Posts Tagged ‘Roman’

A Step Back in Time

image from www-josephinewall-co.uk   Spirit Elements

“If you learn to really sit with loneliness and embrace it for the gift that it is…an opportunity to get to know YOU, to learn how strong you really are, to depend on no one but YOU for your happiness…you will realize that a little loneliness goes a LONG way in creating a richer, deeper, more vibrant and colorful YOU.”
Mandy Hale, The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass

I had really enjoyed my wandering around Tel Aviv. After 12 days I was still awed by the flow of life which seemed a constant all day long. The Boulevard seemed like a true social gathering place. The coffee shops, restaurants and ice cream parlors were fabulous and the beach side bars had an ambiance all their own. I found myself relaxing and as I continued my walks along the Boulevard I also noticed I was breathing easier, the tension was finally leaving my body. It was so strange but so good at the same time. I couldn’t remember when I had last felt this lessening of tension. How long had I been carrying that around?

However, I wasn’t going to wander around for my entire stay in Israel. I had decided to go on a three week tour, 9 days in Israel, 7 in Egypt and 5 days in Jordan. It was a historical tour, but not a religious tour, which was exciting.  On day 13 of my stay the people who were going on the tour with me arrived in the hotel, and I was pleasantly surprised to find another Australian amongst the group. M was a vivacious young girl, the same age as my daughter, and we hit it off from the outset. The rest of the group comprised mainly Americans with a couple of Canadians, two people from Brazil and an English couple just married. It promised to be a great trip.

Early the next morning we set off and the first ‘adventure’ a walk around the old port city of JAFFA! It was so different from my solitary wanderings as we heard the history of the site. We had been blessed with a tour guide who had studied archaeology and so the history became a living breathing excursion. If I went over all the history of each place I’d need a novel, so I scribbled when I could and took pictures instead. Standing at the top of the hill and looking out   over the ocean or looking towards Tel Aviv there was a feeling of freedom. I was fulfilling a dream, a dream both Mum and I had shared for years, and I was learning more about myself each day.

As we walked around Jaffa, it was astonishing to see the additions of rooms to the outside of buildings as they ran out of room to expand, and the giant hanging orange tree. My notes said,” The Hovering Orange Tree, in the centre of Old Jaffa is supposed to be a symbol of Israel’s prosperity, and some see in it a metaphor for the Jewish people, hanging between heaven and earth with their sufferings.”  Hundreds of years old it made me feel as though the people of yesteryear were walking past me to water the tree.

Irrespective of what the travel brochure said, it’s an incredible sight to see. We saw the miniature city of Tel Aviv and walked along Ben Gurion Boulevard, through the Hacarmel markets and got to soak up the atmosphere of Tel Aviv. The markets were an incredible experience. Crowded like nothing I’ve seen before there were stalls offering so many different things it was difficult to take it all in. There were the traditional type of craft stalls, beautiful clothes, so much colour it hurt the eyes, and food, so many smells to tempt the hungry, but we had a special dinner arranged so we had to get back to the hotel. It felt as though we had wandered into another world and when we left we walked out into this world.

The next day we left by bus and traveled up the coast up to Haifa and then on to Caesarea.  Walking through the ruins and listening to the multifaceted history of life from the Byzantine era through the Roman era to present day was mind blowing. I should add I adore history and this was history made live before my eyes. Yes, I was excited.  It was believed built on the ruins of “Straton’s Tower’, captured by Jannaeus in 90BCE until taken over by the Romans in 63BCE. Herod the Great renames it Caesarea in honour of the Roman Emperor Caesar Augustus. He built a deep sea harbour, markets, and held gladiator games in the theatre. Caesarea also flourished during the Byzantine pe

The area became a serious farming area until the Crusader conquest in the 11th century. The farms were buried under the sands shifting along the shores of the Mediterranean. The Mosque on the site was converted into the church of St. Peter in the Crusader times. From then it had a chequered past, seeing the area inhabited by various people until the Israelis took control during the 1948 conflict.  I felt as though I was travelling away from all the problems I had back in Australia and I was being whisked away back in time. Despite the throngs of people there were occasions I was alone and then there were chills at times, as I felt someone from a bygone age brush past me.

From here we went to Acre or Akko as the Israeli now call it, at the northern end of Haifa Bay. It has a historical lineage like Caesarea. It has been inhabited by the Greeks, Jews and Romans. We traveled in our explorations from the Byzantine era, Persian¸ 1st Crusades, to Saladin then the 3rd Crusades (Richard 1st of England), to the Mamluks, Ottomans and eventually the British. It was during the British Mandate that Acre’s fort was converted into a jail where the early Jewish underground fighters were imprisoned and shot. In May 1947 the Irgun broke into the jail, freeing the other activists and around 200 Arab prisoners. In May 1948 the Israeli’s captured Acre and it has remained in Israeli hands ever since.  Parts of the jail are still in use although it is possible to see those areas which are no longer used.

As we walked around, seeing the layers of history as we went through the ruins and up to the level the jail was at the top was a strange experience. It felt, at times, as though there were crowds of people whispering behind you, all in different languages. There was a real sense of impending doom and death in certain places.  My skin would suddenly ripple with gooseflesh, I would almost hear the sound of screams, and once I felt the definite pressure of a hand on my shoulder.

It seemed that as my cares back in Australia fell away and my mind was freed from thinking about them, I was open to hear and feel more of the spiritual experiences I had begun to feel I’d lost, when Mum had passed away. In a strange way, it also felt as though the years were dropping away too, and I became more carefree and light hearted. This was what I needed. I was finally beginning to find myself.

“When you do things from your soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy.”
― Rumi

Blessings, Susan x

Next week – More Revelations

© Susan Jamieson 2013

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image from fx.worth1000.com   Remarkably like Anthony Hopkins, don’t you agree?

The glory of Poseidon.

It’s time for me to bow before the gods and admit I seek their assistance. That being said I’m taking no chances and appealing to both the main Greek and Roman gods of Poseidon and Neptune. I’m not completely comfortable with that because there are so many gods associated with water. This is a brief list of some of the ‘main’ ones.

In Aztec mythology

  • Tlaloc, god of thunder, rain, and earthquakes.
  • Chalchiuhtlicue, goddess of water, lakes, rivers, seas, streams, horizontal waters, storms, and baptism.

Canaanite mythology

Celtic mythology

Obviously the Celts felt like me and didn’t want to run the risk of missing someone out!

Then we have:

Egyptian mythology

  • Sobek, god of the Nile river, depicted as a crocodile or a man with the head of a crocodile.
  • Nephthys, goddess of rivers

Celtic mythology

(Now these guys had a monopoly!)

  • Aegaeon, god of violent sea storms and ally of the Titans
  • Amphitrite, sea goddess and consort of Poseidon
  • Anapos, water god of eastern Sicily
  • Ceto, goddess of the dangers of the ocean and of sea monsters
  • Eurybia, goddess of the mastery of the seas
  • Nerites, watery consort of Aphrodite and/or beloved of Poseidon
  • Nymphs
  • Poseidon, king of the sea and lord of the sea gods; also god of rivers, storms, flood and drought, earthquakes, and horses. His Roman equivalent is Neptune.
  • Achelous, Greek river-god
  • Hebe, Greek goddess of water and wine bearer of the Gods

The above is a list of Water Deities, not complete.

The wrath of Neptune.

image from kellyannmoore.com

Okay you are now wondering if I may have taken leave of my senses, limited though they may appear at times. Despite the ever-present brain fog and the feeling of an imploding skull (courtesy of Lyme disease) I am perfectly lucid at this time. I have no opportunity ton be otherwise and I shall explain.

You will recall my recent tribulations regarding my fluctuating water temperature in the shower, see here.  Since Ray’s birthday is coming up soon, (he has the fortune, or misfortune depending on your experiences of having his birthday on Father’s Day this year. That means there will be an explosion of people wherever we are likely to go. Not relishing the idea of crowds we have opted to spread our celebrations both before and after the actual day, today being the start.

In my semi conscious state I heard him getting into the shower, water running and, so I’m told nice and hot. Solar power is wonderful – yes?  The doors closed and suddenly there was absolute silence in the en-suite. No water sounds at all.  I am reliably told that he turned the taps on full, then off, and then back on again. Not a drop of water to be seen.

image from drawception.com

Right, a little poetic license never hurt anyone, especially when I’m not the target!  Quick dry and on with the jeans and jumper to check of all the taps. No, not a drop coming through. Hmm. Have a look outside.  Just up the road was…. you guessed it, the local council water guys. There had been a burst water pipe and so, bright and early there they were, all the mains turned off. A brilliant move, Sherlock!

It definitely made my morning more a more leisurely entry into the day. Meanwhile, an understandably disaffected hubby elected to make his morning vitamin smoothy. If he couldn’t be clean then he would be suitably fed. “Feed the man” if not meat then something good.

I didn’t laugh, I wasn’t completely awake enough to savour the devilish delight of the situation. That came later.

However, with our ongoing water issues, for which we are assured there is no rational cause, plus this latest debacle I feel the need to ask the gods, goddesses and all associated deities to please, “Give us a break” we only want to get clean. It’s not as though we live in the water or use more than our fair share. In fact we’re very conscious of water usage, something I still find difficult after my long hot baths in England (oh and here too when I can.)

I’m sure I’ve forgotten someone, I only hope they’ll see their way to grant me pardon. I would have listed everyone but it is a huge list… unbelievable long list. I suppose it goes back to the days when there were gods  for every occasion, tree, plant, flower and event. I know there are still ancient shrine in England where offerings are still laid.

Perhaps what I need is the Aboriginal deities explained so that if they are the ones we’ve upset I can ask them to take pity on us?  In the meantime I’ll keep my finger crossed that tomorrow morning will be like tonight, hot and deliciously relaxing. Ah, what bliss.

Oh, in case you were wondering we had a delightful afternoon, visited one of my crystal haunts, went to a new shopping centre, had a beautiful meal out before coming home and putting our feet.  Tomorrow is another day.

image from commons.wikimedia.org

My offering to the gods, left with ceremony on my altar.

“All good fortune is a gift of the gods, and you don’t win the favor of the ancient gods by being good, but by being bold.”
Anita Brookner

Blessings  Susan x

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