Ancient hearts

PS: I’m home at last and happily tired!!  I checked posts sporadically while gone but will try to catch up with all wordpress friends over the next couple of days!!

The Land of the Standing Stones by Paul Anderson ( thank you Vicki)

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The Stones of Machrie Moor

In the heart of the beautiful island of Arran,  with purple heather blooming on the hillside and sheep grazing by an abandoned cottage, there is a moor where a collection of neolithic stone circles lie- five in all, including one at the entrance poetically named Fingal’s Cauldron. The only way to get to them is to walk through the fields which can take about 40 minutes or so.

stones of machrie moor
one of the smaller stone circles

Scotland is full of these standing stones and circles which predate the pyramids of Egypt. Their meaning and origin are surrounded in mystery along with their builders who are lost in time. I visited the ones on the Orkneys last year and could not help but be drawn into their powerful energy.

Machrie farmhouse

The late, brilliant science fiction writer, Arthur C. Clarke, wrote a novel,  “Rendezvous with Rama” about scientific explorers who discover an ancient unmanned space ship sailing  past our solar system to an unknown destination. Inside they find a living biosphere in strange triple patterns.  The vanished alien builders, along with their purpose and quest remain a mystery and as the craft heads out into deep space the scientists must abandon their investigation. Clarke ended the story with the main character back on earth and waking up in the night, forever wondering why the Ramans did everything in threes.

Machrie Moor
Machrie Moor

These stones give you the same sense of mystery, awe and wonder. What is the significance of five circles? Of course, the main theory concerning the placements of the circles is that it is related to the solstices and seasons which would have been spiritually significant to the early farmers of that era.

on Machrie

Please note the little bird on the right hand stone in the first photo. He is also on the stone in the last photo. Before my sore footed and complaining partner arrived he and I had the moor to ourselves alone and he flew from stone to stone as I paid my respects to the old, silent ones. Here is my poor bit of poetic meandering.

an ancient guardian reborn

Priest and bard

he flies from stone to stone in reverent song 

and remembers.

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Birnam Oak Grove, 

Dunkeld, Scotland

The oldest trees in Scotland date back possibly 800 years and to MacBeth!  (Infrared)

birnam oak

Rendezvous with Rama can be found on Amazon and Goodreads for all you science fiction/fantasy buffs and is a worthy read.

51 Comments Add yours

  1. Beautiful atmospheric shots. I honestly envy anyone who lives within reasonable driving distance of these stone circles. I’d love to just lie down in the middle of one of them and just soak up the ambience. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I agree!! thanks so much for your comment!!

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  2. Stunning photography, Cybele!

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    1. thank you so much Naomi!!!

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  3. Peter Nena says:

    Those ancient stone structures are a perpetual intrigue. The ones in Great Zimbabwe are a wonder, especially if viewed mathematically. So precise. And I read that the Eastern Island statues actually have bodies buried in the earth. Some archeologists have been digging them up.

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    1. I would love to see the ones in Zimbabwe!! and that is fascinating about Easter Island- more places for the bucket list!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Aquileana says:

    Hi dear Cybele. Wonderful spotlight here.. I love the photos and song you have added. I truly enjoyed learning about those scottish stones and their meaning, related to the five circles, the solstices and seasons.
    Thanks a lot for sharing your magic. Best wishes, Aquileana 😀

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  5. What amazing images you present here (and great story about the bird in two of them too!)

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  6. Ann says:

    Rendevous with Rama is one of my favorite of Clarke’s stories. He manages to tell a story with a satisfying ending, yet he leaves so much of the mystery unresolved – as it should be!

    Your photos are gorgeous! There is something about old trees… I always feel a kind of amazement or wonder when I look at them. They have survived so much of history and “seen” so much come and go… Your photo of the Birnam Oak captures that.

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    1. thank you Ann. I am definitely a tree hugger- if not a “knower of trees.” :)- (a quote).

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  7. Bastet says:

    Ah .. the wanderlust took to to a land of spirits and fairies. What a lovely post and your photos … especially the little bird on the rock and the light through the bough of the old oak are fantastic … quite inspirational in fact. Glad to see your back.

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    1. thank you Bastet for your well wishes and for stopping by!!

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      1. Bastet says:

        🙂 very welcome!

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  8. Wonderful images. The last one with the bird and rays of light is my favorite. Rendezvous with Rama was one of the first sci-fi novels I read as a teenager. I read the sequel too. I still have them. I should re-read them it’s been eons since I have.
    Welcome home!

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    1. Glad to hear someone else read A.C.Clarke!! Thanks so much!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Inspiring, Cybele! Welcome back.

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  10. I adore that Arthur C. Clarke novel. I’ve read every single one of his works, but that is my absolute favourite. You are so making me want to go to Scotland, Cybele.

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    1. it’s on of my all time favourite books too! You must go, Scotland is magical!!

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  11. ‘The Land of the Standing Stones’ is just beautiful and go well with your wonderful images too.

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  12. lauramacky says:

    You are channeling your magic again. Beautiful!

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    1. What a compliment Laura- yes magic processing so much fun!! But the subject must first inspire!!

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  13. Welcome home, dear friend! Your photos are, as always, breathtaking. I think it’s amazing and wonderful for you that you were able to visit that place and not have loads of people around. And that little bird just made my heart flutter. So beautiful. I love the music, too (both songs!). 😀 ❤

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    1. thank you so much Linda!! It was amazing that I had the place to myself but it is a bit off the beaten track- which is a good thing!! 🙂 The little bird was a messenger I’m sure!! The music is a beautiful haunting piece as much of celtic music can be.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Beautiful, just beautiful. Good thing you are home and not transported to the past or some other time line. Your post esepcially resonated with me, I was watching a new TW show Otherland. Scotland – stones – highlanders…you were probably thisclose to some crazy adventure without even realizing it. 😀

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    1. oh Snow, thank you!! – and you should know by now that I love being transported to the past!! lol. However, modern plumbing and technology have their advantages! The most important aspect for me though is always the mystery!!
      As for crazy adventures, traveling with my friend and Gonzo partner Nick always turns out crazy!! – yes I’m home recovering!! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Hope you had a wonderful trip – seems like ages, but I know you are happy to be home.

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    1. thanks Robert and I took some infrared photos there too.

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      1. They even have sunlight in the UK!?!! 🙂

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      2. every second year I believe! 😀

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      3. Good timing then for your trip.

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  16. Suzanne says:

    Great images capturing something of the spirit of place – I love the one of the little bird on the standing stone.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you Suzanne!! The bird was amazing!

      Liked by 1 person

  17. suej says:

    Great images, Cybele!

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  18. Amy says:

    I love these beautiful photos and how you process them. Glad you are home! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thank you so much Amy!! I’m glad you like them!

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  19. Wonderful Cybele. That last photo is amazing – I just love that bird and the fact that he followed you around the circle.

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    1. thank you Andrea!! And what else was special was that I was alone on the moor!

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  20. Beautiful, ambient scenes and what looks like a warbler or chiff chaff posing for you 🙂 Did you get a song in the stones?

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      1. Oh, that really is beautiful! I can just hear how beautifully a sweet birdsong would accompany that melodic viola 🙂

        Like

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