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The Armoured Heart
Retreat & Gathering

Programme & Schedule

Breaking Open the Heart Trance

 

This evening Ceremony is about the heart’s journey, the one it has taken, the one it is taking and the one it will take, the one it has broken open for. We are going to create though dance, a mandala, a map of the journey of heart, our hearts, your hearts, all hearts, the Great Heart.

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Children of Dreams

 

This ceremony is a song of hope, a song of forgiveness and a song of consolation.

It is a ceremony simple and of the heart, both of sadness and joy, and most of all is a prayer of innocence.

We gather together as childlike souls.

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Despacho of the Fiery Heart

This ritual is based on an Andean/Peruvian ritual of connection, and the relationship of giving and receiving.

This Ritual is a tribute of Warriorhood.

This is a sacred ritual letting everything go; all shields down; it is a bloodless sacrifice in which we are the willing sacrificial victim. This sacrifice is the sacrifice of the warrior who now chooses to take up The Shield and the Sword for others and not for themselves.

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Feeding the Heart Spirit

To give someone something to eat, to feed someone, is an intimate sharing ritual of giving part of yourself in some way to become part of the other. In some way we are all hungry for something. This is a shared silent meditation to bring us as individuals to an awareness and understanding of the interaction between the one who cares and the one who is cared for, in whatever context that care is delivered.

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Forgiveness Ritual

A moment’s pause to look at the space that separates us from others, a space that divides the essence of love.

To stop and reduce the space. The spirit of the rain was said to bring forgiveness because if filled the gaps between all things who had forgotten what was on the other side of the space. A moment to be the rain, a moment to be the healing of the absence of love.

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Heart Light

We have forgotten the story we know in our hearts and replaced it with the story we believe in our heads. In doing that, in living that, we have us over here and them over there, our heart, our fire, over there and over here, what happened to our stories, our songs? In ceremony we bring our stories to light the darkness.

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Heart's Armour

To put on armour is to protect ourselves from the assailment of the weapons of others. We place the armour about our body to keep us from harm, a harm that we have come to expect!

The armour weighs our bodies and our hearts down, keeping others out, and keeping us trapped inside.

In a day long ceremony we learn about that armouring, we get to experience it, and with the help of ancestral spirits, we remove it and we re-learn the art of the armour of the heart.

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Hearts on Fire

The Fire is our heart.

Our hearts are the secret as in sacred resting place of the First Ancestor, Aithar Aodh, Father of the Fires.

It is not that he come to us, rather it is that we open our hearts to reveal and welcome him. Over an afternoon and evening we celebrate the song and the dance of the sacred fire, from creating the hearth to waiting for the sight of the blue flames as the Fire returns to the stars. And for those with daring, we get the opportunity to walk with and on the fire.

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Mear Dao-ean Ghost Mother Ancestral Ceremony

Each of us is the manifestation, a child born of that act of love between the ancestral song of the stars and the elemental song of the earth. The friction, relationship between these two is An’N, the song of our life’s soul; Naofa, our destiny, our drive, the collection, and collaboration of all the parts of this body, feelings, thoughts and the sparks of fire and stardust of the stars.

 

This is a ceremony of the dreaming dance, in which through the smoke of the stars we reach for and are reached too by the dreams of the ancestors.

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Prisoner of the Heart

A ceremony to ransom back the fire of our true nature that got hidden in our hearts, and to set our ‘wild’ free. And in ancient ritual to be anointed as that warrior of the wild.

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S'ualsch Dearg : Red Mountain Ceremony

The ‘Wrap About’ ceremony, is an ancient ritual of cleansing, purification, and healing. It contains the elements of caring, intimacy and mother energy. Its spirit is one of bringing us to a deeper appreciation and commitment of and to themselves. 

 

It was an integral part of the nomadic journey to reconnect the wayward traveller to the safety of home; the essence of the lost child or the weary warrior returning to the welcoming arms of the mother and home.

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Siúlóid Luascadh Swaying Walk Ceremony

This is a ritual of the old times, in the ancient traditions of exorcising the demons that turn our thoughts and bodies against us. From an animist perspective, the ritual is the retrieving of those soul songs that are imprisoned and trapped by the shadows of trauma; both of current and of past lives and by this exorcising the ghosts that haunt our Soul Body.

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Soul Doll

In so many traditional spirit traditions, the creating of an alter ego in the form of a doll in and by which spirits and humans can interact almost remotely as it were for healing. Such traditions have utilized the powerful subconscious externalized metaphor of the doll. In our ceremony we will create this scared extension of ourselves, with its crystal heart, and for us the creation of this doll will be a totemic application, by which the doll carries the intention or ‘magic’ of the creator, which in turn becomes a remote presence or application of some intention.

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The Barq of Seoladair

When our hearts are caught in grief, personal, communal, or just that ‘getting used’ to that which gets lost, this is armouring, this is a keeping away and keeping with, and in that that which is lost, becomes not just lost, it becomes forgotten. In this ceremony we will remember and carry the lost and forgotten to the compassionate boatman, who will carry them to their rightful place amongst the stars.

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True Nature

The first man was asked to look into the waters of eternity and see his true nature in his reflection. He glances and cannot bear whatever he sees, and runs away, abandoning that true self. In this ceremonial reflection we will look into the waters of reflection and see our true nature. In doing this we will touch that part that ran away, hid, armoured, neglected our true selves, and bring forgiveness that we may once again engage with that true nature we were always meant to be.

Senior Student Ceremonies

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The Arrows of Dark & Light offered by Sushant & Ainesh

The ritual of the Arrows of dark & light is in a true sense a ritual of exorcism, an expulsion of the ghosts that overshadow the light of our destiny. We understand that ghosts are the secret and unresolved shadows of history, that hide the path forwards, calling us always to seek the path behind. These unresolved shadows are the arrows that wounded and trapped us in the cycle of unresolved history, and these shadows have become ghosts that haunt our lives, and we don’t recognise them, and they do not see us. This ritual is to open our hearts to see them, and to challenge them with the light that we had forgotten we are.

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The Forgotten Song of the Warrior offered by Priyabrata

Inspired by the ancient story of the weary Warrior, in this moon trance dance ceremony, we will consider what battles we get caught and trapped in, and then like the story, we will wash the remnant of the battles from us, thus remembering our lost songs of innocence.

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Child of Wonder offered by Rachna

This ceremony is to visit with that child part of our ‘soul’ with its untethered sense of wonder and innocence which may through distraction have been forgotten or abandoned, and to open ourselves, as it opens itself, and to be present in the world around us, which begs for wonder. Wonder, adventure, and uninhibitedness are essential elements in living a full life, and in acknowledging this child, enliven them and celebrate the unity and remembering with them. This will be a ritual of celebratory play, allowing for the spiritual child to be embodied in play and dance with other children and the world.

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Songs of Freedom offered by Peeyush

Liberation is the freedom from one's thoughts, beliefs and impressions. Liberation allows one to come into presence to the eternal state of nowness. It is the recognition and surrender to one's song. Happiness exists in this surrender. But how can we be happy if people and others around us are not happy? Happiness is a collective state. In that surrender we also recognize others' songs and come into trust and appreciation of their journey.

 

This recognition of our collective & individual roles allow us to co-create the world that our hearts know is possible, and an interdependent and infinite spiral of giving, receiving and celebrating. This ritual will challenge us to recognize our individual and collective roles with surrender to our song and song of others, as it is all part of the One song. From this place, this ritual will allow us to co-create & tend to our collective garden.

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