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The Strands of Your Life
"Hold out your hands and let me lay upon them a sheaf of freshly picked sweetgrass, loose and flowing, like newly washed hair...
In braiding sweetgrass - so that it is smooth, glossy, and worthy of the gift - a certain amount of tension is needed. As any little girl with tight braids will tell you, you have to pull a bit. Of course you can do it yourself...
but the sweetest way is to have someone else hold the end so that you can pull gently against each other, all the while leaning in, head to head, chatting and laughing, watching each other's hands, one holding steady while the other shifts the slim bundles over one another, each in its turn.
Linked by sweetgrass, there is reciprocity between you, linked by sweetgrass, the holder as vital as the braider."
- Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass

          
Photos above: Loose sweetgrass (top left), Elder of Earth from the Gaian Tarot (top right), Sisters braiding sweetgrass (bottom left, photo by Latisha Guthrie), and Hand holding braided sweetgrass (bottom right). 
 
A few days ago I had the most insightful experience braiding sweetgrass with a circle of sisters. As I was holding one end of the sweetgrass while my dear friend braided, I remembered a card I chose for myself earlier in the week that prompted me to journal with the question, "Where can collaboration and community support me? And vice versa?" In that moment, as I held my end tight so that she could create the braiding pattern she desired, I had somatic awareness that I love working in partnership and reciprocity with others. I've had this cognitive awareness before but this time, I felt it in my body; the joy of holding the space, of supporting her flow, rhythm, and process and then receiving that same support when it was my turn to braid.  
 
In the months ahead, I will be facilitating quite a few classes, workshops and retreats both on my own and in collaboration with others. I am holding steady with the inquiry of "what's the right mix for me? What kinds of experiences do I want to weave together, with who and when?" Which brings me to the image on the upper right, the Elder of Earth from the Gaian Tarot. About five years ago I asked about my path to motherhood and got this card. I looked it and impulsively said (in a not so pleasant voice) "I am going to be a spinster?!" I am pretty sure I threw the card down on the floor. Then, my dear friend quietly looked at the card then up at me and calmly said, "but she looks so happy creating with her hands." Fast forward five years. I got this same card on Sunday to answer the question, "what am I harvesting or reaping at this time?" My response to the happy spinster this time with complete elation. Like the three strands of braided sweetgrass, I am joyfully integrating the strands of my life's work - from ArcanaDance, to the Embodied Tarot to Nia and who knows what else will be inspired by collaborations and community?   

If I placed sweetgrass in your hands and held one end tight for you to braid, what would the names (family, work, art, self-care...) of your strands be? Who can you call on to support you? And how can you do the same for another?  
  
This weekend, a small group of us is gathering for Tarot Journaling with ArcanaDanceDuring this workshop, we will explore a variety of ways the tarot and movement can support, influence and deepen self-reflective journaling. If you'd like to join us on Saturday, August 27, 2016 from 10:00am - 1:30pm at my home in North Seattle - email me at jennifer@jenniferluceroearle.com
 
More upcoming classes and events:
The Dance of the High Priestess: A Somatic Exploration of Intuition - Last session this Sunday, August 28 at 9:00am, Balance Studio in Fremont. Drop-in's are welcome! 
 
Tarot Journaling with ArcanaDance - Saturday, August 27, 10:00am-1:30pm at a private residence in North Seattle.

Nia on Labor Day - Join me for Nia on Labor Day, Monday, September 5, 2016 from 10:30am - 11:30am at Embrace the Moon in Ballard. The 6:00pm class that day is canceled. 

The Dance of the Dark Goddess: A Somatic Exploration of our Shadow - Special three-part ArcanaDance series the evenings of September 6, 8 and 9, 2016 at Embrace the Moon in Ballad. Drop-in's welcome. 
 
A Tarot Mini-Retreat with the Hanged Man card: The Art of Letting Go - Saturday, September 10, 2016, 11:00am - 5:00pm at a private residence in North Seattle (access from the 28 bus) 

See you on the dance floor <3
Jennifer
The Embodied Tarot
Class Schedule

Nia:
Mondays: 6:00pm 
Thursdays: 6:00pm 
Sundays: 10:30am 

Stretch and Fly
Yoga Dance 

Saturday, September 24, 6:00pm-7:15pm

ArcanaDance:
Sundays: 9:00am
(August 28)
and
Special Dark Goddess series week of September 5 (Sept 6, 8 and 9)


 
Copyright © 2016 ArcanaDance, Embodied Tarot, and Everybody, Love Your Body. All rights reserved.