2010 Dun Keri 500 stirring


Well … this is a whole other way of stirring Prep 500.

We trekked up to the top of Dunkery Beacon, the highest point on Exmoor and did a 500 stirring for the moor.

Normally, in biodynamics, one does a stirring for one’s own land, garden, farm, not for a whole moor but we were definitely called to this. It was a fascinating experience.

Before we began the walk 2 of us went to get the water for the stirring from the stream at Dunkery Gate, the White Lady wanted her own water to be used.


Fiona getting the water from Dunkery Gate stream


We began our walk up Dun Keri from Porlock Post. The White Lady – one of Ceridwen’s titles – challenged us at the beginning of the path asking us why we want to go up there and what our purpose was. The White Lady is very scary, however experienced you are, and I’ve been doing shaman work for 50-odd years, you are shaken and must needs answer true. The answer comes direct from your heart, not your scheming mind, and is often a humbling experience. Mine, that day, certainly was.

We each went up individually, in our own space, not with each other and not chatting but holding our focus to the purpose we had stated to the White Lady.

She had also given each of us a task, the same task, to “get our shit together”.

Prep 500 is made of manure prepared inside a cow’s horn over the winter months. It is then given to the land after an hour’s stirring, making the widdershins/deosil vortex and allowing the chaos moment that comes when you change the stirring direction to enable the star energies to come into the water, which is then given to the land. So, each of us spending the vigil-quest-walk time getting our own shit together was very pertinent to the job.

When you’re told to get your shit together it tends to flummox many folk … what is my shit? What is pertinent to the moment? How do I get it together? How to I symbolise this? How will I show the White Lady I have done the task when I get to the top?

To answer these questions, and so do the work, means staying focused and working hard on yourself. The walk took a long time and no time at all in consequence.

We got to the top and I discovered, from the White Lady’s representative, that some of us were a bit short of shit! Fortunately, I’d collected quite a lot and was able to offer it in help for them as hadn’t got all their shit together. One person had been collecting rubbish – crisp packets, empty cans, the usual garbage lazy people drop thoughtlessly in beautiful places. This was, of course, a very acceptable offering to the White Lady, showing care and sympathy and, most of all, service work, work not about “me” but about caring for the Earth of whom the White Lady is one of the goddess-faces.

We got up to the top and set up stirring. It was very cold and windy but you could see for miles, right over to the Welsh coast and even the Brecons beyond. While we were stirring a man came up and asked me what we were doing … so I told him J. He was very polite, not jeering at all, and told me he was a physicist … this was a good handle for me to start him off with. I managed to give him an idea of what the stirring does, mentioning colloids and 80 yrs of research experience, along with my own experience of it improving my garden. I also talked about things like electricity, not knowing “why” it worked but being quite happy to press a switch to turn the kettle or the light on. He seemed happy and  gave him references to look up when he got home.

You know, Otherworld never misses a trick! There he was, there we were, there I was, so they got us together to spread the word in a gentle and easy fashion. I always find it scary when this happens but, as long as I call on the Gang to give me the right words for the person, time and place it always seems to work.

At the end of the hour we then had to spray the 500 onto the ground. We’d made heather brushes t do this with and ran about the site looking completely nuts and causing lots of good-natured laughter … another good point, i.e. it’s OK to be nuts if you’re friendly J. Nobody minded and a couple more people asked about what we were doing.

Dunkery Beacon has a cairn at its peak, a mini-mountain like a nipple at the point of Ceridwen’s breast. The others climbed up the cairn with brushes and bucket and spread the last quarter of the 500 out around the mountain peak. It was a very lovely and joyous moment. We’ll do it again next year.

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