The Mirror Pool
The Mirror Pool
“ I the moon shining on dark water.
I am the reflection in a lightless room.
I am that which lies inside
And can only be seen from without
And I am that which is all around
And can only be known from within”
Charge of the crone goddess by Kate West.
We have just passed Beltane and are fast approaching the Summer solstice.The energy is rising, nature is burgeoning and we feel an intense longing, a yearning for connection – to reach out to the Beloved in Her myriad of manifestations.
This year, as I reach out to the Beloved, I am journeying with the Goddess as Crone, Lady of the Otherworld. Heart open, arms wide, I stand at the Holy door of the Mirror Pool – where the magical alchemy of water and light meet in sacred union. Here in the Northern Hemisphere the days are lengthening and the light of the sun intensifying – the light of sun and moon and stars on still water – reflections, refractions, diffusions, illusions, the breathtaking beauty of heaven brought down to earth – the portal of the mirror pool is at its most potent at this time of the year. It enchants us, it beckons to us to stop, to slow down, to breathe, to soften our focus, to settle and to ground, to reach out and to gaze, on to, into, beneath its watery surface.
Since the beginning of time – of human time – Water has been connected with divinity -every pool, well, lake, waterfall, river and stream has its Goddess or guardian. In our Celtic mythology, the lady of the lake and the salmon of wisdom are maybe two of the most familiar. Such was and still is the power of water that in 950 ad the English King Eadred brought into law a proclamation that declared that “No well or body of water could be offered devotion or worshipped without the consent of the Bishop”.
Despite our present day disconnect with spirit and the natural world, we still as a culture drop coins into wishing wells and continue the devotional tradition of well dressing. Our human bodies are 60 % water – we are all born from and return to the great amniotic fluids of the Great Mother. Our connection to water is visceral. Add to this the dance of light on a pool of still water, and the beauty and enchantment of the mirror pool pulls at our very core. Just like the oceans, our bodies respond to the same pull of the moon, intensity of the sun and the turning of the stars. In the mirror pool, heaven is brought down to earth, all of our senses and perceptions are called in to question as we ponder and muse on the nature of what truly is.
The portal of the mirror pool is a trixie place. It is a place of illusion and deception- a place of challenge and initiation. It has the power to heal and the power to drown. It is an imaginal place where courage and trust are called for. Your intention, your relationship to the sacred, and your willingness to let the light into those dark and murky internal places all impact on your experience. Stay focused on the surface, on the superficial and you may remain trapped in the seductive reflections of this portal, like Narcicuss, besotted with his own reflection, or you may self annihilate as you listen to those self destructive voices that judge, compare and separate.
“Mirror, mirror on the wall.
Who is the fairest of them all .”
(The Queen in Snow White)
Dive deep into these waters and the outcome is again uncertain. We May emerge showered in gold or covered in boiling pitch.
(christianised Frau Holle myth)
My head hurts as I write these words and try and find a way out of these illusions, past these perceptions of good or bad, narcicissitic or self loathing that are reflected back to me in these tales, and I remember a Taoist proverb
”It is only in still waters that we can see clearly,
Calm your mind,
The answers are within the peace of silence”
I calm my mind and go within – beneath the solidity of skin and bone, muscle and tendon, to the fluid place where all is one, where there is no separation, a place from which I can choose to consciously engage with the guardian of the mirror pool as she emerges to meet me in the mirror of my own soul self. Here, the crone of the otherworld holds high the sword of discernment that is the key to self knowledge. She asks us to self reflect and to connect to the deep insight of our own inner dreamscape – the intuition of our own inner mirror pool that moves to the tides of sun and moon and stars.
Water holds memories,
our earliest memories
it is connected to our deepest emotions,
and it has the power to both drown and to heal .
Here at this holy portal, the guardian of the mirror pool invites you to take time to reflect, to ponder, to be in awe. She invites you to bring to her your fragmented, distorted self, to strip yourself naked that you may bathe in the healing waters of the self compassion of the otherworld, safe in the arms of your own crone self.
“For in my life there is death.
And in my love there is knowledge
Know that to find me you must cease looking,
And to know me, will be to find yourself.”
Glory , revel and feast in the knowing of me“
Kate West Charge of the Crone Goddess.
Ceremonial Priestess Ann Staniland