My Awakening to the Sacred Feminine – Scotland 1996
My Awakening to the Sacred Feminine
in the Braes of Balquidder Scotland 1996
In 1996 I attended a workshop that had life changing consequences for me in awakening to the Sacred Feminine. I did not know it at the time, in fact, I left the workshop rather bemused by the circular wheels that were used. When I spoke to the tutor at the end I remember saying that I did not quite get it, and yet I feel I had just encountered something rather special. He smiled enigmatically at me and told me he had felt much the same during his first encounter with this way. There was a conspiratorial air to his reply. The topic was about leading change through what he called a blend of ancient Earth Wisdom and leading edge Management Science. As I was leaving he handed me a small flyer and said that his ‘Earth Wisdom Teachers’ were coming to Scotland and I might like to attend one of their ceremonies.
My husband David and I love indigenous cultures and we had a chat about the brochure and thought it looked interesting. We were about to get married and decided we had enough on our plate and so decided not to attend. A few days later David came home with the same flyer called Maps of Balance. He had attended a seminar on water dowsing and over lunch the workshop tutor handed the very same brochure out to the attendees saying ‘very special’ people were coming to Scotland from California . At supper that night we mused over whether we should attend, it felt like a message was coming to us. We agreed I would look into it what was involved.
I remember speaking to a wonderful lady who told me about the Ehama Institute holding, what she called a body of ancient Earth Wisdom called The Origin Teachings of the Delicate Lodge. The Teachers were called RainbowHawk and WindEagle and she was sure I would really enjoy the weekend ceremony. She told me there would be an evening gathering at the Quaker Meeting House in Edinburgh where I could meet the Teachers and learn more about their work so that I could decide if the weekend ‘ceremony’ was for me.
So I booked my place and got there rather frazzled after a busy day at work. On arrival, I was invited to find a seat, I looked around the room and there must have been about a hundred people there and we were at the full capacity. However, there was a fun energy in the room and the Ehama team did seem quite calm with a room seemed to be filled to overflowing. In the middle of the room there was a beautiful centre piece of candles, colour pieces of cloth woven in with lots of greenery and flowers. It was really eye catching.
Then, I saw WindEagle for the first time. She was wearing a full length turquoise dress that seemed to consist of a number of layers. She was carrying a large feather and a bowl of sage and was gently wafting the smoke as she walked around the room. I was immediately taken with the sense of stillness that she exuded and the way she was taking in the room, and smiling at people, without making really direct eye contact.
We were then invited to take out seats and the evening began. What I was struck by most during the evening was the connection I sensed between the Ehama team. They were peppered amongst the audience and I was aware of them looking at each other periodically and smiling. I liked them a lot and the overriding sense of the evening was this was an interesting group of people.
The first activity we were invited to do was to speak our name, where we had come from and briefly what had called us to the evening. I sensed a rippled of concern around the room. I was taken aback by this. Did we really have time to do this for everybody that was there? Surely we should just get started! As a workshop facilitator, I was attuned to timing and getting through the design and I would never have taken the time to do this with such a large group. It took over a hour to do this and I remember wondering if the team were at all concerned about the use of the time. I laugh as I look back at how little I knew about how this way would change my life.
Once everybody was introduced Rainbow Hawk stood up and moved to the centre of the room. He had and incredible presence, A small wiry man with long hair pleated down his back, piercing blue eyes and dressed in a rainbow coloured jacket and black trousers moving into full length UGG boots. Masculine energy just oozed from this man. He was stern, commanding and yet had this smile that just softened his face. He spoke about the challenges of living in the modern era and how, as humans, we are often are disconnected from conscious connection with the Earth. He stated that this lack of connection was at the root of many of the ills we experience as individuals and as communities. He spoke of tribal cultures in southern and northern America who lived on the land and who over thousand of years contemplated nature and captured its beauty and guidance into a body of Teachings called The Origin Teachings of the Delicate Lodge. My attention was held all the way through his presentation and I remember thinking that I hope I would be as vital when I reached his age.
WindEagle then stood up and moved to the centre of the room where she talked about how the Ehama Institute offered training in these Teachings. She introduced the team and spoke of how they had decided to visit Europe to offer ceremonies that would, in time, lead to a programme of training to be held in California. This evening was what they called a ‘Cornplanting’ and was a metaphor for planting seeds in the consciousness of people who might be called to the training. She talked about how the Teachings were held in Wheels of Wholeness and Balance and the design holds the 8 directions of the compass.
From there the Ehama team moved into what they called a brief teaching space. Starting in the East, they gave us a brief description of each of the directions. We were invited just to listen and let whatever imagery came forward to just arise without thinking too much about it. There was a fluency to the words and I was intrigued that no-one had any notes they seemed to know it all of by heart. The evening was completed by an invitation to come to a weekend , what they called, ceremony in a stone circle near Balquidder in the land of Rob Roy.
I went home that night and said to husband David that I think we should go the ceremony. David and I were both into our own, and supporting others, in personal development. This was by far the most out there we had encountered so far and we just felt it would be very interesting, The only fly in the ointment was camping we were both somewhat challenges by the prospect of camping in the wilds of Scotland. I had only camped once before when I was about twelve and I was not a big fan. However, the prospect of the being in Stone Circle clinched it for us. We were going! The next weekend went out bought a tent, mats and two sleeping bags. We were all set and looking back it feels like at some deep level we were already on the journey with the Teachers.
I can remember thinking a lot about attending the weekend over the next few weeks. Would I be too much out of my comfort zone? What if I didn’t like it? I could be rather sniffy if I felt constrained or dictated too. The ceremony was due to start at 5pm on a Friday. We decided to make a weekend of it so left at lunchtime on a warm and beautiful sunny June day. We travelled what seemed a very long way down dirt track to the site and when we arrived the location was quite breath taking. A stone circle on the brow of a hill looking down on to a small loch. In the distance over the rolling landscape we could see the Scottish mountains. There was much bustling activity around the camp and we were greeted warmly and guided to where we were to put up our tent. I arrived with my pull along suitcase and both it and I were ill equipped for the bumpy grassland. LOL!
I will share more of this adventure another time the experience what I wish focus on here is my awakening to the sacred feminine. One aspect of this was the energy I experience in WindEagle at the corn planting. I felt that she was an exemplar of the kind of woman I would like to be. I sensed a balance of power in her that I felt very drawn to. The second aspect of this awakening was my own experience our time in ceremony. On the Friday evening we were introduced to practice called String the Beads where each person spoke whilst holding a talking stick. Everyone else listened as your spoke. When is was my turn I felt this rise of emotion within me and to my surprise I could hardly speak for the tightness in my throat. This was a pattern for me throughout the weekend this rising of emotion. On the Saturday night I remember going to bed in my tent and feeling very angry, I could not really explain the anger to David but it was truly visceral. I now understand that some part of me knew it was going to have to change and it was fighting for survival. If I could have gone home at that point I would have.
After breakfast on the Sunday morning, the women were invited to gather in the Stone Circle anf the men went down to the lake. Once we were settled in the circle WindEagle looked at each of us in turn and began to speak. She said that she and RainbowHawk saw that ‘the women here are hurting’ and that time to be together as women was needed. She spoke of how in this Earth Wisdom way the metaphor for the relationship of Sacred Feminine and Sacred Masculine was that the women tend the fire and the men hold the perimeter. She told us of the power of the Sacred Feminine and how the awakening and remembering of this in each of us was a profound pathway to healing and balance.
I remember that I experience what I can only describe as a bolt of energy shooting up through my spine and something deep within me shifted that has not gone away. I saw that I was not conscious of this part of me and that I needed to make some shifts in how I operated in the world.
There was a lot of emotion expressed at the end of our time together and lots and lots of hugging. One of the things I remember about that weekend was the songs we sang and as we left the Stone Circle somehow we all recognised that a song was needed. We came out of the Stone circle and started singing
Some suggest a song called ‘The Women and The Wisdom and she taught us it. Here is what I remember of the song I am not sure it is right but this my remembering.
We are sisters on a journey dancing in the sun
We are sisters on a journey sing now as one
Remembering the Ancient ones
The Women and the Wisdom
The Women and the Wisdom
We all linked arms and started to sing as we marched down the hill. The men heard us and turned round to watch us coming down the hill and somehow they just knew what to do . they moved into two lines to welcome us and they were smiling and cheering us as moved through the lines . I remember looking at RainbowHawk and he had tears in his eyes.
We were welcomed
We were beautiful
We were honoured
We were in our full power as sacred feminine beings
One of the things I did when I got home was to go through my clothes and take out the those with big shoulders and big bows. I realised that I did not need to be that ‘big’ anymore and that these clothes were part of my defence strategy. People also commented that I was a bit softer and less prickly. Although, there was a way to go with that LOL!
I have tears in my eyes as I remember, this was a truly transformational time for me and for all us all I am sure. I came home to something deep within me that has never left me and is about who I am as a woman. I offer a deep bow of gratitude to my Teachers RainbowHawk and WindEagle for seeing what was needed and for guiding us to understanding that was so life affirming and transformational.