Woodspriestess: Exploring the intersection between Nature, the Goddess, art, and poetry.

Listening to the woods, to the stones, to Gaia, and to women...

In the woods behind my house rest a collection of nine large flat rocks. Daily, I walk down to these “priestess rocks” for some sacred time alone to pray, meditate, consider, and be. Often, while in this space, I open my mouth and poetry comes out. I’ve come to see this experience as "theapoetics"—experiencing the Goddess through direct “revelation,” framed in language. As Stanley Hopper originally described in the 1970’s, it is possible to “…replace theology, the rationalistic interpretation of belief, with theopoetics, finding God[dess] through poetry and fiction, which neither wither before modern science nor conflict with the complexity of what we know now to be the self.” Theapoetics might also be described, “as a means of engaging language and perception in such a way that one enters into a radical relation with the divine, the other, and the creation in which all occurs.”

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Molly

Molly

Molly has been “gathering the women” to circle, sing, celebrate, and share since 2008. She plans and facilitates women’s circles, Red Tents, seasonal retreats and rituals, Pink Tent mother-daughter circles, and family ceremonies from her tiny temple space in rural Missouri and teaches online courses in Red Tent facilitation and Practical Priestessing.

Molly is a priestess who holds MSW, M.Div, and D.Min degrees. She finished her dissertation about contemporary priestessing in the U.S. She is the author of Womanrunes, Earthprayer, and The Red Tent Resource Kit. Molly and and her husband Mark co-create original goddess sculptures, pendants, and ceremony kits at Brigid’s Grove (http://brigidsgrove.com), where they also publish Womanrunes book and deck sets.

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“Let the beauty we love 
Be what we do
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the Earth.”

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"Human beings are ritual-making creatures. We might not build them consciously, but form them we will. We honor the goddess most effectively when we create rituals that express the best of ourselves and our intentions toward the earth, our mother."

--Patricia Monaghan, The Goddess Companion

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 “Loving, knowing, and respecting our bodies is a powerful and invincible act of rebellion in this society.”
~ Inga Muscio

A fun self-nurturing activity with many applications is a sacred bath. This can be used as a group with footbaths, instead of full baths and it can also be used for a postpartum sealing ceremony. A simple ritual is for each participant to bring something to add to the bath mix. As they add their contribution, have them choose one word to represent the contribution and sing it in Call Down a Blessing to bless the full mixture.

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I offer what I offer fire
I give what I give
I share what I share
I am who I am…

When planning a ritual involving children, I always have to remind myself to keep it short and simple! This simple ritual of spring welcome is perfect for family or a small group of friends. It can also be adapted to enjoy alone. This ritual is designed to be done at night around a campfire and to be followed by a drum circle, but can easily be adapted to day time (perhaps with a fresh flower mandala to gather around instead of a fire). It can take place anytime between March 21 and mid-May and still feel seasonally appropriate.

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Today is International Women’s Day! In addition to my work online and face-to-face with women as well as with the products offered by our shop, I womensdaysupport two resources that help make every day “international women’s day.” I sponsor a woman through Women for Women International and I keep multiple microloans going at Kiva. We started making Kiva loans in 2012 when we covered economic freedom in the Cakes for the Queen of Heaven feminist spirituality class I was teaching at the time. We decided to put our money where our mouths were and make a collective loan, from our women’s circle to a women’s circle somewhere else in the world. We collected $50 from the members of the circle and I made two microloans to two different women’s groups, both in Senegal. A few more women contributed in later months, I contributed another $25 of my own and we got a $25 referral credit, and I’ve steadily kept microloans going there ever since, loaning a total of $800 to 32 different women’s groups in 20 countries since we began. The cool thing is that this did not cost me $800, instead it is the same, original money from that long-ago Cakes class that I keep relending as soon as my Kiva account builds up to $25 in repayments. There are 6 loans currently going, from what was originally only $50. Just a drop in the bucket. I encourage you to do this too!

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Dance in a circle of moonlight
Make a web of life
Hold me as I spiral and spin
Make a web of my life…

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“Doing shamanic work with children is magical and luminous, even miraculous…”

Imelda Almqvist

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