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Archive for Thursday 28th November 2002 - The island of mysteries

Why is Britain is known to the rest of the world as the “island of mysteries”?

Every summer, young romantics flock here from all over the continent, attracted by the strangeness of this land. To them, it is the home of King Arthur, of ancient legends and monuments, of UFOs and of crop circles. As one such visitor recently said, it is “The Tibet of Europe”.

It was always like that. In ancient times, the chiefs and nobles of Europe sent their children to study at our Celtic colleges. In Britain and Ireland were the most learned teachers - initiators into the deepest Mysteries. In these colleges the light of wisdom was preserved throughout the Dark Ages. And from them came the Celtic and Anglo-Saxon missionaries who brought spiritual knowledge back to Europe in the 7th century.

Someone told me that Prince Charles once asked an Indian mystic, What is the destiny of Britain? The sage replied, To be the spiritual leader of the world. That is certainly how our country was seen by our national prophet, William Blake, who was born this day in 1757. Every nation, he said, should become aware of its high traditions, and we should work together to attract paradise down to earth.

Blake's national pride was no kind of stupid chauvinism. Every country has its part to play in the ideal scheme of things. Ours is an important role indeed – a point we should perhaps remember, next time we are tempted to complain that things are going downhill around here. It may be so… but we still live in a very special part of the world.

John Michell

If you have a favourite mystery subject - from spontaneous human combustion to ancient Celtic ritual sites, write to John, suggesting a theme. And if you have any answers or theories about the mysteries John will be highlighting, he would particularly like to hear from you.

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John Michell is a prolific author. Below are just two of John's books which might interest you. We have arranged with our friends at The Daily Mirror for website visitors to order books mentioned on this site.

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Unexplained Phenomena, A Rough Guide Special
(co-author Bob Rickard, rrp £12.99) at the special Mirror Direct price of £9.99 + p&p.
Who Wrote Shakespeare?
(Thames & Hudson, rrp £8.95) for the Mirror Direct special price of £6.95 + p&p.
Call 0870 165 8587

John Michell Mysteries


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