‘Death & Birth; the journey of lovers’
8th Residential Animist/Shamanic Conference & Gathering
Easter Seals Camp, Squamish BC Canada
Wednesday 4th – Sunday 8th May 2016
pre-conference Monday 2nd & Tuesday 3rd
post conference Monday 9th
We believe we created an amazing conference schedule
that delighted both the hearts and souls of the spirits and us humans.
Guillermo Bedregal, A Bolivian revolutionary said this: “To make your love fit, something would have to die in the world.”
Birth contains the journey of death and Death the journey of birth.
For something to come in to being, something else must leave.
It might be thought that Death and Birth are twin lovers, yet in truth they are together the act of love.
It is sung that the soul that does not sing of death is not living and the dead that sing of living cannot be reborn.
Each and every soul upon this Earth we call our home and mother, comes into being by the act of Her love for the Stars and their love for Her. Each soul is a song, an act of that intimate love.
Death to Birth, Stars to Earth, each moment of each life is the journey of that song and that love.
Somehow, somewhere, sometime, we have forgotten to sing the song of the dead as a song of love.
The Elders of many Traditions look to the inability of the dead to find their joyful way home and that these are held in torment by the Shadows around our Mother the Earth.
These shadows created by our silenced song are empowered by the stasis of those souls unable to move to their rightful place as Ancestors.
Held in this place, those that have died cannot speak to us in guidance, strength and support as Ancestors and that act of love cannot be consummated in birth and creation. Slowly the world stagnates and drowns, caught in the Shadows song of sorrow and the journey of the turning of The Great Wheel of Seasons and Life, slows to a halt.
When we look out into our world today, the preoccupation with life at any cost and the dismissal of the dead, we see the suffering overflowing into the living world, not just humans but the living fabric of the Earth and all who are part of Her.
We were called through and by this Gathering to sing the song of love and joy, birth and death. And in that celebration to release the dead from the shadows who in return release us from those same shades of dis-ease.
We gathered together to release fear and sing of our completeness as children of the stars, the spirits, the gods, who sent us to be in the joy of this amazing journey of love.
This was not to be a dirgeful funerary gathering, far more a true celebration love beyond the static points of life and death.
We gathered to make a love that fits; that we may be Warriors of love despite fear.
We explored and took ceremony with the Ancestral Spirits on the improbable and impossible love and we are asked to consider and pray with the journey of that love, devoid of fear and doubt.
Consider the world we live in, not the natural world, rather the world of humans, it seems a little devoid of this journey of love. Consider also the spirits that choose to incarnate and be in this world, as teachers, guides, healers, parents, the list is endless, they can only choose to be here out of some unknown love. Consider also the so called ‘negative’ incarnations, murderers, rapists, dictators, again another endless list. Imagine for one moment the love those spirits have, to be incarnated as such and to be such powerful teachers – difficult as it may be to grasp, yet every soul that descends from the stars comes to guide us to a better way of living, some with greater force than others; this has to be the truest love that our human hearts may not be able to fathom because we may be caught in fear.
And in many traditions, these incarnated spirits return over and over again to open our hearts.
This Gathering called us to let go of fear, attachment, doubt and take or rather be that journey of love, for we too came to this world as an act of love.
And a song that explodes with the true essence of being.
This year we made a special place for children, by offering a daily Children’s ceremony/workshop, plus time for ‘homework’ and space for children to work and play separately from adults/parents.
Stephanie Mills will be coordinated, ‘Honouring the song of our Children’, which was a creative, spiritual and ceremonial space for children who accompany their parents & guardians. This space, separate from some of the workshops, allowed time for children to attend specific workshops, ceremonies and storytelling for children and necessary space to attend to any school work. Along with those presentations deemed suitable, the following presentations all of which included elements of crafting, dancing, journeying were held for the children:
‘Dancing with the Spirits’ with Kat Naslas, ‘Masks of The Mist’ with Stephanie Mills, ‘Animals of Fire’ with John-Luke Edwards, ‘Jewels of the Snake’ with Merina Mohr.
Schedule of Presenters
All our teachers and presenters came to share their wisdom, knowledge and experience
for the benefit of the community in the Gathering and beyond;
they received no payment for the gifts they share with us.
Annie Spencer: a ceremonialist and workshop leader with an Oxford MA and a diploma in Humanistic Psychology, has been running groups and trainings for over 25 years including the groundbreaking Women’s Mysteries courses. Annie has co-founded a number of spiritual and healing initiatives within her community including Openings, the Bath based centre for therapies and group work; the Arcania programme (now The Sacred Trust) which has brought many indigenous teachers to Britain; and her own Hartwell, centre for shamanic and ceremonial ways. Her writing on earth mysteries, women’s mysteries and ceremony can be regularly found in many major publications. More recently, Annie has been developing work with young people: she has worked for ten years on an initiation ceremony in Vermont USA; and co designs camps for teenagers with Circle of Life Rediscovery, bringing earth based spiritual traditions to the youth of today. Annie has been making ceremony for young people’s movement into adulthood; marriages and handfastings; and women’s movement through the menopause for the past ten years. Annie will be offered ‘Birth, Death and other rites of Passage’; Birth and Death are the greatest rites of passage that we humans endure – and at this time we looked at ways different cultures honour birth and death. In some cultures many of these rites of passage overlay one another. One person’s initiation into young adulthood can also create the opportunity for another person’s initiation into middle age and yet another person’s initiation into eldership. We explored the possibility of making ceremony in this multi-layered way.
Beatrice Simmons: lives in a Swiss mountain valley where she is working in partnership with the spirits and the power of the land. She believes that by finding our own inner stillness and true essence of light will allow us to reconnect with the origin of creativity in respect of all the teaching of life. She offers her Shaman services, her fragrant consultations as well as the F.M. Alexander Technique to accompany individuals as well as teaching in groups. She has completed the ‘Teacher Training’ and ‘Medicine for the Earth’ with Sandra Ingerman, which inspires her work. She is a member of the SSP and the SCGM and an Initiated Pathfinder of the Wolven Path Tradition.
She presented “Love is the Absence of Everything else and Love is in Everything” A transforming and remembering of self; a journey of the Soul Song and Love or to speak in Rumi’s words: “Believe in Love’s infinite journey, for it is your own, for you are Love.”
Carey Selk-Rodger: is a Cranial Sacral Therapist and Integrative Energy Healing Practitioner. Carey’s background in counselling of 15 years includes education and training in Self-Regulation Therapy, Pre and Perinatal Professional Training, Way of the Heart and Shamanism. Carey is passionate about insights, dreams and visions that guide one’s journey.
Imagine a time and place, the space between, the intimacy of death and birth, the journey of lovers. We are called to the space between, to transitions, to be in the space of where things end and where things begin, where fields blend and energy is transformed. Together in ceremony we carried an intention to experience and journey to the place and space between the elements. A merging and connection that danced us through death and birth, “The Space Between”.
Cassandra Varteresian: DOMP (CEO-QC), RMT has been in clinical practice for the past 15 years providing services for manual osteopathy and registered massage therapy in North Vancouver B.C. Through her personal insight and clinical experiences she was naturally drawn to the study of animist traditions. After 3 years of intensive studies as an apprentice of Rev. Ceann-luil Seannair Dr. John-Luke Edwards she has just recently become an initiated Pathfinder of the Sagh’ic- Tire Dhream tradition.
Cassandra will be offered “One Bone of One Wheel”. We are all one bone. What does that really mean? We are all connected. What does that really mean? This ceremony was a physical representation of these 2 statements and it’s intent is to embody these 2 statements. Open hearts are connected hearts. Our heart is the connection, the meeting point between birth and death. This ceremony’s intent was to connect to and open our hearts to more of ourselves, which in turn opened us to deeper connections to others. Through interactive journeying and physical movement we gained a deeper awareness of our own internal wheel and our connection to the ‘Great Wheel’. We connected to our personal responsibility to keep our own wheels spinning as we see how it influenced the ‘Great Wheel’.
Christiana Harle: has been working with shamanism for nigh on twenty years in Finland. Life has taken her to Tuva where she worked with shamans for two years, continued her late husband’s research on Tuvan culture and shamanism which resulted in a film: In the Arms of Buddha and the Drum. She is an official shaman, red card holding member of Düngür the first Shaman Centre in Tuva. Heimo Lappalainen, Jonathan Horwitz, and Annette Höst were her first human introduction to shamanism. She teaches shamanic healing, gives workshops on birthing, shamanic drums and lectures on Tuvan shamanism in Finland. She is a keeper of Bees and a registered music and breathwork therapist and a Director of the SCGMSS and Elder of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream. Christiana presented“Hive Home – Sacred Flight”. Many healers say that when they dream, when they journey to the Spirit World to talk with the Spirits a part of their soul takes flight. It is a Sacred Flight. And our soul returns for we are people who are meant to heal this World, each other, our communities, our homes. During this workshop we went to work with our ‘Hive-ourselves’ and extend our reach out to our local community where we live. The Sacred Flight can be described as a journey within as well as a journey outwards. It was working with energy-it was working with Love-it was working with a balance between so-called male and female-it was working with Ergi it is working with the flight of part of our soul to commune with Spirit and it was working with borders: the sting. Through stories and through practical work each one departed with a stronger connection to Spirit, some tools in their pockets, a loving force, and a greater understanding in practical terms of themselves and their home, their Hive.
Fritz Muntean & Diana Tracy: Together we made the Journey of Life. Led by the song of the Woman of Light who is the Moon, we tread the Blue Wheel, following the course of the Great River. Challenged in our path at every turn, we confront the eight great totemic beings. They both provoke and assist us, honoring our accomplishments while requiring us to accept our mistakes, our fears, our regrets.
They will be presented the evening ceremonial pageant, “Journey of the Blue Wheel”. This Journey is an endless circle. We, as lovers, chose to continue walking this never ending path, sharing these experiences, enduring these hardships, receiving these blessings? Perhaps we will. Or do we now, as lovers, begin to experience an attraction to other, higher realms? There is something about the Great Song, sung by the Moon, that draws us upward.
But the path to the stars must begin with the deeper journey, the Journey of Death and Birth. The land of the dead calls us. The mysterious world that lies beneath the surface of memory is the realm of the secrets we must learn, the sacrifices we must make, the service we must offer, in order to experience the transcendent, to conquer both age and experience, to make the true Journey of Lovers.
Diana Tracy and Fritz Muntean are experienced performers and leaders of ceremonial pageants in the broader, celebratory world of Mystery Religion. Fritz has a graduate degree in Religious Studies from UBC, and Diana is a veteran storyteller, singer and composer, as well as a master builder of masks, costumes, and strange puppets.
They will be assisted by Louise Bunn, who is a practicing witch and priestess with over 30 years experience. She has led public rituals and pageants in and for the Pagan community and developed magical, ceremonial, and celebratory practices to that end. She leads the oldest coven in the lower mainland. Louise is also a painter and sculptor with a busy studio on Granville Island, has recently completed a master’s degree in Myth, Cosmology, and the Sacred in the UK, and is currently studying astrology.
Grant Guindon: is a member of the SCGMSS, an Initiated Ceann-Iuil of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream. Since early childhood he has had an affinity with the trees, knowing full well the importance they will have in the days to come. Grant will be presenting a Men Only ceremony entitled nd lives in North Vancouver. He carries the elemental duties: Fire Guardian, Wind Walker, and Night Keeper. He moves through this world learning to embody the wisdom of his ancestors with an intense focus on plant spirit medicine and their knowledge. He presented ‘Hearts of Fire’, to the men in which “We engaged in the ritual preparation of creating fire with stones, evoking the primal energies of the inner fire to create a living reflection of our shared spark that we used to enliven the spirits within ourselves and contemplate with one another how the forces of nature influence our lives.”
Jaime Gradt: presented ‘The Spirit of Epona’ as we learnt about the spirit of the horse. Together we journeyed to that spirit to find our true beauty and strength, and encompass that into a shamanic healing piece/tool, creating our own powerful representation to hang as a daily reminder, or as a tool to help aid in the healing of others with that horse spirit, brilliant power and strength, and beauty like no other, allowing our true power and elegance to be birthed. But like any birth there must be death, so we will ask the spirit of the horse to bring us the aspects of ourselves that must be let go of and returned to the earth to allow room for our birth to take place. Letting go and receiving, death and birth, and the journey to finding our inner beauty and lover, all guided by one powerfully stunning creature. “Come feel the wind through your mane as you gallop through your open landscape.” Jaime has been a SCGMSS member for 7 yearsand is an initiated Ceann-luil; Pathfinder of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream, a licensed Aoghair Minister of SCGMSS in the U.S. Currently residing in Bellingham, Washington with her Husband David Gradt and daughter Jaiden. Jaime has had a love and spiritual connection with horses for the last 30 years, riding, showing, and training on many levels. Currently she is a full time certified Farrier of the last 17 years, who tends to the upkeep and care of horses feet. She also has a deep connection to working with spirit through art and creating shamanic tools. Making knives from scratch for rituals and initiates, painting drums, making jewelry and more. Along with Paul McLeod, they presented ‘Death & Birth with a Shaman’s Blade’, a ceremonial engagement with the forge and anvil as a journey of life and death and love in the sculpting of a shamanic blade
Sara Dunbar; is an Eclectic Witch in the Okanagan Valley. She is extraordinarily blessed to come from a line of wise women that have taught her how to survive and thrive on the bounty of the land. She has taken the knowledge imparted from her grandmother, mother, and aunts and given it a modern pagan flair in the Okanagan Women’s Mysteries which she has been a facilitator for the last decade. Sara’s personal practice has its roots in Geri, Reclaiming, and Druids teachings and she is a part of an on going movement in the Okanagan to raise awareness about Paganism. Sara’s inquisitive nature has taken her on an academic journey to completing her B. Sc in biochemistry where she relentlessly endeavoured to incorporate local flora and fauna, as well as international plant based medicine into the research done by herself as well as colleagues. Her future projects will have a focus on incorporating conventional and spiritual healings into the contemporary medical education system. Sara, offered two healing circles, ‘Hands to Hands’ in which by using group energy facilitated physical or emotional healing or pain management and she presented ‘Protection of the Ancestral Home’ making simple folk magic staub using locally sourced materials to protect our homes and selves.
Geoff Dick; lives in Lynn Valley, North Vancouver and is an Initiand of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream and a committed worker for the Earth & Forest. Within The Tradition Geoff carries the four elemental duties: Fire Guardian, Water Bearer, Earth Stander. Geoff believes that he is a dancer in the shadows and believes we should all dance with shadows rather than they dance with us. He describes himself as a child of the forest and spends much time gathering the discarded garbage of humans that desacralise the sacred forest and is working on approaching tobacco companies to bring awareness to smokers regarding discarded cigarette stubs. He is a member of the SCGMSS, and is an initiated Ceann-Iuil; Pathfinder of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream and is a Licensed Aoghair/Minister of the Society. Geoff assisted in the Children’s presentations; ‘Masks of The Mist’ with Stephanie Mills, ‘Animals of Fire’ with John-Luke Edwards, ‘Jewels of the Snake’ with Merina Mohr.
Jeff Stockton: from Calgary is a Shamanic practitioner in the Celtic tradition. His studies and training in the shamanic realm began in 1996 on the strings of the Celtic harp, and inform and nourish his work in the wider world. In addition to his work in the Shamanic realm, Jeff weaves song and story on the strings of the harp in performance and recorded works. He is a Director of the SCGMSS and Reverend Elder of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream; the Wolven Path Lineage Tradition in which he holds the title ‘Ciaradh Tean-Astir (Dark Eye)’ and a Licensed Aoghair Minister of the Society. He holds and carries duties for the elemental Guardianships of Wind, Fire, Water, Earth, Dark and Order of the Raven Dead. He will be offering early morning meditations, ‘An Ceárta Milse – the Honeyed Forge’ as a stepping into the flow of the new day with awareness, acceptance and attention has far reaching effects. He will also be presenting the evening ceremony, ‘Mil Agus A Uisce Choisrichte’ – Honey & Holy Water; a ceremony woven through song and story, we stoke the fires of the forge of Ceardach, and recommit to the great dreams we are here to smyth and sing forth between life and death. With the sweet wisdom of Methair Ghui at the fires of the forge of Creation we will celebrate and deepen our gifts and destiny with fire, sweetness, and the Holy Waters of life.
Joseph Abbott: began his path like most of us, as a seeker of knowledge. His path began as a child with a deep connection to the natural world. This path took him into healthcare, due to his wish to help heal others; this left him with more questions than answers.The world of the two leggeds is full of people who see the fears in their lives as being controlled due to some childhood trauma, event at birth etc, through this we look at death and our own mortality; we develop fears of death and end of life events.The truth of the matter is that both the fears we carry from birth, which govern our lives and keep us from enjoying our lives, are reflected forwards in our fears of death. There is no separation between birth and death. They are entwined in our fears and lives. The healing lies in our ability to recognize this within ourselves, society and others we encounter. To free ourselves Joe will be presenting a ‘Cauldron Ritual of Release & Connection’.
Studying under the direction of Dr. John-Luke Edwards as part of the Thunder Song group, culminating in his initiation as Ceann-iuil within the Sagh’ic Tire Dhream; Walkers of the Wolven Way. Joe found and made his own a gathering of healing , comradery and support for each other.
John-Luke Edwards: Presidor of the SCGMSS, and called by Ancestral Spirits to awaken Ceann-Iuil and gather, as Ciar-Sùil à Dorchar Cuchair the Dark Hunter, the nomadic family into Sagh’ic Tire Dhream; the Wolven Path Lineage Tradition. John-Luke is a Reverend Ceann-iuil and Elder Seannair of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream and sits on the Ordination Gyre and the Council of the Tradition. He is a licensed Aoghair of the Society, as well as Signatory for the SCGMSS Ministry Denomination. He has a private Shamanic Intervention practice and runs a series of workshops and interactive groups for men to hunt their hearts as well as facilitating the celebration of the ancient rituals of the Clan.
Supported by Nikiah Seeds & Jeff Stockton, John-Luke will be offering the ceremonial journey of death & birth, ‘Dark Love’, a ritual of the old ways of dance, song and trance as we follow the two great spirits Arrnwath; Guardian of the Dead and Mear Dao-ean; the Ghost Mother as they bring into and out of life, in which we may let the incomplete within us die and the unborn waiting within us given birth. He will be leading the Morning Gatherings in our journey through the arcane lands of the Sagh’ic and in that will be facilitating the Dream Smoke Ritual.
Karen Thies: has B.A. degrees in both Anthropology and Biblical Exegetics from Smith College, received a J.D. in Law from University of San Francisco, and hold a license as a California Real Estate Broker. In the real world, her passion has been the pursuit of “God” and self-improvement through Spirit-guided study within numerous disciplines and with various teachers. Major influences are Leslie Temple-Thurston, a teacher of enlightenment from South Africa; the Kabbalah Center which reveals the richness of Jewish mysticism; and the Lightsong School of Shamanic Studies where she had the opportunity to assist in classes and also to get practical experience as an energy worker and Holy Fire Reiki Master. A synthesis of teachings has enabled her to heal much of the trauma in her life. It is her hope that sharing some of what she has learnt will help others to heal themselves as well.
Karen will be presenting ‘Hidden Jealousy: the Unending Death’ for people with a ‘spiritual bent’ who are interested in learning new ways to clear their shadows. Hidden jealousy keeps us bound, both as individuals and as a greater community, to an unending death spiral pursuing false dreams and goals. And where there is no end to death, there is no rebirth –no true growth – possible. Lifting the lid on Pandora’s Box and facing this monster within is a powerful way to begin to heal.
Lauri Shainsky: facilitates connection between spirits, sound and humans through ceremony, her healing practice and coursework in shamanic sound healing. She is committed to people learning that they are not alone, and that they are supported by a council of spirits who orchestrate the perfection of their life’s path. She is moved by the plight of animals on earth and contributes to their healing in whatever way she can. She co-owns and runs a small retreat center (Hidden Lake Retreat) in the foothills of the Cascades, where most of her sound work is done. Lauri is an Associate Healer and Teacher at the LightSong School of Shamanic Studies and Energy Medicine, is the school/community’s ceremonial singer and lodge pourer, an elder and always a Student and Servant of the Divine. Lauri will be presenting the Evening Ceremony, ‘Inner/Outer Frequencies of Love & Death’. We will gather together to sing the song of the dead and love; to be that song sung by the stars, by our ancestors, to the yearning Earth. Our sacred voices have been buried under a shroud—some shrouds made of “I can’t carry a tune”, “better seen than heard”, “the meek shall inherit the earth” or the harsher pervasive echo of “be quiet (shut up) and sit down”. In this ceremony, we invite and coax the sacred voice out of the shroud and into the community, for community, to facilitate the song of the dead as the song of love for the upliftment of all sentient beings. We may wail, weep, and keen, sing dirges, and then joyously swoon lullabies, divine melodies and devotionals. We invite the power and wisdom of our sacred voices to transport us to an ascended state of peace with love and death.
Kat Naslas: a graduate of the Foundation for Shamanic Studies 3-year program, and is a Sundoor certified Master Firewalk Instructor. She is honoured to serve as one of the Fire Guardians when called upon by her Wolven Path family. She has tended fire for Tepee ceremony, sweat lodge and Vision Quest. She has also gained knowledge from Spirit/Shaman guided pilgrimages to Guatemala and Peru, Greece and England, and participates regularly in SCGMSS & SSP conferences in Canada, US and UK. She leads workshops across North America and co-leads Shamanic pilgrimages to Greece. She is a member of the SCGMSS, a Licensed Aoghair Minister and an Elder of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream. She will be offering a Firewalk – ‘Hearth to Heart: a Return to Love’, in which she calls us to step into the journey through the hearth-fire to your heart-fire and to allow the transformative qualities of the Grandfather fire help you identify and release what may be fueling the flames of fear and doubt, while rekindling the self-love that pulses deeply and truly inside your self own heart to re-align with your own journey.
Manjit Sidhu: is an Ordained Reverend Ceann-Iuil; Pathfinder and Titled Seanair; Elder of the Wolven Path Tradition, has been with the Tradition for the last 9 years with Reverend Pathfinder John Luke Edwards and has served as a Director of the SCGMSS. She has also trained to work in a hospice and hospital to be with patients dealing with pain management. Manjit works full time in the corporate world, volunteers and facilitates women’s journey circles and assists in group hearings and rituals with the Wolven Path Tradition. Manjit will be offering ‘Introduction to Shamanic Journey’ which will be an introduction to basic journey techniques and tips for support during the conference and navigating through the many journeys in the conference workshops and provide support through the week. This will help us to be connected to guides/power animals and employing the learnt journey will enable us to have direct connection to spirit through journeying. When we journey to the other worlds for guidance or clarity we surrender to this mundane world and we are more compassionate to ourselves in that surrendering.
MaryJane Richardson: was born and raised in Vancouver, B.C. She began an arduous journey into the ways of the Pathfinder completing her training in November 2009. She was ordained and initiated into the Wolven Path Tradition receiving her Shamanic name “Brigantia, Shining of the Morning Dawn”. She works and counsels individuals who have come to her for shamanic healing. Retired from the corporate world, she is now committed to the daily practice of Yoga and working part-time as a landscaper. Working with Mother Earth is both rewarding and healing and she waits for whatever it is that Spirit opens up to her. She is a member of the SCGMSS and a Titled Seanair; Elder of the Sagh’ic. Mary Jane will be offering two separate healing circles, “Love Within & Without” one a drum healing and the other a Wrap About Mountain Healing ritual. Mary Jane says, “Love defines the Source from which we came. By letting go and allowing yourself to be tended to through the heartbeat of the drum and the ‘Wrap About Ceremony’ you will feel peace and harmony within. By receiving the energy of love you will be more in alignment to your true self and feel a renewed sense of empowerment and well-being”.
Merina Mohr: Ceann-Iuil ~ Pathfinder Shaman, is a mixed Media Artist, Photographer, and Ordinand Elder of Sagh’ic Tire Dhream; Wolven Path Lineage Tradition. As an artist she has exhibited works both Canada, US and internationally. Merina has facilitated workshops for both children and adults, from diverse backgrounds, including addictions recovery, disabilities and new Canadians. She also advocates for animals and individuals navigating the medical system. Merina has found through the journey of ‘inspiration, intuition, and imagination,’ we can all connect.
Every moment is sacred, as are the items in our daily practice. I am held by my guides to create tools, paintings, and experiences for individuals, groups or those from the forest. Merina will be offering ‘Nomadic Shrine’. As Pathfinders we have been a nomadic community, moving from the mountain to the plains, to the sea, to the valley. Even as a modern Pathfinder, we have a need to carry our alter and shrines with us through the journey through the seasons of Death to Birth, and the dance in between. Through journey and smything I will take the participants through the wheel of seasons, and assist them in crafting a portable shrine – a Nomadic Shrine that will fit easily into a small bag. In keeping with the ways of the Shag’ic, the items used to make the shrines will be mostly reclaimed, recycled, or ethically sourced to create an altar or shrine, with little to no impact on the Earth – leaving no mark on the Earth, Mathair Tei.
Michele McLeod: Australian born and of Slavic and true Gypsy blood, is an Oaken Hand Apprentice of the Sagh’ic. She has studied Wicca, brews mead and has a knowledge of medicinal plants. She is a mother of two daughters and lives on Burnaby Mountain in BC Canada. Michele will be offering a Women’s Only ceremonial crafting and dance workshop, ‘The Song & Dance of the Lover Within’, centred around the gypsy ‘Belly Belt’. It will encourage women to see who they are. As sexual beings, when they are in ritual, these belts will help jingle out their love. It is our women’s song and it comes from on the most sacred sacred places; the womb. “As women we should let our music be heard in on of the most sacred ways -‐ women shaking their hips!”
Monique Wilson; is a Traditional Healer and Shamanic Practitioner; she integrates Divination, Clinical Hypnotherapy, Aromatherapy, Reiki & various forms of Energy Healing into her work. She is trained in Bereavement Support, and volunteers in Hospice care. She works with Traditional, and non-Traditional Teachers and Elders and has been blessed to sit with the Elders of the territory in which she works and is honoured to care for an Elder of that Nation, and to have received many Teachings and instruction from him. “Hych’qa~ I lift my hands to him, and to the Ancient Ones that call us here, to this Sacred Place, to do this Good Work.” She is passionate about the Earth, all of Her beautiful children, and about humans too. Her Ancestors are Irish, French, Haudenosaunee (Iroquois/Mohawk) and Cree. Monique has a strong connection to them, and she is blessed to be able to integrate their Knowledge and Teachings into her healing practice. Monique will be presenting, ‘Death ~ the Gift; Honouring the ultimate Surrender’; exploring the questions, “How, Why and When? through Journeys, Sharing & Discussion. Monique will be using her training as a Dearth Doula with Sacred Passing and her experiences as a Hospice volunteer for 6 years.
Nataraj Brewer & Tina Puddister: will be offereing ‘From Death to Birthright: the journey of infinite Love’.This wisdom teaching is intended for those participants who wish to release their long-standing shadows and their resistance to the deaths in their lives, in order to step out into life’s abundance and light with renewed passion and a desire to move forward. Participants will gain a new perspective on the natural cycles of death and life and how they interact to bring a deeper intimacy of love and harmony to the soul. Ceremony will involve journeying and rebirthing ritual to experience the intimate subtleties of death and rebirth in an environment of love, surrender and forgiveness, that this love might cause a ripple outwards and stir healing in others.
Tina has worked as an R.N in Pediatric Intensive Care and Oncology for over 25 years. She is a certified and practicing Intergrative Energy Healing Practitioner and a Cranial Sacral Therapist. She is an Initiated Ceann-iuil Pathfinder in the Wolven Path Tradition. She completed her second year of Pre and Perinatal Professional Training through the Kutenai Institue of Integral Therapies. She is deeply committed to sharing her passion in an integrative and mind-body-spirit approach to support a more balanced, harmonous expression of health in wellness for others.
Nataraj works as a Peer Support Worker with the mentally ill and/or substance dependent as a mentor and guide sharing his lived experience with these challenges. He is a meditation and Ascension teacher and has completed his studies as an Addictions Careworker through McMaster University. Nataraj aspires to bring healing modalities such as Shamanic Practice, meditation, self-responsibility and self-care into clinical settings such as the Psychiatric Ward, and Transition for less acute psychiatric patients, in order to support the conscious release of clients’ old programs and imprints to provide a compassionate setting for healing.
Nikiah Seeds: has been working in the realm of woman’s spirituality and healing for the past 15 years. As a sacred beekeeper Nikiah has been working with the bees both shamanically and as holistically as possible, and is currently working on developing curriculum with the Collage of the Melissae. Nikiah is also a co-author of the book Moon Mysteries – Reclaiming Woman’s Menstrual Wisdom, and an Ordained Spiritual Minister. Since 2006 Nikiah has been a devout student of shamanism and this deeply informs her work as a ceremonialist and priestess. Nikiah is an Initiated Ceann-Iuil; Pathfinder of Saghìc Tire Dhream; the Wolven Path Tradition and is currently taking her journey to Eldership. She is also a Director of the SCGM and cares for the Society`s bee hive. Nikiah lives in Vancouver, BC, Canada. Along with Stephanie Mills, they will be presenting ‘Journeying into the spiral from death to our birth’.The goal of this workshop is to journey to discover their Death Animal Spirit Guide. With this guide participants will journey to ask what part of their lives needs to die now in order that they can live more fully. Sacred contracts will be made in combination with ritual and ceremony in the creation of energetic talismans
Paul McLeod: descended from Scottish bloodlines, Paul is an Oaken Hand Apprentice of the Sagh’ic and a acolyte Fire Guardian. He has studied Wicca and as a 1st year Probate in Thelemia. He has over 15 years experience in metalworking and uses this skill in spiritual smithing.
He lives with his wife and daughters in the forest of Burnaby Mountain.
Along with Jaime Gradt, they will be presenting “Death & Birth with a Shaman’s Blade’, a ceremonial engagement with the forge and anvil as a journey of life and death and love in the sculpting of a shamanic blade
Quality; is a dream master, tribal shaman and spiritual alchemist. Born with a privileged gift of sight and sound she actively leads a life centered around quantum travel and magic. It is her intent to awaken divinity within all life on Earth through the remembrance of self, true love and ancient wisdom.
Quality will be presenting “The sweet kiss of death” – A mystical tale of divine balance, the foundation to godly creations. This presentation will tell the story of the ancient truths discovered by the indigenous peoples of the land. Sharing astrology, totems, gods and goddesses, lore and myths, plants, crystals and otherwise mystical teachings that exemplify the gifts of destruction and its place in obtaining heavenly embodiment.
Quynn Red Mountain; was called to the Shamanic Arts by a logically unexplainable experience. Since 1999 she has inspired others to learn how to reconnect with their inner worlds, so that they feel empowered to be their authentic Self and speak for the Earth and its creatures. She practices “Full Circle Shamanism”, which is for those who are the first generation of “Remembering Ones”, those called to shamanize after many generations of ancestors made to forget their Shamanic and Animist lineage. In her tradition, she is of the Butterfly People, Raven Clan and Beaver Lodge. Quynn will be presenting ‘Reweaving Retrograde’ -A Ceremonial Workshop for Soul Restoration, Death Regret Reduction and Release. This year’s conference is held during Mercury Retrograde, a powerful time to witness oneself and reweave reality. In this workshop Quynn and her drum are your guides to help you call upon your Ancestors to lovingly explore areas in your current and past lives that have created blocks, traumas or unhelpful patterns that inhibit the fullness of your Sacred Unfolding. As individuals and a collective, when we tend the traumas of our younger selves, our past selves and our Ancestors, we clear the path for our Good Death, and a more Loving Life.
Rob Murphy: is an initiated Ceann-Iul of the Sagh’ic Tire Dhream and is a member of the SCGMSS. He is an ordinand Elder of the tradition and a director of the SCGMSS. He is a practicing shaman and is attuned as a master shamanic-reiki practitioner and Level 3 reiki practitioner. He has been initiated as a yatchak (shaman) into the Quichuan Path of Light tradition in by Don Esteban Tamayo in Ecuador and a shaman in the Green Path Medicine tradition of shamanism taught by the late Brazilian shaman, Ipupiara and his wife Claicha, a yatchak in the Peruvian Quechua tradition, and Dr Eve Bruce. Rob was also initiated into the Brazilian shamanic tradition of the Makunaiman (one who makes others dreams come true). Rob is the founder of the Richmond Shamanic Meetup and Drum Circle. He gives workshops and classes in shamanism for the Richmond, Virginia and NYC areas and in Canada & Ireland and facilitates trips to learn from indigenous elders in South America. As a graduate of Dr Linda Backman’s Past Life Soul Regression and Between Life Soul Regression programs, he regularly uses the power of regression therapy as an integral part of his shamanic healing. Rob will be presenting ‘Death to Rebirth’ which will serve the shamanic community by bringing about a greater awareness of the dynamics of our life agreements and the relationships with others that serve the growth and health of not only ourselves but is in service to all within the community.This workshop is intended for those that are experienced with journeying and interested in exploring the the space between Death and Birth where the act of love’s consummation brings into being a new journey of service, relationships and self-discovery.
Stephanie Mills: Rev. Stephanie Mills is an Initiated Ceann-Iuil and ordained Seanair within the Sagh ic –Tire Dhream – “The People of the Wolf.” Stephanie is on the Board and is the Treasurer of the Sacred Circle of the Great Mystery Shamanic Society as well as also being the Chair of the USA Chapter of the SCGMSS. Within the Ministry of the SCGMSS Society – Stephanie is a Licensed Aoghair and lives Bellingham WA.
Stephanie and Nikiah Seeds will be offering ‘Journeying into the spiral from death to our birth’, a workshop which prepares participants to not only fully live their lives now, but to feel the comfort of knowing that their death guide is ready for them, regardless of their time.
Thilo ‘Many Bears’ Mehrhoff: a resident of Vancouver B.C. and has been facilitating Transformational Breathing and walking his path for many years. His passion is healing through music and ceremony. He bears a strong connection to the land and his ancestors with a strong focus on First Nations beliefs and customs. The greatest lesson Thilo has learned is how you breathe, is how you live your life. Transformational breath work is his foundational teaching which he received from Founder Judith Kravitz. Thilo trained under her for 3 years and it is now his private practice. Thilo will be presenting ‘Breath of Life we bow to you’. In this sacred breath ceremony, we aim to maintain a” full circular breath “which activates a high frequency of electromagnetic vibration, throughout the body &mind, enabling toxic patterns to fall away and to once again fall in love with ourselves.Guided through breathing and music, allowing spirit to support our journey, we will experience more joy, vivid connections to The source, greater freedom, less attachments and we will “fall in love with ourselves all over again, becoming our greatest lover.”
Thunder Song: Tad Seymour, Mojo Kemp and Joe Abbott, who will have undertaken their journey of study and soul be initiated Ceann-Iuil during this Gathering/Conference. As a group they have become a thunderous and ceremonial voice for the Earth and the community at large, both spiritual and temporal. They will be offering as their first combined work as Ceann-Iuil, ‘The Fetish and the Catharsis of Soul’, which will be a powerful tool for the transformation of one’s own soul. The intention for this work is to provide a catalyst for the release and renewal of our souls deep seated burdens. This process of cathartic healing, and the birth and death of the fetish is an act of self-love. Deep work like this, when undertaken even by a few also creates a catalyst for healing within our shamanic and global community. Learning to love and understand ourselves is always key to creating harmony within our communities and with our relationship with the spirits. This workshop is recommended for those with some previous shamanic and journey experience. We will be exploring aspects of the soul’s shadow.
View an overview of the Conference
Through and by this Gathering as with all our Gatherings, we supported Reforestation and demarcation of ancestral lands of The Pataxó People and the People of The Guarani in the Brazilian forest, and the continued support and sponsorship of a boy and girl in Mali, a girl child in India and a boy in Nepal. We have also taken on supporting an SOS village in Nepal.