Re. the ‘Boyne to Brodgar’ programme: III

By Bernie Bell

The last part in Bernie’s musings about the ‘Boyne to Brodgar’ connections.

5)      And to …the same person….October 2015

“I woke up this morning, with the thought, of the similarity/connection, between Knowth and the Ness.

Last night, I had a series of dreams, or, rather, a dream, which was in parts.

I was in Ireland, at a place, in a cluster of buildings, with some of my family.  There were a lot of other people, too. We were preparing for a cousin’s wedding, and also, for the coming of age, of one of my nephews. He seemed very young, to me, to be coming of age – maybe they came of age, younger then, or, maybe that’s the natural response of an Auntie, who looked after him as a baby and small child – that he must be too young, to come of age. 

His mother and sister, had prepared everything for the coming of age celebrations.  His sister had made a cake and they’d decorated a room. The wedding took place, and the young people, left, and the coming of age ‘do’ was in full swing, when three people turned up from no-where, walking through the stone gate-way, to the cluster of buildings. They said they’d had difficulties, on the road, and asked to stay the night.

I was standing, holding hands with my sister.  I had a strong, strong feeling that these people weren’t ‘right’. I also felt this, communicated though my hand, from my sister, too. So, we asked them a lot of questions, and their responses didn’t add up.

So, we took them to another group of people, which included a man, who was strong – in himself, not as in, a big, strong person, physically. The consensus, was that these three, shouldn’t be entered into the place.  By this time, they had dis-appeared. Not in a puff of smoke! but, just, gone  – possibly knew that their plan, whatever it was, hadn’t worked. We in the group, then connected with, God, The Universe …..all that IS, and, mainly asked for protection for the young couple, who had got married. We placed them in the arms of the Universe, for safety. Also, we asked, and envisaged, the place, being placed in the protection of the Universe.  And were content.

When I woke up, I had the thought,  “Knowth/Ness”.  Picture the Ness, when the structures were complete ( note I say ‘structures’, not buildings, or cairns, or tombs – as I keep on and on saying, just because there are dead folks remains in a building, doesn’t make it a ‘tomb’ – look at Catal Huyuk, look at Skara Brae, look at……….Knowth, I think, is seen as a collection of cairns – tombs – why so?).  Think about Knowth – I repeat myself – I think it’s seen as a collection of tombs – why so?  All sorts, was going on there, some of which was to do with initiation, some to do with inauguration of, what would be called kings or chiefs, today, all sorts of big, human things.

So, Knowth/Ness? Probably, someone has said this, before, but, I’m not in the archaeology world, so, I’m not aware of what is being said about places.  What I do know, is the dreams I had, last night, and the simple two words I woke up with ………Knowth/Ness.

I’m getting this down, before it flies away, as dreams do.

One thing, they had a lot of pictures and carvings of birds, in flight. Very simple, line drawings, like the one in Unstan cairn.

Unstan bird B Bell

Do you remember my story, about the Eagle Cairn, and how the spirit, flies, with the birds, as they eat the person’s remains?

Also, in my dream ( which I only remembered now, telling of it), there was a man, lying down, with a head-dress on, which also was in the shape of a bird, a swooping bird. This is an image, which I’ve just remembered from the dream, and I can’t remember if it was significant, in the dream, or, not!

The other thing is, the idea that there is a third centre, which tri-angulates with the Ness, and Knowth. There are three, and they tri-angulate, with each other. I’m afraid that I think the third one, is now under the sea – I had a look at a map of the world, and that’s what it looks like – in the middle of the ocean, now.

I’m trying to remember, anything else, from the dreams. It was vivid, very real – the joyful bits, were very joyful, the disturbing bits, with the threat from the 3 people, were disturbing, intensely so. And I woke up, with that simple idea in my head, which I have spent all this tippy-taping, to tell you about!

This time of year, does un-settle me – it always does. It’s not comfortable, and sometimes, I think I’d rather not be as I am, but, on the other hand….it’s LIFE, and it is how I am, so, that’s that!  It is, also, enormously interesting, and can illuminate places.  Knowth/Ness.  As you know, I feel so happy, at the Ness, and, Knowth, well Dowth was ‘home’ – I was so happy, I was in tears, but, Knowth…….well, it’s Knowth. Ah-ha, that’s reminded me, how could I forget to say?  Many extra-ordinary, and meaning-full objects were discovered, in the structures at Knowth….and….at the Ness……..

Knowth/Ness.  Oh, yes!”

6)   Again, not to an archaeologist, let’s say to….an interested party – July 2016

Loughcrew B Bell“I checked the dig diary for the Ness of Brodgar this morning, and saw that Antonia Thomas has found this carved stone.  It immediately reminded me of some of the carvings at Loughcrew.  I sent Antonia some of the photos we have from our visit to Loughcrew when we visited  the Bru Na Boinne, April before last. I thought I’d send you the link to the dig diary, and I’ll send you what I sent Antonia, too.

This is because we have previously discussed the possibility of a link between the Bru Na Boinne and what is now called  The Neolithic Heart of Orkney – what I refer to as The Irish Connection!

Here’s the link, and I’ll send some photos, too. I’m certain that there was an Irish connection then, and that they shared images, ideas, art, beliefs.  We can’t know about the ideas and beliefs, but we can compare the carvings and  artefacts.”

7) Archaeologist bothering again, July 2016

 “Subject: Re. The bones under the slabs of stone in structure 10 – possibly placed when it was being re-constructed/re-modelled/re-?/re-thought.

I’ll subside now. Antonia’s find of that Irish Connection stone has got me all wound up.  To me that’s the biggest find of this year – so far.  So different, so small, but holds so much.

The Irish Connection.

I’m even wondering if any of my actual ancestors came over to visit the Ness? That would be groovy.  Maybe that was what that dream about the wedding party was about?

Ancestors – family – continuity – a line following through maybe from the earliest acknowledgements of what’s in that bowl in the hills and that bend in the river – right through, not just locally, involving the links and connections spreading out, too.

I’m getting far too over-excited, and need a chamomile tea. B”

And, another bit of archaeologist bothering…………..bringing us right up to date….


Knock isn’t in the Bru na Boinne, it’s in the west of Ireland,  and it’s modern, but Knock/Ness?  ‘Appen. Something similar?  Maybe even people selling ‘souvenirs’ at the Ness, as they do at Knock?   Mebbe.

“The biggest, most impressive building, isn’t necessarily what matters.  I’m put in mind of a place called Knock, in Ireland.  Some time in the 18 hundreds, the Virgin Mary appeared at the gable-end of the church there ( I’m not saying what I make of this, I’m just telling the tale).  She appeared to a group of children. This became a place of pilgrimage.

When I was a little girl, my Mum & Dad used to take me there, to drink the ‘Holy Water’, as I had Asthma.  (I should mention that, by this time, the ‘Holy Water’ was dispensed from a row of taps, which were periodically blessed by a priest!  Still, maybe that still makes it ‘Holy Water’ – who knows!).

At first, people could just go to the end of the church, and touch where Mary appeared. This was so , for many years.  Then, next stage, they built a big, glass box round it, with statues representing Mary, and the children, so you couldn’t touch it any more, but people knelt and prayed at outside the glass box.  This was also the case for many years.  THEN……they built a whacking great Basilica, not really near the church, at all.  It looks like a flying saucer.

They have non-stop masses going on ( seriously, one after the other).  When you go in, you can walk round a covered walkway, (does that sound familiar?) so that you can ‘participate’ in the mass, without going in and disturbing people.  The whole thing, is pretty horrendous.   So……what I’m on about is……..the huge, great, Basilica, is now seen as the main event at Knock.  Possibly, people go there, and don’t even go to the old church, may not know that the old church matters, at all!   The Basilica has taken over, because it’s the most noticeable, impressive ( if you like that sorta thing!) building in Knock.

Newgrange through the trees

Newgrange through the trees (B Bell)

And, again, New Grange, I know I’ve wittered at you before, about how people go to the Visitor Centre, and I’m not sure if they are even aware that the cairn exists!

So, the massive big building, isn’t always the actual centre of what a place is about, it’s just what people have built, around what the place is about.

So, yes, the big building at the Ness, is hugely impressive as a Neolithic building ( or am I not giving them enough credit?) , but I’m not at all sure if it’s what the place is actually about, or if it’s actually peripheral, more to do with what the visitors wanted or needed,  than the  prime purpose of the place and area.

There you are.   I’d say to go to Knock and have a look, but it’s really not worth it! except as a prize example of a secondary, man-made artefact, taking over from the basic spiritual presence.  So it goes.”

Related stories:

Re. the ‘Boyne to Brodgar’  programme. I

Re. the ‘Boyne to Brodgar’ programme.II

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4 replies »

  1. Sitting in a cottage on Great Bernera – checking out TON.
    In the slideshow – the big stone labelled ‘Stone at Knowth’ – is one of the many, crazy carved stones at Loughcrew.
    And now, I withdraw into the Hebridean mists again.

  2. As to the bowl in the hills – I also sent this, to a very patient archaeologist…………….

    “Yesterday, here, where we live, it was a misty, moisty, murky day. Mike works in Stromness, and he says it was even more murky, there.
    Coming home, after work, however, he drove out of the murk into Stenness, and into a bowl of sunshine. Then, out of the sunshine, back into the murk again.
    You’ll be very familiar with how Stenness can have its own weather conditions, and how, often, it’s the bowl of sunshine effect.
    I don’t know if it will have been like this when the water levels were lower? That could affect that kind of phenomena – to do with moisture and sunshine.
    If it was like that, way back then, that would very much add to the magic of the place.
    I think, this time, I was particularly taken with idea of the bowl of sunshine, in the bowl in the hills, and the wonder of it – as with many climatic phenomena, and tricks of light, on Orkney. Another reason, for centring on the place, as a place of connection.
    Have you read ‘Sirens of Titan’ by Kurt Vonnegut? It’s about…among other things….why monuments are raised, ( a bit tongue-in-cheek about that) POWER, and….humanity – always comes back, to humanity.
    It all comes down to people, though, doesn’t it? And how they react and respond to what’s around them.”

    And, let’s not forget, the links between Ireland and the area around Kilmartin Glen, Argyllshire.

    In fact, when we were at Nether Largie South, we had some tea left from having lunch, so, we sat on the big cap-stone near the main cairn, and had tea with the ancestors – and very pleasant it was, too.

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