Awakening the Sleepers


by Sirona Knight

Standing before the stone altar, the High Priestess took the
athame in her hand, and began drawing a circle of light around
the small clearing nestled in the surrounding trees. Once the
sacred circle was in place, she called in the wards from each of the
four directions--north, east, south, and west--before once again
returning to the altar. Setting the athame down, she picked up
her wand, fashioned from a branch of her favorite Oak Tree, and
began chanting the names, "Kerridwen, Math, Anu," until the energy in
the circle rose up, increasing in intensity. Once she felt the energy
was high enough, she released it with three Ayeas. She rested
back on the soft grass below her while experiencing a rush as her
spirit merged with the spirit of the land and earth. She felt a whisper
speak within her being.

"I have heard your call. What is your desire?" came the
voice, and from her experience, she knew it to be the Sleepers,
arising from their slumber. Initially her body trembled, but this
feeling was soon replaced by a calm connectedness which moved
from her stomach outward through her body. A web of light and
sound moved like waves of an ocean, pulsating inward and outward as
she merged deeper into the spirit of the land, until she became One
with the Wholeness. She felt the power and knowledge of the
Sleepers enter into her being, which was now feeling a sensation
of completeness where there had once been empty holes and
fragmented pieces.

By becoming One with the Sleepers, she became whole again.

The concept of the Sleepers in Celtic mythology originates
with the tales of the Tuatha De Danann. Literally, the family of
the goddess Danu, the Tuatha De Dannan brought to Ireland from
Greece and the Mediterranean, their knowledge of magic and the
Druidic arts. When they were defeated by the invading Milesians,
the people of the Tuatha moved into and merged with the hills and
mounds of Ireland, which they divided into kingdoms among them.
These other world kingdoms are known by various names including Mag
Mor, Mag Mel, and Tir Na n'Og. When the Tuatha De Danann merged
into the land, they became the Faery or the Sidhe, whose spirit and
power sleeps within the land, waiting for those who call upon and
awaken it.

Traditionally within Celtic mythology and magic, the Sleepers
were the Sacred Kings and Priestess Queens, who chose to remain in
an altered state, where their consciousness was absorbed into the
land. Author R. J. Stewart says, "The old Sacred Kings worked with
only one land, locality, and tribe. They would go into the land,
and commune certain deep insights, powers, and energies to others,
not from some spirit dimension as in channelling, but from with the
body of the land. These ancestral spirits would talk to them about
mysteries and energies of the land, and about the connections
between past and future. Often containing elements of prophesy,
the Sacred Kings and Priestess Queens would never claim to be in
some spirit dimension where they know everything or tell you what
to do. In a poetic sense, channelled material has a tendency to
come from above. Things to do with Sacred Kingship and Priestess
Queens and the Underworld come from below, from within the land and

By tuning in and merging with the land, you awaken the
Sleepers and release the ancestral power stored within the Earth.
The land, which consists of energetic ley lines, harmonics,
minerals, flora, fauna, etc., is like a giant crystal, and like a
crystal it picks up the energy of anyone or anything that comes
into contact with it.
Traditionally, people worked the same basic area of land,
meaning that much of their energy was imprinted onto the land, and
when they died, their spirit and flesh became part of the Earth.
When you wanted to talk to your ancestors for guidance or support,
you went out and merged with the trees, streams, and Earth, and you
released their energy from its resting place in the land, bridging
the past with the future.
With each passing generation, the residual energy and power
sleeping in the earth increases proportionate to the number of who
give their energy to the land. Even though in modern society many
of us do not have the traditional affinity with the Earth that our
ancestors had, we still have a need to connect and work the land as
evidenced by the continued gardening trend sweeping through this
country. Even people in the middle of the city often have a garden
or special spot they go when they want to commune with nature. The
following is a short exercise for communing and merging with the
land, and in turn awakening the Sleepers.
Next time you are in your special spot or just out in nature,
take a few moments to relax and become totally aware of your
surroundings. First, use each of your senses to experience
everything around you--from the smells in the air, to the feel of
the earth and sight of a blooming flower. Next, start merging with
the land by telling yourself you are each of the aspects of the
landscape. An example of this using an Oak Tree is, "I am the Oak
Tree, the Oak Tree is me." As you become each thing, try to be
aware of all the qualities that make up that thing, an example
being, as the Oak Tree, feel the bark, branches, leaves and roots.
With practice, you will merge and shapeshift into the tree by
tuning into Oak Tree-ness, unlocking the wisdom and power contained