I was minding my own business when he showed up again. On the tour bus heading to Blarney Castle in Ireland, I closed my eyes to catch a few minutes of meditation during this busy, tourist-spot heavy bus tour. He popped into my meditation space.
“I’m back!” Teacher said.
Shaking my head, I questioned this awkward intrusion into the otherwise peaceful world where I like to spend my free time. I mean, it’s not that I didn’t want to see him again. I’ve been begging for him to come back to me, but I knew this was going to be a quick visit. I wanted more.
“Why are you here now?”
He smiled that wickedly funny smile of his and changed. Suddenly, he’s dressed like a leprechaun, only a heck-load taller. Green hat and top coat and trousers. Green and white striped socks. All that was missing was the ginger beard.
“You be havin’ to kiss the Blarney stone, don’t you know?”
My questions came too late. Just as quickly as he appeared, he was gone. Kiss the Blarney stone? I hadn’t really thought about it. I’d heard passing comments about the old legend, but it was just a story, I thought. Suddenly, it was an order.
Kissing the stone, set in a wall below the battlements of Ireland’s Blarney Castle, is said to bless the person with the eternal gift of eloquence. Legendary lips, including those of politicians and writers, have touched the cool surface.
It’s not an easy task Teacher set out for me. To finally place my lips on the spot where thousands of others have been, I needed to climb narrow, winding steps to reach the castle’s peak. Once there, a white-haired volunteer took my glasses, directing me to lie on my back and grab the bars set on either side. Then I inched back and lowered my head until my lips were confronted with the stone that seemed cool and smooth to me.
Only afterward did I even consider the implied dangers that might stop others. In addition to the sundried list of issues someone may have with placing their lips on a germ-filled stone, in order to fit under the wall, I had to release my inhibitions and allow myself to be guided to the right spot. I had to have faith that I was in no danger and that this would be fine.
I had faith that Teacher was guiding me to where I needed to be. Only guessing at the reason, I supposed he wanted me to use the gift of eloquence to write this blog or the books I know are tickling at my fingertips. I’ll give it a shot, I thought.
And when I did and came up, I knew the magic was working to at least give me a sense of euphoria.
The legend of the stone, at least one of the stories, says the original stone was Jacob’s Pillow, brought to the island by the prophet Jeremiah. It became an oracle of sorts to Irish kings, similar to Harry Potter’s sorting hat for kings. Other stories place it as the deathbed pillow of St. Columba and the Crusade’s “Stone of Ezel.” The legend I choose to believe is the one that claims a witch revealed its power to the MacCarthy clan.
The magic it holds, though, is its ability to get me to release all my doubts and trust in the guidance I had received. I still have problems with that.
I share this with you, readers, to admit that faith is not easy to accept. To have faith, you have to let go of everything you had expected and had dreamed of. Sometimes, that’s easy because the challenge is simple and part of your plan. At other times, the challenge goes against everything you had known before.
Those are the hardest.
I only hope the challenges that follow will be as easy to accept as this one was.
Until next class, dear friends, I am, ever-faithfully,
The Dragonfly’s Student