Welcome all to the warm wonder of the wild Wahoo! You have two chances to drum this week - in ecstatic south Minneapolis, or in sublime Burnsville. The Burnsville drum is a smaller space, a smaller group (for now) and it makes for an intimate experience.
This week we find ourselves at Imbolc - the midpoint between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. February 2nd is the holiday in European traditions that honors the great mother-grain goddess, and, in the Celtic world, the goddess of springtime, Brigit. February 1 is the Christian holiday Candlemas.
In the British Isles (and places like Seattle) this time of year really is the beginning of spring. Crocuses are emerging. You could dig the first furrows in the land for the seed. There are all kinds of rituals around this ancient act of co-creation with the Great Mother. But here in our arctic tundra, it is too much of an abstract leap for me to say that February 2nd is the beginning of spring. The ground remains un-plantable until nearly the end of May - another three months.
However, I do want to offer you what I hope is a powerful meditation on, or direct experience with, the Great Mother this Friday. We will drum for awhile - maybe 90 minutes or so - as a way of de-stressing, of shedding the weight of the world, of boosting our immune systems (yes, science that's true), opening the spiritual imagination and feeding the heart of compassion and forgiveness that beats in each of us (and is so often buffeted and silenced by pain and worry). We drum for all of those reasons.
Then we'll have an intermission where you can enjoy crumpets or small pancakes (a traditional image of the Goddess because they are made from grain, and of the sun because of the round shape and golden color).
Then those who want to can rejoin the circle for a ceremony of taking awakening warmth into the earth as an offering to the Great Mother. Those who wish may also seek guidance, solace or healing from her (in whatever form she may take at the moment).
Part of this ceremony will involve building a cairn - a pile of rocks that honors the Great Mother. In the Celtic world, cairns were used for mundane purposes like marking the boundary between lands, and also as a marker and a cover for tombs, which are the passage way into the realm of the Great Mother. If you want to, please bring a fist sized rock (smaller will be fine too). If you can't, or forget, don't worry, I'll have some. You'll get the rock back.
Stay warm, see you soon.
For more on Imbolc/Candlemas: http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?llr=mekxtcdab&et=1104331122069&s=0&e=001ZfXgZOQ0mRrhTkBFwkyTlStndel6Jt8-MZc4tuWj0LLQMmsQ4GTUBJTtAgGVzpGOW-mAKQswFUWENix-QvT-NF5CRE6QoD3hwJhQ1KtgisDtH1W1DfDPrn6mtEODnj_74nY2iO9JljE=
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