In Part One of this article, I described dancing Jewish, Romani, and Armenian dances for forgiveness and reconciliation with groups in Germany and all over the world. I also offered danced rituals of remembrance at former concentration camps and other places… Read More ›
When I first began researching traditional circle dances in the mid-1980s, I was amazed to find that the peoples who have suffered the worst of human experience – oppression, exile, genocide, war – also produce the most vibrant and joyful… Read More ›
Cat moves elegantly through our lives with grace, independence and an unquenchable self-assurance. “My dog believes its human; my cat believes its god” is a saying reflected by the beliefs of our ancestors. Since Neolithic days cats have been associated… Read More ›
I offer this look at the life and stories of Butterfly as a healing salve for our very troubled world. In this time of great, world-wide transformation, as we grapple with the many, many racial, social, economic and environmental injustices… Read More ›
Anyone who has seen dolphins frolicking in the sea, understands the allure of these mysterious creatures who live in the water and yet are not fish. Highly intelligent and communicative, Dolphin inspires a sense of joy in our hearts. Often… Read More ›
My hobbling has made me aware, in a new way, of my vulnerability. When I walk down the street, I notice that very few people actually seem to notice my constraint. And this makes me feel even more vulnerable. I’ve been afraid to take the subway, afraid to be in crowds, uncomfortable even when I am alone at home. I worry about another break, a fall, a misstep—banging into something, or having something drop on my foot.
And I think, with deeper compassion, about my friends and acquaintances—and all the people I don’t know—who bravely endure even greater, often invisible, challenges.
Turtle moves slowly through the world carrying its home on its back and has done so for over 200 million years, offering us its special wisdom – all you are and all you need is inside of you.
Lion, ancient symbol of strength and courage, is found in cave art from our early days. From the Egyptians to the Medieval Christians, lion could represent danger and chaos or protection and triumph over chaos. But through it all lion’s… Read More ›
Generosity and Community: the Alternative Worldview of Women’s Ritual Dance, Part 1 by Laura Shannon
My life’s work with traditional women’s circle dances of Eastern Europe and the Near East has been a natural interweaving of feminism, activism and Goddess spirituality. In more than thirty years of experience, my students and I have gained valuable… Read More ›
Swan glides gracefully across the mirror-like surface of the lake, stirring sensibilities of purity, loyalty and love in our hearts. Her long, curved, delicate neck reflects in the water as gentle ripples spread out behind her. Swan evokes feelings of… Read More ›
Fox, as a member of the Canidae family, is related to wolves, jackals and dogs. But unlike these animals who hunt in packs, fox hunts alone. Fox is intelligent, clever and cunning. While it is persistent, fox is gentler and… Read More ›
The horse was first depicted in art about 32,000 years ago on the cave walls of southern France and northern Spain. Though archeologists disagree as to whether the paintings are realistic depictions or symbolic markings, many concur that they are both…. Read More ›
In these challenging times, one of the hardest things to do is to keep our hearts open. Grief and despair tend to shut them down. And even among close friends, colleagues, family members, and people with whom we share worship,… Read More ›
I spent the winter holidays in Rio de Janeiro with my sister. It was wonderful to experience the warmth of both the Brazilian people and summer in the Southern Hemisphere but a little odd to miss the quiet, dark time… Read More ›
In my lifetime of researching women’s ritual dances in Greece and the Balkans, I have often come across related practices of divination or healing. One of these is the custom of coffee divination, the art of interpreting patterns in the… Read More ›
This year the summer solstice occurs on Tuesday, June 20 in the Northern Hemisphere. (In the Southern Hemisphere, it’s the winter solstice and it occurs on June 21.) For us in the Northern Hemisphere, the summer solstice is the longest… Read More ›
Magic, divine intervention, shapeshifting – what do these things offer the modern mind, concerned with time clocks, definitive proofs and skeptical disbelief? Yet to the ancients, shapeshifting was a well known tale, found in stories and mythologies across the world.
Pendle Hill, seen from the back of my house, in May. The Soul of Gaia is the numinous earth beneath my feet, her soil cradling the bones and the stories of the ancestors who have died into the land… Read More ›