Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Greatest Teacher

By C. LaRene Hall

In 2006, I visited the interesting English town, Glastonbury, which is located 125 miles west of London. It’s full of myth and legends, and has been a pilgrimage place for many years attracting travelers from all over the world. Some people believe that the greatest teacher of all time, Jesus Christ, with his uncle Joseph, once visited Glastonbury, and the Chalice Well, that is a timeless and sacred place. It’s full of legend, symbolism, and atmosphere, where history has no beginning. Christian mythology suggests this is where Joseph of Arimathea, placed the Holy Grail – the cup used by Christ at the Last Supper and later by Joseph to catch the blood of Jesus at the crucifixion.

I felt peace as I entered the garden, and walked up a cobblestone path under an archway of plants entwined around the gazebo. The well is a pure natural spring, rich in iron, that rises from deep in the ground. Its red water emerges for the first time directly from its source at the Lion’s Head, and flows down through the waterfalls and pools of the gardens to King Arthur’s Court. Some Christians say that this water represents the rusty iron nails used at the crucifixion. Others believe the water has healing power.

Throughout the garden are many wonderful old yew trees, standing as ancient sentinels. Usually they plant these trees in churchyards, but sometimes their presence provides the reason for the location of a church. In ancient tradition, the yew is a symbol of longevity and rebirth. There are several Holy Thorn trees in the garden, one is located above the Lion’s head, and a larger one is beside the Vesica Piscis pool. This famous tree descends from the original tree that sprouted from Joseph of Arimathea’s staff when he came to Glastonbury.

As you can guess, I didn’t want to leave because I felt total peace. I had left a hot almost unbearable street to come into this beautiful garden, and I hated the thought of leaving it behind. Now I know why many authors visit Glastonbury and this very garden to relax and write. I doubt I’ll ever get back there again, but I’m grateful for the memory, and wish I could return.

This ends my travel stories to places that many writers lived or visited frequently. However, I’m still telling other adventures I’ve taken on my personal blog at

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