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An Excerpt from Robin Deen Carnes and Sally Craig’s book  Sacred Circles:  A Guide to Creating Your Own Women’s Spirituality Group

We wanted to establish different ground rules than those that govern everyday social discourse; we wanted a chance to speak plainly, a place to be intimately known, a setting to create ritual, to sing, and to dance, a collective forum where we could ask for and receive Spirit’s guidance. So we set out to create our circle. We had no idea then what a powerful influence in our livers it would become.

… a place where we could come and drop the roles and facades and masks we habitually wear.

It has also been a safe place to explore issues like sexuality and power and grace, taking delight in one another all the while.

Gradually the group began to meet people’s deep need for belonging. … Sometimes people work makeup, sometimes not, sometimes a silly hat or a silky scarf. The policy was ‘come as you are’ in the moment. Imagine! Liberated from having to show up a particular way, we felt a growing freedom to rediscover and express ourselves. We began experimenting with ritual, lighting candles, chanting, sitting in silence together, listening and speaking with increased consciousness. Magic transpired. We walked away from meetings moved and different from when we arrived.

… As we immersed ourselves in the subject of women’s circles, we started finding them everywhere.  … Why, we wondered, hasn’t this phenomenon come to light?  Why do some women feel isolated in their efforts?  Why don’t these groups know one another or at least know of one another’s existence?  …

… we are not a movement exclusively for those fed up with traditional religion.  True, many of us have felt deeply wounded by the religion of our childhood .. But many others feel just as fervently that change needs to happen within the system.

… for the essence of women’s spirituality is all about finding, trusting, speaking, and acting upon the truth of one’s experience.  And this truth, we assert, is all we ultimately have.

Welcome to the ever-widening circle.

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