Practicing Druid, Philip Carr-Gomm, joined Ian to talk about his life as a Druid and the magical world of England. He traced his evolution within Druidry back to his teenage years when he first began studying under an old Druidic chief. He explained that the main focus of training within Druidry is to "open you up to the potential that you have within you." Eventually joining the man's Order, Carr-Gomm would go on to become the chief of the group after his mentor died in 1988. Nine years later, he was contacted by his deceased mentor via a series of lucid dreams which contained profound synchronicities that revealed themselves over the following year.
On why England has been a hotbed for magical activity throughout the ages, Carr-Gomm offered a variety of reasons. From an esoteric point of view, he noted that the island has had a magical reputation dating back to Julius Caesar's writings. In addition to that, Carr-Gomm pointed out that it also has a "secret history" of magical figures, such as John Dee, who are fleetingly revealed to be major players behind the political powers-that-be. From a sociological perspective, Carr-Gomm observed that as the British empire grew, it fanned out around the world, and, as its native denizens returned home, they brought with them many magical traditions and secrets from the realms they explored. He also credited the British culture, which celebrates eccentric personalities, as well as the expanse of the English language as reasons "which might explain why it has become a crucible for these magical traditions."
Carr-Gomm also shared an introductory lesson in what he called the "psychological side" of magical skills. During difficult or tense situations, such as an encounter with a surly waiter or an upset spouse, he suggested that one imagines that they are wearing a pair of "magical bifocals." These glasses, he said, allow the wearer to still see a person's aggressive behavior, but "when you move your vision up, you see the divine part of them. You see them as a radiant soul, as who they really are." From there, he advised that one should pause, and then simply smile at them, be warm to them, and "connect at that level with them." This methodology, Carr-Gomm said, shifts us from being reactionary or "fear-based" and, instead, creates a connection that allows us to "work out of a place of trust." Ultimately, this simple technique encapsulates one level of magic, which Carr-Gomm described as "a way of transforming ourselves, a kind of technology of personal change."
During the first half hour, researcher James Chiles discussed an odd photo he took, which shows a "brief atmospheric anomaly." A self-described "cloud chaser," Chiles said that he's been photographing the sky, as a hobby, for the last three years and stumbled upon this picture while evaluating his archive of photos. While he likened the anomaly to some kind of "plasma ring" and mused that it could be "a lucky shot of a new phenomena," Chiles was also open to other interpretations, noting that the image constitutes a "tabula rasa," where the viewer can impose their own interpretations of what is in the picture.
Saturday's first hour guest, James Chiles, discussed this photo of a brief atmospheric anomaly that was visible at midday, June 2009, in Minnesota.
The skyline in Taichung, Taiwan will soon feature a breathtaking new tower that is designed to resemble a tree. While the interior of the building will feature a museum, restaurants, and an urban park, it's the eight external elevating observatory 'leaves' which provide the tower with its name: "Floating Observatories." Construction is scheduled to begin in 2012 with an eye on 2014 for the grand opening of the remarkable structure. More on the story, including additional conceptual images of the tower, at PhysOrg.
Bumper music from Saturday November 20, 2010