"A cold coming we had of it,
Just the worst time of the year
For a journey, and such a long journey:
The was deep and the weather sharp,
The very dead of winter."
And the camels galled, sore-footed, refractory,
Lying down in the melting snow.
There were times we regretted
The summer palaces on slopes, the terraces,
And the silken girls bringing sherbet.
Then the camel men cursing and grumbling
And running away, and wanting their liquor and women,
And the night-fires gong out, and the lack of shelters,
And the cities hostile and the towns unfriendly
And the villages dirty, and charging high prices.:
A hard time we had of it.
At the end we preferred to travel all night,
Sleeping in snatches,
With the voices singing in our ears, saying
That this was all folly.
Then at dawn we came down to a temperate valley,
Wet, below the snow line, smelling of vegetation;
With a running stream and a water-mill beating the darkness,
And three trees on the low sky,
And an old white horse galloped away in the meadow.
Then we came to a tavern with vine-leaves over the lintel,
Six hands at an open door dicing for pieces of silver,
And feet kicking the empty wine-skins.
But there was no information, and so we continued
And arrived at evening, not a moment too soon
Finding the place; it was (you may say) satisfactory.
All this was a long time ago, I remember,
And I would do it again, but set down
This set down
This: were we lead all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt. I have seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different; this Birth was
Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.
A Pilgrimage of Peace
The Search for Truth
Collective Blog: Grand Tour at WordPress
Collective Blog: Lemurian Tours
It is one of the reasons that your Temple is such an interesting idea. What is there is not the pure idea, of course, for much that has been left there was put there for you. But what if - what of the pure idea? What if there were a place that people who were unsure could come and put something, not having to wonder if it would be right, perhaps putting it down when no one saw and walking away. And what if, likewise, someone who was grieving could come and take what they needed? What if we could fill a well with what people really wanted to give, but were afraid and what if that well was really there for someone who was in need? It is an intriguing thought. Would it be enough to take “something” that was given by “someone”? Could it be like sending a donation to Amnesty International or Oxfam? Or is it the touch of person to person that is of paramount importance? Is it something that could be put into a “well?” It IS something that can be placed in beauty, in reality. I can see that. What I wonder is if anyone in grief could come there and drink? And would it be good? Would it be enough?
Edwina Peterson Cross
The Temple of Solace
courtesy of faucon of Sakin'el
The paths through the Enchanted Woods lead to more enchantment. The Gypsies are always camped nearby and the Lemurian Hermitage is just over that hill. You can wander to the Abbey and spend time with Imogen Crest, the Lemurian Hermit or take a turn in the path, cross Mnemosyne's Stream and head towards the famed Abbey, the place where people first settled in Lemuria.
The place I love to visit is the Temple of Solace, a very special sanctuary that can be found within the Golden Seed Grove.
Living with my husband’s advanced cancer for many years has proved challenging. Advanced cancer is a term to desribe a metastic cancer and is a cancer which is unlikely to be cured. One of the painful realities, when cancer will not go away, is that family and friends sometimes withdraw. For years I have converted the stress of ‘living with cancer’ to creative energy and the Soul Food Cafe is a product of that creative energy. The Temple of Solace was borne out of a deep sense of loss over hurtful abandonment at a time of deep grief.
Recently a close friend here at Soul Food shared saying “I think the whole of Soul Food is a wonderful creative resource where people can browse or contribute as they wish, where there is no pressure to produce, just to enjoy. It is well known that writing and art heal the soul and I’m sure, given the right stimuli, people respond in it in a way that they never can to conventional medicine. This is why art therapy is so helpful. The fact that Soul Food exists online means that is accessible to everyone who has a computer or access to a computer. If they choose to join our community they will be sure of a warm welcome. We can all attest to the reality of the closeness contained in this virtual community, a community which does become real when you start interacting with kindred spirits and exchange private mails, phone calls, snail mail, etc. I think SFC rocks! I am biased of course”
Soul Food and the Temple of Solace are not just for those who are feeling isolated because of circumstances such as that which I have experienced. It is quite simply a refuge, a safe place to retreat. Vistors to the temple may be searching for some kind words as a result of a loss of a job, a way of life, an empty nest, the loss of a teddy bear, the death of a pet, the loss of property, loss of a way of life, a lost muse, a sense of abandonment: about almost anything. Personally, I have found that kind words can reduce me to tears, simply because I am not as accustomed to kind words and kind actions as I am at steeling myself, putting up my armour to protect myself from the pain of what feels like rejection.
Today, wander in to the Enchanted wood, seek and you will find the Temple of Solace. When you arrive at the temple, choose a rug from the pile Monika Roleff has provided, wrap it around yourself, rock and keen or wail if that is what you feel like doing.
There is only one catch to all of this. If you choose to unburden and seek some comfort be ready to comfort and listen to others. No one is expected to find any solutions or offer any quick fixes. They are simply expected to hear and feel empathy and then go out into the real world and treat people with kindness.
For a long time gratitude journals have been popular and these are excellent. What we would like to see in the temple is a book of kindness where folk record and share some of the simple things they have done to comfort and support another over a sustained period. You see, folk are usually quite good at the time of a cataclysmic happening but they are not always so good at marathon running, at being there for an extended period. It often simply gets too hard.
What also needs to be recorded is what we feel would have been enough. It is enough when people spend a little bit of time with me and nod knowingly.
I am hoping that people will ask to become members of the temple, that they will produce ideas, essays about the subject, icons that comfort, alters, references, meditations, helpful hints, spirit lifter suggestions and so on.
Lets start a chain reaction to break the silence Gandhi spoke of.
Simply begin commenting at the Temple and if you want to be a member of a team committed to beating the drums that call for compassion, empathy and kindness, simply contact
heatherblakey at gmail dot net or
indigo_moon22 at hotmail dot com
Webmaster: Soul Food Cafe
Consider ways that you can help support Soul Food and the Temple of Solace and ensure that its field of positive influence is expanded. Any donations are ploughed back in to the site. Soul Food is a free resource and is not a profit organisation. It has been funded and operated by Heather Blakey for over eight years but now a group of like minded individuals have gathered to ensure that the vision is sustained.
Soul Food is recruiting for people to fill the role of 'Temple of Solace Priestess'. Seven places will be made available. To become a priestess email heatherblakey at dailywriting dot net with an expression of interest.