We travel through the landscapes of our lives yearning for, seeking out and gathering together the lost and unremembered parts of ourselves, fragments that we may not have even known were missing, dissolved or torn from the fabric of our being until we glimpse their returning shadows at our heels. These journeys of remembering and mending, reweaving the familiar and newly weaving the unknown, are uniquely healing, revealing, profound and empowering to each one of us. Every traveller follows her own meandering route but there are common elements to be found in our soul pilgrimages, which is why the companionship, compassion and shared wisdom of other travellers can be such a precious resource with which to infuse and enrich our experiences.
The Weavers’ Trail is women’s soul pilgrimage into ritual landscape, wild shrines and sacred hearth. This workshop experience travels through thirteen moon cycles as it unfurls into the three deepening journeys of Daweyo (the Hearth Woman), Lagyâno (the Shrine Guardian) and Soitlâ (the Bone Dreamer). These ancient words come from the 4000-year-old Proto-Celtic mother tongue. The three key elements of sacred hearth, wild land and ancestors that are represented by these three journeys form the primordial granite foundation from which everything else within this body of work is dreamed and created. Daweyo, Lagyâno and Soitlâ are the three ancient grandmothers or wise women archetypes who anchor and accompany these ritual journeys, bearing witness as each travelling sister sets out to kindle the fires within the sacred house, tend the feral prayers of wild shrines or dream without boundaries inside the ancestral cave.
You might choose to enter this Weavers’ Trail because you have reached a threshold of change or challenge in your life and are seeking a journey you can use to support or encourage your way forward. You might choose to thread this Weavers’ Trail into your own deepening, questing, yearning path as a woman of spirit and curiosity and courage. Along this Weavers’ Trail you might find prayer or magic or dream or a myriad of other possibilities; it depends, of course, on what you seek. You might encounter answers to your questions or more questions waiting to be revealed; this trail can certainly be a tool for the awakening or strengthening of your own intuitive wisdom. In essence this Weavers’ Trail is a woven vessel of words and images, songs and rhythms, ideas and imaginations, waiting for you to travel here, to shape it anew with each step you make, to thread it into the unique textures and colours of your own journey.
The Weavers’ Trail draws on the writings, paintings, songs that I have created, the workshop journeys and women’s circles that I have guided over many years, and the place of wild sanctuary that I have tended during half my lifetime. This Weavers’ Trail may be undertaken alongside the reading of my books as a way of broadening your experience with those texts, or developing your own interpretations, or binding your own understanding and insights into a collective enrichment of women’s anciently-held wisdom. The books that are woven into this trail are: Weavers’ Oracle, Sacred House, Her Bone Bundle, Book Of Hag, Wild Litany. The images threaded into this journey are from paintings created during 35 years, most of them originally life-size and now embedded within the Weavers’ Oracle. The songs and drum chants spun into this work are drawn from a broad archive of 200 songs recorded, performed and shared in circles many thousands of times. The mythic stories and sacred tales laced into these landscapes are infused by dream and song and image, and fed into the memories of stone and river and bark and wind. The sacred house finds a physical form in the ceremonial ancestral roundhouse which sits on the land at the centre of our turning circles, and a spirit form in our constantly renewed honouring of women’s primordial truths within this earth womb, this dark cave, this blessed nest, this wondrous manifestation of our magic. The ultimate source is the ancient land and the ancient women who fill it with their ancient whispered prayers. We are simply the cups that catch the whispers and the cloth that tenderly enwraps the spells.
The books mentioned here may be found with this link
ANCIENT MOTHER WORDS
The Bronze Age mother tongue that roots this workshop programme into ancient earth is the Proto-Celtic language, a resonance of the 4000-year-old words used by the ancestor people of the British islands that fed into the various branches of the living Celtic Iron Age languages. This ancient nearly-forgotten tongue exists now as bone words, remembered within the marrow of our own songs and prayers. These words have been carefully uncovered, smoothed and burnished, held up to firelight and washed in chill streams. The undertaking and offering of this work are described in Her Bone Bundle. This mother tongue will feature constantly and profoundly within the Weavers’ Trail as a sacred channel of communication with land and ancestors and spirit forms.
The book mentioned here may be found with this link
STEPPING ONTO THE TRAIL
Although the Weavers’ Trail is laid out as a cycle of thirteen moons, it is designed to be travelled at your own pace. You are welcome to unfurl and stretch the time in which you explore and deepen your study, slowing the momentum of travel to fit the requirements of your life or circumstances or inner rhythm. The trail is sequential so you will follow each step of the journey in turn but you can choose when you want to begin travelling; the entrance to the trail is also not fixed in time. You can decide for yourself how far you want to deepen into the programme; you do not need to commit to the whole trail at the start for the next parts of the journey can be added as you go along. The main time consideration we suggest is that you do not rush through this programme of workshops; the Weavers’ Trail organically follows thirteen moon cycles and this is the ideal minimum time in which to undertake the whole experience. However, so we may check that you have not become lost in mists or tangled in briars, after you have travelled over twice the number of months allocated to your chosen journey, we will make contact to invite you to join the Heron’s Feather (or Heron’s Wing for bursary travellers) which offers additional support for long-time travellers. You are welcome to wait a while before moving into the next journey; for example, you may wish to anchor your work with the Daweyo and remain in her sacred house for some moons more before you feel ready to step out again and seek the wild landscapes of the Lagyâno. Working with the Soitlâ can be intense, requiring focus and dedication, space and solitude, if you want to reach her secrets. Tread the trail steadily, do not hurry, there is no pressure to finish. Allow the unfurling trail, the deepening work and the encouragement of your wayfaring sisters to combine in helping you to move onward with your journey.
Your trail bundle includes written text, painting images, pre-recorded films, posted packages of craft and ritual items, journey tasks to undertake, monthly online gatherings, monthly newsletters and access to our online forum and galleries. These each represent footsteps along your unfurling trail. The texts and images may be viewed on your screen or downloaded and printed out. The films (teaching sessions, drum song sessions and ceremonies) may be watched at any point during each part of your journey and as many times as you wish. The posted packages are an important physical element within these journeys, offering your hands something to touch and hold and work with. It is crucial to have the chance to connect into the wider community of women travelling across these landscapes; sometimes mutual encouragement and support can be vital in keeping our feet moving forward. To enable this, Carolyn hosts and guides a monthly kuro (circle) on zoom, gatherings that encompass informal teachings, drum songs, question sessions and simple shared ritual with the aim of stirring the collective momentum of all participating sisters, no matter which journey you are travelling. Each kuro is recorded and accessible through this website following the gathering. Each month we will also initiate a new thread of conversation and welcome offerings to our online riverbank which is open to all travellers on these journeys; this conversation will roll forward and be archived so you may revisit it at any time. It will hold and keep safe the river of words that we choose to share with each other about the trail and our journeys along it. There are other ingredients in the trail which are co-created by and for the travelling sisters: the photo galleries dedicated to each journey, the sound and song gallery, the sister map, the monthly prayer tree posts, the seasonal archive library that houses women’s longer pieces of writing and ongoing projects. This trail is organically encompassing new possibilities as the community gently grows.
You do not need any specific tools, books or materials in order to participate in this online programme, and all texts, images, songs and basic ritual items will be provided to you. However, the following may be useful: drum or rattle (if you do not own either, you can make simple percussion instruments from natural or domestic items such as small stones shaken in a sealed jar or a fat twig beaten onto a sturdy box); notebook (for written tasks, creative work or recording impressions during your journey); candle (to burn each time that you enter your journey, a symbolic hearth fire that connects you to the sacred roundhouse and to the warmth of flames lit by every sister travelling on this trail); blanket or shawl (to wrap around your shoulders whenever you enter your journey to remind you that you are stepping away from daily life into inner landscapes and quiet, intuitive exploration; the trail wanders into some very cold terrain so stay warm); journey totem or amulet (this can take any form, something you can hold easily in your hand, an item that you cherish or find meaningful, which you trust to anchor your heart and protect your edges whenever you are travelling with your journey).
(If you wish to extend your resources while you are travelling with the trail, you can find all Carolyn’ s work here: www.seventhwavemusic.co.uk BOOKS: The Weavers’ Oracle (English, German, Russian and Slovakian editions), Her Bone Bundle, Sacred House, Book of Hag, Wild Litany. SONGS: Many titles including This Place of Herons, Wyched Wombe, Weathered Edge, Cave of Elders, Drum Songs from the Heathen Hills, Winter Folded Everything Inside a Shawl of Feathers… PRINTS: Large prints available of all paintings featured on this Weavers’ Trail, and Weavers organic T-shirt.)
Our ancient roundhouse door waits for you to step inside… The Weavers’ Trail is a vessel that contains all the many and various ingredients of the thirteen moon cycle and the three journeys but only you, as the travelling woman, can shape these elements into something that authentically nourishes and strengthens your life. You are accompanied by the three ancient trail guides only to the extent that you invite them into your personal experience and understanding. This is your unfurling journey and you are answerable only to yourself, which can be both exhilarating and daunting. However we, your wayfaring sisters, are here to bear witness to your footsteps on this trail and hold out a hand when the path becomes uncertain. There is much to be said for an encouraging word left tied to a tree along the way, or the distant echo of a drum sounding through the night to remind you that there are other women out here, all across the ancient and sacred land, also travelling in this direction. Welcome, sister, to the Wegjê Kerdâ. May your footsteps along this trail be strong, inspired and truly blessed.