Women of the 14th Moon has created generational healing among the women of my family and many others in my community. It persists, because it fulfills a deep need among women to acknowledge the image of God that our lives reflect. Part of the genius of this ceremony is its adaptability. Many incarnations of the 14th Moon last for several days and reflect either Native American spirituality or alternative Earth based faiths. While our community incorporates many aspects of Earth based faiths, most of our leaders are progressive Christians and our interpretation joyfully calls upon that tradition, too. Also, by keeping it small, we are able to offer a one day ceremony, giving access to these healing opportunities to people who may not be physically able to camp or who can not take time off work to go to a longer experience.
This ceremony does what it was meant to do – empowering elder women and re-establishing their place within our Western Culture. It should be spread world-wide.
Ceremonies are experiential and unique to each community that creates them. I believe that the essence of ceremony is simplicity. We are fortunate to have the skeleton, the bones, of our community provides. We are black, white, red, yellow and brown. Every year we flesh it out differently, and every year we learn from the ceremony itself. It is an entity unto itself and it teaches us about power and control, about giving and receiving, about humility, self esteem, appreciation, friendship, community and much much more. Each woman who attends, attends her own unique ceremony.
Surely this is magic.
It was special to see what you can create in this world!! Now this ceremony lives on in other locations throughout the world and in different styles too. It is so important to join together and pray together and to make vision together and song together and honor each other and give to each other and live for ourselves and each other. It keeps us on the right path.
The 14th moon ceremony is like no other. It's a sisterhood -- a place to honor our elders. It also provides support for matrons and maidens who are our elders of tomorrow. As we grow in strength and love we take that healing to our families, communities and workplaces. As we birth the 14th moon ceremony in Central Oregon, it's amazing to watch the women come together and bond. We are dedicated to continue here to honor our elders and support all women in our community.
The sacred space we hold for this ceremony as we gather in community to honor the divine feminine in one another and ourselves grounds our work and amplifies our prayers. For me, each ceremony year I have been blessed with awakening and self-discovery. There is heartbreaking beauty in the care and artistry of the Arbor, the Drum, the Gates of the Four Directions, the Sacred Fire, the transporting and transforming holy dances of the Maiden, Matron, and Elder. There is always the Unexpected. Being privileged to honor my sisters and our ancestors, and learning to accept honor as I learn to accept myself, guided by Spirit, surrounded by love and acceptance – this feeds the Holy, and feeds my soul.
As a 65 year old woman, there are many experiences I have had which have contributed to my growth and awakening. Among them is the Women of the 14th Moon Ceremony, which has changed my life.
I first began attending as a matron in 1999. Having absorbed a lot of unhealthy belief systems and painful, unhealed, and neglected experiences from my family of origin and from our culture, I initially had to overcome my fear of the unknown and of other women to push myself to go. Then, that very first experience drew me in. I couldn't formulate the words or a clear description of why. I just knew that this ceremony was something I deeply needed.
Over the years of my participation in the 14th Moon Ceremony, including being on the planning committee for four years, many changes evolved for me from the inside out. I could spend hours giving details. But to instead sum up, I have learned to love myself as a woman and as a human being. I have opened to connecting with women, to trusting women, to experiencing my relationships with other women as being necessary and nourishing. I have learned to value myself and other women. I have come to increasingly experience and recognize the Sacred Feminine within myself and other beings and all of life. I have grown to value Elders and to love growing older. I have opened to the support and wisdom, the compassion and courage, the humility and commitment to heal my heart and transform my wounds into gifts and blessings. I have become increasingly empowered to shed the fear and shame and sense of being deeply flawed that once permeated my being. I have come to recognize and understand the transformative power of participation in ceremony and healing ourselves as women...
This ceremony has made all the difference in my life. I have also been witness to the transformative power of the ceremony in the lives of countless other women from age 11 to 94. This Great Awakening of the Sacred Feminine is so needed in our world and, I believe, in all of us.
And I am eternally grateful.
If I had known that my whole view of life was going to change, I do not know if I would have had the courage to pick up that talking stick with Linda. I learned how to honor my sisters in Spirit and be in ceremony with maidens, matrons and elders. I feel so grateful for this blessing to be of service to our sacred mother earth and to know now that we are part of the global sisterhood. When we honor the earth, we honor all life. We are WOMEN OF THE 14th MOON!
As the ceremony progressed, we began to understand as a group, that we could be more. That we could help each other heal. That the young women held the dream of the future. And that the Elder Women held the Wisdom of their past. We were grateful for the Matrons among us, who steadfastly did the work it took to shoulder the duties and responsibility necessary to create a ceremonial weekend of this magnitude. We learned to be a Village in those three days. And we experienced the immense energy that can be created by sitting within a consecrated ceremonial circle, where Spirit is called in to heal and teach.