First … my apologies for having canceled the Sacred Sweat Lodge Ceremony this past Saturday, and for canceling the Women’s Full Moon / Cedar Ceremony tonight. As you probably guessed, I’m a bit under the weather.
For obvious, and not so obvious reasons, it has taken me a bit of time to get this update out to you. I have been working on my new website and, while it is still needing some work, it is up and running. Please take a moment to go to http://www.cedarwaterhealinglodge.com and check it out! The first page is a blog … so, I welcome your comments, questions and concerns. This site will eventually replace my old web site … http://www.gaylejoseph.com, as I continue improving the new one and phase out the old.
We have put together a Cedar Water Healing Lodge Council designed to help us move the Lodge and all its activities further out into the community. Those sitting on the Council include Donna Andrews, Wes Fletcher, Michelle Meritt, Mike Roberts, Gretchen Snell, Ken Trepanier, Cherie Ulatowski, and myself. In addition, Carol Profit (using her engineering background) has agreed to work with the Council in these endeavors, spending a great deal of time and effort getting us organized! I am proud of our Council and all who work to support us. The vision of the Lodge is simple … we want to be for all people a place of healing, understanding, where judgment does not exist, but where growth, health, happiness and community does.
So our first project has been our June 22 – 24th weekend event … Wisdom Keepers’ … Ancient Wisdom for the 2012 Transformation. We have been working at getting this information out to as many people as possible … advertising in local businesses, across the internet, and throughout the midwest. Planning and executing such an event will take a lot of hands and help … more than we have right now. If you would be interested in lending a hand or two, please let us know. We also need donations of various types including mulch, solar lights, wood, printing costs, sound system, blankets, comforters, cotton cloth in either yellow, red, black, white or purple, landscaping materials, etc. If there is anything you would like to contribute or have questions about it, please, please, please, don’t hesitate to call or email me. We can certainly talk about it.
Also, we will be offering space for people to set up a booth to sell their goods and services at this event. If you or someone you know would be interested in doing that, please let one of us know and we’ll work out all the arrangements for you to do that.
In the meantime, there is one immediate need we have. We are in need of some birch bark. Our supply is very, very low and we have not been able to find any. I generally find birch bark further up north … and have very little success finding it around this area. However, if you happen to know where we could get some, I would truly appreciate it. We never take it directly off the trees … but instead find what we need lying on the ground. Any help in this area would be greatly appreciated.
Another change taking place at the Lodge concerns the Sweat Lodge Ceremonies. In the past when we prepared the Sweat Lodge for ceremony we would put down blankets on the ground for everyone to sit on. I’m not really sure why we started doing that … but it isn’t traditional. Following tradition, people attending the sweats would either sit directly on the ground or bring their own blanket, wrap or shawl to sit on. Beginning next month, we will be following that same tradition. So, when you come … try to remember to bring your own blanket, towel, or wrap.
Speaking of Sweat Lodge Ceremonies … our next ceremony will be held March 3rd at 2:00pm. And, for all you men out there who have been asking for an all men’s sweat … May 12th is set aside just for you!
The FireKeeper Training is going very well. Wednesday, February 15th, at 5:30pm is our next scheduled practice meeting. Remember to bring your wood!
For those of you who want to take your healing practice to the next level, our next Reiki-Infused Bodywork I training class is scheduled for Saturday & Sunday, February 18th & 19th, from 9:30am – 4:30pm. If you are interested in learning more about the art of healing and the body, sign up soon.
As usual, our Reiki Share will be held from 7:00pm – 9:00pm, Tuesday, February 14th, by Donna Andrews.
Meditation this month has been combined with the New Moon and Full Moon ceremonies. As I mentioned earlier, the Women’s Full Moon Ceremony for tonight has been canceled. The next Sacred Pipe/New Moon Ceremony will be held Tuesday, February 21st, from 7:30pm – 9:00pm, and conducted by Gretchen Snell.
Finally, for those of you who come to the Full Moon Ceremonies, here is the theme for this month, February of 2012. As you know, there are numerous names for the full moon … depending on the Nation and their location. For this area, because of the large snow falls, this full moon was often referred to as the Full Snow Moon, or because the snows made it difficult to hunt, it was also referred to as the Full Hunger (or Starving) Moon. During this time of year, the people would hunker down to preserve their supplies, and persevering through the days and nights of snow, wind, and bitter cold. This was a time of storytelling … where the elders would pass along the old stories, lessons and traditions to their people. The stories often told of choices and the consequences of those choices, of life and lessons. It was a time of bonding. As the elders would tell their stories, the younger ones would listen and learn much about their heritage, their family, and the wisdom of their elders.
So how does this all apply to you in this month, of this year? As I mentioned last month, January (as well as the year 2012) is about disruption. Everything we thought to be stable is not … whether it is our relationships, our jobs, our future, our home, our appliances … whatever! And this does not include the fact that we are in a Mars retrograde until mid-April. This particular February is about persevering … its about having the resolve, determination, dedication and diligence to keep moving forward … to keep growing, learning, and understanding who you are, where you came from, and where you are going. You started this journey some time ago. And while you may not have always liked what you have come to discover or learn, or you may have found some of the lessons a bit uncomfortable, you are moving ever towards your goal. Sometimes we choose to side step a situation, to leave it for another time or place … that is movement. Sometimes we choose to back away from something that doesn’t feel right or we are not ready for … that is movement. Moving ‘forward’ doesn’t always mean you are moving in one direction. Moving forward doesn’t always mean being the proverbial ‘bull’ … stopping at nothing to attain your goal.
Back in the day, the elders and people would sit around the fires keeping warm and telling stories of choices and their consequences, or life and its tricks … today, this is a time to review those choices and decisions made in the past, of being responsible for them and deciding what you want to do about them and for yourself. Sometimes in life when we find ourselves continuously facing the same obstacle, to fully remove it so it never appears again we need to take ownership of it … to recognize our own responsibility to this thing. Doing so can be karmic … but it will be a very good life lesson … and will rid you of the recurring obstacle.