Voices of the wells

Voices of the Wells is usually offered once each year.

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‘If the power of the [Celtic] woman is the power of place speaking, then this is the gift that we can offer to our world, the contribution that we can make to the healing of our Wasteland. We are the carriers of the wisdom of our native places, the knowledge of the plants and the animals, the rich intelligence of the cycles of life and the seasons. We are the mediators of the wisdom of the Otherworld, the Voices of the Wells. … Be the power of the land speaking. Pass the gift on. Pass it on, and in this way we, like our female ancestors from long ago, like the goddesses of Sovereignty in our native mythology, become guardians and protectors of the land.

By taking up these ancient roles, we begin to restore life to the Wasteland. Refuse the continuing destruction, because what hurts the Earth hurts us. Because we are the whole Earth. We are the Voices of the Wells; we are the power of the land, speaking. Use your voice. Speak.’

from If Women Rose Rooted – Sharon Blackie

THE TIME BETWEEN STORIES

The world is changing. The old stories that Western civilisation has been living by for the past few centuries – stories of limitless growth, of the pursuit of progress as the primary purpose of life, of human separation from and domination over ‘nature’ – are crumbling. These are the stories of the patriarchy. I strongly believe that the stories which we need to replace the destructive stories of the patriarchy should – and will – be born from the wellspring of creative, generative wisdom which belongs to women.

In this time-between-stories, then, and in these days of crisis and uncertainty, we need visionaries. We need the Voices of the Wells; we need the power of place, speaking. We need the stories of the land; the stories of our native traditions, and the wisdom which is encoded within them.

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STORIES FOR THE FUTURE

We also need more than just talk: we need practical commitment to real, meaningful change in the ways we choose to live, and the ways in which we perceive our place in the world. For the duration of this course, I encourage you to take time out to explore the critical questions we’re facing now. Among them are:

– What are the stories we need to guide us in the future? – stories which are life-enhancing, rather than soul-destroying?
– What is the essence of women’s power and creativity?
– What is the wisdom we need for these mythic times?
– How do our old native myths and stories help us uncover more balanced ways to live on this earth?
– How do we take those old stories forward for new times?
– How do we find a greater sense of belonging to our places?
– How do we take responsibility for our own choices?
– Most important of all, how do we begin to create genuine, authentic, and lasting change – from the individual, to the social?

DURING THE COURSE YOU WILL …

(1) Deeply and honestly explore your own individual journey to authenticity and belonging;

(2) Beginning from the perspective gained by exploring your own journey, gifts and skills, then explore the ways in which women can reclaim our ancient roles as protectors and guardians of the land.

The central tenet of this course, as in the rest of my work, is that we can only feel a true sense of belonging to this earth, and can only become its guardians and protectors, by developing a deep, embodied, grounded relationship with the land. The creative imagination – and above all, the mythic imagination – is also critical to our work.

 

HOW IT WORKS

What you will explore

In this course, we explore old Irish, Welsh and other European stories about the Grail, and ask ourselves what the Grail quest means for women in these ever-more challenging times. I believe that, above all, the Grail quest is a journey to restore the Wasteland which we have created – not just the inner Wasteland, but the outer: the Wasteland all around us. Physically, socially, and culturally. The two, of course, are interconnected, and those interconnections will be the basis of our journey through the course. It’s a journey that will take us into the creative, generative heart of the Otherworld — the mundus imaginalis of Celtic tradition.

SELF-STudy

This is a self-study course, and it lasts for 16 weeks. The course material is divided into eight sections, and every two weeks for the duration of the course, you’ll receive a set of written materials to download and work with at your own pace. You’ll receive a weekly email with reflections, practices and issues for you to consider. You’ll also be able to access a private forum to discuss issues arising from the course with other participants.

ENROLMENT AND PAYMENT

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