The Fire of Her Bright Spirit: a Year of Priestess Training in the Mother Grove Tradition

Mother Grove has been preparing this new program for many months and I thought I’d share it here for those of you who don’t do Facebook.  Leave me a message if you’re interested in the training year.

Year One
2015-2016

Cohort Luna

Ten women, meeting twice a month for thirteen Moons.

Ten women mentoring with seasoned priestesses, learning with and from each other.

Ten women tearing off the restraints and trappings of modern culture, stripping away fear and embracing longing.

Ten women training to be priestesses, learning to create and facilitate ritual, dancing into trance and memory and genuine power.

Ten women.

Are you one?

We begin in November, in the heart of the ancient New Year.

Join us.
The priestesses of Mother Grove Goddess Temple have designed a year of classes focusing on bringing a select group of women into alignment with their Goddess honoring selves. It is not a clergy training program—it is a mystery school for deepening each women’s spiritual journey, where women can feel able to priestess themselves.

We’ll begin in November of this year, meeting twice monthly for four hours each time. Every quarter we will meet for an intensive in a retreat-style format. We will end with a final day-long retreat, ending in a certificate ceremony the following November.

The charge for the year is $3000 per student, exclusive of travel, food, lodging and the quarterly intensives.

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Ancestors on the Move…do I have enough cornbread to get through Samhain?

After a super-busy week that included the final edit on my new book, the publisher sending the book to the printer, a memorial service, teaching at the Organic Growers School’s fall event, picking up and delivering a load of goat-and-chicken poo and Sunday’s ordination and more—anyway after all that and the weather change, I am excited to think about autumn and winter gardening.

And my thoughts are frequently visited by my Ancestors.

I have a class on Ancestor Altars at Raven and Crone on Friday evening and one on working with our Ancestors coming up next month.  All this reverie made me think of this piece I wrote last year, so I’m sharing it here to keep it close.

We begin with apples in our laps.

We hold the vastness of the center.

Shoulder to shoulder, we hold the Void.

 

Crow, come in! Hawk, come in! Horse, come in! Bear, come in!

We rise.

As Ancestors form a deeping fence,

As Mighty Dead align their Host,

As Crow and Hawk, Horse and Bear ring the place between

Earth and Nothing,

She steps out from the darkness.

She steps out through the Beings.

 

Her face both maid and granddame,

Her back straight as an ash spear,

 

Hand reaches out to hand and we begin to dance.

Circle within circle,

ringed by the Eldest,

ringed by the Dead,

we dance the dance of tilled Earth

as the brass bells at our waists

ring out.

And as the smoke from fires past begins to cloud our eyes,

We open our dry throats and sing,

apples strewn in our path

like fat rubies.

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Rams’ Heads

On the front corners of my home altar, there are blue ram heads made of plaster. My morning meditations usually begin with me facing the East,  placing the palm of each hand on one of those blue heads and then inclining my own.

I did that this morning, after two weeks of traveling about. Very happy to be back to my regular morning routine but holding in my heart the memory of the temple at Palmyra that was recently leveled by the Islamic State crowd.

As I took that first deep breath to greet the rising of the Sun, there was a stern voice at my shoulder.

The plain is not empty.

The way is clear.

Build the Temple.

Oh, dear. I almost lifted my hands from the ram heads and turned to speak. But I held my ground and thought on the flattened landscape where that old temple had stood.

Temple? Was it still a temple if no one sang the praise-songs? Or offered up the appropriate sacrifice?  Is it still a temple if no one is there, serving the Divine Beings that were once housed and worshipped there?

The Divine ones that I serve seem to be less interested in historic monuments that are chiefly tourist attractions and more interested in humans remembering and honoring Them, even if the honoring isn’t what They experienced back in the day.

It doesn’t mean that the destruction of the temple shouldn’t be avenged, that justice doesn’t apply in this situation. But the Divines want more from those of us who serve Them than a slavish devotion to the trappings of the past. They expect us to be the flesh-and-blood congregations that keep Them vital.

Time to build the new temples for these new times.

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