RECLAIMING THE WISE WOMAN
As the state of the biosphere grows ever more perilous and contemporary culture becomes ever more alienated from the natural world, I believe it is the job of women to bring us back into right relationship with the land. Women have a special relationship with the earth, a unique understanding of her stories; the old mythologies across so many cultures tell us that it’s always been so. And in my native Celtic lands, once upon a time women were seen as the guardians and protectors of the natural world, the heart of the land, ‘Sovereignty’ personified.
The Wise Woman emerges out of our own native myths and literature, and our own iconic native landscapes. The Wise Woman is more than just an archetype: she is a living, breathing woman with a deeply connected way of being in the world. She knows that this connection to place and to the land she inhabits is the secret of women’s creative power. The Wise Woman knows how to listen, and she knows how to tell. She has fallen into the land’s story; she has become part of the land’s dreaming. She is a land-whisperer, a place-conjuror, a story-weaver; she listens for the wisdom of the Earth.
Men have their own story-makings and myth-tellings, but in the old Gaelic traditions which are my heritage, women were bards and poets too. Still, today, the voices of women are quieter, and our stories are less often heard. The Wise Woman is a woman who has reclaimed her stories, and has found the voice with which to tell them. The Wise Woman is remaking the world.
In this course we explore and reclaim our native Wise Woman stories and traditions, bringing them alive and making them relevant to the world we live in today. We explore both old and new representations of the Wise Woman in myth, story, literature and art. We explore a range of skills and practices which help us develop a rich and authentic relationship with the natural world around us, and bring us back into balance with the land on which we live.
This course takes place online, and it lasts for a year. Just before each New Moon – every four weeks, i.e. thirteen times during the year – you’ll receive an emailed link to a password-protected page on the website for the course from where you can download your materials. The material varies from module to module, but includes audio files and illustrated text PDFs. Some Modules will contain more material than others. Some, but not all, for example, will include reflections on ‘wise woman’ characters in contemporary literature. Every Module includes a ‘wise woman’ story which comes out of the native traditions of Celtic and Northern Europe (available to you both in written form and as an audio file). Other original written course materials focus on subjects which include understanding our native traditions relating to plants, animals and trees; what it means to ‘listen to the land’s dreaming’; uncovering and telling the stories of place … Where appropriate there are also reading recommendations, and links to external resources on the subject we’re dealing with during that Module.
Please note that ‘Reclaiming the Wise Woman’ is a self-directed course and there’s no one-to-one element built into it.
You can subscribe to the course at any time, and you will begin with the first Module on the next New Moon which follows the date of your subscription.
This course is relevant to, and therefore open to, women. It’s aimed at women of all ages, but I believe it will be especially interesting to and useful for women who are approaching or going through menopause or other midlife and late-life transitions, and who are thinking about what it might be to become Elder.
The course fee is 150 euros; please use the buttons below to make your payment. (PayPal will accept payment in any currency and automatically convert it, without fees.) Please note that you don’t need to have a PayPal account to make the payment. If this is a problem and you would prefer to transfer the funds directly into a bank account (in euros only) please contact us to arrange.
IMPORTANT: PLEASE READ THIS INFORMATION CAREFULLY!
1. If you are paying by PayPal and have a PayPal account, please make sure that the email address associated with your account is correct, to ensure that your course materials are sent to the right place. If you would like to have your materials sent to a different email address, or if you would like to purchase the course as a gift for someone else, please email us (info[at]thehedgeschool[dot]org) with the details as soon as you’ve made your PayPal payment.
2. Once you’ve made your payment you will receive a PayPal receipt for your payment. We always then acknowledge all sign-ups individually by email. If you do not hear from us within three days of signing up (allowing time for weekend breaks or travel-related delays) please check your junk mail folder. Although fortunately this happens only rarely, it is important to be aware of the possibility, because so many email programs now have strong spam filters, and links to your course materials will come via emails which are sent to multiple recipients and contain hyperlinks, and so are strong candidates for filtering. If your course emails do not arrive as expected, you will undoubtedly find them in your spam folder! Please do check before you contact us, as if our emails are being sent to your junk mail folder, then you will not receive our replies to your queries and life can get rather complicated. If in doubt, and if your email program permits it, please add the email address info[at]thehedgeschool[dot]org to your ‘safe senders’ list, as this is the email address the materials will be sent from.
We recommend you don’t use a Hotmail email account for this course as it is notorious for screening out emails which are sent to mailing lists before they even make it to your spam folder.
3. Please note that once you begin the course and have downloaded your first materials, no refunds can be given.
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