Last October I attended the final gathering of the Council of the 13 Indigenous Grandmothers in Phoenicia, New York. I was at the first gathering, also in Phoenicia, when they formed their Council twelve years ago and I had followed their progress all along the way. About halfway through their time together, they came to Ithaca, New York, where I live. They accomplished much during those twelve years and I feel forever grateful that I was able to walk some of their walk with them.
These are very powerful women. Their ceremonies, stories and spiritual presence infused the entire four days of each retreat with an energy and consciousness that I drank in like I was dying of thirst. I felt like I was Home in ways I rarely feel otherwise. And, it held up a mirror to how colonized my western (patriarchal, industrialized, rational, homogenized) mind really is. Despite years of attempting to undo all that.
I feel very strongly that I most resonate with nature and spirit, with something far wiser and deeper and larger than the cultural energy and consciousness that is destroying everything in its path. I need to trust this. I feel like there is a way for me to be most powerful if I can trust this and ground in this.
I want to build a sanctuary, for myself and for others where I can hold the space to nurture and empower peace, beauty, awe and gratitude, love and compassion, creativity and conscious evolution. And a deep, deep relationship with Earth and all beings.
It’s not that I want to ignore or run away from what’s happening in the world. It’s that I don’t want to give it any of my life force beyond being awake and engaged with it in a way that feels true and of service to the greater good. I literally want to be the change I want to see in the world.
A Council of Women has recently formed in the area where I live. The response has been extraordinary; women have been organically stepping up and mobilizing around issues of interest such as political action, education, health care, environment and more. Naturally, the one I’m most drawn to is “healing and spirituality” and I’m excited to see how it will unfold. I imagine it will provide much fodder for this blog. Stay tuned!