Friday, November 21, 2008

(2) Serpentine Summers

Though I was working at the Serpent Mound during the very
earliest outcropping of the New Age Movement, there were
much older mystics wandering in our territory. Some felt that
the Serpent Mound implies something cosmic. For example,
perhaps the Indians built this mound because of some sort
of cosmic event; i.e., an asteroid, a comet streaking across
the sky.

It has to be said that, yes, the Serpent Mound was built to be
seen from the sky! (It's hard to take it all in as seen from the
ground.) This led to the idea that this mound was a response
to alien visitations. Perhaps it was a symbol of worship or
communication directed towards these aliens?

No kidding, but I met one couple who claimed they could
access visions of their past lives when visiting the Serpent
Mound. The one day they talked to me, they said they could
see themselves as an ancient Egyptian priest and priestess.
All this, while standing near the Serpent!

As for myself, considering the other effigy mounds built by the
Mississippian Culture, I suspected that these were giving honor
to or placating their spirit animals. Maybe the Serpent Mound
simply represented a spirit animal. Still this consideration later
would behoove me to dip into American Indian symbolism,
when it came to these animals.

But when you are working at a public parkland or monument,
well I learned early on that one has to respect visitor responses--
unless they are criminal. I had to attend to a person's interest
whether she was a scientist, whether he was a mystic. Still,
it was important somehow to remain rational.

Nonetheless, I had to wonder why so many people found such
mystical or spiritual satisfaction from sites like the Serpent Mound.
At the time I was working there, I wasn't very religious--much less
spiritual. Just a young guy following an interest in the American
Indian. It's just that I wasn't very far along at this point, I guess.
Maybe I should have considered that special day--years ago--
when I had my own psychic vision, if you will. I had never forgot
it, but much of the time I put this vision on a back burner--not even
giving it credit for initially prompting me to begin my fledgling
investigations about the American Indian.

But then it happened--again! Towards the end of my second
summer at the Serpent Mound, I had another vision. I had
been able to extend my internship for an additional summer.
By the time of summer's end, I had collected a lot more information
about the Mississippian Culture.

Fascinating, for me, were the pictorial illustrations I came across
that depicted some of the Mississippian sites. In some cases there
were temple mounds, platform mounds, and plazas. They almost
seemed reminiscent of Mesoamerican sites, such as those of the
Aztecs and the Maya!

In the midst of my studying the Mississippian Culture, one late
afternoon--after the visitors had left--I decided to take a short walk.
Eventually I sat down near the mound, just relaxing, when suddenly
I saw an Indian standing atop the Serpent. Fully formed, dressed
like a Mississippian priest, yet the face was that of the "same"
ancient Indian I saw when a boy. He said "Return to your

Again I had to wonder whether I might have dozed-off. It didn't
seem so. I felt the vision was real. Though startled, basically I
was not frightened. Deep inside, I decided to take these visions
seriously. That night, in my room, I began to think that maybe this
ancient Indian was a guide--my guide? I couldn't think why I was
experiencing these visions, but there they were. Two now. The
first message seemed to convey "get off the grass." And this recent
second message pretty much told me to "go home."

Well okay! But I had to complete my senior year at the university
before I could return to my mountains.

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