“I am, you are, a vital cell in the awakening Feminine on Earth, a crucial component in consciousness realizing itself in form. You, your experience, is not insignificant, it is part of a larger awakening of the Feminine incarnate.”
-Lucy H. Pierce
Brief history on women's circles
Humans have been gathering in ceremonial circles since we began walking upright. Circles with a sacred center are ancient and the oldest form of social interaction. The fire was in the center as people cooked and ate their food, heard stories, worshiped their gods and goddesses, and passed down the traditions and wisdom that kept them alive and healthy.
Women circles, too, have been taking place for ages, all over the world. Many were directly tied to menstruation and the moon cycles. There are menstrual hut and moon lodge traditions all over the world that date back to 800 CE* and, in some places, these are still practiced today. While nowadays these often carry negative connotations, there was also an empowering side to them, once upon a time. The red tent (menstrual tradition) and moon lodges were popular as a sacred spaces for women and girls to affirm their spirituality and sexuality and to heal from the wounds of patriarchy by connecting with each other.
Benefits of women's circles
Nowadays, in an increasingly competitive world, it can be hard to have a healthy connection with other women. Many women have deep scars from childhood, feeling not so welcomed by girl peers, mothers or sisters, which has damaged their self-esteem, confidence and connection with other women and, most importantly, their connection with their inner feminine. So many women are suffering from depression, loneliness and anxiety, and this is a ritual that is designed to combat that.
When we’re in a setting where we’re not going to compete with one another, there’s a hormonal response that we’re safe. And that allows us to look each other in the eye and talk about real issues that are going on in our lives. It’s a sense of community, based on sisterhood. There are real health benefits to these types of bonds. "Connection with other women is more important to our health than exercising and eating right," says Naama Barnea-Goraly, M.D., former Stanford brain researcher.
I facilitate many kinds of circles depending on the needs of the members—support circles, healing and wellness circles or spirituality circles. Circles are especially powerful during a full moon. Working with the moon is an easy and powerful way, because as women, we are naturally in sync with it.
So,what happens in a women’s circle?
We set our intentions and create a sacred center (or 'altar') with things that are important to us (jelwery, crystals, photos), from there we draw cards, we sing, meditate, do yoga, drink cacao, dance, share stories, or simply just listen.
Some women attend as a way to reflect inward, to let go of something, while others go simply for the raw emotional connection to other women.
Prior to a women’s circle
I ask for the use of basic guidelines to ensure the energetic safety of all participants:
What is said and done in circle, stays in circle.
Each woman takes responsibility for her own feelings and needs and asks for what she needs.
We speak from our “I”.
I also recommend that you stay connected to your own shadow before, during and after the ceremony-- stay aware of it and also of your body. Journal in anticipation and after to capture both the content of what happened, but also the energy and power of the event. Watch your dreams around this time.
I suggest (not required) to read the book ‘Burning Woman’, by Lucy H. Pierce or ‘Women Who Run with Wolves’ by Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes. They are great resources to learn more not only about women’s circles but also about the power of the feminine and how to re-ignite and tend to its flame.
If you have further questions about women’s circles, want to be part of one in person or online, please contact me below.