Ley Lines


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Aerial view of Sainbury ley, which runs three and a half miles in the Cotswalds in Gloucestershire, England. Fortean Picture Library.

Ley Lines

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Scattered all over the world are stone monuments left by people who lived during what we now call the megalithic age, the age of stone building. No one doubts the existence of Stonehenge or the megaliths of Easter Island, the pyramids of Peru or the dolmans of Ireland. They are there for all to see. Scientists have even speculated about and perhaps demonstrated how they were built. The unanswered question remains not how were they built, but why.

Why did a stone-age people, in the midst of their daily struggle to survive, feel the need to move megaton boulders miles over the landscape, sometimes even importing stones across vast bodies of water, just because rocks of a particular size and color were not available locally?

Current theories say the structures served as calendars or astrological observatories. But there are much simpler ways to construct such things. And why were they often placed at specific locations when it would have been much easier to build where the materials were found? Also, why do buildings of significance to one religion tend to be built upon the holy sites of earlier religions?

It could very well be that the last person able to answer these questions was slaughtered by Julius Caesar (see Caesar, Julius) during his conquest of Gaul, when the indigenous religion of the Druids was wiped out. It could even be that the Druids arrived too late on the scene, the knowledge of the builders of the great monuments having already passed into obscurity.

But there are those living today who claim there is a geometry to holy places, a pattern to structures of England's Glastonbury Abbey and the rocks at Stonehenge. They believe this knowledge was known to the builders of the pyramids, to certain members of the first Freemason societies imported by King Solomon to build the Temple at Jerusalem, and to other ancient builders in tune with Earth rhythms. Those who believe this are called ley hunters, and they believe the earth either was or still is seamed through with lines of power, called ley lines. Where these lines intersect or rise close to the surface they can be detected, it is believed, by diviners (see Divination) and people attuned to the primitive forces that align our world. Whether they are naturally occurring fields of magnetic force, ancient rivers of glacial melt, or mystical veins of power is a matter of debate.

It is said that even people not in tune with ley lines can feel or intuit their power, a notion that explains why holy places remain holy. They "feel" sacred. Every year, thousands of modern Christians worship at the magnificent Cathedral of Chartres, unaware that they are standing upon the same ground where Druids once led sacrifices among the sacred oak groves of Gaul. And who has not entered a forest or climbed a mountain and felt, for a fleeting moment, an experience of reverence?

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Aerial view of Saintbury ley, Gloucestershire, looking south. Courtesy Paul Devereux/Fortean Picture Library.

Ley Lines

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Leys (pronounced "lays") is the term used to indicate ancient straight lines that connect natural points of power in the earth. In his book The Old Straight Track (1925), Alfred Watkins (1855-1935), an early photographer and inventor of the pinhole camera, showed that a vast network of straight lines crisscrossed Britain and aligned large numbers of ancient sites, earthworks, standing stones, and burial mounds. He also suggested that such ley lines existed in other parts of the world.

Many believe that the leys indicate the course of subtle earth energies. Where two or more leys cross is a power point that has, in the past, naturally drawn people to assemble or build structures such as standing stones, barrows, temples, and churches. Today, many people use dowsing rods to map out the ley lines. Janet and Colin Bord give several examples of leys, such as the Montgomery ley on the Welsh border. In just six miles it includes six sites: Offa's Dyke; Montgomery Church; Montgomery Castle; Hendomen, the motte and bailey castle predating the Norman castle; Forden Gaer, a Roman camp; and a half mile of straight road exactly along the ley. All are in an exact straight line. One major ley runs from Glastonbury Abbey in Somerset, through Stonehenge, and on to Canterbury Cathedral in Kent, which is more than 150 miles.

Ley Lines

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Leys (pronounced “lays”) is the term used to indicate ancient straight lines that connect natural points of power in the earth. In his book The Old Straight Track (1925), Alfred Watkins (1855–1935), an early photographer and inventor of the pinhole camera, showed that there was a vast network of straight lines crisscrossing Britain, aligning large numbers of ancient sites, earthworks, standing stones, burial mounds and the like. He also suggested there were such ley lines in other parts of the world.

Many believe that the leys indicate the course of subtle earth energies. Where two or more leys cross is a power point that has, in the past, naturally drawn people to assemble or build structures such as standing stones, barrows, temples and churches. Today many people use dowsing rods and pendulums to map out the ley lines. Janet and Colin Bord give several examples of leys, such as the Montgomery ley on the Welsh border. In just six miles it includes six sites: Offa’s Dyke; Montgomery Church; Montgomery Castle; Hendomen, the motte and bailey castle predating the Norman castle; Forden Gaer, a Roman camp; and a half mile of straight road exactly along the ley. All are in an exact straight line. One major ley runs from Glastonbury Abbey through Stone-henge and on to Canterbury Cathedral, over one hundred fifty miles from Somerset to Kent.

Sources:

Bord, Janet and Colin: Ancient Mysteries of Britain. London: Guild Publishing, 1986
Watkins, Alfred: The Old Straight Track. London: Methuen, 1925
References in periodicals archive ?
That's where the name came from and we're going to see if we can use our music to join up the cosmic ley lines.
Within seconds, the two rods had crossed, signalling a ley line outside local resident William Boyd's house.
There is some disagreement as to exactly what ley lines are, yet all agree they are lines," says Anthony, "and what is more they are straight lines.
Next time you see the man from your local water board with his kooky-looking divining rod or hear your friendly architect muttering enthusiastically about ley lines, be a little open minded and give credit where credit's due.
Specialist surveyor Gordon, who has a particular interest in medieval buildings explains: "The tower is built on the junction of two ley lines and has an incredible sense of peace.
But it says here that you could join ex-soldiers in the gym, take water divining lessons, hunt for your ley lines, learn to tango.
Sandra also revealed the site is popular with pagans because it is situated in the middle of a triangle where all the ley lines, ancient energy faults under the ground, converge.
I don't hold with crystal power or ley lines or anything but it's easier to believe that the pull of the planets might have something to do with our character or behaviour.
Founded by Tim Fielding (pictured right), who has mixed the latest Journeys compilation, Ley Lines, which hits the shops on November 3 and which he describes as "a mental trip to a musical Avalon.
Stirling University boss Ron reckons the many historical sites in the Circle have produced an intricate web of ley lines.
Alfred Watkins would no doubt have coughed nervously to see where his ley lines had been heading, but (as we all know) it is almost impossible to un-invent a theory.