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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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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I distinctly remember my first Tarot deck and the sense of anticipation, “danger,” and intrigue it held for me. I was about 13 when I got it, a gaiantarotcover-200x300 Rider-Waite in the yellow box, and I did NOT like it. I never connected with the deck, the book that I also got was way too esoteric and, frankly, boring, and I didn’t find the images compelling at all. This experience set me “off” of the tarot for a long time. I discovered other oracle systems I greatly enjoyed, such as Crone Stones, I bonded powerfully with Womanrunes and wrote a book about them, but I felt like Tarot and me were just not a match. Ah, thenThe Gaian Tarot. One afternoon in 2013, I was turning over some issues of leadership, power, group dynamics, and “warrior priestessing” and, for a reason I no longer recall, decided to do an online reading using the Gaian Soul website. Now THIS, this was a deck with which I could connect. The images. The earthy-messages, the goddess roots. I fell in love. I ordered the deck and began to regularly use the cards, enjoying many profound and illuminating experiences with them. So, when I found out a new edition was being released I was thrilled to review it!

Since I have and love the older edition of the Gaian Tarot, my first instinct when receiving the new one was to compare the two and the new edition does not disappoint. The cards are larger and thicker and edged with silver.

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“Blessed Brighid burning bright
Lead us from the darkest night
Triple Goddess of new life
Shine your flame on us tonight
Perpetual flame of love and light…”

–Kellianna, Brigid’s Flame

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One of the things I’m passionate about in the Circles I facilitate is our capacity to experience everyday magic. To me, this is a sensation of being fully alive and vibrant and connected and in flow, while going about my everyday life.

Two weeks ago while on vacation, we were staggering along the below-freezing, wind-whipped beach and I was thinking about my “Core Desired Feelings*” for 2017. I decided one is definitely “everyday magic.” Just then, I looked down and there in the sand was my word of the year, Thrive, on a little square. I couldn’t believe it! And, I have no idea how it didn’t just blow away in all that wind. Everyday magic b2ap3_thumbnail_15895459_1846367282242152_7268272793530528748_o.jpgindeed!

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“Beginnings and endings are so very sacred, to give honor to all that has transpired, every experience, every joy, every pain, is a doorway to the magical. Hold your entire year between your hands, every day, every thought, every breath. Now bless it with gratitude, love and humility. You have done more to transform this new year than a thousand resolutions.” 

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