The School of Shamanic Midwifery (SSM) is a Women’s Mysteries School for midwives and doulas, a gathering of wise women, a year long Earth based ‘religious’ experience. It will awaken in you a deeper connection to the cycles - the way of life - and enable in you a range of ancient and traditional skills and tools to serve women and the birth process. The School of Shamanic Midwifery is based in Australia and is given and co-ordinated by Jane Hardwicke Collings, Homebirth Midwife, Mother, Grandmother. Jane has apprenticed with many great teachers – Maggie Lecky Thompson, Blackbear James Harvey and the late Jeannine Parvati Baker. She brings the experience of 25 years of homebirths and shamanic practice together and, as requested, presents what she has learnt and commits to helping facilitate those who are interested on their journey toward being Shamanic Midwives.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

SSM1 Dark Moon Gathering, Victoria, July 9-11th

The Dark Moon Gathering for SSM1 was held in the country side north of Melbourne at a beautiful retreat centre.

By this time we have come to know ourselves as mermaids - mistresses of transformation - and have gathered to journey deep into the dark.

The Dark Moon Gathering is about mapping the inevitable yet often avoided descent. We experience the descent in the cycle of the Earth’s seasons, in the lunar cycle and in our menstrual cycle. Within these cycles and inherent in the descent and subsequent ascent process is - transformation. In a culture that values the 'up and on' position as opposed to the 'down and out', its not surprising that we do all we can to avoid what is not seen as, or supported as, a natural and necessary part of the journey.

Stories of descent abound from the Ancients. One such story we will use to experience the process of descent is Inanna's.

We had a huge day of processes leading up to a ceremony re-enacting Inanna's descent into the Underworld and ascent to a place of truer self knowing.

Ready for the 'Dance of the Seven Veils", preparing to let go of the wounded ways that we express ourselves in the various roles in our lives for the journey ahead.

Integration time after the ceremony, making beautiful artefacts.

And so the Virgin Journey of The School of Shamanic Midwifery approaches it's completion.

So much has been learned, discovered, re-membered, let go of, and birthed, including (by the Closing Gathering) three babies! Several of the SSM1 women will continue the journey as Apprentices with SSM2 and SSM3. The others will take 'the work' into their own worlds and practices to 'spread the word'. Such brave courageous women paving the way for their sistars - reclaiming feminine power through reconnection with the women's mysteries - as simple as that!
For all our relations.
Blessed Be and Blessed Do.