(This post is a continuation of the story from last month)
As I was going through the airport security gate and looking back at my family, I realized that I didn’t really want to leave. “Could I just walk back through?” My kids were waving and blowing kisses. My husband must have sensed my distress so he just looked strongly at me, steady as a lighthouse. “Go,” his eyes said, “find what you are looking for.” I trudged toward the gate and boarded the ten-hour flight to London and then on to the countryside. I was searching for a connection to Christ and Mary Magdelene. I was searching for a connection to my Heavenly Mother. I wanted to be transformed.
I quickly rolled up my pant legs and pulled off my black socks and tennis shoes. I was at the sacred Glastonbury springs and well. It was my second day in England. The iron oxide of the spring gives the water a reddish hue and it supposed to have healing properties. This spot is supposedly where Joseph of Arimathea placed the chalice that held Christ’s blood. We can also read into the Holy Grail story in the Da Vinci Code way. The legend implies that Joseph left Jerusalem after Christ’s death with the pregnant wife of Christ, Mary Magdelene, and brought her eventually to Glastonbury. Here, he stuck his staff in the ground which become a holy thorn tree that only blossoms at Christmas time and Easter. This tree (or the remnants of it) also reside in the Chalice Well garden. The water flows into a gathering pool where one can bathe the feet before it moves down the hill into a vesica-piscis shaped pool. Here, pilgrims come who want to connect to the divine feminine. The water was freezing cold on my calves, but I felt it cleansing the journey ahead of me – sort of a mikvah for the soul. I also drank the water from the lion’s head and said a silent prayer.
I ran in just before the giant gates closed to the college. We were supposed to meet at King’s College Chapel in Cambridge at a certain time, but my taxi had been caught in traffic and I was late. I slid through the chapel doors and looked up to see the world’s largest fan vault ceiling. I couldn’t move for a moment because of the beauty of the building that was begun in 1446. It was my last full day in England, and we were there to hear evensong – the worship service that corresponds with twilight. Candles were being lit. I slipped into a side chapel where I found my friend crying. “Look!” she said and pointed to the wall. There was a beautiful painting of Christ, by Girolamo Siciolante da Sermoneta, being taken down from the cross, the twisted nails and thorned crown discarded at His feet. Supporting one of His arms was Mary Magdelene. Her flaming red hair falls around her shoulders as she leans in with all tenderness to care for her Savior’s body. I looked at her face carefully before sitting down to the services. The choir began to sing and the colored stain glass windows were glowing under the light of the setting sun. I could not get Mary’s face out of my mind. As the voices rose in worship and the organ grew louder, I thought about her. She was called the disciple of the disciples. How had she been transformed from the day she met the Savior? How had I since I had tried to become one that He would call His own?
This morning my husband’s voice woke me from a vivid dream. It was the Sunday after being home from my nine-day journey. I had seen and felt so many things on my trip and my sleep since I had been home has been deep. In my dream I was in the middle of Glastonbury garden. I had taken an egg-shaped stone, dark as the center of an eye, and placed into the cup of an ancient machine. I pulled a wooden lever and a large wheel turned. The stone disappeared and in its place was a vessel for holding water. The people around me cried out in surprise. “Who did this?” they yelled. I meekly apologized for my mistake and that I had pulled the lever. A man whisked me away into a sacred circle of people. He explained that they had been waiting for hundreds of years for the vessel to appear. They had been in a drought and now the sign appeared that there would be water. He instructed me to raise my arms. I did and a crackling sound went through my body. My spirit was separating and I went out of the top of my head and began to fly. I was being cleaved from my body. As I was floating through the grey mist, I heard a woman’s voice say she had a message to give me. Unfortunately, that is when I was woken up. I thought about this dream all through sacrament meeting today. I was the dark stone that had changed to a vessel that holds water. My trip was the lever that I pulled to transform me. I had to transform in order to ascend. The message was clear. I had found those that I sought. I had found what I was looking for.