the Interpretive Centre as the author of The Book about the site. When he asked what we had experienced, we didn’t say much, but I mentioned the stone that we had felt was used for aiding inter-dimensional travel and remarked that in the Parsifal legend, the Grail is described as a black stone. Surprised, he added that according to some, Queen Guinevere’s father was from the Orkney Islands….Dear me – two steps into any discussion of the British Isles, you find either King Arthur or a Sinclair!

The rest of the day we wound our way upward from one sacred site to the next, arriving near nightfall at Via House, from which Lynn and John run Island Peat Fire Tales in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney. I was reminded of the museum in Florence that contains Michelangelo’s unfinished works – tombs and standing circles were everywhere, reaching out of the earth, reclaimed by human endeavour the way the artist had unveiled the treasures hidden within blocks of Carrara marble…

Lynn joined us as we set out in the early morning darkness to return to the Tomb of the Eagles before sunrise. To our surprise, we were met in the car-park by both Kathleen and Freda Simison, as well as Paul, a Pipe-Carrier[iii] who was called to this place years ago and has done ceremony, holding and activating the energy there, ever since. Judith had brought her pipe as well – we all felt even more deeply that something important was happening.

Our group now seven in number, we made our way to the Tomb, entering the dark passage and offering ceremony according to sacred traditions. Catherine’s golden bowl captured the light of the rising sun as it pierced the passageway and illuminated the chamber, bathing us all in sparkling sun and sound. Bowl, drum and prayers opened the ancient passageway for this new time, when humans hold the quickening potential to awaken and unite heaven and earth in our own lives and bodies. Judith and Paul did a two-pipe ceremony, binding the male and female pipes in Oneness. We connected not only Above and Below through the portal and our bodies, and masculine and feminine principles through the male and female pipes – it was such a strange joy to hear familiar prayers sung in the tongues of the first nations of Turtle Island[iv], here in this First People’s ceremonial grounds on the other side of the ocean. The magic of the work escapes description.

Many hours later, when we finished and crawled out of the womb/tomb passage back into the world, we had remembered ourselves and all of Humanity as vessels of Light….

Catherine Gaze and Judith Moore are dear sisters of mine, who had their own personal and individual living of this experience that I have not taken the liberty of attempting to recount on their behalf….

I have been told that Paul has passed the spiritual guardianship of the Tomb of the Eagles to Kathleen Simison….


[i] Four causeways ordered built by Winston Churchill in the 1940’s to protect the Scapa Flow harbour against further German attack, they now connect the southernmost Orkney Islands to the Mainland.

[ii] For a brief description of this sunrise phenomenon, in the guise of a book review: http://www.orcadian.co.uk/books/reviews/sunset.htm

[iii] Pipe-Carriers are people who have been given the honour of  “carrying” an indigenous American ceremonial pipe – ie, of doing sacred pipe ceremonies.

[iv] North America

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