Issue 4                 As Above, So Below: Heaven and Earth, Divine Mirrors                       January 2007

Home  Newsletter Archives

Editor-in Chief:
Bekki Shining Bearheart
Chief Cook, Bottle-washer and Reviewer of Exotic and Amazing Books and  Other Things:
Crow Swimsaway

IN THIS ISSUE

What's New at CEH
Workshop Reviews:
     Drumming in the Temple
Book Reviews:
     Astrology Books in Brief
Announcements:
  Tom Cowan Faery
   Doctoring Workshop in
      Jackson,OH
   Crow's Book: Review it
EnviroTip: Recycling,etc
Your Feedback
Bekki's Art:
    Colin's Rattle
Activists' Corner:
    Great Bear Foundation
Intern Opportunity
Wishlist
Submission Guidelines

HELP!!!!
we need your ideas, journeys, and prayers!

We have been asked to present a paper at the 8th Conference of the  International Society for Shamanistic Research. The ISSR is based in Hungary, and this year the conference, which has been held in Mongolia, Korea, Japan, France, Estonia and China, is actually being held in Hungary.
We have been pursuing possible funding, but need to have some money by the middle of March in order to secure our hotel and conference fees. If you have ideas for how we can raise money or can put some mojo into this, we would appreciate it. The Spirits have given it the go-ahead, and Bekki hopes to connect with long-lost relatives while there. We are doing regular shamanic work ourselves but would appreciate help...

What's New at CEH

Greetings,
    Last issue we were pleased to share the news of Michelle's and Bill's new baby Hunter. Hopefully we'll have a picture to share soon.
    There is another new addition to the circle. Chris Forester and his partner Sharon have had a baby girl, Willow Artemis, on Dec 31st. See her picture below.
    We've had a lot of positive comments about the newsletter, but we are hoping that people will be inspired to respond to particular articles, reviews and other content. While we don't have loads of space for long letters, we want the newsletter to be a space for you all to reflect on its content. So if something really shakes your chain let us know.
    So sorry for the lateness of this issue-- it's been on hold, waiting for a few items.  The next issue will follow quite soon. We are attempting to back on schedule!
    We have been asked by students in Norfolk VA to do some high-powered work with them, so we plan to teach there just about once a month through the summer. We will be alternating the Elementals workshops with other offerings, including a Fundamentals course, our plant spirit workshop, Rooted in the Heart, Seeded in the Soul (also being offered this summer in the Dayton area and Bucks County PA near Quakertown/Philly) and a shamanic dream workshop co-taught by Bekki and Mary Pat Mann (information available on the web site soon). We have helped build one garden in Norfolk for this workshop and will do two more in PA and OH for their workshops. We also hope to schedule Drumming in the Temple (see the review by Crow this issue) for Norfolk later this year. We plan a spring Circle of the Ancestors in Athens, and another Fundamentals in Bucks County. We now have two groups in the Bucks County area, a new group just beginning and our first group, which is working at an advanced level. They will be doing the 3rd workshop in the Elementals series in March. Check our schedule for the updates soon. We still have some room in our schedule if you've been thinking about sponsoring a workshop, so contact us about availability.
   Those of you in the Detroit area may see us at the Hilton Detroit/Troy at ConVocation 2007. The theme this year is
"Sacrifice: Instrument of Change". We are guests of honor, offering workshops and shamanically based rituals, and will be available for healing work and ceremonial tattooing while there. A complete schedule is available at the web site.

Blessings,
Bekki and Crow

PS: Upcoming issues:
February: Shamanic Views on Relationship deadline to submit: ASAP!
    We're looking for someone to review the Love Medicine workshop for this issue. If you've taken it please consider writing one.
March: Shamanism and the Elements deadline to submit: 2/15/2007
  
We're looking for someone to review any of the workshops in the Elemental series (Shamanism and the Earth Elementals, etc) for this issue. If you've taken any of them please consider writing one.
April: Healing Techniques, Take 2 deadline to submit: 3/15/2007
May: Plant Spirits and the Green World deadline to submit: 4/15/2007
   
We're looking for someone to review the Plant Spirit workshop Rooted in the Heart, Seeded in the Soul for this issue. If you've taken it please consider writing one.


ANNOUNCEMENT
We're STILL looking for someone to review Spirit Knife, Soul Bone; The Ancient Shamanic Art of Extracting Negative energies by Crow Swimsaway PhD.
You get a free (reviewer's) copy of the finally completed, corrected second edition (JUST OUT!) and we get an independent opinion on the book to publish here in the Newsletter.
Spirit Knife, Soul Bone is now available in both pdf on CD and in print. In the new year the voice recording on CD, read by the Author, will be available. Mairynn Wrentmore of Art and the Goddess, putting fresh faces on mythic legends  (www.mairyannsart.com), and a member of our Athens area journeying circle, is designing the new cover for the CD--- and quite amazing it is too. Please see our website for details.


Tom Cowan Faery Doctoring Workshop
Janet Martin is bringing Tom Cowan to Southeast Ohio  to do a three-day Faery Doctoring workshop
March 9-11 2007, at Canter Caves, Jackson, Ohio. You know we are careful about the teachers we endorse. Our standards are pretty high. Bekki went to Tom's  Return of the Sidhe, which Janet also organized, last year. It was excellent. Tom is a fine teacher. He uses the myths and stories of the Celtic tradition in his Celtic workshops, a traditional method of teaching shamanism that people who have studied with Sarangerel will recognize. He brings to the work great concern for the earth and our relations. This workshop promises to be another excellent offering.
"Faery doctors are men and women in rural Ireland and other Celtic lands who treat people suffering from illnesses and misfortunes attributed to faery influence. In the past, faery doctoring was strongest in areas without western medical care and where the presence of the Otherworld was recognized as one of the realities of daily life. ..Working as a faery doctor means allying yourself, your shamanic practice, and other areas of your life with that realm of the Otherworld that some Celtic people call the Sidhe (pronounced "shee" and meaning both the faery world and the faeries themselves)...Like all shamanic practices, faery doctoring requires working with and for the spirit world as much as seeking its help for ours."
---Tom, from his web site. For more info on the workshop see this link.
To register for the workshop contact Janet
at 740-286-5551 or bjmartin@zoomnet.net


Book Reviews
Beginning Astrology Studies
by Bekki

This column will be a short overview of some of my favorite astrology titles , including some of my first explorations of astrology. It doesn't include my recent forays into Vedic/Hindu astrology,know as Jyotish.
I plan another issue on that topic. For a little more basic info on types of astrology you can go to my astrology  page on our web site.

Basic Astrology Texts- all of these give a thorough introduction to how to read a natal (birth) chart.


Astrology: The Classic Guide to Understanding Your Horoscope by Ronald C. Davison;
CRCS Publications; $10.95; ISBN-13: 978-0916360375; Paperback; 175 Pages

"The purpose of living is to discover the purpose of  living."-- from the Introduction

One of the first and best books in my library, this book is also an inexpensive book, which makes it a good investment for the beginner. (My copy cost me 95 cents in 1972!) Davison was a prolific author and a president of the Astrological Lodge of the Theosophical Society in Britain, and first published this book in 1964. It has never gone out of print. It is the text I have most often used for my workshops and classes.

The Introduction, his first chapter, discusses the spiritual and material reality and basis of astrology, and its history of use by human cultures. The second chapter describes the basics of how a chart is constructed and what it is constructed of. In the following chapters he goes on to describe the nature of the planets, signs and houses of the horoscope or natal chart, including the meanings of the planets in the signs and houses. there are 10 planets, and they can be in any of the 12 signs or 12 houses depending when one is born. Each position is synchronous with a set of characteristics, skills, potential challenges, and so on.  He describes these qualities in ways that are easy to grasp and yet very illuminating. He also discusses aspects-- the geometric relationships of planets to each other in the chart. These aspects reveal ways in which the energies of the planets support, enhance, challenge or block each other's expression. The final chapters cover how to calculate a chart (in the old days it was all done by hand using special books); how to blend the various factors in the chart by judging the strengths of the planetary influences; and lastly gives some sample delineations or readings of well-known horoscopes.
****************
 (New) A to Z Horoscope Maker and Delineator by Llewellyn George; Llewellyn Publications; Rev&Expand edition (September 1, 2002); ISBN-13: 978-087542264;
Paperback; 592 pages


First published in 1910, my hardback edition dates to 1972. If you go to Amazon you will find a wide range of editions-- stick to either the hardback used editions or the "New" edition re-published in paperback by Llewellyn in 2002, which has been revised and updated. I can't tell you what is in the new edition, but my 1972 edition is still one of the best comprehensive books on astrology you will find. The author was the founder of Llewellyn publications and was a very well-respected astrologer at the turn of the previous century. His work is practical and down-to-earht; my only caution is that his language and concepts are somewhat old-fashioned.

This is for the serious student who wants to know at least something about all branches of astrology. Not that this book is only an introduction. The material on natal chart interpretation is extensive, detailed and very accurate. While a junior in college, I used this book in 1974 to do a chart reading for a sceptical friend. His scientific bias wouldn't allow him to accept astrology, so I suggested that he obtain birth data of someone he knew that I did not. I wrote out an interpretation of her chart, and described her physical appearance exactly (even to her weight and height!). He could not understand how I did it, but admitted that I was correct in all the details. This book contains information on all of the basics of chart interpretation you will find elsewhere, plus a lot more.

In addition to natal astrology, the author has detailed chapters on contruction of the chart;  predictive astrology, both progressions and transits; and rectification of the chart (finding the correct birth time). He also includes brief sections on horary astrology (casting a chart for the time of a question in order to answer the question, such as "Where will I find my lost keys?"); electional astrology (making charts for the best time to intiate action (weddings, building houses, buying cars, etc.); relocation by astrology; picking winners; and a host of other topics.

I don't have a current list price on this but you can get fairly recent paperback copies on Amazon for practically nothing, and suspect the publisher is still printing it.
******************

The Everything Astrology Book by Trish MacGrego
r; Adams Media Corporation; $12.00; ISBN-13: 978-1580620628: Paperback; 310 pages
First published in 1998, this book does most of what you want in a beginning text.  MacGregor covers the structure of a chart, and information on interpreting planets in signs and houses, plus aspects. She includes Marc Jones' planetary patterns (very good information!). She introduces but does not interpret the Nodes of the Moon and the Part of Fortune-- enough info to make you want more about these. She discusses, again in brief, moon phases and eclipses. One of the pluses of this book is its format. It is easy to read, well-laid out, illustrated and has exercises at the end of sections. She has a section at the end on putting it all together, plus sample chart readings. Also she does refer to other texts where you can find out more about certain topics. What she will do is whet your appetite for more.

More Book Reviews
Advanced Topics in Astrology
by  Bekki

I cite the publisher, ISBN,  and other details when I have them available. Most of these books are available through Amazon, and I can order someof them through my book supplier.

Liz Greene is one of my favorite authors. She is a prolific and insightful writer on astrology  and tarot who  is also a Jungian analyst. She lives and works in England but occasionally teaches here. She skillfully blends a profound understanding of Jung into her writings on  astrology, teaching  reams about both disciplines simultaneously. Below are some of my favorites, she has written loads more.
Astrology of Fate;
Weiser; ISBN-13: 978-0877286363; Paperback; 384 pages
Liz focuses on two areas in this book. She is examines the ancient goddeses of Fate and looks at their relationship to the placement of the planet Pluto in natalcharts. She relates this planet to body image, depression/suicide, transformation, power dynamics and other psychological phenomena, and does it in a profound and deeply compassionate way.
In addition she looks at the (Greek) mythology behind each of the 12 zodiacal signs and how these myths reflect the daimon of each sign.

Saturn: A New Look at an Old Devil; Weiser Books; ISBN-13: 978-0877283065; Paperback; 200 pages
Saturn has been amuch maligned planet in traditional astrology. Liz looks at the challenges of Saturn, and its potential rewards. She particularly is interested in Saturn it constellates the Shadow archetype in natal charts. She gives interpretation of Saturn in this role in the signs and houses, and in aspect to other planets, as well its effect in relationships.

The Astrological Neptune and the Quest for Redemption; Weiser Books, ISBN-13:978-1578631971; Paperback; 506 pages
This book covers the mythology of Neptune, as well as its role in generational movements of the arts and fashion (glamour), religion, and of course its effect in natal charts. I can't say enough about this book-- but if you have Neptune strongly placed in your own chart-- or hang out with lots of folks who do-- you need this book! One of her best.

The Luminaries: The Psychology of the Sun and Moon in the Horoscope (Seminars in Psychological Astrology, Vol 3); Weiser Books; ISBN13: 978-0877287506; Paperback; 256 pages
A series of lectures given by Liz and one of her colleagues, on the Sun and Moon. One of her lectures in this book is on the Divine Marriage-- seeing our parents' relationship in our charts. Very good. There are several books in the Seminars series and I recommend them all.


Stephen Arroyo, another well-known author in the field of psychological astrology:
Astrology, Karma & Transformation: The Inner Dimensions of the Birth Chart; CRCS Publications; ISBN-13: 978-0916360542; Paperback; 255 pages
Stephen has written a number of good books. This is clearly one of his most inspired. He looks at a number of topics, including natal aspects of the outer planets to the inner planets, and also transits and progressions of the planets,  in a way that transforms the way we think about ourselves and our world.

Melanie Rheinhart is another Jungian, and teaches for the
Centre for Psychological Astrology, the London School of Astrology and the Faculty of Astrological Studies. Born in Zimbabwe, she now resides in England. She is best known for her book on Chiron, which I consider by far the best work on this planetoid. If you are interested in healing and shamanism, this book draws some fascinating parallels between Chiron and the shamanic experience.
Chiron and the Healing Journey: An Astrological and Psychological Perspective
; Penguin;
ISBN-13:
978-0140195736; Paperback; 447 pages

Tracy Marks wrote a number short astrological works on astrology, as well as three full-length books. I consider this one to be the best piece of work available on the twelfth house. This is  important because it is one of the least-understood of the houses, and one of the most pivotal. Even if you have no twelfth house planets she shows you how to work with the influences governing this house.
Your Secret Self: Illuminating the Mysteries of the Twelfth House; CRCS Publications; ISBN-13 978-0916360436

Donna Van Toen has written an entertaining and informative book about the moon's nodes in the natal chart. Short and sweet, it fills a void in the literature.
Astrologers Node Book; Weiser, ISBN-13: 978-0877285212; Paperback; 96 pages (95 cents on Amazon)


Steve Cozzi has written an excellent book detailing the several methods used to determine astrological influences for a particular person in a particular location, in order to move to a new place, go on holiday, etc.
Planets In Locality; Llewellyn

John Townley pioneered the contemporary use of composite charts to understand the dynamics of a relationship.  His first work was a pamphlet published in the 70's. A few years back he published a full-length book based on years of research. He also wrote a volume on synastry (comparing two charts) focused on romantic/sexual relationships.
Composite Charts: The Astrology of Relationships; Llewellyn Publications; ISBN-13: 978-1567187168 ; Paperback; 528 pages

Planets in Love

Robert Hand, one of the best-known astrologers today, has also written on composites (Planets in Composite). I recommend all of his writings.


Workshop Review:
One Experience of Drumming in the Temple
Crow Swimsaway, Ph.D.

Personally, I avoided Bekki’s Drumming in the Temple workshop––it sounded too God-oriented for me.I am neither a theist nor a deist. Theist? I do not care to follow a prescribed organization of faith and worship contained in the books of any religion. Deist? I prefer the "small gods.” (See Small Gods by Terry Pratchett, 1992, for a wonderful exploration of this notion.) I am very comfortable when Spirit manifests as shamanic allies, teachers and guides. The core of my connection with Great Mystery, they help with the spiritual and healing work I do for others. After thirty years of these expanding spiritual horizons, I felt no need to seek help for myself or anyone else from any deity. So there seemed little point in pursuing Deity through shamanic journeywork.
Now that I have, I admit I may have been wrong to deny myself the pleasure of this learning experience. Let me see if I can share what it was like.
For the rest of this very long article see this link to our web site.
<>



Willow Artemis Forester

December 31, 2006

   

Wishlist

We are grateful for the many ways you all support the Church and our work.
And...
We are always happy to recycle miscellanous garden stuff that folks aren't using. Now's the season-- well it soon will be!  If you have stuff you aren't using and wish to donate to the Dragon Waters Gardens let us know! For more ideas of what we currently need/could use, see this page on our website.



Activist's Corner

THE GREAT BEAR FOUNDATION: Spiritual Activism

by Crow

When you are involved in shamanism on any level, your motivation and guidelines for activism for the earth are so clear as to be unavoidable imperatives.

When, in weekly journeying/drumming circle, you spend time in deep connection with Wolf, your primary ally, is there any question that you will do everything you can to protect and promote wolves in the wild?  That might include writing letters to the governor of Alaska, asking why his state still allows wolf hunting from airplanes.  It might mean taking on-line action to save the Arctic wilderness from oil well drilling.  It could mean active involvement in a wolf conservation organization.  All these and more: we are fortunate today in having many opportunities for activism!

World-wide shamanic practice is earth-derived, earth oriented; draws much of its power and effectiveness from earth awareness, earth spirits, and a connection with 'spirit of place.'  Engagement in an even mildly active personal shamanic practice raises and maintains your involvement with the earth so effectively that you are constantly aware, even without input from the web and the news, of the suffering and pain humankind brings to our Mother, locally and globally.

This awareness manifests in different ways.  Rage,  impotent anger, frustration are common responses to the enormity of our impact on the planet and the very biosystems which give us life.  (Shamanically, when the biosystems suffer, the Spirit systems suffer too.) There is tremendous energy in anger. Let us use it.

That means expanding our network of awareness to cover those (damaged) aspects of Nature most important to us; then, expand our awareness to realize the tremendous number of opportunities available to us to do something about it.  There are many websites which give easy access to information and assist us to take action on behalf of our Relations. Here are a few to get you started:
Natural Resources Defense Council
Center for Biological Diversity
Greenpeace

There are also organizations like the Great Bear Foundation, PO Box 9383, Missoula MT 59807.  I no longer remember how we found the foundation or they found us but we have been members since 1998, maybe earlier.  Annual membership costs range from $20 up. Membership brings Bear News,  a genuine print newspaper, several times a year plus the opportunity to participate in the International Wildlife Film Festival (May 13-20 in 2006) and the Annual International Bear Honoring (the 7th one was May 5-7 in 2006) both in Missoula. The Foundation also offers classes, workshops and ecologically conscious and consciousness raising trips and field sessions about bears.  Plus you are supporting the world's most active organization advocating for and educating about bears of all varieties, all around the world.

Bear News is not a happy newspaper.  The conditions of bears everywhere are very serious and continue to deteriorate. Of course, there are heart-movingly beautiful photographs of bears in every issue.  On the front of  V 21, N 1, Spring 06, is a picture of a Kermode or spirit bear cub which is small and white, peering around a tree root; standing next to it is the very large dark head of its mother. There have been some recent triumphs in protecting the Kermode bears and their ecosystem on the NW coast of British Columbia, covered in detail in this issue. Elsewhere are articles about bear farming (for bile) in China, hunting bears, bear diet, various efforts to help bear ecosystems and the usual rant by Dr. Charles Jonkel: "The President's Letter."  You can expect a long, passionate and invariable informative letter from Dr. Jonkel, one of the founders of the Foundation and their Scientific Advisor, in every issue.  I look forward to  his material because he feels compelled, to tell it as it is and to place responsibility on all those who should carry it, for their lack of caring for bears.  His latest letter is "The Global Mass Media and the Death of Bears (and us All)?"  Guess what that is about.

As you know from your shamanic studies, the bear, wherever it is found in the world, is the most important of allies for working shamans.  We must all be aware of the condition of the bears of this world and work to help them, their Spirit manifestations, and we poor humans survive.
Bekki's Art
I completed this rattle for a student in the first Fundamentals class we taught in England in 2003. He told me what energies he wanted and I journeyed for the design. The main motifs are the Serpent Mound, which is very close to Dragon Waters and which we visit often, and the White Horse of Uffington, which Chris Forester had taken us to see on that trip, and which I feel a strong connection to. See this web site for more on the White Horse, and a lot of other cool places:
http://www.mysteriousbritain.co.uk/majorsites/uffington.html

       
This close-up shows additional motifs, including bearpaws  and  runes. Not visiblein these pictures is the quartz crystal beaded into the bottom of the rattle's handle.
 

EnviroTip
In the United States, approximately 6.6 tons (almost 15,000 pounds carbon equivalent) of greenhouse gases are emitted per person every year. And emissions per person have increased about 3.4% between 1990 and 1997. Most of these emissions, about 82%, are from burning fossil fuels to generate electricity and power our cars. The remaining emissions are from methane from wastes in our landfills, raising livestock, natural gas pipelines, and coal, as well as from industrial chemicals and other sources. (Source: US EPA).
As an individual there are three areas where we can make the most impact in reducing carbon emissions – the electricity we use in our homes, the waste we produce, and the transportation we choose to use. According to the U.S. EPA, you can affect the emissions of about 4,800 pounds of carbon equivalent, or nearly 32% of the total emissions per person by the choices we make in these three areas. The other 68% of emissions are affected more by the types of industries in the U.S. the types of offices we use, how our food is grown and other factors (source: U.S. EPA).

TIP:
Recycle more and buy recycled. Save up to 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide each year just by recycling half of your household waste. By recycling and buying products with recycled content you also save energy, resources and landfill space! Find out where to recycle in your community here.

TIP:
Change a light. Replacing a regular light bulb with a compact fluorescent one saves 150 pounds of carbon dioxide each year.* Learn more about these bulbs and how to properly dispose of these bulbs when they do burn out. Learn more about energy conservation here.

This information from the EARTH 911 web site.

Internships at Dragon Waters
Because of we expect to be on the road a lot for weekends this Spring and Summer we are looking for one or two people interested in doing a live-in internship with us here at Dragon Waters. The internship includes a bedroom space of your own and attendance at local workshops and/or private instruction in shamanism and other interesting subjects, in exchange for animal care on those weekends when we need to be away. Internships are negotiated on an individual basis, so contact us with your availability and interests. The internship time period could start as early as mid-March.



Church of Earth Healing Newsletter Guidelines for Authors

Our newsletter is a monthly publication which  includes articles, book reviews, workshop profiles and reviews, news of current and upcoming events and stuff that is really hot that we feel you need to know about. We focus on alternative healing and other work of the church and ourselves, though we cast our net widely.

We love to write and have lots of good material to share.  We also value your outlook, talents, and opinions so we welcome contributions.  These may include specific material we request from you, our readers. We welcome all kinds of material, preferably on our monthly topic. If you are submitting something on the topic, we must receive it before the deadline. If it is of general interest we will fit it in as soon as we can. Articles on topic receive first priority.

We work in Microsoft Word; that is the most convenient electronic form to receive material in.  If you need to use another form please ask first. Format is quite open.  Please place the title, author (in exactly the form you want your name to appear - including degrees, professional designations, etc.) and a very brief bio at the beginning of your offering. Please keep it fairly short and snappy, since we have limited space. We will read everything we receive before publishing it.  We would prefer not to have to edit for intelligibility or length.

                 All Contents Copyright Church of Earth Healing 2007