Pagan Event Reviews
Year: 2014 ...
Sacred Space Conference
Beltania Festival (Florence, Colorado)
Sacred Space 2014 Conference
Summerland Spirit Festival 2013
Year: 2013 ...
Sacred Space Conference
Sacred Space Conference 2013
Houston Pagan Conference 2013
Free Spirit Gathering 2013: Many Paths
2013 Midwest Witches "Steampunk" Ball
Year: 2012 ...
Between the Worlds: An Interfaith Esoteric Conference
Sirius Rising & Summerfest 2012
Starwood 32--Review by Oberon Zell
Why Celebrate International Pagan Coming Out Day?
Spring Mysteries Festival XXVII
Celebrating 20 Years: St. Louis Pagan Picnic Reaches a Milestone
Summer Solstice Ritual, SF Ocean Beach
Summerland Spirit Festival 2012
Toon Town’s Pagan Summer Fest: A Ten Year Long Dream
Mabon with Blackberry Circle
Salem, Oregon Celebrates Its First Pagan Pride Day (2012)
NorthWest Fall Equinox Festival (NWFEF) 2012 (Review)
Michigan Midwest Bazaar and Witches Ball
Year: 2011 ...
Starwood Festival 2011 (A Review by Oberon Zell)
Sacred Space Celebrates Twenty-one Years!
The New Orleans Witches' Ball
"New Fire in Deep Winter: Oimelc in Minnesota"
St. Louis Pagan Picnic
Celebration of the Divine Feminine and Religious Freedom
Summerland Spirit Festival 2011: The Initiation of a Community
2011 Midwest Witches Ball and Bazaar
Through the Looking Glass Midwest - Michigan's 2011 Witches Ball:
Year: 2010 ...
Sacred Space Conference
Review: Sirius Rising
Free Spirit Gathering
43rd Annual Gathering of the Tribes
Summerfest 2010 (Festival Review)
Midwest Witches' Ball 2010
Year: 2008 ...
The Sacred Space Conference and Winterfest Banquet
Toon Town's Pagan Summer Fest.
Sacred Harvest Festival 2008
The Land Institute Prairie Festival 2008
Sacred Harvest Festival 2008; The Fool's Journey, Breaking the Hermetic Seal
Year: 2007 ...
4th of July Pagan Religious Rights Rally and Ritual and Chesapeake Pagan Community Summer Gathering
Sirius Rising 2007: Making Connections
The 12th Annual Halloween Festival London UK
Louisville Pagan Pride Day
Central Vermont Lughnasadh Festival
2nd Annual Children's Camp
Year: 2006 ...
Harvest Home Gathering 2006 (picts added Oct. 18)
Southeast Women's Herbal Conference
Canadian National Pagan Conference
Toronto Pagan Conference
Sirius Rising 2006
Rally for Religious Freedom
Brazilian Mabon Celebration in Săo Paulo
Chesapeake Pagan Community Gathering: Dancing with Devas 2006
WitchFest Wales, 2006
Pagan Pride Day - Metro Detroit
Rochester Pagan Pride Day
The 2006 Between the Worlds Men's Gathering
Hellfire Caves Ritual
Beltaine 2006: A Pagan Odyssey
Year: 2005 ...
Tara Summer Solstice 2005
Starwood XXV: Feelin' the Love
Persephone's Masquerade: The 4th Annual OHF Spring Ball
Pictures from New Orleans
Sirius Rising 2005: Restoring the Balance
Harvest Home 2005: Magick, Imagination, and Love
Spirit's Haven in the Woods
Inner Mysteries Intensive with Janet Farrar and Gavin Bone
People of Beauty, People of Peace: CPC Summer Gathering 2005
Mid-Atlantic Pagan Alliance’s Wicked Awesome Lugh Beach Party
WES Raises Funds for Katrina Victims
Adirondack Pagan Pride Day
The 2005 Between The Worlds Men's Gathering
NOTE: For a complete list of articles related to this chapter... Visit the Main Index FOR this section.
Southeast Women's Herbal Conference|
Author: Diotima Mantineia [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: October 8th. 2006
Times Viewed: 11,698
Sponsored by: Red Moon Herbs
Location: Hendersonville, NC
Event Date(s): September 22-24, 2006
"This is why I practice an Earth religion" I thought, fleetingly, as I walked towards the lake, feeling remarkably joyful and connected with the beauty around me. Starhawk had sent 100 or so well-grounded women off to spend a few minutes communing individually with the Earth during her workshop at a breathtakingly lovely campground in Western North Carolina, and I ended up sitting on a rock, with my back against a tree, watching the light play on the water of the lake. Starhawk's workshop on The Earth Path opened the Southeast Women's Herbal Conference for me, and though the women in the workshop were from varying spiritual paths, Starhawk's ritual and experiential honoring of the Earth, the Elements and the Web of Life, while accessible to all, was nonetheless clearly based in her Pagan spiritual path.
The Conference was the second annual, held near my home in the Western North Carolina mountains. I love my adopted home with a deep and fierce love, and the camp at which the Conference was held epitomized for me the beauty and energy of the region. With the added energy of over 400 women joining together to connect with the plants, the Earth, and to hone their healing skills, I knew a deeply transformative weekend was in the cards.
As Starhawk's drumming drew us all back to the circle for more discussion, ritual and sharing about living consciously and in communion with the Earth, I felt a moment of deep gratitude for this place and these women who had come together here in support of the Earth and each other.
While I was in Starhawk's workshop, my friend Byron Ballard was out on an herb walk with Corinna Wood, the director and founder of the Conference, and the proprietor of Red Moon Herbs (www.redmoonherbs.com). Byron, a Witch whose ancestral roots go deep in these mountains, and who grew up with herbs as her primary medicine cabinet, said she had learned more from Corinna in an hour than she had from anyone else in years. This came as no surprise to me, as I had taken workshops with Corinna previously, and her knowledge of plants and herbal medicine is indeed phenomenal.
The mission of the SEWHC is to help women to deepen their connection with the Earth, the plants, each other, and their own bodies. To this end there were 5 or 6 workshop tracks going at once, which included a variety of herb walks, and workshops such as The Wise Woman Tradition, Permaculture, Elixirs and Cordials, Plant Spirit Art, Granny Healers of Latin America, Southern Appalachian Folk Medicine, Plants as Elders, Death and Dying, and Birth as an Altered State.
I took a couple of Herb Walks with Suki Roth (www.herbhaven.com), and found that walking was not really necessary. Suki could have spoken for hours just on the plants we found in a small circle, and my knowledge of our local plants was considerably enriched by her extensive knowledge and shared experience.
The meals were cooked by women volunteers working from the Nourishing Traditions book by Sally Fallon. The food was truly incredible -- even if the programs hadn't been fabulous, I'd go back next year just for the food!
The main ritual was led by Starhawk, and while it was carefully crafted to work for women of many differing spiritual traditions, it still had a distinctly Pagan flavor, with invocations to the Four Elements, and much drumming and dancing (and hootin' and hollerin'!) around a fire, as well as quiet meditation on the Equinox. This was followed by a procession to a field for a spiral dance. The comments I heard later from women who had never experienced this kind of ritual before were quite positive and usually contained the word "Wow!"
I have always admired Starhawk, both for her writings and as someone who walks her talk, so I was glad to finally meet her. I found that in person she carries herself with a quiet authority, but not even a hint of "I'm a famous author" energy. This was nowhere more apparent than in the "Women Take Action" talk she gave on Sunday, where she spoke eloquently of the work she has been involved in during the aftermath of Katrina in New Orleans and discussed the necessity of both the kind of bottom-up organizing she has always advocated and the need for responsive governmental authorities when dealing with large-scale disasters of this sort. She gave advice on how to handle various situations one might encounter as an activist, and also spoke about how being an activist and facilitating change can take a variety of different forms, from large protests to helping build sustainable systems within one's community. Her website, www.starhawk.org contains a wealth of resources for those who are asking "What can I do?"
At the closing circle I felt a bit sad that it was over so quickly, but exhilarated to have met and interacted with so many women who are working closely with the Earth to heal Her and to heal ourselves, our families and our children. There will almost certainly be a third annual SEWHC next year, and if you are a Pagan woman looking for a deep, magical, Earth connecting experience, I can highly recommend it!
Article ID: 11224
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 2,748
Times Read: 11,698
RSS Views: 48,088
Location: Hendersonville, North Carolina
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