Through the Gate of the Stone


Make sure you are sitting comfortably, with your eyes closed, and relax your body. Start
with your left leg, tighten the muscles and then relax them. Then the right leg — tighten the
muscles there, relax them, and let them go completely. Then your abdomen and stomach
tighten the muscles up and then release them, let them go completely.
Now your chest and breathing muscles tighten them up and then relax them. Your back,
shoulder, and neck muscles, tighten them up as tight as they’ll go and as you release them
feel the tension of the day just draining away. It’s a wonderful feeling. Now your head and
face muscles tighten them up as tight as they’ll go. Tighten them up as tight as they’ll go
and then relax them. Lastly, do the muscles of your arms. Tighten them up as tight as
they’ll go and then relax them, from the shoulders down to the finger tips.
Now become aware of the black nothingness around you. Feel yourself floating, and then
moving forward, lifting, drifting away. As you feel yourself floating away, the blackness
fades to grey, becoming like a foggy mist as you begin to descend.
Your feet make contact with a surface, and you find yourself sitting in a small round boat
— a coracle — which is floating through the mist on a river. It gently moves towards a
bank, and comes to a halt, and you climb out and onto the riverbank

The riverbank is forested, but where you climbed out of the coracle there is a pathway
leading into the forest, and you follow it. The path is narrow, and twists and turns through
the trees as it takes you deep into the heart of the forest, eventually coming to a shady
clearing, still covered high above by the green canopy provided by the tall trees around it.
In the centre of the clearing is a mound, green with moss and plants, but clearly made from
three great stones supporting a huge slab of granite, covered now by dirt and undergrowth.
You hear a sound like deep sighs from within, and find your way through the growth
covering the stones, to enter the mound.
Inside it is surprisingly warm, and a little humid. It is difficult to see in what little light
makes it into the mound, but the texture of the rock under your fingers feels like it has been
carved with intricate maze symbols and spirals. You become aware of a presence in the
centre of this place, and as your eyes adjust to the dim light, you see the matronly form of
Modron, planted firmly in the ground…
(pause for conversation with Modron)
Almost before you get going, it seems that is time for you to continue your journey.
Promising Modron that you will return again, you make your farewells, and wriggle out of
the mound once more.
You set off on the path that leads on from the clearing, a wider, straighter path that keeps
the sky visible above. Before you know it, you find yourself approaching a small hill that
appears to be more or less a large rock jutting out of the ground. You climb up the rocky
surface, which takes you up above the treetops and into the sunlight.
Standing at the highest point, looking out over the forest, you see the muscular back of a
man, tanned, naked, and rippling with power. But all of this fades into insignificance as you
notice the fine antlers that extend from either side of his head. He turns, with a smile on his
face and a glint in his eye, and you find yourself face to face with Herne…

(pause for conversation with Herne)
Once again, the need to continue your journey catches up with you. Surprised to see that the
sun is beginning to set, you thank Herne and continue on your way.
This time the path leading away from the clearing curves sinuously this way and that, in
great lazy loops, until before you know it, you find yourself at the riverbank again.
Although this is much further downstream, the coracle has floated down this far and is
waiting for you. Carefully, you climb into it once more, and no sooner are you seated than it
begins to move away from the bank, taking you into the mist, which gets thicker and
thicker, until all you can see is the coracle. Soon the mist closes in completely, leaving you
in a featureless grey expanse as you feel yourself floating up and back.
The grey mist fades to black, and you feel yourself returning to the place you started from,
sitting with your eyes closed. Sit up and open your eyes. The journey is over

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