Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 4 – Life and Death

I recently attended a workshop with The Silent Eye about Facing Our Fears, an extraordinary weekend spent among the hills and grey stone villages of the Peak District. It’s taken me a little while, as it usually does, to process everything that happened. Once again there was history and mystery, good company and tasty food, old friends greeted and new friends made. And, as always, revelations.This is part three of my account, parts one, two and three can be found here…

(Apologies for the slight delay between posts – I had a project that needed finishing and another that needed starting, so have been focusing on those for the past few days. However, let’s now head back to Derbyshire and the next stop on my journey…)

Saturday morning dawned bright and clear, another glorious day. I got up early, despite being tired from the previous afternoon’s events, as I’d arranged to meet Sue and Stu at 9am and wanted to take a quick look around Tideswell before doing so. Breakfast was downstairs in the small dining room, where I was watched over by a most curious onlooker. Hmmm.

Once I’d eaten, I headed out into the morning, taking the main street past the ancient (yet still venerated) spring, welling clear from a stone set there for the purpose. It was nice to see it marked in such a way when so many of the old springs and rivers have been lost or built over, all in the name of development. I continued past curving walls of grey stone, ending up outside the Church of St John the Baptist, which is known as the ‘cathedral of the Peak.’

It’s certainly a beautiful building – built between 1320 and 1400, it was thought to have replaced a smaller Norman church, and is a wonderful example of gothic architecture, with long windows and pointed arches, carved angels gesturing skywards. I stood and took it in for a moment, then recognised a couple of familiar figures emerging from a car nearby – Sue and Stu had apparently had the same idea I’d had, and so the three of us took the tree-lined avenue leading into the church.

I always enjoy looking around old churches (even the one in Eyam was interesting, despite the weight on my chest). I think about the layers of years in such places, the ceremonies of birth and life and death that have gone on beneath the vaulted ceilings, continuing a thread of human’s celebrating significant events that stretches long into our dim past.

The Church of St John the Baptist was a peaceful place, sun sparking through the stained-glass windows to scatter colour across the ancient stone floors, gilding the old carvings, and we spent a little while wandering around, taking it all in.

Both Sue and Stu were familiar with the building, and so were able to point out some of the more interesting details, such as a small dragon curled up above on one of the ceiling beams.

The richly carved pews, which put me in mind of some of the work at the Natural History Museum, featured green men and salamanders, flying foxes and even another small dragon, not the usual religious symbols you’d expect in such a place.

And, in front of the altar, a knight slept in effigy inside his tomb, pierced marble giving the viewer a peep into his eternal rest.

Then it was time to meet the others and head up towards the moors. We were going to a much older place of worship, one where an ancient tradition was still practiced today.

The Eagle Stone awaited…


Enjoyed this post? Want to read more? Find me on Twitter @AuthorHelenJFacebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Plus my latest book release, Under Stone (Ambeth Chronicles #4), is now available on Amazon. Visit my Amazon Author Page to see more.

34 thoughts on “Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 4 – Life and Death

  1. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 4 – Life and Death ~ Helen Jones – The Silent Eye

  2. Tideswell is a favourite place, and the church is worthy of far more time than we had to offer on this trip. The carvings are superb and we find something new with every visit 🙂

  3. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 4 – Life and Death ~ Helen Jones | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  4. Helen, you really have now activated my curiosity about how weird is weird 🙂 A nice little teaser, look forward to the next instalment. Love the detail in your photos!

    • Well, it was an interesting afternoon, and we had a very strange encounter at the end of the day 🙂 I’m writing it up as quickly as I can 🙂 And thank you – it’s such a beautiful place it’s easy to take nice photos x

  5. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 5 – Failure | Helen Jones

  6. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 5 – Failure ~ Helen Jones – The Silent Eye

  7. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 5 – Failure ~ Helen Jones | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  8. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 6 – Release | Helen Jones

  9. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 6 – Release ~ Helen Jones – The Silent Eye

  10. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 6 – Release ~ Helen Jones | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  11. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 7 – Fear Itself | Helen Jones

  12. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 7 – Fear Itself ~ Helen Jones – The Silent Eye

  13. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 7 – Fear Itself ~ Helen Jones | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  14. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 8 – Weird | Helen Jones

  15. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 8 – Weird | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

  16. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 9 – Heights | Helen Jones

  17. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 9 – Heights ~ Helen Jones – The Silent Eye

  18. Pingback: Facing Fear With The Silent Eye, Part 9 – Heights ~ Helen Jones | Sue Vincent's Daily Echo

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