Tag Archives: magic in Australia

CloudCatcher 2017 Community Path Day 3

It’s day 3 of Path and I am feeling a lot lighter. Last night I spoke to Gwydion about some of my concerns and I gained a great deal of ease through his response. I think what I really learned is key to this Pentacle of Community. I suspect that in the past I may have sat with my misgivings and allowed them to bubble and even ruin my experience. Everything I have learned about group work has taught me to speak up and to bring myself forward. That the teachings of this pentacle support and encourage this through well thought out techniques and models has been demonstrated in how Gwydion responded to my concerns. I feel safer and more held within the container having had my concerns expressed and responded to.

The pentacle point of Common Good was one of the primary teachings for today and we unpacked and played with 3 major techniques that we use in Reclaiming to support the good of all of us. The first of these is Consensus Decision Making. As we looked at this tool a lot of memories flooded back to me because In the 80s I was involved in a housing co-op for about 5 years, working from its inception to planning, lobbying, gaining funding and so on. We used the Consensus model and all trained in it to use it as best practice. I clearly remembered big long meetings on sticky points of difference facilitated by experienced practitioners. The feeling of nursing a community through big differences of opinion and out the other side to consensus was deepening for us as a community. It was beautiful to have this memory provoked and I am planning to look for classes on Consensus Decision Making as it was once a real passion for me.

We also explored the Principles of Unity and I really get how for Reclaiming witches this is a sacred text. The PoU is a remarkable document and one that I have on my altar to constantly remind me of the deep thought gone into this tradition.

In order to examine another aspect of the point of Common Good we played with some small group exercises using core concepts of Non Violent Communication. The practice allowed us to move from a story we currently had going on in our lives to seeing into what our need actually was. So, as I told a story about how my partner’s move to Alice Springs is affecting me, group members listened and then selected what needs they thought I might have. They chose security, trust and consideration and these all resonated with me. Getting down to these needs allowed me to feel much more deeply what is going on for me and to feel truly seen and heard.

We began the transition into the point of Power today with a role playing game called Werewolves. It is kind of like ‘Murder in the Dark’ but with a few more twists. It is amazing just how ruthless we can get to stay ‘in the game’! My fellow werewolf sold me out to the villagers to stay alive and there was nothing I could say to stop from being lynched. It was an incredible reflection of how easily voices are taken away when blame is laid or untruths are told, not dissimilar to how our society works at all.

CloudCatcher 2016 Day 4 – Labyrinth Path

Today was bitter-sweet as it was the last session of the Labyrinth Path- WitchCamp is drawing to a close. At the second night ritual we had drunk a sweet potion, filled with beautiful herbs, which had not been finished. We each took a small amount of it this morning, and poured it out onto the land as an offering of gratitude to the Fae and all spirits of place, before dismantling and closing the Faery Gate.

We removed the threshold first, with love and care, before slowly unravelling the adornments, and dismantling the structural pieces. Many of us kept the pieces of ribbon and twine that had been used for the gate for our ongoing work with our allies. We then changed the path of the labyrinth back to its’ original form- the 7 Path, Minoan Labyrinth.

 “We journey the labyrinth in meditative silence. In this silence we listen to the voice of our soul, the voice of the land.” (Path Intent)

We had the opportunity to walk through the labyrinth individually a last time; I felt slightly melancholy, not wanting to give up this beautiful creation that offered so much, but encouraged by these feelings to work with the power of Labyrinths more often in my practice.  I stopped in the centre of the labyrinth and had a moment with the altar, reflecting on the past for days, and feeling thankful. As I walked the path back out again, I looked to the future- bubbling with excitement for the creation of the next labyrinth, whenever that may be, and for my ongoing relationship with the Fae.

 “We journey the labyrinth in community. Together we forge the path of conscious truth. Together we weave our magic.” (Day 4 Intent)

We then held hands and walked the labyrinth as a whole group, eyes open- seeing each other, in meditative silence; Listening to the voices of our souls and the soul of the land.

 

CloudCatcher 2016 Day 2 – Labyrinth Path

Paul lead us through a mindfulness exercise using the five (or six) senses, which we then continued on our own- walking around nature. Beginning by grounding and focusing on breath, we then honed in on each of our five senses, one at a time. There was then the invitation to open to a sixth sense, and walk around the camp grounds and potentially perceive any entanglement of our human and Fae worlds. I am very familiar with this exercise, as I do it several times a day to ground myself. It’s practical and kinaesthetic for me personally, as I find physical things ground me a lot more effectively than methods such as visualisation. I found it very different to use this method to open up my minds’ eye and explore my edges of reality. I declined the invitation to do so, but was able to enjoy seeing, feeling, hearing and smelling the world from a deeply centred place of deep appreciation.

“We step into the wisdom and enchantment of the land, and open to a Fae ally” (Day 2 Intent)

The second part was a trance journey, through a faery gate, into the Fae lands, with the aim of make contact with the Fae ally or lover we met during the last night’s ritual.

I held some self-doubt and reservation as to whether I would be able to make contact with the same  being I had encountered last night during the group ritual, but expectations were surpassed as I was met with not only the being from last night, but by another too! One being climbed with me up an enormous tree- holding me, should I feel afraid of falling, yet laughing joyfully, all the while. Close to the top, they showed me the view proudly; Greenery as far as the eye could see, a huge river running through the land, breaking off into smaller streams, with large rocks and several carvings spattered throughout the landscape. I seemed to remember the place well.

Having made our way down and back to the other being, I asked if we could restore our relationship, inquiring as to what I would and could do personally to make it a reality. It seemed too formal to them- a laughable question. I just have to do what I was doing before, when we did have a strong connection; Create daisy chains, race leaves down streams, walk and skip though nature! I doubted whether that was going to be enough, but was only met with the reminder to find joy, simplicity and healing in these small, but wonderful things. I do believe that the more I, and everyone, can find beautiful, child-like, joy and gratitude in the simplest of things, the better the world would be- What a wonderful place to start!

The practical, physical, magic we weaved together today was a Faery gate on the other side of the Labyrinth we created yesterday- opposite to where we currently walk in. We all gathered different supplies and worked together to form them into this beautiful, shimmery, mystical portal- Charging it with a symphony of natural sound. Again, this practical, hands-on, type of work was my favourite. Using fallen branches to create the archway, wood, ash and petals for the threshold, and colourful strings and ribbons for decoration and tying beautiful flowers to the sticks; I couldn’t have even imagined how beautifully this Faery gate would manifest!