yourself for meditation in the usual way. When you are ready, visualise
yourself on a hillside. It is night, cold but clear. There is light
from the stars and the moon. Down below in the valley is a house. There
are lights at all the windows and the sound of festivities coming from
You go down
the hill, towards the house. You see group of people approaching the
door. They pause at the door, and sing a Christmas carol.
they come to the end of their song, they are invited inside. Through
the open door you see that there is a party in full swing. A roaring
fire in the grate, lots of good food and drink, and children playing
happily with their new toys, around a brightly decorated Christmas tree.
feel that you would be made welcome if you were to go inside, but you
do not linger; there is much more for you to see tonight.
journey on, through woods and fields and across a river and now, in
front of you, you see a great medieval castle. The gates are open wide,
the guards standing by, watching you with idle curiosity as you pass
through the gates into the courtyard.
There is a crowd of people
here, laughing and joking and watching some tumblers perform. Several
wild boars are being roasted on spits over open fires; nature's gift of
food to the hunter, in this season of bare fields and hedgerows. Wine
and beer are being served from booths at the side walls of the castle.
There is a general atmosphere of rejoicing and merriment.
warm yourself near one of the fires, for the night is still chilly.
Someone offers you a goblet of wine, which you gratefully accept.
continue to enjoy the warmth and the entertainment for a while, then
something catches your eye at an upper window. Someone is looking out.
He is not wearing regal vestments; nevertheless, from his appearance
and demeanour, you know that he is the King. He is looking out over the
castle walls towards the forest.
The face at the window
disappears, the next you see of the King is in a doorway at the base of
the main castle building. The King summons a page, talks animatedly to
him for a few moments, and the page hurries off.
After a few
minutes, you see the page come back to where the King is waiting. He is
carrying a large sack of food and a bundle of firewood. He and the King
slip quietly out through the castle gate, unnoticed by the crowd - but
you follow them.
You follow them for quite a long distance,
across wintry fields, to the edge of the forest. There is a small shack
here. The King and the page go inside.
You go closer and look
through the window. There is an old peasant man inside; he seems
nervous at first, but the King soon puts him at his ease and all three
sit down to enjoy a feast together.
You move on again, into the
forest now. It is very still and quiet in the forest, and a little less
cold because you are sheltered from the wind.
Touch one of the
trees; embrace it. It feels still, cold, and lifeless at first; but no:
perhaps not quite; deep, deep down in the roots of the tree, far under
the earth, you fell the glimmer of a warming current of energy. Draw
the energy up to yourself; feel it flowing up the trunk of the tree and
into your body, warming and vivifying. Enjoy the pleasant warmth as the
energy fills your being and flows around to every part of your body.
the tree now, taking some of the energy with you. The tree looks dark
and still, just as before, but you sense the new life beginning to stir
in it as you walk away.
You leave the forest and find yourself
in an open field. The sky is bright and starry. There are three men, in
rough clothing, walking ahead of you. One of them is carrying a young
lamb. You follow them.
You follow them for some distance, and
enter a village, busy with people. Unhesitatingly, they head for a
small stable in the yard of an inn - and there, lying in the straw of a
manger, is a tiny baby, his mother and father watching him intently.
man carrying the lamb goes in and, with some shyness, offers it to the
mother as a gift for the child; it is graciously accepted.
few days time kings will come here, bearing rich gifts, but gifts that
they can well afford. How much more valuable is this gift of one lamb,
which to the shepherd is his livelihood. That is how important he
believes this child to be.
For you see, what you give to this
child is not a gift for this one individual alone, but a gift that will
return again, to the benefit of the whole of mankind.
this, what would you give? Will you give just a little of the winter
energy that you have just absorbed, knowing that it will revivify and
vitalise the whole of the human race? Will you?
The child seems
to understand your mind and looks at you with the knowing look that you
will often see on the face of a newborn child, who has not yet become
too attached to what we as adults call "the ways of the world". For
make no mistake, this is a very human child that you are looking at,
pride and joy of his mother and cherished just as much as any other
Take this thought with you as, quietly and without fuss, you leave the stable.
Find a secluded spot, away from other people's gaze, and go over in your mind all the things that you have seen tonight.
still for a few moments; then, finally, return to objective reality, in
the place and the time where you started your meditation. Put your
consciousness in the centre of your head, just behind your eyes; and
when you are ready, open your eyes