For me earth honoring rituals are those where participants seek to relate in conscious ways with the spirits or powers of a specific place. Practically speaking, this often takes place in public parks, rural residences, or other semi-wild areas that are less dominated by human presence; however, urban and indoor environments can also support place-focused, earth-honoring ceremonies.
Ritual intention can vary widely and often includes greeting and engaging the spirits of place, staying open to receive blessings from the local powers, working personal growth edges in alignment with the qualities of place, and making ritual gestures that support repair, reconciliation, and healing from past human harms (e.g., extraction of materials without permission, presence of troubled human dead, past construction without permission, desecration of natural sanctuaries and power places).
2013 Mountain Spirit Training. Mountains are natural temples, holy places where Earth and Sky meet. Living elders, mountains help us to wake up bone memory of our unique destiny and to remember our connection with the stars and vastness. Throughout 2013 we’ll gather on the slopes of six of the sacred peaks circling the San Francisco Estuary for heart-centered and transformative earth-honoring ritual. The training includes weekend intensives (camping), day quests, and rituals of reconciliation and honoring. Participants can expect to:
- Learn ways to relate directly with local mountains (song, offerings, ritual, prayer, and other ways to honor local powers)
- Activate earth, mineral, bone, and mountain energies in your everyday life for optimal health and remembering destiny
- Get to know the natural world and human history in the Bay Area in a heart-aware, inclusive ceremonial working group
This series is open to all, regardless of prior experience with ritual. The six mountains of focus are: Mt Diablo, Mt Hamilton, Mt Umunhum, San Bruno Mountain, Mt Tamalpais, and Mt St Helena. For details see the training flyer (Word format here and PDF format here). Dates for all six gatherings are on the events calendar. Be in touch directly with questions or to register.
Earth-honoring community rituals I have offered over the past five years include:
- Five-day prayer walk on Mt Diablo
- Peace tree ceremonies to honor the ancestors of place
- Year-long plant medicine training (in progress in 2013, spaces full)
- Salmon welcoming back ceremony
- Community grief rituals
- Day quests in the San Francisco Bay Area
- Rituals to welcome back rains
- Ceremonies to feast local mountain spirits
- Animal medicine intensive near Mt St Helena
- Five annual week-long summer wilderness quests near Mt Shasta (2007-2011)
- Reconciliation rituals for past mining activities at Almaden Quicksilver and Black Diamond Mines
- Honoring ceremonies for Cougar, Dolphin & Whale, Burrowing Owl, Snake, the Oaks, etc.
- Five-year Earth Medicine Training cycle (2008-2012) around S.F. Estuary (over 60 day-long group rituals)