The White Spring – The Wounded Masculine and Seeking Balance

We had beautifully lit the well house with candles and tea-lights by the time a large group of Spanish people arrived at 7.30pm on a cool March evening. I met the teacher outside where she gave me a gift and introduced us to the group. Max and I stood by the door ready to welcome them in and the group gathered all around. The English-speaking teacher talked to them about the White Spring then paused for every word to be translated into Spanish.

First she spoke of ‘The Wounded Masculine,’ and told them that, for a time, the site had been dominated by this vibration. Other people have told me that they felt the same.

Before the sanctuary was renovated, there were often drunken and confrontational males at the site. Some people still associate the place with that kind of energy and, as a consequence, they avoid visiting. I am told that in the past, years before I moved to Glastonbury, this was a serious problem. There would be fights, arguments and cars could be damaged.

Since we moved here and joined the Spring in 2007, we have had people arrive for healing who appear to be quite damaged. Sometimes they hang around for a while and this can become quite intimidating, especially if they become confrontational when asked to respect other visitors. Occasionally there are drunken people who don’t really monitor their own behaviour, and although we can encourage them to be respectful when we are there, we cannot be there 24/7. So when the place is closed there is little we can do about it. So I can see why people associate this place with the archetype of the ‘wounded masculine’

We are quite tolerant, have had infinite patience with some individuals, and understand that if people have the space they need to heal, then they receive the cleansing they need from the place. So we extend our compassion and avoid moving people on unless they are being abusive to others. This has meant that we sometimes get flack and criticism from both ‘sensitive visitors’ who feel we are not doing enough to stop this kind of thing, and the people who want to behave as they want to without any consideration of others. Between a rock and a hard place is a cliché that comes to mind.

I can see where the teacher who had brought the group had got this idea of the ‘Wounded Masculine’ archetype from and there was some truth in it. I must remark that this dynamic is not exclusive to men and we have had a few women also being confrontational.

We are in a challenging situation. Max and I would rather talk to people who have been causing problems than let others in the team risk confrontation, so I guess we are seen as the rule makers. This means that some people will take against us as symbols of authority. Though, always we find that the more love we put into the place the more it is reflected back, and as a consequence, there has been less and less trouble over the years.

The teacher went on to say that Max and I were Guardians of the place and told them how we were responsible for restoring balance to this sacred space, how we care for the Spring through our love of the waters and of the land.

Although I could resonate with what she said and agreed somewhat. I did not feel that Max and I were wholly responsible for the shift that had happened there. We were merely a part of the puzzle that formed the bigger picture. Neither did I feel I could take on the title of Guardian. The White Spring has its own natural Guardians. We are just keepers of the space, current custodians as transient as the water, yet here right now; taking care of it.

The group all had been told to bring a candle with them for the White Spring. They had thought it was to help them see in the darkness of the cave-like building. Their teacher, however, had other ideas. She told them to hand their candles to us so that they can lend their light to the transformation that is happening here. It was a beautiful gesture. They all filed through the doorway, handing over their candles with a blessing. Once they were all in, we went to the Tor to look at the stars; it was a wonderful and clear evening and we stayed there star-gazing for an hour before going back to lock up the well house.

Now this comment that the teacher made about restoring balance had jarred with me and I continued to think about it. Yes there have been improvements at the White Spring, there are less incidents or expressions of the ‘ Wounded Masculine’ … and the ‘Wounded Feminine’ for that matter.

Is it possible that because men and women behave differently when they feel wounded that the expression is more obvious in the masculine? Perhaps there are just wounded people seeking balance?

So, can this elusive balance be found? Will it fix the broken bits of us and move us to a place beyond the wounding? I wonder.

As equinox approached, I looked to the places where it may be found … in myself, in nature, in others and in my environment. I found harmony, duality, parity, proportion, symmetry … projections and reflections of equilibrium. Balance itself seemed to be a transient thing. It can mark a moment in time, like the Equinox where day and night are the same, but it is fleeting. Everything is in flux – moving, growing, changing. The one constant we can rely on is change. So where is this balance and why do we seek it? Does it not mean stagnation … for if we did achieve and manage to maintain perfect balance, where would the impulse for movement come from? Scales with the same weight on each side, remain still, movement only occurs when we add or remove something from either side.

We met in the courtyard on the day of the Vernal Equinox to mark the turning of the season. It was a beautiful gathering and there was a large group there. We shared stories and poems and thoughts about the world.

I talked about this elusive balance. I suggested that it was a myth. This transient, ever flowing dance of life … always in flux, ever-changing. This reveals a paradox that I have often felt in the past, when the times and tides of Equinoxes seem to reflect to me where I am so out of balance. I proposed that perhaps instead of seeking balance, we seek to go with the flow. To dance on the ebbs and tides of life, moving through our wounded places(masculine or feminine), to a place where harmony is reached. A sacred synergy of life flowing together, not seeking or grasping an illusory concept, simply surrendering to the flow.

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