Article from She Who Knows Magazine - Winter 2016
Deep connection to the earth, the moon, the womb; this way magic lies. Dropping into the heart, through the womb and into the earth leads to a beautiful security and knowing, to empowered womanhood, self-honouring and love.
In the last few years I’ve really begun to work with my blood cycle in a conscious way. I give such thanks for this path, which has transformed my life in ways I could not have imagined. I feel more solid in myself, more deeply rooted in my womanhood and in this earth.
Working with Native American teachers started this journey, opening up my relationship with the elements and the idea that our monthly bleed is a sacred time, a time of innate ceremony when our connection to earth and spirit is very strong. In traditional Native culture, women went to a Moon Lodge for their Moontime - a sanctuary where, relieved of domestic duties, they came together in sisterhood to bleed, pray and dream. At this time of natural connection they received teachings from spirit or earth mother that were considered gifts for the whole tribe.
One night in a ceremony, I was ‘told’ by the fire that when bleeding I should leave everything else behind apart from being on the earth and praying – and so it began. I started to retreat for two or three days each month, spending as much time as possible alone and in nature, resting, dreaming, doing yoga. Meditation had never been so natural; it was like being in a meditative state effortlessly and continuously…as long as I could create the space and peace for it to happen. I felt ecstatic states of connection to earth and the wild world, and sudden inspirations and creative ideas. And I discovered that the deeper I rested in this, the Winter of my cycle, the more energy and inspiration I would bounce back with in the ‘Spring’. Beginning to plan my life and work around the innate talents of each ‘season’ was profound, and eased the emotional difficulties that pre-menstruum can bring.
Meanwhile, in my daily life as a yoga teacher, I was delighted to discover Womb Yoga. Diving deep into Uma Dinsmore-Tuli’s extensive research and beautiful yoga sequences, I added Womb Yoga to the practice I had already been evolving and sharing – yoga to help us connect with nature and tap into the energies around us, honouring earth, fire, water and air in our body prayer.
For thousands of years the main lineages of yoga have been held by men, but the ancient Tantric roots of yoga surely involved women, entwined with the practice of Goddess worship. I knew I had to do the Womb Yoga teacher training…but on the course, I had a clear inner guidance to stop teaching my weekly yoga class! I took the leap and followed my intuition. In my next Moontime I had what can only be described as a detailed ‘download’, and the concept of MoonSisters was seeded just like that.
Meeting once a month for 13 moons with a small group of women, starting in January, I will be sharing Womb Yoga, Yoga Nidra, (deep relaxation) and the Blood Mysteries – ways to connect with the earth and moon, practices to ease PMS and cramps and support pelvic health, and how to work with the seasons of the cycle, gradually deepening further into menstruation as a spiritual practice to love, honour and empower ourselves as women.
My dream is that we can revive this ancient gift for our daughters, and all women someday have access to this magical connection with the earth, moon and womb.
Articles and Resources
- Article on MoonSisters, written in Winter 2016 by 'She Who Knows' magazine
- Nikki interview by Asta of www.wildishwonder.com
- Video from Harry Merculieff on the 'Womb at the Center of the Universe'
- Video from Schumacher College What does it mean to be indigenous ?
- Video from Pat McCabe on 'Healing the Masculine and Feminine'
- Video from Uma on Pancha Kosha
- Video from Uma on 'Yoni Shakti means Source Power'
- Womb Yoga Website - Honouring the natural cycles of our womb with the cosmic rhythms of the universe.
- What is sistering, with Clare Dubois
- TreeSisters website
Moon Sisters’ chosen charity is Tree Sisters.
I donate to them every month on behalf of my groups.
They are an amazing organization for women, tackling climate change by planting trees in the tropics on a vast scale, and reconnecting women to nature and to sisterhood, empowering them to take the lead in re-balancing and healing the earth.