by Jyoti Wind
Our second Ireland Tour of the sacred sites began with 13 women boarding a 14-seater bus, luggage stowed in the back amidst extra wellies [Wellington boots] for the rain and mud. Some of us traveled with a friend, some singly, and most were unknown to the others.
We began with Brigid’s Well and the stories of Brigid as Goddess and St. Brigid and how the old ways were woven into the coming of the patriarchy. We blessed ourselves with the well water and prayed for those not present. At the Grange circle, we stood with the ancient stones, hearing the stories of the spirits of the place, sang in the center, meditated and joined hands in the circle of women we were slowing becoming.
One woman became feverish the next day and a clinic and antibiotic prescription was found for her. Vitamin C, essential oils, herbal formulas had all been dug out of everyone’s suitcases the evening before in an effort to help. We were beginning to care for each other. She recovered.
At the Neolithic Cemetery, we all bonded through ancestry work, letting go of the fears and separateness our ancestors had carried, some across the sea. We freed them and ourselves from the continuous loops of our unconscious memory patterns.
We all ate together, slept in shared rooms, and traveled aboard the bus each day, even changing seats to get to know another woman better.
Our morning attunements before the day took us across the countryside, and became a place to air our stories and experiences; tears at times, and laughter mostly. There was a sense of the sacred and respect carried throughout.
From the Isle of Healers to Galway’s Shop St. for lunch in a pub, to our last night’s circle and deep embraces, we were a cohesive group of sisters ready to be of help and service to one another. We carried those transforming experiences home to share with others.
Personally, it is beautiful to watch women bond with one another, bringing their differences to the table like a precious shawl and covering someone else’s chilliness with it.