Tuesday, 3 August 2010


In the Celtic calendar Lammas is a time for celebration of the first corn harvest of the year. Rhys and I spent Lammas weekend camping at 'The Council of All Beings,' held at Llwynbwch in Mid Wales. The land is jointly owned by Sue Weaver and a friend, who conserve it for future generations. It is rich in wildlife with oaks, beech and other varieties of British trees, and a river runs through. Some of the land is lightly grazed to encourage wild flowers. At this time of year the perfume of meadowsweet pervades and the land is vibrant with purple thistles and yellow birds-foot trefoil.  We heard the frequent cry of buzzards, the tapping of woodpeckers, the zizzing of bees in the orchard and best of all, there was no traffic noise. This place feels ancient and sacred. 
In the last year I have been on three eco-psychology weekends that have explored the connections between us and our relationship to the rest of the natural world, considered the impact of the Copenhagen summit on climate change, and have been inspired to write poetry about the environment and become involved with Cardiff North Transition Group. The work that is lead by Sue, her partner Alan, and her colleague Rosie from Totnes Town in Transition is based on the work of Eco-Philosopher, Joanna Macy( http://www.joannamacy.net)
'The Council of All Beings is a communal ritual in which participants step aside from their human identity and speak on behalf of another life-form. . .the ritual serves to help us acknowledge and give voice to the suffering of our world. It also serves, in equal measure, to help us experience the beauty and power of our interconnectedness with all life'(JM)
There were thirteen of us who took part in our ritual. The river chose me to represent it and the owl chose Rhys. At the Council, held in a North American Indian teepee by the river, we wore the masks we had made to represent the life-forms that had chosen us. Present were Rainforest, Soil, Stream, Mole, Python, Snow Leopard, Squirrel, Slug, Cow, Bee, River, Salmon, Owl. We discussed our plight and the damage done to us by human beings. 
By the end of the weekend, as human beings, we all committed to action that we will take to raise awareness about the plight of endangered species, our environment and the planet Earth. Also, to seek opportunities to become greener, healthier and enjoy the power of nature in its many forms. 

The weekend for me was thought provoking, interesting, creative, exhausting, sensual, sad, uplifting and fun.!

For further information about eco-psychology workshops and rituals, contact
Sue Weaver at Llwynbwch, Llansadwrn, Carms, SA19 8LP. Tel: 01550 777402.
Outstandingly delicious veggie food was created and produced from home-grown produce by Creative cook, Sue Laker (email jonsuzi@btinternet.com)

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