Women of Soul in Circle Together
The framing for this retreat rests within the beautiful and bountiful space of creative collaboration. It depends entirely on our willingness to lean in and engage; it calls on all of us to plunge into the deepest places we can reach to listen, speak, witness, encourage and share. Each of us is invited to step into the fullness of who we are in this moment and to take responsibility for our desire and commitment to the transformational possibilities we are unearthing for ourselves, each other and life.
The flow for our retreat features a morning circle, which focus will be guided by our Elders in service and what Spirit brings through you. Mornings will also include time for your morning practices, spontaneous dream circle discussions, movement and meditation in the South Lodge.
In the afternoons there will be an invitation to join in small group with an Honored Elder to inquire, explore, share, witness, question and deepen into our shared journey. You may also choose to express your soul’s wisdom through creative handwork and artistic expression. Two of our Honored Elders will be present in the art room to talk with you and provide guidance as needed.
This retreat asks for vulnerability and risk. To that end, we will cultivate a space of clarity, safety and respect. Here are some basic guidelines:
The Co-Creator’s Agreements
(Adapted from Geneva Group Agreements, Boulder, CO and found in The Co-Creator’s Handbook by Carolyn Anderson in collaboration with Katharine Roske)
Be Mindful: My intent is to be myself, to be authentic, and to be fully present.
Realize Our Potential: My commitment is to realize my full potential and support others in doing the same.
Follow My Guidance: I attune with Spirit and follow the calling of my soul on behalf of the well-being of the whole.
Communicate With Integrity: I speak from my heart with compassion for myself and others and to honor confidentiality.
Act With Integrity: I keep my agreements and do my best to follow my heart in making commitments.
Deep Listening: I listen respectfully to others and tune into their deepest meaning.
Honor Our Differences: Coming from a sense of cooperation and caring in my interactions with others, understanding that objectives are often the same though methods for achieving them may differ, I honor the diversity of all life.
Take Responsibility: I am responsible for my creations, reactions, experience and relationships.
Maintain Resonance: I will take time to establish rapport and then to re-connect with anyone with whom I feel out of harmony as soon as it may be appropriate.
Resolve Problems Constructively: I will take problems, complaints and upsets to the person(s) with whom I can resolve them at the earliest opportunity. I will not criticize or complain to someone who cannot do something about my complaint and I will re-direct others to do the same.
Go for Excellence: I support others and ask to be supported in participating at the highest level of excellence.
Learn From Experience: I will do my best to learn from my experiences.
Accept Imperfections: I intend to embrace and accept imperfections in myself and others.
Be A Leader And A Follower: I will foster an environment of genuine collaboration to empower all of us to express our individual and collective potential.
Service To Others: I open my heart, still my mind and place myself in compassionate service to all life.
Re-evaluate My Commitment: I agree to choose and re-choose my commitment to participate. It is my choice.
Lighten Up: I will create joy in my relationships, work and life.
Using The Talking Stick
Our words in these circles are sacred. We honor each sharing and allow the deeper wisdom to shine through by attending to our listening and speaking skills.
- After receiving the talking stick, the person speaking has the right to speak without interruption, and an obligation to speak in a focused way.
- Each speaker takes a brief moment to attune – to allow the inner voice to speak spontaneously with clarity and simplicity. Each person is invited to share in an empowered way what truly has heart and meaning for them.
- Sharing may be cumulative, building on what others have spoken. However, this is done with care to not comment directly on another’s experience, offer advice, fix anything or supersede another’s experience.
- Silence is always honored. No one is required to speak. If one receives the talking stick and does not want to speak, simply hold the stick for an attunement moment and then pass the stick.
- All others listen for the soul, release judgment and hold loving presence.
The time in circle can allow a more intimate sharing that outside of circle feels like an invasion of privacy. We ask you to take care in engaging a woman in her personal story outside of circle.
Here are some interesting books and CDs that may inspire and ignite your soul as you prepare for our gathering in October.
Sue Monk Kidd, “Dance of the Dissident Daughter”
Robin Wall Kimmerer, “Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants”
Joanna Macy, “Coming Back To Life: The Work That Reconnects”
Michael Meade, “Finding Genius In Your Life” (CD set)
Subonfu Some, “Women’s Wisdom from the Heart of Africa” (CD set)
Angeles Arrien, “The Four-Fold Way: Walking the Paths of Warrior, Teacher, Healer & Visionary”; “The 2nd Half of Life: Opening the 8 Gates of Wisdom”; “Living in Gratitude”
ClarrisaPinkola Estes, “Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths & Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype”
Maureen Murdock, “The Heroine’s Journey: Woman’s Quest for Wholeness”
Jean Shinoda Bolen, “Urgent Message from the Mother: Gather the Women, Save The World”; “Goddesses in Every Woman: Powerful Archetypes in Women’s Lives”; “Goddesses in Older Women: Archetypes in Women Over 50/Becoming a Juicy Crone”
Terry Laszlo-Gopadze, “The Spirit of a Woman: Stories to Empower and Inspire”
Jean Houston, “Manual for the Peacemaker”; “Jump Time: Shaping Your Future in a World of Radical Change”
Judith Berger, “Herbal Rituals”
Barbara Tedlock, “The Woman in the Shaman’s Body: Reclaiming the Feminine in Religion and Medicine”
Jamie Sams, “Dancing the Dream: The 7 Sacred Paths of Human Transformation”
Barbara G. Walker, “The Crone”
Francis Weller, “The Wild Edge of Sorrow”
Julie McIntyre, “Sex and the Intelligence of the Heart “
Dominique Christina, “This is Woman’s Work”
Rosemary Ellen Guiley, “Dreamwork for the Soul: A Spiritual Guide to Dream Interpretation”
Sherry Ruth Anderson & Patricia Hopkins, “The Feminine Face of God: The Unfolding of the Sacred in Women”
Tami Lynn Kent, “Wild Feminine”