Albion, ancient sites, Art, Books, Don and Wen, Photography, sacred sites, spirituality, symbolism

Finding joy…

lincoln bakewell gt hucklow 078

““And then, right on cue as it were, in walks our angel.”

“Oh, you mean the old woman with the radiant face and sparkly eyes.”

“Ah ha, you see, even you noticed her radiant face, bit of a giveaway that one.”

Wen chuckles, “Well to be strictly accurate she didn’t so much walk in, as shuffle.”

“Angels always affect that shuffle, it’s merely to throw you off the scent.”

“And what makes you so sure she was an angel, I mean apart from the radiant face, the sparkly eyes and the shuffle…”

“And the stockings halfway up her leg…another classic element of angel disguise.”


“Well for one thing what did she have to be so radiant about?”

“That’s true. Her life, as described, was pretty much a litany of disaster.”

“She talked about her and her husband’s quite considerable bodily troubles and ailments as if she were talking about children playing out and scraping limbs and what was the secret of her joy in the face of such calamities, and what did she exhort us to do?”

“She exhorted us to pray.”

“Ah, that’s my girl, she was the Angel of the Praying Hands. After all, the angel is the one thing missing from the Four Ages of Man Window.”

“Well, I still think that’s a bit of a stretch but it certainly felt like something of a privileged moment to be in the church with her at that time.”

“She even asked us if we’d seen the Christmas Window.”

“She did.”

“Did you see her after we’d left the Church?”

“Come to think of it I didn’t, and we weren’t too far behind her.”

“We weren’t too far behind no, but I did see her. She was shuffling down to the opposite gate to the one we used when we emerged. She got to the gate looked back at us, smiled, and then disappeared into thin air.”

“The problem with you Don, I never know when you’re being serious.””

Excerpt from Giants Dance  by Stuart France and Sue Vincent

Xmas St Faiths 063

It is a true story. We were visiting a beautiful little church with some amazing stained glass and ancient stonework when this radiant old lady walked in, for no apparent reason, and began talking to us. The tale she told of her own and her husband’s trials and tribulations was one that would make most people weep. Life had been hard for her, she had lived… was living… through some very tough times, yet here she was, simply oozing sunshine.

Occasionally you meet people like that. Regardless of what life has thrown at them, there is, it seems, an indestructible core of joy that is untouched by events and the daily battles against seemingly insurmountable problems. And it doesn’t stop there. They can be weeping in grief and still meet your eyes with that inner radiance that transcends the vicissitudes of human emotion. It is as if that core is shining from another level of being entirely, just as the sun lights the earth yet is not of it.

Xmas St Faiths 059Where does it come from? How do they find it? There are many possible answers, depending upon your point of view. Perhaps it comes from being who you are meant to be… an acceptance of self that neither judges nor blames but accepts that this is who you are, without denying what you may have been or indeed what you could become. Maybe it springs from faith in the rightness of the moment, good or bad, or in a higher power or design whose plan we may not grasp but in which we know we can trust. Sometimes, I think it is born of the simple act of being the person you wish to meet in the mirror. Or simply being alive to the beauty in the world and its denizens.

Yet when you look at all of those, they all come down to the one thing… that joy is born of Love. Perhaps that was what was radiating from our angel in her wrinkled stockings, drawing an answering smile from our eyes and hearts and leaving a lasting impression of tenderness for the little old lady who shared with us a golden moment out of time…



The Triad of Albion is now Live on Amazon.


Don and Wen, two founding members of a new Esoteric School, meet to explore an ancient sacred site, as a prelude to the School’s opening event.
The new School is based upon a psychological, nine-fold, system and operates under the aegis of the Hawk of Horus.
The trip does not unfold as planned.
Instead, Don and Wen, apparently guided by a plethora of birds, embark upon a journey that will lead them through a maze of spiritual symbolism, to magical mysteries and the elusive figure of the ‘Ninth Knight’.
The Initiate is the story of a journey beyond the realms of our accustomed normality.
It is a true story told in a fictional manner.
In just such a way did the Bards of old hide in the legends and deeds of folk heroes, the deeper truths of existence for those ‘with eyes to see and ears to hear’.

“From heart to head a lay, from head to heart the way…”

Now imagine that the lens of the camera captures a magical light in soft blues and misty greens and gold. A light that seems to have no cause in physical reality. What would you do? If you were open to the possibility of deeper realities, perhaps you would wish to explore this strange phenomenon… something two people came to know as ‘sacred chromatography’.

As the veils thin and waver, time shifts and the present is peopled with shadowy figures of the past, weaving their tales through a quest for understanding and opening wide the doors of perception…

Available via Amazon UK,, and worldwide


26 thoughts on “Finding joy…”

  1. What a wonderful tale. And food for thought. I wish we’d met someone like that yesterday in the churches we visited. Makes me want to visit some more, just in case…


      1. You’re right, you don’t often meet anyone else. Surprisingly, we also met two very nice people in different churches yesterday, but sadly no angels!


          1. It is. We were at Hillesden when a lovely man came in with an insane but beautiful and very excited dog and we got talking to him. He’s the keeper of the keys and it turns out the year old puppy is training to be a medical detection dog. People do have some interesting stories to tell…


          2. Wow, that was lucky! I love the fragments of glass at the top of the clear windows that the locals pieced together after the civil war when it was all smashed out by Cromwell’s troops. Very evocative and quite poignant.


          3. The amazing thing is that so much of the St Nicholas window escaped! Especially when you see the holes from the musket balls still in the door…
            I did have to go back a few times, though, to get a decent picture of the ‘miracle’. The church no longer seems to publicise it, but it drew so many pilgrims in its day that I felt I had to pay my respects.


          4. Ah yes, the miracle! I could see it well yesterday, but alas the light was too dim by the time we were there so no photo for us either. The St Nicholas window is a bit of a miracle of its own too. It’s beautiful – and lucky! It’s a special church.


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