Ancient forest tales: Forgotten legend of the Place of Magical Power
In the wilderness of the strict nature reserve, in the central part of Białowieża Forest, a stone circle was discovered
a few years ago. The trees there, especially oaks, growing in the vicinity of the circle, differ significantly in appearance from other trees in the area.
Most of the trees near the circle grow in the form of several shoots. They are growing just above the ground with two, three, or even more trunks. While such types of trees elsewhere in the Białowieża Forest would be rather unique, it seems to be the rule here.
What is interesting is that the stone circle is surrounded by
a natural glade overgrown with hawthorn bushes, which, for unknown reasons, the forest does not enter.
Water diviners and geomancy practitioners know that a special kind of positive energy occurs here. In these very places my ancient Slavic ancestors in the pre-Christian era, performed animistic rituals.
The stone circle involves a legend.
A long time ago, when vast herds of aurochs roamed the forest, and oak branches reached heaven, a powerful god with four faces ruled the Białowieża land. His name was Lasowid (from Polish: las – forest and widzieć – to watch). Unlike the Greek gods, who spent most of their time in the sky, Lasowid preferred the surrounding forests and streams.
One moonlit night, Lasowid saw a very alluring nymph at one of the many fountains in the forest.
It is worth mentionioning that one of the nearby villages carries her name nowadays – Czerlanka.The fruit of a short,
yet turbulent romance between Lasowid and Czerlanka, was their son Wisz (pron. Veesh),
who grew into a big strong man of unbridled ambition.
Soon after Wisz was born, his father disappeared.
In these times, in the woods, there lived an old witch. And as everyone knows, a lot of conditions must be met to make the performance of witchcraft possible. One of them is to know special places that define themselves as the places of power.
There, the Mother Earth gives insiders a special force that purifies the mind, allowing them to feed the energy that runs directly from the Primeval Spring.
During her wandering around the forest, the witch found at least one of those places that are today called ‘chakras of the earth’. Being an old woman, and thus with the senses somewhat worsened by age, to benefit fully from this great fount of energy, she needed something even more magical.
To construct the required buildings, she needed large stones extracted from the deepest lake. And this is where Wisz enters the story again. Using the forestry agency’s mail service or the jays, she proposed to the son of the forest god a seemingly favorable deal: he will provide the huge stones from the bottom of the lake Hańcza to build a magic circle, and she will give him the secret knowledge that will allow him to dethrone his father.
The problem was that the witch did not have such knowledge.
Wisz fulfilled his task in just one night. It was a special night, the spring solstice, during which all witchcraft is celebrated a lot more easily and pleasantly than during a usual night.
When the stone circle was ready and the moon was full, the disloyal woman kindled a great fire and demanded Wisz to sit inside the new forest temple.
Uttering some strong Slavic spell, she turned him into a stone, which can still be admired today right in the centre of the circle.
The chronicles stay silent about the further fate of the witch. Perhaps the reason is that the written word was then unknown and perhaps, it’s because all the texts of all the old religions were burnt with the arrival of the new one (Christianity). Rumour, however, says that the muscular Wisz will wake up from centuries of slumber only when the Białowieża area will again be ruled by those who submit their own interests for the common good of other people.
I visit the Białowieża Forest at least twice a year, spending an hour or two in the Place of Magical Power. I find it difficult to determine whether I am surrounded by good spirits of my ancestors there, but one thing I can say for sure – the power of nature there is overwhelming. If you choose to have a lonely trek through primeval forest, where you can hear the sound of a falling leaf, before you get to meet with Wisz, your mind and heart will gain peace, like nowhere else.
The last primeval forest in Europe is home to countless species of plants and animals, including Europe’s largest land mammal, the European bison (żubr). It is a magical place untouched by man, which every traveler touring Eastern Poland must visit.