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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Listening to the Infinite

Morning birdsong filled the air  b2ap3_thumbnail_22338975_2058326864379525_7570131764764457268_o.jpg
in a patterned chorus raised above
the grinding notes of distant trucks
on the highway
through it all, a surprisingly distinct sound
the rasping dance of two dry leaves
twining around one another high on a branch
somehow differentiated from all else
as a unique note in the symphony
I laid on my back on the rock and
looked up at the white clouds,
still against the morning sky and black branches,
and felt between
sound
and silence.   
 

I wrote this after being in the woods one morning as I became fascinated with the sound of two dry leaves dancing together on an oak tree. About an hour later, after yoga, I turned to the day’s page of my Meditations for Living in Balance book and the quote of the day was this:

"To be able to listen to the silence is to be able to hear the infinite." --Anne Wilson Schaef

She goes on to say: "Silence is almost a lost experience in today's society. See if you can develop a way of listening to what is being said in such a way that nothing is required of you. Conserve your power."

Bringing it back to listening to the leaves in the woods though, I would add that I find it vital to discover a b2ap3_thumbnail_29745058_2061438070735071_3032310435085757700_o.jpgway of listening to the world around you, as it is, in this exact moment.

And, that reminded me of a quote from one of my favorite books, Listening to the Oracle:

"Ancient people saw and heard oracles everywhere because they lived in an ensouled world. The phrase 'ensouled world' may inspire us today, but perceiving everything around us as truly alive, brimming with consciousness, intensely present, and gazing back at us is an experience of a different order. Few adults living in modern culture are able to sustain an ensouled relationship with creation for more than a few moments at a time..."

--Dianne Skafte

What do you hear?

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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 Story Goddesses, original goddess sculptures, mini goddesses, pendants, and ceremony kits at Brigid’s Grove (http://brigidsgrove.com), where they also publish Womanrunes book and deck sets.
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