Spiritually Speaking With Liz

Sacred Circles, What are they and what happens within them?

September 21, 2022 Episode 16
Spiritually Speaking With Liz
Sacred Circles, What are they and what happens within them?
Show Notes Transcript

In this episode, I continue talking with Beccy of Wild Ways. Beccy is a yoga teacher, Reiki practitioner, Cacao carrier and sacred circle facilitator. We talk about sacred women's circles, where they originated, why they are used and what are there benefits.
Put the kettle on, make yourself a cup of tea and join us!
Love Liz



Beccy can can be contacted via instagram and Facebook: mywildways
Her website is www.wildways.org.uk where her course details will be shared

Hi, this is Liz. And welcome back to my podcast. Spiritually speaking with Liz. In this episode, I'm continuing to talk with Becky. In the last episode, we talked with her about being a Cacao carrier. And in this episode, we continued talking about how she holds sacred circles.  becky is a yoga teacher and Reiki practitioner, a circle facilitator, Cacao carrier. And has nearly finished her training to become a shamonic practitioner. So welcome back, Becky. Hello.  I can't wait for this one this time. What I wanted to ask you because I'm not again, I've seen it on your Instagram. 

With all your photos and your little description about the sacred circle, but what is a sacred circle? 

Oh, okay. So a sacred circle to me is a sacred space. And the reason I call it sacred is that, um, it is a space that where women come and sit where we open the space by inviting in the ancestors and elements and mother earth and grandmother, moon and all the beauty that is above us and around us. Um, and it's, it's a held space. 

Um, by each and every woman who sits in that cycle. So for somebody who doesn't know, what does held space Okay. That's a very good question.  So, so held space is somewhere where you can set and feel. Comfortable. With the fact that you, because, because the sacred circle is somewhere way, you speak your truth or you tell your story or we might have a theme, around letting go and maybe it's what you need to let go of.  So held space is a space where you feel comfortable enough to be able to tell your story. Now you don't have to. Speak in sacred circle because you might be new to it and you might arrive and think that you have to speak. You don't have to speak. The only thing you need to speak is your name and just introduce yourself just so the circle knows each other And yeah, so that by being held at it's more. I don't really like to use the word safety because I think that's a really personal. Um, Way of saying it. I think, I think it's just held as in, you know, that you are. A woman in a space who is able to speak a truth without judgment. Or opinion from somebody else. 

That's nice then. So the field fully support. Supports it that's the word  how did you discover a sacred circles? What makes you host them? Well It's a very interesting and funny story. I might not be interesting, but, um, I, uh, 

I felt really called to sit in circle, which is really strange because throughout my life, Um, I've never felt like I belonged. In with women. And that's my own. That's coming from me. Not all my lovely friends are out there But I've always felt uncomfortable and, um, slightly on edge. Um, When I gather with women. 

And so to be called to sit in circle with women was really strange. And I remember. Going to my first. And it was a red tent that I went to.  And I was taken by a lovely lady whose children, I used to teach yoga to. And, We went together and we arrived and I was totally out of my comfort zone. This was at the very beginning of the journey that I embarked on to find who I am. Um, but there's always a star 

So we arrived and we went and there was women and there was a woman with a baby and she was breastfeeding and, and then women kept joining and we all sat in a circle. And we held this,

It's like a basket and you had to hold it over your womb and say your name. Well, for me, that was a bit like. 

oooooh Where am I, but you know, you can't just leave. So I was like, I'm Beccy, And I don't really know what to say. So I passed it on. Exactly. And, uh, So that was my first experience. Uh, and that was like, oh, and so I then. Didn't go to the another one for But then where I live, there was another circle held by a lovely woman who actually now comes to my circles. 

It's really interesting how it works. Um, and I went to that one a few times and that was really beautiful, but it was really interesting. So I learned lots of new things, but still I felt like I was on the edge. Like I couldn't immerse myself in. Uh, in that sacred space. Um, But I knew. That it was something that I needed to investigate. 

So I didn't go to a, woman's a specific woman's circle again. But what I did do is I sat in circle there's a beautiful place in the lake district, called sunny brow farm. And that's where I truly stepped into. Who I am now, I think, um, and she has a yurts and we sat in the yurt and obviously you sit in a circle. 

But these were. Courses or retreats. So it didn't, there wasn't any pressure. It was, we're going to lie meditation and we're going to do some movement, but actually they're much, much deeper. So the more I went to these retreats at sunny brow, the deeper I went, I did my Reiki training. With the lovely lady called Jane. 

Do you some incredible, um, I did that at sunny brow and so that was the first time I felt like being with women. In circle for me was safe. Okay. So that was my own safety. And I, and I felt held and I felt I could express myself. And these were women. I didn't even know. 

Yeah, it isn't it isn't. I think sometimes you can be a bit more vulnerable with people you don't know. Because there's no history there with you. Yeah. I know them. Yeah. And the, and there was never any judgment. Um, someone might come to the end and say, oh, you were really brave or what a story. And you might say the same to somebody, but it was never anybody who said, oh, well, I wouldn't have done that. I would have, or I did this. All right. You know, it was just. 

It was like an unknown not a rule, but an unknown. 

Yeah, I have to say rule, I suppose that you just didn't just didn't do that. And powers, but empoweringrather than disempowering yeah. Yeah, it didn't need to be set. It was just, that was it. Um, so yeah, so that was my kind of journey into circle. Um, but yeah. And then, so now you've led on to do your own. Would you say that. 

Doing your own. You've brought in elements from all the ones that you've done and sort of made it. The wild way circle, so to speak. So it's unique to you. Yeah. And I think that's with every circle. Um, I think. You will find if you're looking for a circle. You will find the one that's right for you. My circles are very ceremonial. I have an altar in the middle, so I place a candle and each of the elements. And if we're doing about heart opening, I might put some roses or some rose quartz. And I feel like the altar is a place where everyone places, our intentions for that ceremony or that circle. other other places you might go to circle and they might just sit and tell stories of what's happened to them that week. 

They don't have to be really deep and you don't have to go there and cry. You know, they can be full of joy as well so I've created, so for me, I have the women's circle. And then I do also do a drumming circle, which is amazing. I love that. So each woman has a drum, a shamanic drum. Or rattle and we drink cacao first and then we drum our intentions into the altar. 

And then we all just drum. And there's no set tune or set beat We just drum. And each and every woman in that circle expresses themselves through drumming. So it's not, you don't have to speak. Um, it's just all about. Yeah, expressing yourself through. We use our voices, whatever rises you might want to get up and move around, you might want to stay. You might want to just lie down and feel a vibration over you. So that's the drumming circle. 

And they've also just incorporated a creative circle. Which is really mindful. Cause I love, um, weaving and macrame I find like tying knots is just so satisfying. And then at the end of it, you're like, oh, and if it's not that good, it doesn't really matter. But that's also another way in, for women who don't really want to do the spiritual side of. 

A circle. So it's more of a let's sit in circle. We drink tea. We have some lovely herbal teas. We sit and we just create, and we chat. And we chat about, oh God, I'm terrible at this. And then, you know, it it's just leads onto, it leads them to, um, it's there is still like a little ceremony. I do an opening meditation, so we're all grounded and everything, but it's more about. 

Creating something and you can go home and you can be proud of it. And I love that. That's a good sort of. Way, it's like an intro level. Without putting it down. Yeah. So a woman might come to that, do a bit of crafting. Really enjoy the meditation. It's not been anything she's really done before and thought actually I quite like this and then find out about the other circles that then at that progression to go deeper. Yes. Yeah. And I think that's how you would start. I think I was thrown in right in the deep end 

I mean at this red tent, we also made Uh, fabric yoni's. As well, so yeah, it was. 

I don't even know what that is? it's a vagina, I was like, oh my gosh. Well, my first one, so I was really thrown in. To just what's the red tent, just to people know , I don't really know much about red tents but I do know that hundreds of years ago, Thousands of years ago, we used to go into, they used to be red tents in our communities, and that is where a woman would go and she was bleeding and she would sit in there and,  with other women who were bleeding and they would tell stories and it was more like a Rite of passage. So now the red tent isn't like that, but it, but it is an honoring of a woman who was bleeding her and who is going or has, so you'd start a red tent when you on your first bleed. 

So it goes from your first bleed all the way through to when you've had your last bleed and on, and then you become the wise woman. So, um, yeah, a red tent. Is a place where you can, again, just be who you are. I'm not really sure of the. 

What the differences, but I know that the history behind it. And so there are lots of red tents out there. But held all over the country. Yeah, right. I have heard of them. I've just, I've never been too long, to be honest. What would you say. The women that come to your circle. Why do they come? Do they just come to be with other women? Do they feel the call into it? Like you did? Is it a mixture suppose at the mixture of everything? 

So what, what type of reasons will women come.  I think firstly, women are very curious. But they also. Usually come with an open heart to just see what it's about and if it's what they're looking for, then they will come back and if it's not, then they don't and that's absolutely fine. Everyone's journey is different. 

The women come just to be heard. And to be listened to because I think in our society, we talk. But the person you are talking to, you might be thinking of the next thing to say. Yeah. So when in, um, In the circles that I hold. Each woman has the opportunity. To speak. And if no one speaks, there's just silence. So it's, it's sitting in the silence, but I think women generally come to be heard. And for me. To be held in, in,

Just in this. Beautiful space. That's created like a sacred space I imagine Yeah. Yeah. 

And it's incredible because. 

Afterwards, There's almost like a release, you know, they walk out and they're like, oh, I felt so much lighter. Um, or that was fun or all that card that I, that I pulled was spot on. You know, it's exactly how I'm feeling I just think it's it's connection. It's it's, it's a different way of women connecting. 

So we're not sitting around a table having cups of tea and chatting. We're not, um, going out for dinner and drinking or going out and dancing, whatever it's. Um, It's a, it's a place where women can connect in a completely different way. Probably like we used to. Yeah. Exactly. Sitting around the fire. 

I think it's a really amazing thing. Yeah to do that, to bring women together because it is sort of lost isn't they already it's been taken over by. Um, either going out for a meal, not that there's anything wrong with that? Going out for a meal going up for drinks where you're not fully present. Are you in those? 

You know, it's a different level, isn't it? Where there seems to be a lot deeper. Yeah level. Yeah. It's deeper and also, you know, I think that women get more out of it. But I also think it's, it's a really daunting prospect of sitting in circle and it's not, it's been vulnerable. Isn't it? 

Totally vulnerable. And we don't do that. You. You know, as women. You know, we also have witch wound, I suppose, that it's kind of called where, um, When the witches were burned, women turned on each other. And they said horrible things about each other and they blamed other people and, oh, I'm not a witch but I know who it is, you know, that. 

And we carry that deeply within us. To this very day. And by sitting in circle, it's almost saying. Oh, women are. We are all women just beautiful. Aren't we. When we sit together, we can be wild and we can have fun and we can cry and immerse ourselves in the deepest emotions, but also be held. And it's just. 

It's just kind of. 

Giving us. The okay to trust. Yeah, which are things being lost big time. Yeah. Yeah. And, and be able to speak your truth. Because I think we're scared of speaking for sure. Our truth, because for fear of what would happen. Yeah. Fear of judgment. What will people think of me? And that's a wound that we have as well. 

Um, you know, we've always, we've been told to be silent. Not, not so much now. But, you know, in the past, oh no, don't, you know, the woman she's in the kitchen, she doesn't speak or, you know, or It's awful. All of these things, Um, we hold these wounds and you might not even know that you do it but we do. Even this kids though. I remember as a kid, it was, you know, it was always the. Be quiet when people came round, it was the be quiet. Um, or, you know, you sit and observe you don't, you know, good girls are quiet type thing. Yeah. Oh yeah. Definitely a good girl. is quiet. And, and, and you should be wearing you. Shouldn't be wearing this. Why are you wearing this? And that's too short or too low. You should wear this. This will cover you up and then you'll be safe. 

It's just like, Yeah. There's a lot of, yeah. There is a lot of yeah, the shoulds oh, yeah. Lot of shoulds 

And it's. It's not a good. No. So it just, it just creates a space for women to voice that and just say, do you know what. This is who I am. This is who I want to be. Um, and I why, why can't I, and, and it's a space for women to be able to voice that. Voice their concerns. About their, everyday about that deep history about their wounds from ancestors. You know, it's, it's just a beautiful, beautiful space to be held. It sounds. Where do you hold them? So I hold them in Harrogate. But I've also got 

A I do at the acorn wellness retreat as wellnear Brimham rocks near Harrogate  um, but then I've also got some online offerings which will be coming Yeah. So that's, then it's available to more people. Um, and I think we're all used to zoom all the equivalents now, after COVID. Yeah, exactly. Um, everyone knows I haven't done anything online. So this is a big step for me. 

Um, but I think they'll be it. Won't just be one-off circles. I think what I'm planning on doing is longer. So like four weeks or six weeks, or maybe even three monthly. Circles so that the same group of women can create a community between them and long may that community last, you know, through WhatsApp or , zoom, but it's. 

I just think it's important that. The S the circle is held for longer. Yeah, no. Because, yeah, because if it's the same people, like a closed group so to speak, then. You after the first couple of them, people will relax and Be able to share more. I would imagine than they would do in the first. Yeah. Whereas there were different people coming in, then you might be a bit like, feel a little bit bit more guarded. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. So. 

And between each time each ceremony or each circle. They'll be rituals sent out and meditation's, and a playlist, you know, so that you, and there'll be a WhatsApp group. So you can. Yeah. Between you. So, yeah, so that's my, um, future. That sounds exciting. Yeah, it's going to be good. So I've noticed throughout the last conversation we had this conversation that it's very much about ritual for you. 

Um, why do you think that is? Where did that come 

Oh, Do you know, I don't even know where it came from. It's presented as. It's just been there. I remember when I did my teacher training and we had to do our. My yoga teacher training. And we had to do our final Presentation  as a class. So we had to teach far fellow participants, our class, and, um, 

I have always taught yoga in a circle as well. So strange because I've never taught in lines. I've always taught in some form of fan or a circle. And I'm at that teacher training. A final. I made an altar in And I don't, I don't really know. It was like almost. I needed to have that in there. And then I've just learnt. 

Through all of the, um, Retreats and ceremonies that I've been to. There's there's always been an altar and a connection and. To the elements and to. The earth, like I said before, so ritual to me is you can find it in every day. It's it's, it's making a cup of tea. Um, but, but, but really mindfully making that cup of tea. 

I love, to offer back now. So it's something that's just come. So I'm asking through the manifesting through the ritual, but then after the ritual, I will offer back to the earth and. Give my thanks because I think that's really important. Something that we don't really do. Don't give thanks to the food that we eat.  The water that we have. 

Where we walk. You know, the earth we walk upon. So yeah, offering back, it's really important to me as well. But yeah, ritual. It's just, yeah, it's obviously been ingrained in you and then these little threads of just being pulling out and now you make weaving fabulous tapestry. Yeah. It's becoming exactly wild ways 

and it takes me when I sit every morning with my cacao and my candles, lit and my little altar, however, it looks, it takes me to a place of complete and utter peace. Of within myself. Yeah. So. It's just magical in itself. Isn't that? Yeah, absolutely. And, and from that. If I can give that to other women, to find that place, even if it is just making that cup of tea in the morning, it doesn't have to be all of the. You know, the crystals and the candles and laying an altar out, it can just be lighting a candle as you turn the. You know, the kettle on put your teabag in. And just breathing and feeling the earth beneath you and, and connecting to the outside. 

And I think if we can do that for other women, Oh, yeah. That is good. As you see it is, it's just finding that peace and then bringing that peace where you can throughout the day. There's always going to be times where we're wobbled out. We went. Pushes us. But then if you can just breathe centre yourself, come back to that. 

Yeah. State of peace as quickly as you can. Yeah. I mean, sometimes it can be minutes, hours, days. 

And I think we always have to remember that we're human. Absolutely. So, you know, walking into a circle, you're going to have anxiety, probably a bit of anxiety or fear or. Oh, gosh, what's happening, you know,  we're human and we always, always have to remember that first and foremost, you know, we can fly off to these. 

Peaceful. Spiritual places, but actually. But at the end of the day, we live. In a body. On the earth. And if we can just bring little practices and then, you know, it makes life easier, but you know, we're still gonna get angry. We're still gonna have. 

Well, having the human experience. the human experience is emotions. Isn't that? So. It's about. Working with those and tempering them and harnessing them suppose. Yeah. Which is, why I hope that by sitting in circle can give women that. Chance to just have a little piece of that. For some yeah, no, that's lovely. And I think. Everybody needs that time out, men, women, kids, you all need that time away from your family away from being the mom, the wife, the sister, the daughter. To just being. You. the Person. Yeah. And we can get shrouded by. By exactly those names. You know, by those Names we've put upon ourselves while I'm a mother or a wife or I'm the. You know, I'm a daughter, like you just said, you know, we, we can. Those can just be surrounded as we find it difficult to find out, actually, who is Becky or you know, who is Liz? 

Because we take on so much as well. Yeah. Yeah, we really Um, I've been distracted by this gorgeous stick over here. Now I saw this on your Instagram post, and I will share this when I do pictures, I will share this as the second picture. 

Because I love it. And I loved what you put. So can you, so if I just describe it as a beautiful natural stick that has been stripped of its bark, it looks very natural. It's not in a straight And throughout it, there are tied pieces of wool and ribbon and glittery ribbon, regular wool. Thicker thinner. It's all different. All different colors. 

So tell us what is it? So I was gifted that stick by my daughter's friend who was only seven at the time. She gave it to me for my birthday. And sh and I said, oh, what's it for? And she said, well, you can hang, you can hang it up. Cause you put some holes in it. And then she said, you can dangle things off it. And I was like, oh, I love it. Thank you so much. 

And it was sitting there and I did my , Circle facilitator training and this stick had been there and, and, and I knew. But what I wanted, most of all was, was as like an altar where you put your intentions. In a women's circle, you pass around a stick. That's how it used to be. I think. Yeah, the talking stick. So that's from gosh, from all different. 

Um, communities around the world. There's a talking stick. Some people use a crystal, some people use a stone, um, and I had this stick. So I thought actually that's a really, it's quite long, but it's a really good stick And then. Like I said, like the altar. I wanted something to hold the stories of the women. 

So this stick gets passed around with a little pot. Of all the offcuts of my macrame and wool and threads and lace and things like and as the women. As the woman is speaking. She takes the wool and kind of infuses her story into the piece that she's chosen. And then it gets tied around. The stick 

so this, I see this stick in a, in a museum. You know, in years and years to come, it literally sings, though. Yeah. Not, you know, it's not, I don't hear that this is going to sound barky, but I don't hear so like they've spoken the story into it, but it's at the side of me, but it's kept dry. As soon as I walked in. 

Yeah, but then it's to the side of a, but it keeps drawing me, but it's. It's sings. Yeah, it's it. It's got real potent energy about it. And I didn't actually think that was going to happen, but the, um, Now wait now. And it has to be. Laid out. They can't just be shoved in a bag somewhere. It has to be laid out. 

I will take a picture Um, and, and all the women, where's the stick can we got a stick and some people may be tell a story. And depending on the story, they'll look for the. A threat that matches the, you know, the color of their story. Yeah. So, um, It's a nice release. Isn't nice. Letting go. Yeah. And also women who've put their story on it before, and maybe that story was, um, You know, quite emotional, quite sad. And then they come back and they tell another story, which. Maybe. Uh, happiest story and it's, they kind of have that sense of, do you know Um, I'm moving forward. I'm taking steps. I can see it because they might be able to find that other thread that held the sadness of a story to the joy This is a it's beautiful. Yeah. It's like a complete story that isn't. Yeah, absolutely. No, no, it's beautiful. Thank you. Well, again, thank you so much for joining I really enjoy. Chats. I will put in the show notes about how you can contact Becky for if you live in North Yorkshire, where her circles are held in north Yorkshire. And I will also put a link to her website where the upcoming sacred circles online will be. That's really exciting. Really exciting they're coming soon. So I've got the cacao Jannie, which has talked about before. And then hopefully November, I will be. 

Putting on another, well, putting on a new circle online. I know, I'm really , I think that's really good.  📍 I can see it. Wonderful thank you so much for joining me thank you Liz thank you everybody for joining me thank you for listening and i will speak to you again with another exciting podcast soon