Discernment: Seeking Clarity in the Mists
Much of the work we do in the Avalonian tradition is to seek clarity and insight that supports our quest to reclaim our sovereignty and speak our truth. We cultivate relationship with the Goddess for guidance in navigating our day to day lives, but often it can be hard to hear her voice with clarity. The amount of information we are processing on a dally basis can be overwhelming. How do we separate the wheat from the chaff…the spiritual insight from the buzz of all the outside forces looking to influence the decisions we make in our daily life? In this session Sydney will explore the tools of Discernment that support us in seeking understanding through clear sight, keen hearing and true speech.
Sydney Bell, MSW/RSW is a trained social worker and Health at Every Size® educator/advocate who provides body image coaching services to women. She is a past president of the Sisterhood of Avalon and currently serves as Communication Matron on the SOA Council of Nine. To learn more about Sydney and how to work with her, please visit her website: Embracing the Body Divine.
Striking the Balance: Restorative Justice and the Sacred Isle
The Hermetic Principle of Polarity asserts that opposing poles merely differ in degree and that all polarities can be resolved. The spectrum of justice could be said to range from the pole of merciless vengeance to the pole of yielding pardon. The Avalonian Path of the Lawkeeper seeks always to abide by the Law of the Realm of Sky and strike, instead, a restorative balance between these poles. The restitution sought must balance the offence committed. In this workshop, we will strive to use the four keystones of restorative justice – inclusion, encounter, amends, reintegration – to craft our own sacred cycles of restorative justice for use in our personal work and our wider communities.
Kate Brunner is a writer, healer, ritualist, & member of the Sisterhood of Avalon. She is lives in community at Heartwood Cohousing and works as the Children’s Services Manager at Pine River Library. She holds a BA in Economics from Tulane University and is currently pursuing her MA in Library & Information Science at University of Wisconsin – Madison’s iSchool. Kate currently serves as the Lawkeeper Matron on the SOA’s Council of Nine and as Novice Hearth Mother to Sibral o Lleuad Sofran Hearth in Southwest Colorado. Her work is published in Flower Face: A Devotional Anthology in Honor of Blodeuwedd and The Goddess in America: The Divine Feminine in Cultural Context.
When the Walls Come Tumbling Down: The Spiritual Gift of Challenge
It is one thing to walk with intention through the cycle of healing, marking the steady steps from station to station. It can push us up against the wall, forcing us to really look at some things we have been trying to avoid and inviting us to open ourselves to the messages of the Goddess, especially the one aligned with the particular station.
It is quite another thing to feel the walls come tumbling down around your ears when you least expect it. This is the Tower in Tarot, Calcination in Alchemy, Hagalaz in the Runes. It is Blackthorn in the Ogham and the 51st hexagram in the I Ching. The loss of a job or a loved one. The loss of a dream or a health crisis. These situations can arise in the blink of an eye, without warning or preparation, leaving us gasping for breath and often feeling spiritually bereft.
It is one thing to experience the Avalonian Goddesses in the exquisite pattern of the Cycle of Healing. It is another to see them standing there holding out a hand once the proverbial dust has settled around the rubble of your life at your feet.
This workshop invites the exploration of crisis as the path to the Realm of Sky with each of our five Avalonian Goddesses sharing a particular message on how to distill crisis into a gift.
Tiffany Lazic (BAA, RIHR, RP) is a Registered Psychotherapist and Spiritual Director with a private practice in individual, couples and group therapy in Kitchener (Canada) and internationally via Skype. As the owner of The Hive and Grove Centre for Holistic Wellness, she created and teaches two self-development programs, “The Great Work: Patterns of Conscious Living” and “Spiritual Language of the Divine” Programs, as well as teaching in Toronto’s Transformational Arts College of Spiritual and Holistic Training’s Spiritual Directorship and Divine Connections Training Programs.
An international presenter, retreat facilitator, and keynote speaker, Tiffany has conducted workshops for many conferences and organizations in Canada, the US, Mexico, and the UK. She is the author of The Great Work: Self-Knowledge and Healing Through the Wheel of the Year (Llewellyn Publications, 2015). Tiffany has been a member of the Sisterhood of Avalon since 2007. She served as Hearth Mother to Kitchener’s Aelwyd am Gwenyen Arian Novice Hearth from 2009 – 2014 on the Board of Trustees as Administrative Director. She currently serves on the Council of Nine as Lorekeeper Matron. For more information about Tiffany’s work, please see her website at http://www.hiveandgrove.ca.
Avalon, the otherworld beyond the mist holds within it much mystery and magical praxis. In this class we will discuss the role of Witchcraft within the Avalonian framework, the mysterious isle of Apples which lies beyond the mist and is home to Lake Ladies, Mermaids and even the King and Queen of Faery. As well as how Avalon can be worked with through the perspective of witchcraft and spirit work. Mythology and folklore will be discussed as well as how to incorporate these practices and inspirations into a working witchcraft practice rooted in Avalonian lore and how this is accessible to anyone.
Annwyn Avalon is a Priestess, Artist, Dancer, Witch, and founder of Triskele Rose Witchcraft and WaterWitchcraft.com. She is a Water Witch working with the energies of Avalon. She is active in the Avalon Mystery School, is an initiated Priestess, has several degrees and certificates from Reiki to Bachelor Degrees. She blogs at Patheos, writes for the Magical Times and is author of her forthcoming book Celtic Water Magic. Her work as a Priestess is in service to the water, the spirits, Avalon, and her community.
Death is part of the cycle of life, the last mysterious rite that we all face regardless of our human circumstances. Death comes to us all – living in fear and denial of this fact only serves to needlessly burden us. It does not help that the world treats death and dying as taboo. As wise, empowered women, we can learn how to boldly face our own death by understanding the death and grieving process, and coming to terms with our own beliefs of what awaits us after this body no longer serves us. This is an interactive workshop where we will complete individual and group exercises and guided visualizations to overcome fear, and embrace the art of dying well. Please bring a small, meaningful item from your life that you are willing to give away to another person, along with the story that goes with it. The story can be given verbally, or you can write it out beforehand and bring it to give with the small object. We will end our workshop with a ritual that will allow you to pass the item and story on to another person, as a way of practicing releasing the things we cannot take with us when we transition through death.
Pamela Borawski is a 46 year old mother, wife, and member of the Sisterhood of Avalon, born and raised in the deep south. She works part-time as a museum educator training new volunteers and docents at the South Carolina State Museum, but her deep love is that of a healer. This love has urged her to become a certified hypnosis and spiritual coach, as well as an ordained pagan minister, reiki practitioner, and sacred jewelry artisan. She considers herself a spiritual alchemist, guiding her clients in transmuting the negative thoughts and beliefs deep in our subconscious into something more positive and healthy. She will graduate in November 2018 as an Integrative Healing Arts Practitioner from Southwest Institute of Healing Arts. Her spiritual path is eclectic, but she feels that druidic shamanism best fits as a description of her way of life.
Personal Sovereignty & Boundary Making: Growing Your True Potential
In this experiential, interactive workshop, we will explore the concept of boundaries in ritual space and personal life, delving into the meaning and purpose of boundaries. Through shielding techniques and the creation of sacred space (using traditional SoA methods), we will create a cauldron in which to brew our sovereign selves. Balance your priorities! Find your voice! Honor yourself and your Sisters! Value your individuality! Together we will name and reclaim our unique gifts, skills, and qualities, remembering and celebrating our true selves in the safe container of Sisterhood.
Michelle Skye is the author of three books focusing on the divine feminine: Goddess Alive, Goddess Afoot, and Goddess Aloud published by Llewellyn Publications. She has been following the Path of the Goddess for twenty years and has been a member of the Sisterhood of Avalon for ten years. Michelle has presented at the Morrigan’s Call Retreat, the Celebrate the Goddess Telesummit, facilitated by Guardian Gateway, and the Ninefold Festival.
Lynette Mansani currently lives with her 11-year-old son in Massachusetts. She has been studying and practicing various pagan disciplines for over 25 years and felt a calling to the craft before that. In 2013, she became a Hellenic priestess (Hierea) of Aphrodite, Athena and Pan. She has also practiced and studied ancient Celtic reconstructionism. She has presented and facilitated rituals at retreats. Regarding, her formal studies and career, Lynette graduated from UMASS Boston with a degree and Cultural Anthropology, which She has coupled with her background in music to further her exploration into how ancient societies practiced their religion and the impact of their music as a method of practicing and enhancing their beliefs. This along with her specific interest in archaeology, have helped to define and direct her spiritual growth. She currently works for a non-profit organization who help low income residents as an Executive Assistant to the CEO. In addition, she is a Reiki master teacher and spent years learning additional healing modalities. She has been published as one of the contributors in Out of the Broom Closet, with her story titled “The Celebration of Life and Rebirth.”