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Books and Free Excerpts

The Emerald Modem: A User's Guide to Earth's Interactive Energy Body The Emerald Modem: A User's Guide to Earth's Interactive Energy Body ( Charlottesville, VA: Hampton Roads Publishing, 2004).

First and Subsequent Visits to the Grail Castle: Welcome to Sarras

You don't have to travel too far to find a Grail Castle. Know that if you go in search of a Grail Castle experience, you will be facilitated by the Ofanim, provided your intentions are pure. There is an old saying about the Grail, that it will not serve the impure. Your perceptions of the Grail Castle will gain in sophistication over time and repeated visits. Any of the 144 Grail Castle replicas will do, as they are all copies of the same original. Think of them as 144 doors opening into the same place.

The first time I visited a Grail Castle I was sitting on Chalice Hill in Glastonbury, England. It's the softer, rounder, feminine hill next to the enigmatic, much-visited Tor. I didn't know there was a Grail Castleabove it until I had already left it and started wondering what that experience was all about. You experience the Grail Castle as above a given physical location because that is the way your mind interprets and positions the data of a subtler dimension. It's higher, above the physical, and until recently, very hard to see.

Sometimes the locale's name itself belies this seeming spatial differentiation: Horncastle, as in the horn up to the castle; or Castle Rigg, the rigging up to the castle. You climb up psychically into the Grail Castle. Let's not overlook the obvious either: Chalice Hill, the residency of the Grail chalice.

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I entered a large hall, the kind you would expect a king to have. The Fisher King was seated at the far end, on a throne, under a rotunda. He looked like my high school biology teacher. He wore a crown but he looked crabby, forlorn, like somebody heavy had sat on the crown and dented it considerably and wouldn't apologize for the offense. I offered him my Grail bowl. I changed a light in the ceiling. I stood next to him and watched the Grail Maidens. Eventually I wasn't there any more, but was merely on Chalice Hill being probed by cows.

On another occasion, I entered the Grail Castle through the door at Mount Hood, near Portland, Oregon. My experience that time concerned the architecture of the place. The castle appeared to me, as if I were seeing it from overhead, as an equal-armed cross, with a golden rotunda at the end of each arm, and a larger rotunda with a sky blue roof in the center of the cross. In all, it was a Grail temple with five chambers, big enough to accommodate thousands of Grail Knights. Each of the chambers is overlit by an archangel like flood lights. A vast golden Grail chalice occupies the central rotunda and at some point I immerse myself in the pure waters of this vessel.

I entered the Grail Castle through Montsegur in the Pyrennees of France. Montsegur, an old Cathar stronghold, actually has a legend about its being the site of a Grail Castle and is remembered by some writers, notably the 13 th century Wolfram von Eschenbach, author of Parzival, as Munsalvaesche, the Mount of Salvation. The Papacy considered the Cathars to be irretrievably lapsed Catholics and dangerous heretics and burned them out of Montsegur in 1244 A.D. But they couldn't raze the Grail Castle, no matter how much they might have wanted to. It's still there, above the peak, open for business 24/7.

The Montsegur Grail Castle is guarded by a dragon; so is the Chalice Hill one, for that matter. In a sense, the castle is inside the dragon because you enter through the dragon's mouth. The castle's interior presents itself as the inside of the coiled dragon and has a spirallic shape. The Fisher King's throne was an eggshell pale blue and gives him an excellent view of the Grail, effulgent, almost too bright and golden to see, like sculpted dry ice emanating an intense golden mist. The mist clears but the scene shifts to an apricot-tinted amphitheater. Numerous healthy looking men and women walk around, laurels on their heads. It looks like a scene from classical Greece, the way we might imagine it.

The Cathars at Montsegur kept this Grail door open for the continuous, uplifting two-way flow between Grail Castle and human world, Sarras and Logres, in the old words. Initiates throughout the Pyrenees had only to position themselves at a holy site in the vicinity and they could access the Montsgeur Grail Castle by a kind of etheric subway system. The Cathars did not need to do anything else, geomantically, other than to just keep the door open. The fact they had been inside the Grail Castle was sufficient and had a positive impact throughout the area.

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On another occasion, I entered through the door above Mount Temehani on Raiatea, one of the Tahitian islands in French Polynesia. Raiatea was once regarded as the holiest Polynesian precinct and its temples were visited by many. This time when the mist cleared I saw a small, stone-lined pool set high in the mountains and surrounded by lovely slender white birches. Perhaps they were Grail Maidens in disguise. I immersed myself in this pool of heavenly dew in a self-administered baptism.

I realized this pool was the opposite of the River Lethe, as the Greeks described. In that river, you lose your recall of past lives before entering a new incarnation. But this pool was more like Mnemosyne, mother of the Nine Muses and goddess of memory, the place of complete remembering, where, perhaps after an incarnation, you refresh yourself in your soul's vast memory.

I deepened this sense of deep recall through my Grail Castle experience at Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay. How ironic, and appropriate for our times, that government authorities would erect first a military garrison then a prison on this isolated rock surrounded by treacherous currents under a Grail Castle.

What better way to block access to a higher spiritual reality than with a jail. But mythic reality will have its own, and the legendary Bird Man of Alcatraz was a kind of Grail Knight manque, unconsciously seeking flight upwards with his birds. And perhaps he was a Wounded Fisher King figure too, so close to a paradaisal place of total remembering and spiritual fulfillment yet unable to ascend, his wings clipped and his almost literally legs in chains.

Somehow I managed to get myself a considerable distance above Alcatraz so that I was looking down on it at a 45 degree angle. I saw a miniature spiral galaxy with a flat silvery disk and a golden mound in its center. It looked like a spaceship and a traveling galaxy with an intensely golden sun at its core. I flew down into the sun and encountered what I would describe as a Shepherd of the Sun.

He gestured to a series of vertical golden rectangles each perhaps five feet high. I walked through one and on to a causeway high above the ground. At the end of this elevated walkway was a small beehive chamber twenty feet across, its walls made of golden pentagons. On the surface of each was a written script. The figures or letters seemed written in living fire; within the letters were angels - Seraphim, I think, as they tend to manifest as living fire - whose essence was the living fire script. They seemed to exude or sweat liquid fire into a golden phosphorescent puddle at my feet that quivered like mercury. I daubed some on my crown chakra and it burst into golden flames.

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Once you've made a physical connection with a Grail castle site, you can revisit from a distance. Your being bodies remember the way. In fact, technically, once you've visited even once replica, you can access them all from a distance. You just need to know where they are. I revisited the Chalice Hill Grail Castle several times. On one occasion I saw that pool of heavenly dew again. This time, instead of immersing myself for a baptism, I dove in headfirst. I had figured out it was a dimensional portal cloaked as a mountain pool. I emerged outside a tall white-stoned wall on a small hill overlooking a vast desert plain. Out on the plan was a huge stone-walled city; the walls were formidable, perhaps forty feet high.

I stood outside the wall, looking for a way in. I sensed a city full of bright, happy people inside. I asked the Ofanim for a lift over the top, and they obliged. It was intensely emerald inside the city, a bit like Frank Baum's Emerald City of Oz. In fact, I briefly saw the jewelled crown atop a vast being; one of the jewels was an emerald. The emeraldness of the city had a morning freshness to it, like the first moments of pure wakefulness, as if one were conducted from sleep to waking while participating in the awareness of the highest angels. The city was pervaded by a sense of eternal consciousness, a present and unending moment.

I later learned this place is called Sarras. It's referred to obliquely in the Grail sagas as a place to which the Grail or Grail Knights were taken, but generally the nature of this place is left vague in the accounts. According to the Ofanim, Sarras is the name of the place that Grail Knights use to ground their individual experience of the Grail.

But what about that well or pool in the mountains? I take that as the waters of memory known to the Greeks as Mnemosyne, Goddess of Memory and mother by Zeus of the Nine Muses, the goddesses of the fine arts, music, literature, poetry, inspiration, and generally of all artistic and intellectual pursuits. In Mnemosyne and her Nine Muses you have the qualities of memory, water, flowingness, patronage of the arts, artistic creativity, inspired eloquence, deep transcendent knowledge. You have also the suggestion of a being of high spiritual stature: She is not the Fisher King per se, but rather more of a guardian of the lineage, perhaps an overseer of the Grail process.

The process of the Grail is that of deep remembering. But it also involves synthesis. The Grail as a bowl is the unitive function in consciousness, the pre-Fall condition of unified consciousness, free of separation, differentiation, and duality; all the signs of the zodiac are unified, welded together as a golden chalice. Think of it as Garden of Eden, pre-apple, pre-serpent nondual consciousness.

But the Grail is a hollow, receptive space, intended to contain something. The Waters of Life, some myths say; the blood of Christ, say others. That something is the process of individuation, the vast congeries of life experiences and insights one gains over the long haul of multiple incarnations, as selfhood on the way to the Self. All the things you pick up in your eons as a Grail Knight trudging through the Grail fields. Put it all in your bowl and cook it, alchemically. The process of individuation is expressed as the overflowing of the bowl with water - the muchness of the experiences as a separate self seeking unification.

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It is paradoxical. You end up with the one and the two, unified and individualized, both God and yourself, or yourself now transparent to God. The Grail legend is the synthesis of these two processes in consciousness, the unitive and individuative processes, the nondual and the dual - both, inclusively.

You might wonder why the Grail has to come into the picture at all. Isn't that a concept from a limited mythic vocabulary, of interest to the Celts and early Christians? What if I don't care about either? As best I understand it, the Grail, and the other symbolic structures and devices reported in this book are part of the archetypal mythic structure of the Earth. Touch them and you're touching something (perhaps you'll see it and describe it differently) that was put there purposefully at the beginning of the Earth to be a continuing revelation and mirror for consciousness of its celestial origins and nature.

Think of it metaphorically as the Tower of Babel. Once there was a unified, singular symbolic system and descriptive language that linked human consciousness with the energy and spiritual structures of the planet and cosmos. Then the tower got blown to pieces, and these pieces of the full picture got scattered across the planet and are now resident, somewhat enigmatically, and certainly out of context, in dozens of mythic traditions and cultural memories. Rather than struggle to interpret the individual and now culturally colored pieces, I prefer to see how they once fit (and can fit again) in that singular symbolic edifice, the metaphorical Tower of Babel of unified spiritual vision.

The Grail, then, is one such symbolic structure or description. Call it a bowl, dish, chalice, or cauldron; call it the cup of the Christian mysteries or the beer stein of the inebriating gods, the essence is the same. And it's something you'll need as you make your connection with the Earth and galaxy.

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