for Dynamic Peace
What is a mandala?
Traditionally, when communities or an individual was out of balance, a mandala ceremony was created to restore harmony and wholeness to the situation. A colourful wheel was created that included all potentials of energy. A cosmic journey to the centre was visualized in order to become conscious of an answer or a resolution. Often polygon combinations were involved that had particular significance, such as 7, for seven heavenly realms, or 3 for a baseline trinity formation. The mandala would be taken apart at the end of the ceremony, indicating its impermanence. A mandala can also be seen as a design for living, a kind of etheric template for harmony and peace. Mandalas are sacred designs, static or moving through time and so may be 2D, 3D or four dimensional.
On Spring Equinox, 1992, I was given a vision after reading a Gaia Atlas of First Peoples. I was shown this Earth where indigenous peoples were still being pushed out of their places of origin. Their communities and ways of living were being dislocated and the fabric of their way of relating to the land was being torn by war, attrition, and invasion by modern consumer culture. In this vision I saw many shamanic practitioners coming to Nova Scotia and others arising from the root-wisdom of this place, joining together in traditional and contemporary gatherings, to raise energy and create a direction for harmony and peace. Not only here but for the planet. I had no logical idea of how this was going to happen or how long it would take, as I knew of less than a handful of shamanic practitioners like ourselves in Nova Scotia and elsewhere. I also wondered how resources would come together to create such a reality.
Many of my own challenges since that time often made me think that the spirits had been talking to the wrong person or I had simply been delusional. In spite of obstacles, the needed help has come for fleshing out the dream. I offer thanks to my Ancestors...
Help has come to my husband and I through opportunities to get to know traditional practitioners, participate in their most profound rituals and learn from them. Also there have been many opportunities to travel to sacred places and to greatly deepen our own practice through mutual healing and growth.
The co-founding of an ecovillage in which to practice shamanism with others who shared our common passion for Mother Earth gave so much back to us and augmented our potential for service.Though the ecovillage has disbanded, the lessons live on.
Dance has been a focus in our practices, as we first vision what it is we would like to manifest and then make space to join in ecstatic expression of that vision, to the sound of drums, rattles, didjeridoo, bells, voices, whatever instruments come to us. We have toned in a Celtic Sweat Lodge, danced up the dawn on the medicine wheel in order to communicate to the sun and all sentient beings, and have celebrated the solstices and equinoxes with dance gatherings. We pour our intent into the centre where all are one, in order to reweave the dream we have been given into a new dream for our grandchildren.
I was supported in this vision by a synthesis of my work with: Crystal Beings, mandala and shield-journey artwork, flower essences, the medicine wheel, geometric dynamics of energy in my light work, research and teachings about the elements, sacred dance, pilgrimages to sacred circles and ceremonial sites.
During a sacral cranial session with wonderful practitioner and friend, Barbara "Singing Water Woman" Shaw, I was shown by Black Elk how I am a stowaway in the mainstream culture in this lifetime and that I carry the seeds of the mandala within me, that he had seen before he died. My Tibetan spirit-teacher guided me to the 12 points of the wheel that are in many wheels such as the Nagual, the Celtic, the Tibetan, etc.
I have been shown the origins of the mandala in the sand painting ceremonies of traditional peoples, and in the more recent work of Carl Jung. The calling together of a circle in consultation with the spirits, in order to problem solve, and to create a new tomorrow, is very ancient in its roots. The 12 points and crystals augment and direct that energy for manifestation. A site where the spirits are willing to communicate, can produce measurable results in activities that take place there, and also out in the world, following the dances. The mandala works to transform the individual and the community, in holy relationship.
Presentation and Training
The Mandala 2010 training will take place at a church hall in Halifax (Jan-Mar) in order for participants to clear their own energy fields and to learn how to direct light energy toward the common vision, through movement and sound and colour (manifestations of light).
The many layers enfolded in this project are becoming evident as we move up the spiral of our experiences. Past participants who have called it a life-changing event, often come back to lend their experience and energy to the circle.
The mandala is about total trust! We are creating a whole from very individualized parts. Each person has a contribution to make and remembers more of who s/he is, as a spirit in a body. We learn to let ourselves be spirit-guided instead of resisting the unknown. Within the matrix of unresolved creative energy, we anticipate and present a new harmony.
The results are danced on the Equinox or Solstice, where the dream is shared with people who wish to celebrate the changes of the turning of the year. Those who feel drawn by their spirits to the dream that we are creating, join the dance, where we express our passion for life within the container of a community circle. The beauty of this project has been stunning for me and its impact upon the earth, where our feet touch her, is growing stronger each time.
Not only do I invite others in Nova Scotia to join us, I am also available to offer the 7-step training elsewhere in the world by request. By starting in our own backyards, we may change the world.
In this time of great transition, we need to focus on activities and qualities that bring us dynamic peace. There is apparent chaos within change, and we are learning how to surrender to spirit to let ourselves be navigated through the river of life. The flow of tears and laughter keeps our passion for growth alive.
Mandala Dance Project 2010 to be held Jan-March in Halifax is now open for Registration.
Cost: $450. If you have taken this course before the cost is $400; couples are $800: students are $375. If you have taken this course before you can join us weekly for $50 per session. No beginners after Week 1. Deposits are $200 by Dec. 15 and the remainder is due on the first day. Cheques may be made payable to Nancy Sherwood. The address is: EarthSea at Serenity, 923 Hwy 14, RR3, Windsor, NS BON 2TO Saturday afternoon Dates are: Jan 9, Jan 16, Jan 30, Feb 13, Feb 20, Feb 27, March 6, March 13, Presentation Sun March 21. Nancy 902 792-1667 email@example.com