MatriFocus, a Cross-Quarterly eZine for Goddess Women Near & Far
I had an interesting experience at RCG-I's Goddess Summer Camp last July. It is a four-night campout and I was usually one of the last three women to wander back to my tent from the campfire long after midnight. On the first two nights I stumbled back in the darkness and seemed to hit every rock, twig and vine my feet passed. I almost fell a couple of times and was so relieved when I got back to my tent safely. The third night I started back and this time did not even have my little dim flashlight with me. And then it occurred to me I am a witch.
I stopped and took a deep breath and then prayed, "Goddess, guide my steps." Then I consciously stepped into the darkness. I walked briskly and smoothly. I walked straight to my tent without stumbling once. The energy of the night carried me home safely and I went to bed with a great feeling of satisfaction. The next night I kept coming up with reasons to leave the group and go walking around in the dark. I explored this new ability with excitement and a bit of wonder. It was like figuring out that I could hear or see. It was a whole new sense.
In August I went to the Michigan Women's Music Festival for the first time and camped in among the ferns. Every night when I got back to the shuttle drop off after the concert, I would take off through the woods towards camp. I purposely left my flashlight-toting buddies behind so that I could exercise my new sense. I never tripped, stumbled or even turned the wrong way in the dark the entire week. What a discovery!
Over many ages, the darkness has been turned into something to be feared. Shadows are to be avoided. The woods at night are an evil place. Why? Could it be that women have a different power in the darkness? That this sense I discovered this summer is actually the beginning of something much more significant? I felt something strange and powerful on those walks. I felt magic and energy all around me. It was much more tangible than usual.
At Hallows we turn into the dark time of the year, the time our bodies tell us to rest and regenerate. Yet this time between Hallows and Imbolc is packed with light festivals and frantic activity. Why? Why are we afraid of embracing the darkness and listening to our own biological needs? What has been instilled in us about the darkness that we need to unlearn? What could we lose or gain... by exploring it? What power does the dark hold for us?
As we head into this dark time, I invite you to join me in setting aside some time to sit quietly in the dark, or better yet, find a place to move in it and feel Her around you. What senses could awaken in you if given the opportunity? What power can you reclaim in the darkness?