Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Where the Festival of Shamans will be :)

Picture the people, flags, journeys, ceremonies, joy, soulness, drumming, friendship old and new, workshops :) This is where we will be.
...a Festival of Shamans
near Cape Town SA
24th, 25th 26th Feb 2012

more info on

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Day of Mourning

"Although primarily meant to commemorate the destruction of the Temples, it is also considered appropriate to commemorate other Jewish tragedies that occurred on this day, most notably the
expulsion of the Jews from Spain
 in 1492.
 Accordingly, the day has been called the "saddest day in Jewish history". T
he day focuses on commemoration of five events: the destruction of the two ancient Temples in Jerusalem, the sin of ten of the twelve scouts sent by Moses, who spoke disparagingly about the Promised Land, the razing of Jerusalem following the siege of Jerusalem in 70 CE, and the failure of Bar Kokhba's revolt against the Roman Empire."

I knew that Tisha B'av was approaching, this day of deep mourning. I was not sure how I was going to interact with it, as has been my walk with my spiritual path for a long time now. The requirement is firstly to fast. The second is to attend a gathering where the Book of Lamentations is read. The day is spent as if in mourning. 

Entrance to Holy of Holies
As the day approached, it began to weigh heavily upon me. Another depressing day, another dismal celebration. No wonder I suffer from melancholy. Then the Friday before, I took Soda Pop to the vet, and discovered that he was in such bad shape that I had to put him down... Can one officially mourn a dog? Is that acceptable? Or would that be making a mockery?

During the weekend I went in some deep, dark places in my soul. All the losses in my life came bubbling to the surface, all the things I had not achieved, all the things I could have achieved and didn't, all the people who I had loved and were no longer with me swirled around me the whole weekend.

Herod's Magnificent Temple 
So, on Tuesday I fasted, but could not face going to the synagogue to be with a bunch of morose people mourning the destruction of the temple 3000 or so years ago. In fact, I began to think about celebrating our lives, and our joy at still being alive, at having a maintained a continuous line of faith even though our temple had been destroyed centuries before. In fact, I could even make a case for celebrating the destruction of the temple (I hear the word "heresy" echoing in the background). It is what released us from the tyranny of the temple and the cult of animal sacrifice. From it emerged a system that was far more resilient and stood us by the long trail of oppression and sacrifice that we had to walk all these years. It spurred us onto to a greatness and a resilience that has become well-known and envied by many.

That is what I celebrated. Happy to be alive. Happy to be able to still practise my faith. Proud of all the famous and amazing men and women who were my ancestors and helped lead us to this present place of wealth and abundance and awareness.

Love to all,
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Sunday, July 24, 2011

Contact Improvisation - A Dance of Life

Last Friday we shared an evening of contact improvisation dance.

Contact is a form of dance in which we use our bodies to communicate with one another. It revolves around the dialogue regarding the alignment of our centers, about offering to support another's and for the other to trust you enough to place him or herself onto your center.

Interactions that take place in this dance are metaphors for life. For instance, the need to listen. But in this form, as it is a dance, the need to listen is about listening with your body to the bodies around you. As I move through the space, and encounter others, a dialogue ensues about whether I wish to take your weight, about how I wish to do so, and for how long. Whether you move in towards me offering, or away, removing.

Just as in Tango, the couple communicates via their centers, by keeping them aligned and in a certain relationship, and thus can move together. In contact, it consists of an interaction of taking and giving, of supporting and being supported.

Resistance is the way to hurting yourself or someone else. Resistance causes pain. Use the energy coming at you to flow into the new configuration. Each movement being an amalgam of your desire and interaction with your environment. Both have necessary constraints which will affect the outcome.

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Soul Journeys and Sacred Dances - workshop

Dance expertise is not necessary as we enter our body spaces through movement. We will look at our poetic inner landscapes and protect our spaces. We will use our hearts intelligence as
we encounter The Serpent of our Inner Power :))

The ability to move from our 3D world into an altered state where original healing occurs,
is a valuable skill. Exploring our inner realms with confidence and support, a space appears
where dreams are born and choices made.

- Please put in a deposit by 10th Aug. If you have a problem with payment, let us know and we can make a sliding scale arrangement with pleasure :)

Bring a packed lunch, your journal, something to lay down on and a covering. Wear comfy clothes.

email Susan at [email protected]
or Lyn at [email protected]
or call (203) 623-6026

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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Wise Council

“The soul, when accustomed to superfluous things acquires a strong habit of desiring others which are necessary neither for the preservation of the individual nor for that of the species. This desire is without limit; whilst things which are necessary are few, and restricted within certain bounds. Lay this well to heart, reflect on it again and again; that which is superfluous is without end (and therefore the desire for it also without limit).

What more can I say? Since I read this piece, it has pervaded my consciousness.

Thus you desire to have your vessels of silver, but golden vessels are better; others even have vessels studded with sapphires, emeralds, or rubies.

I understood the desire for the faster car, and the bigger house and more money. Now I begin to look for it in my life...

Those, therefore, who are ignorant of this truth, that the desire for superfluous things is without limit, are constantly in trouble and pain.

What I understand from this then is that this is one of the existential causes of our discomfort. This gives me a place to look for my own desires for superfluous things.

When they thus meet with the consequences of their course they complain of the judgements of God; they go so far as to say that God’s power is insufficient, because He has given to this Universe the properties which they imagine cause these evils.
Moses Maimonides 1190 from "The Book of Jewish Thoughts"

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Monday, June 27, 2011

from my writings.

cranial sacral body tides
ink on paper

Complexity theory and quantum physics have shown the primal uncertainty of our understanding of being in this world. Explorations of how the brain functions and neuropsychology during a shaman’s journey link Heidegger’s debate that understanding is “always ahead of itself” thus projecting expectations that interpretation attempts to clarify. Physicist Von Neuman’s contribution, asserts that “we futuristically collapse a wave function in ways that cause a fundamental, unknowable disturbance in the system”...creating and spontaneously bringing into existence something that did not exist before. Therefore, it can be said that we “know” already, what the synecdoches and metaphors mean, when they are retrieved from our inner conscious by a shaman artist who brings them forth in creation.


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Friday, June 10, 2011

Journey work

This morning I received an SMS from a friend of mine. He has been struggling for a long time now trying to find a steady source of income for himself and his family. A number of months ago, his Rabbi encouraged him to put more effort into the spiritual side of his life. By this, the Rabbi meant attend services more often, say your prayers twice a day, and lay the 'tefillin' every morning. He did lay tefillin for a little while, but soon tired of that.
Since then, he began to see me to do some inner journey work. It is a form of journey work called the "Merkava Descent" that has been handed down to me from ancient Hebraic traditions. We spent a number of session descending into his inner spaces and working in there, rearranging, investigating, shedding some light on what is often regarded as the shadow, the unknown, unconscious aspect of our existence.
Recently we have begun to meet in a group to practise a similar technique. And as group prayer is know to be more effective than praying alone, so this journeying held withing the safety and support of the group - similar to voodoo rituals - is know to be more efficacious.
So in conclusion,.

Inner work produces results in the outer. The only problem is, because of the non-linearity of the relationship, the relationship cannot be scientifically (by the present methods of science, anyway) proven. Science cannot say whether there is any "factual connection".

I ask, what if science had to make an effort to prove this connection. I mean a "real" effort. Just as from the belief in Democritus' concept of the atom, we have produced this wonderful, and useful, edifice to modern physics, some of it of practical use and a lot of it very speculative. What if we truly believed there was a connection between the inner and the outer, and we used the same type of mathematics (or something similar) that we have been using to describe the inner world of the atom to describe this essential non-linear, chaotic and unpredictable relationship.


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Monday, March 28, 2011

The Alchemy of the Feminine in Shamanism

Join us on Sunday, 10th April from 10 till 3pm

At Alive Dance School
16 Palmer Rd, Muizenberg, Cape Town

We will open with the directions of the Medicine Wheel and then journey to meet and connect with our Mother Earth.
Learn how to protect and clear ourselves with Medicine Spaces.
Bring a small bundle of your personal jewelery. We will play awhile in the realms of our Divine Feminine archetypes. Lovely and surprising.
We will meet and say "hello" to the Inner Serpent energy of our belly's in Sacred Dance.

Please wear your ceremonial regalia if you have.

Men are welcome to join in an outer circle.

Bring a cushion, lunch and beverage.

Donation of R150 or best can do :)

More info: email [email protected] or phone 0832313704
RSVP please.

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Monday, February 7, 2011

Experiential Kabbalah workshop

Walk the tree

An experiential introduction to the Kabbalah

Have you ever been intrigued by the Kabbalah? Heard about it, but no idea what it is about? Want to experience it's energy and it's spaces?

This is an opportunity to gain some insight into the range and depth of this ancient form of mysticism. Jewish in origin, it has grown and expanded throughout the millenia of its existence to show itself as a universal form of mysticism, what might rightly be called a Science of the Sacred.

Come and join us for a day at the lovely Bailey's cottage in St. James, where we will be using movement and sound and your inner voices to interact with one another and the structure and energies of the trees.

It is a time to play in the realms of the sacred. To step out of the mundane and walk with others in the inner spaces in which we encounter the profound.

A raw food lunch will be part of the experience prepared by the raw-foods chef, Ian Light...

Date: Sunday 27th February

Time: 9am – 5pm (approx).

Place: Bailey's cottage, St. James.

Price: R100 deposit.

Total workshop fee approx R350

No one will be turned away. We ask for a R100 deposit to ensure your place. We will use a process called CCP or Co-Creative Payments to cover the costs, pay for the venue and for the facilitator.

Yehuda Moshe ben Aaron (Julian Gordon) is a long-time student of the Kabbalah. He has a depth of knowledge that comes from studying this and related topics for many years. But it is his ability to meld this knowledge with modern science that provides a unique and broadminded view of this fascinating topic.

contact Julian on: [email protected] or phone: 083-2265482

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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Journey Workshop

This workshop space is unique in that it stretches out onto the rocks in Muizenberg. It is a heritage site and soon to be renovated into an upmarket venue. The sea will surround us, and the mountains will stand behind. The weekend will be full of ocean and water, representative of the journey that we will all be on. Just as those explorers set out to find the new lands and opened up new spaces to all of us, bringing us into contact with a far vaster range of culture than we were aware of, so these journeys open up inner spaces that we will have to cross vast waters to appreciate. In the evenings we will gather over supper to share and using the group energy to deepen the experience. As one wise man said, “Each one of us is a spark of Divine energy. But when we gather in Sacred space, we become a flame.” We will encounter the shape of our cloaks, and discover wonderful new spaces for reparation.

We gather for supper on Friday night the 4th of Feb and through the honoring of the Sabbath day, we facilitate the transition from mundane to sacred space. For the work to be most effective, we need the space of honoring, of unconditional love. We will discuss and describe some of the processes, the purpose and goals of the processes we will be exploring during the weekend.

Essentially we will be leading you on journeys into the inner realm, the place of our avatars, where our non-material bodies, our souls, exist. There we will seek out and encounter the veils that our souls are clothed in that are essential for our incarnation on our 3D Mother Earth. We use the Kabbalah and the Sefirot of Compassion, Passion, Creativity, Majesty, Mercy, Severity and Foundation to explore the shape of these veils.

Each time, upon our return, we will ground these experiences in this world by some expression of what we have discovered, either through drawing (no art experience necessary) and/or writing and/or various interactions with the ocean and its natural gifts that we will be ensconced in.

In the evenings, we will gather together to share bread and our stories. Only when we interact as compassionate witnesses from our higher hearts do we truly understand. And the images and energies that we will discover will speak to us of these things.

Bring something to lay down on while journeying and to sleep on if you want to stay over (please let us know if you would like to do this).

AND :))...


and a special WATER CEREMONY:))

Bless you all. May we all learn the ways and deepen our understandings of that infinity we are custodians of.


With much love,

Julian & Lyn.

Please contact Lyn on [email protected] for more info or phone 0832313704


If you are interested in the deeper components of this workshop, read on...
The content of the workshop is based on the Kabbalistic Tzimtzum ( ) and the Sephirot ( ).

In short, when God created the world he (and I use the masculine specifically here) created spaces for existences. That is the Tzimtzum part. It is in these spaces that we find our cloaks.

The Sephirot are the spheres that make up the Kabbalistic Tree of Knowledge. You have probably seen it. Each sphere emanates a specific quality or characteristic. We will be journeying for 7 of these emanations for the workshop (there are 10 Sephirot) These emanations are: Chesed = Mercy, Gevurah = Severity, Tiphareth = Compassion, Netzach = Passion, Hod =Majesty, Yesod=Foundation and Malchut= in this instance for Malchut, we will journey for our cloak of Creativity.
Kabbalistically, each of these emanations are like Cloaks for the Soul to exist here on earth, we wear them as characteristics of that expression of ourselves.

So, we will do a series of journeys to find our character of these emanations and when we return from the journey, we will draw or write a rendition of that characteristic of our soul (so we can see it), see what state our cloaks are in, explore what we can do if repairs are needed, open wonderful new spaces. For example what does the state of your cloak of Mercy look like, what does your cloak of Passion look like, what does your cloak of Majesty look like?

It may sound complicated because of the Kabbalah but one doesnt need to know all that as these journeys can be used on many levels (psychoanalytically, poetically, artistically, or shamanistically to heal and understand those parts of ourselves)
. The journeys are sacred and personal so whatever way it speaks to a person is correct.

Your journeys will be guided in safe and supportive surroundings :)

All you really need to know is that you will journey to find out about 7 characteristics that cloak your inner souls!

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