Once everybody arrived on the first afternoon, we sat, ten women together, sharing our personal edges and exploring our collective one. A bundle of polarities and paradoxes came out. As if we were stuck in the middle. It was a good start. Aquarian energy coming in. A good, warm space, with a satisfying depth of circle conversation and plenty of insights. And with it, for me, a headache that stayed all night, insinuating into my dreams. I was fully prepared to lose the next day to one of my habitual migraines. Thank the goddess, by morning it had dissipated.
The second morning, already over breakfast the ancestors came to call. The women in the forefront, of course. What our mothers did to us, all inadvertently. All these privileged women sitting around the table, the voice came in: it’s not just about being a woman. There are so many other factors. Is the feminine perspective really where we need to be putting our attention right now? And yet, what about the huge majority of that 50% of humanity – our sisters – who are in thrall to their womanhood. Breathing through the noise of the tragic, violent and unequal world created by our subjection, our missing perspective?
Back in our circle, Ria, on behalf of the ‘facilitators’, surrendered leadership to the collective. There would be no more facilitation. Only holding. The structure would come from the talking pieces, the centre and the bell. Looking back, I’m not sure anybody really took that on board. It certainly didn’t result in instant chaos, like it did the first time we pulled that trick. Instead, no sooner than we began, up came all the pain, individual and collective. Heavy and juicy. Why do we carry it? What happens if we drop it? Through what, if not through that, can we connect to ourselves, our bodies, our fluids and our feelings, our ebbings and our flowings?
Anne-Marie reminded us, like a bombshell in our beautiful introspection: Don Beck is opening the circle with five hundred Palestinians today. THAT brought me alive. A flood of ecstasy and urgency and power through my capillaries. My hair on end. The indomitability of life that can bring these forces together…
It’s interesting what a break can do. We always seem to know when the natural hiatus arrives. We drifted back after a spell around the coffee and biscuits of trying to lead or design what would come next. Nah! Couldn’t be done. We all felt it. When the last of us finally gave up, we were all back in our room together. We didn’t even get back into circle. Some music, some dancing. Some cuddling. Luxuriating in this spontaneous, honeyed silence, interspersed with the occasional chuckle or sigh. Drawing, writing.
It is becoming very apparent, as we gently sink our sensing toes into this third gathering of women on the edge, that we are building on the two that went before. The ‘We’ has been much quicker in the birthing, and the questions born out of the previous gatherings have flowed straight in to the centre, into the present from the past. A major inquiry in the first gathering had been “what is it that we are holding back, and why?” What is this holding back? Since the second gathering, another question has been mingling in with this: What if it’s not always holding back that we’re doing? What if it’s about timing? What if we must sense what the world is ready for, moment by moment by moment?
The word ‘witches’ has come up, and doesn’t seem to want to go away. And the continual nagging intuition of timing has suddenly quickened in me. We are the generation of witches who will not be burned for our witching. So perhaps, after all, the time is now.
To be continued…