Pythagoras said, ” know thyself; then thou shalt know the Universe”
The apprenticeship takes you along the path to knowing yourself. It’s a hard and difficult path that turns you inside-out and upside-down, and challenges all your current belief systems. In doing so, it enables you to become self-aware and so aware of all the other worlds around you, seen and unseen. It requires you to keep jumping off cliffs, keep taking yourself way out of your comfort zone into a place where you know nothing, in order to learn who you are. It’s a journey … as Ursula le Guin said, It’s good to have an end to journey to but it’s the journey that matters in the end … that idea is so worth hanging onto!
The journey – we call it following the deer trods – begins at Samhain each year, 31st Oct. But the application begins your conversation with me; that helps us both to get to know each other, and so know more about what you’re going in for. When we’ve agreed that what I have is what you want there are the pre-course notes where you begin to learn how the work goes. Then there’s the pre-course weekend workshop at the end of July when you, me and your fellow students all meet here at my home, get to know each other, and you all get some hands-on practice in the work. One of the Rainbow Warrior students helps me with this so you’ll be able to ask them about doing the work and so get more idea of how it works.
The actual course begins in October when you get your first lesson in time for Samhain, 31st Oct; you then have until 20th Dec to play with the work. I say play very deliberately; the work is not like school or university, it’s about immersing yourself in otherworld and learning how to include everything in the universe rather than separate yourself from it. In the Old Ways we live in an and/and universe, not either/or.
You send me your report of how doing the work has changed you on 20th Dec – not before, it’s important to give the work time to work with you, and to spend time working with it. Our old ways are all about exchange, otherworld (through the work) give to you, you give back to them, that’s how it works.
The work is done through the 8 seasons of the year. You get a new lesson at the beginning of each season, probably just before you send your report to me. The lessons come to you online, in a Word document as an attachment to an group email for your course year. You send your report in a Word doc the same way I send the lessons to you, and you can include .JPG pix if wish.
You work largely alone but I do organise a secret Facebook group; that enables you to chat, share your thoughts and questions, delights and discoveries.
The apprenticeship costs also include up to 3 group visits to my home to work with me during the year; we arrange the dates at the beginning of the course. Students can also come individually for extra work with me, including working through problems and personal issues but I do charge extra for this – see 1-1 work for more details, there’s a special rate for students.
The 5-day workshop happens in March, in the wilds of Exmoor. We stay in a very comfy cottage, down narrow lanes and far from anywhere. From the doorstep, you can walk out onto the moor, the hills and woods, with wildlife all around and many ancient, sacred places nearby.
Deer come to graze on the grass in front of the cottage windows, you’ll likely see foxes, hares, rabbits, badgers, little mice and maybe water voles (think Ratty in Wind in the Willows), as well as trout and otter-sign in the rivers. Ravens, hawks and falcons fly overhead, and the trees and bushes are full of small birds. You visit and work at ancient sites, walk the ancient paths, and sing the streams and rivers too. At the cottage, there’s no internet or mobile network coverage, and no noise or light pollution either which is nice.
- Students who have done the apprenticeship may be invited to continue onto the 3-year advanced training, Rainbow Warriors.
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