contemplativeinquiry

This blog is about contemplative inquiry

Tag: Retreats

POEM: THE OLD PEONY STALK

Seeming old dry stick

and yet …

a whole ecology

of

moist earth

tiny insects

a little live stem

whiskers and bones

whiskers and bones

dying back to the earth

without fuss

and not too fast

enough life left to feel/hear its

resonance

… a  subtle one.

Stillness allowing movement

permitting earth, moisture, fragmentation

in slow process

easy not to notice

yet, in softened, mutated from –

Part of the Song.

One of the cultural values of the Druid path is that those of us who are not dedicated, specialised poets and artists are encouraged to write poetry and to practise in the arts. I wrote this yesterday after participating in a ‘Lectio Divina from the Book of Nature’ practice with my partner Elaine. This practice was first introduced to us by our colleague Julie Bond and Elaine has adapted it. She will be offering it at our Contemplative Druid Retreat this weekend (17-19 April). I enjoyed rehearsing the practice with her very much, and am glad to have this record of its fruits.

A CONTEMPLATIVE DRUID EVENT

Thanks to the interest generated by Contemplative Druidry, members of the Gloucestershire contemplative group have set up an entity called Contemplative Druid Events. So far we have a blog at http://contemplativedruidevents.tumblr.com/ and a forthcoming retreat.

The retreat is being held on the weekend of 17-19 April 2015 at Anybody’s Barn, Birchwood Hall, Storridge, Nr. Malvern, Worcestershire WR13 5EZ.  Details of the retreat can be found on the blog.

I am excited by this prospect. It provides the opportunity to work with a larger group of people and to learn from them. Contemplative Druidry doesn’t come with a long specific tradition or an inherited set of practices and teachings. As modern Druids, we are engaged in an exploratory and co-creative enterprise. Events will extend the experience and understanding of participants and facilitators alike.

At the same time we do have a vision of what we are offering, and a sense of how the retreat will work. We will use the Friday evening to enter sacred space and move into introductions and a culture setting process. I consider the way in which we enter into relationship with the space and each other to be a highly significant part of the event and not just a warm up or preamble. It does much to determine the quality of living presence in the space, as important as any practice or activity. As for practices and activities – there will be sitting meditations and an introduction to what our existing local group calls “Awen Space”. Other offerings may include chanting, sacred movement, outside walking meditation and ‘lectio divina’ from the book of nature. We will likely make use of a fire pit on the Saturday evening.

The retreat also gives us the chance simply to be, alone and with fellow travellers, in a beautiful nurturing space. (After the opening process, every activity is an invitation to the participants, rather than a demand on them.) We will work with a maximum of sixteen people, including ourselves – there are five of us with facilitator roles from the Gloucestershire group. This is not the full capacity of the centre we are using, for we wanted a spacious environment on the physical as well as other levels.

I have a strong belief in this way of working and look forward to sharing it with new people.

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