CMG-LA Presents: ~ Monthly Journeying Experience
You asked for it and the Gay Men's Medicine Circle has agreed to facilitate monthly Journeying Experiences. You don't have to attend all the sessions. You don't have to have attended any sessions yet. Come for one or as many as you like.
Journeying is used in Shamanic practice to access stores of knowledge that we simply would not know from any other source. It can be seen as directed day dreaming, or meditation on a theme or a visit to another place with different rules, inhabitants and knowledge. This is something you can do by yourself, for yourself, to help your life run smoother. However, we enjoy doing it in a group and sharing our "travels" so we can all learn from the individual experiences.
This repeating workshop is offered by the Gay Men's Medicine Circle [GMMC], a group of Shaman who practice in the West Hollywood/Los Angeles area. It can be you very first time, or your 200th time. If you're at all interested in finding out something about what makes you tick, this is for you. It is also fun, strange and very enlightening!
What to bring: A mat or blanket if you'd like to lie down, a notebook or journal or paper to write it down and an open mind. You should also bring water or something else to drink as this can be drying. The technique is easy, but it does take practice to get the hang of it for most people. Some do it the first time as if they grew up Journeying. They are thought to have been Shaman in another life. That might be you. The GMMC is planning an introduction to shamanism weekend workshop in the Fall.
What to expect: You'll hear a brief explanation of how Shaman use the practice of Journeying [for beginners] or you'll discuss your Jouneying experience and expectations before setting off on your next [for advanced]. That will help get us all settled after a week of work and a drive in afternoon traffic. Then, get comfortable, do some deep breathing and a drum will beat for the Journey. After about only 10 minutes away, we'll write down our experiences because they fade quickly if not recorded. Finally, we'll go around the circle and share what happened for us. This last is a most powerful part because hearing other's experiences inform our own.
Our Facilitators: Ben~Andy is Keeper of the Journey as well as a long time CMG Brother. Peter Luu is Keeper of the Ceremony. Ray Hogenson is Keeper of the Plant Medicine. Ray and Peter have each attended several CMG's as well. Other members of the Circle will attend as they are able.
The CMG Spirituality Series: This is an ongoing series of workshops and events which is mainly driven by YOU the members of CMG. What is your spiritual practice? What practice are you curious about? How can it be shared with other interested men in the CMG? It has been said that there are many paths to enlightenment or many paths to God. This series is the CMG-LA forum to explore and experience the world-wide phenomenon called Spirituality. If you have any suggestions for another chance to touch the infinite; be it a trip to a temple, to hear a service, a discussion of the Koran, Bible, Torah or Bhagavad Gita; please let us know and we'll help you make that happen. We are open to attending any kind of organized service that is willing to have us attend.
Did you know: There was an article on Shaman in Siberia/Mongolia in a recent issue of National Geographic. That's appropriate. The very term shaman comes from that geographic area. When Western Ethnographers were learning about the tribes there, they asked, "What do you call that person?" and the answer was, "Shaman." It just might have been his name, but then, Caesar was a name before it was a title too. The term came to be used for all of the "medicine men" of tribal peoples who were interviewed after that, no matter what their name was for that position. A better title for them in the North American tribes would have been "Peace Chief." The names of the chiefs we know, Sitting Bull for example, were the WAR Chiefs. When the tribes were in balance with one another and with nature, they had Peace Chiefs instead. The advance of the white man caused the tribes to be compressed and go to war more frequently. Tribes that had developed some kind of agriculture tended to develop a priesthood as they developed cities and their spiritual beliefs tended to evolve into a religion. So the Aztecs, Inca and Maya were much more like their conquerers than the nomadic tribes of the plains and the rainforest tribes still being discovered.