Posts tagged Women’s Pilgrimage

Story 4. Dear Elizabeth Lesser

Dear Elizabeth,

In 2012, I read an article you wrote that was published in O Magazine.  Your topic became a prompt during a writing bootcamp I was in last year.  It caused a spark within me to ignite and has since burst into a flame atop a tall torch shining its guiding Light on a transforming path between my female ancestors and me, and beyond.  It was “Mamisma!”  THE writing prompt perfectly fitted to descend me into the past.  To my surprise, however, it turned out to be a “calling” from my future!  One thousand words spilled through the ink onto my paper, and …

Sacred Pearl Tours was conceived!

In a whisper, Mamisma conveyed a message to lead a pilgrimage for women of all faiths to Israel. Nine months after finishing the bootcamp, I realized the heat of my desire had been propelling Sacred Pearl Tours’ pregnancy.

Elizabeth, you might be wondering what Mamisma has to do with an interfaith women’s pilgrimage?  First, I must tell you—having never heard that word, you activated my curiosity and I rapidly scanned the article wondering what the heck was Mamisma?  Since I knew you are a co-founder of the Omega Institute, and that it’s emphasis is on personal and cultural transformation, I expected I would learn something important about the relationship between Mamisma and feminine power?  And I did.  Mamisma is a force!  You said it is “femininity defined by mature and maternal qualities.”  Mother love!  You went on to say, “But one need not be a mother, or even a woman, to be motivated by mamisma.  It’s available to anyone who values the power of the heart.  Mamisma is not to be confused with machisma, which is the sister of machismo. The world does not need patriarchy to be replaced by matriarchy.  It needs mamisma. It needs women to harness their hearts and drive the chariots of love into the center of town.”

And where does our strength as women come from, Elizabeth, for us to have what’s needed for harnessing our hearts and driving our chariots?

Could it come out of the stories from the lives of women who came before us?  Are we their conduit?  Have they been pumping that Mamisma through us, into the women who came after, and for those who came after them, and for those who will come later?

Are we the conduit for the Pearls of Wisdom grown by our ancestors?  Do we have a duty to our female lineage to turn toward their stories and listen to their life journeys to find the Pearls of Wisdom in us?  And if we continue our journey within, will we each come to the Mother Pearl?  As conduits, do we need to connect first with our own Mother Pearl to build the muscles required to drive love into the center of town, and into the lives of those who come after us?

The Pilgrimage to the Mother Pearl in Israel was conceived for us women to pump our Mamisma!

In Mamisma, Elizabeth, Thank You!

Jacke Schroeder

It Takes a Tribe to Manifest a “Calling!”

Story Two.  I heard a “call” to lead this Sacred Pearl Tour, the Pilgrimage to the Mother Pearl in Israel.  Like all previous spiritual “calls” I’ve received, just because the telephone rang didn’t mean I answered it…right away.  It took some convincing for me to take action.  This time was the same.

Lorien Eck was one such convincer.

lorienabout3 This past winter I went to San Francisco for the Wisdom 2.0 Summit.  There were thousands of people attending who were doing business on the cutting edges of Mindfulness and Technology.  In the middle of the roaring crowd, I missed the phone ringing and then barely could hear the voice message being left by a stranger who was inviting me to dinner for that night.  She had seen my post on Facebook that I would be at the Summit and she was going to be in San Francisco for the day.  She knew me from a virtual business-networking group we both belonged to and she said she looked forward to meeting me. I accepted the invitation.  With so many people to meet at the Summit, why did I say yes?

I believe in the power of the mysterious and the synchronistic.  Tickets to the Summit came to me at the very last minute when supposedly they were sold out and I believed there were important personal and professional reasons for them coming.  And, it was quite unusual to receive a telephone message like that one.  My curiosity was peaked!

When she pulled up in front of the Convention Center, her friend Lorien Eck was sitting in the back seat of the car. Our dinner was electrified!  That I was thinking of leading a pilgrimage for women to Israel came tumbling out from my mouth.  I could see Lorien’s mind churning; she was excited!

Lorien is an artist and creative process workshop leader. She is drawn and inspired by the land–its history, colors and textures.  Her art reflects what she “receives” and it awakens your heart and nourishes your spirit.  Of course, Israel being the Holy Land, Lorien’s art fits perfectly with Sacred Pearl Tours!  She offers sessions with individuals seeking self-understanding through her Soul Cosmology Paintings as well as offering workshops for groups both nationally and internationally.  Look at Lorien’s exquisite paintings for purchase at Lorien Eck Fine Art www.lorieneck.com.

Meta-Morph-Osis-V_L_EckBackground6.jpgI could have never guessed that Lorien would be a member of my Tribe, helping me manifest the “call!”  Take a look at the BEAUTIFUL background of  SacredPearlTours.com.

Thanks so much, Lorien!  I think of you every day!

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What is a Pilgrimage?

Times when I have wanted to gain a deeper spiritual connection or make sense of my life, I’ve gone on a pilgrimage—a sacred journey.  And when I haven’t been  able to make the journey, physically, I review those I made previously.  In other words, my desire to understand the interconnectedness between my psyche and spirit with various relationships I’ve had, places I’ve lived and worked, and spiritual teachers I’ve had the good fortune to study with was so that I could access and remember the wisdom I found during those pilgrimages.  Separately, and together as one, pilgrimages have become the placeholders and guideposts for my personal and spiritual development.

Artofpilgrimage-210-expPhil Cousineau wrote one of my favorite books, The Art of Pilgrimage: The Seeker’s Guide to Making Travel Sacred.  In it he says, “For millennia, this cry in the heart for embarking upon a meaningful journey has been answered by pilgrimage, a transformative journey to a sacred center. It calls for a journey to a holy site associated with gods, saints, or heroes, or to a natural setting imbued with spiritual power or to a revered temple to seek counsel. To people the world over, pilgrimage is a spiritual exercise, an act of devotion to find a source of healing, or even to perform a penance. Always, it is a journey of risk and renewal. For a journey without challenge has no meaning; one without purpose has no soul.”

He goes on to say, “Pilgrimage is the kind of journeying that marks the move from mindless to mindful, soulless to soulful travel. The difference may be subtle or dramatic; by definition it is life-changing. It means being alert to the times when all that’s needed is a trip to a remote place to simply lose yourself, and to the times when what’s needed is a journey to a sacred place, in all its glorious and fearsome masks, to find yourself.”

Pilgrimages are a wonderful way for paying homage. The sacred journey is not just through nature but through history. During the Pilgrimage to the Mother Pearl in Israel, we will more than pass by the sacred sites along our travels.  We will make connections with the stories of the people associated with those sites and find deeper meaning in the events of our own lives.  We will be honoring our ancestors, offering gratitude for who they were and how they’ve influenced our lives today.  We will find the Mother Pearl.

The thing about a pilgrimage, like most other things in life, is that there is no way to experience it except to do it.

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Your Future! Has It Ever Come “Calling” For You?

Have you ever thought about where good ideas come from?  When I started telling friends about Sacred Pearl Tours, they asked what made me want to lead women on a sacred journey to Israel and how did this begin?  My thoughts weren’t concise.  I wasn’t sure enough to give them a direct answer.  Instead, I started telling them stories about experiences I had been having over an extended period of time, and how I was being effected by those experiences.

One way I’m going to use this blog space is to tell you some of those stories along the path to choreographing the Women’s Pilgrimage to the Mother Pearl in Israel.

(As a side note… I can get kind of “out there” and esoteric when I tell personal stories.  One friend tells me I’m speaking Jackenese when I go into that mode!  Not to worry though…I always get back on track when I veer off.  So please bare with me… and let me know if you need me to clarify anything.  I’d love to converse with you here!)

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Story One: Dame Freya Stark is one of my heroines.  She was a passionate nomad.  Born in 1893 in Paris, Freya was a resourceful and scholarly travel writer who was the first Westerner to journey through many regions of the Middle East.  She wrote 24 travel books and autobiographies and eight volumes of letters from the 1930’s to the 1980’s. Many of the books were based on often hazardous journeys by vehicle, camel and donkey. One godson, Malise Ruthven, wrote, “Traveler Through Time: A Photographic Journey With Freya Stark,” a tribute in which he observed: “Freya never lost her passion for acquiring fresh knowledge and new skills. Writing, like travel, she saw as the pursuit of truth.”

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Dame Freya said, “There is a great moment, when you see, however distant, the goal of your wandering. The thing which has been living in your imagination suddenly becomes a part of the tangible world.”

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Do you have any recollection of that ever happening to you?  I believe it is exactly what happened to me!

Three springs ago, during a 3-hour workshop with four other women in New Renaissance Bookshop in Portland Oregon, Ingrid Kincaid, the Rune Woman who changes lives with ancient wisdom asked our group two really hard questions.  One was this:

Not caring what anyone else thought, if you could do anything with your life, knowing you wouldn’t fail, what would you do?

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She instructed us to take out a sheet of paper, and without thinking jot down the first three things that came to mind.  I put my pen to the paper, started writing, and to my great surprise the first answer was “Be a Tour Guide on the Appalachian Trail.”  Ha!

I thought about where that idea could possibly have come from?  I remembered many years earlier knowing a man named Gene S. who accomplished something that historically very few people do–he hiked the entire Appalachian Trail from one end to the other.  I wondered if perhaps I was to get in touch with him again.  So I Googled him.  I found who I thought could have been him, left a voice message on the phone I thought could have been his, but I never heard anything in return.  And I never gave any more thought to being a Tour Guide.

Until now. Three years later!

My future came calling for me. 

Has yours?

(More to come…)

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Praises

There are people who expand your sense of what’s possible. I think that’s Jacke.
Shaney B., The Waldorf School