What the Eleusinian Mysteries can teach us about Songlines
2022 the year we learn to listen to love
Week 23--in which we ask the Eleusinian Mysteries to teach us about the mystery of mystery schools
Friends, soul writers, mystics, witches, and lovers of prayer,
I’m in a strange place. A place I never imagined I would be. I am creating (along with 7 thrilling female mystics) a mystery school. I did not set out to call it that. I even tried to avoid that description.
I wrestled for weeks with how to describe this deep mystical exploration, piercing the veil of time to receive seed medicines from 11 witches of the past whose medicines prepare us to become the witch we’re here to be.
Now, I have created some pretty wild mystical prayer intensives, experiences that drop us deep into The Mystic, but in Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches, we are entering new and I sense very ancient and sacred mystical territory.
As you know from previous Notes from the Field, this is a command performance requested by Jeanne d’Arc.
And from the moment she crashed into Suzi von Mensenkampff’s meditation room, Jeanne said this is a “mystery school” with 12 moons, 12 witches, 12 seeds, and 12 shadows that ends with an initiation.
Suzi and Emma Kupu Mitchell and I have met every week since January to try to figure out what Jeanne wants us to create, what people will experience, how to describe it, and (minor detail) what to call it.
The name, Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches, came pretty fast.
It was in the middle of our second meeting. I said something about how the teachings of the bees might help us, and the word “songlines” suddenly popped out of Emma’s mouth. She was as surprised as Suzi and I. But instantly we knew this word, Songlines, although we didn’t know what it meant, was critical.
Each of the three evocative words in the name is a deep dive of its own. These three words are not normal. They’re not words people use in their regular, or even mystical, conversations.
So the first thing I did was try to define these words.
When you visit the page for Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches, take a moment to let the radical meaning of these three mystery-laden words wash over you:
- Next, we wrestled with how to describe how time bends and folds as witches from the past step out of time to ask us to find their story, shadow, and seed medicine in our own lives.
- And how the witch whose secret we have carried for lifetimes beckons from the future to help us remember who we really are and who we came here to be.
- Then, there’s also mediumship, eye-popping insights into the celestial happenings during the witches’ lifetimes, and a surprising array of seemingly unrelated mystical traditions, all interwoven with an intimate relationship with your four radical moon mothers.
It's a lot!
Each time we met, we’d massage a bit more language, but the one piece we couldn’t finish was the opening description.
As a professional writer, I’m ashamed to admit how long it took me to get this opening description done.
Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches is:
a radical, time-looping, 13-dark moon witch mystery school
to remember and be re-membered by the medicines, prayers, and songlines
of 11 mystic witches from the Once Was
who come forward now to prepare you to remember and be re-membered
by the 12th witch—she who has waited for lifetimes in your Not Yet
it is she who is beckoning, she who has been tapping on your heart
she is calling now
come, let us walk our moons together
come, let us sing the songlines of the witches
come, let us remember who we really are
What took so long? That first line.
I did everything I could to avoid calling Songlines a mystery school.
It sounded a tad pretentious. As if I and Suzi and Emma have a grasp of the mysteries of life that we will somehow pass on to you. Or that we are your teachers. “School” sounds like an education. With teachers at the front of the room. And tests and grades and degrees. Ick. No.
So I tried “deep mystical exploration.”
And that is accurate, Songlinesis a radical, deep and vast, mystical exploration. But that isn’t what Jeanne called it. So I’d go back and forth, back and forth, calling it a mystical exploration and then erasing that and writing mystery school.
Finally, we were at the deadline. It was time to sign off on the whole rich gorgeous landing page so we could open the doors and invite 108 hex maidens to gather under the Summer Solstice sun to begin.
I returned to Jeanne.
If the greatest mystic witch of all time wants us to call it a mystery school; it’s a mystery school.
And yet, I still felt some trepidation.
Until I felt a nudge to get Demetra George’s Mysteries of the Dark Moon. This book changed my life. It opened my eyes to the beauty and wisdom of life long before patriarchy, a time when we looked to the Moon for guidance and direction.
And the Moon’s greatest teaching? Why it’s the endless rhythm of life, death, and rebirth—a truth anathema to patriarchy.
In Mysteries of the Dark Moon, George writes at length about the Eleusinian Mysteries in Greece. I’ve read this section multiple times, but this time, as the words poured over me, I couldn’t miss the striking parallels between these ancient mysteries and Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches.
Here’s a taste:
“The Eleusinian Mysteries were the ritual enactment of the story of birth, death, and renewal. They were performed from the fourteenth century BCE until the fourth century CE.”
Ah! The Goddess-centric truth long before the emergence of any patriarchal religion. This is where I want to go and what I want to remember.
“The rituals addressed humanity’s fears and concerns about death…. The mysteries were essentially an emotional experience that gave people hope for the future.”
Yes! Wash away that oppressive teaching about your one life that ends with reward or, more likely, punishment. (Patriarchal religions are obsessed with judgment, suffering, and punishment, aren’t they.) I so want to remember the deep knowing that we return and return and return.
And hope! I’ve been ruminating about how accepting the gifts of the witches turns us into embodiments of hope. We are here to bless one another with love and grace, and the sweet hope that we can live together in a post-patriarchal world filled with reverence for all life.
A key word and image for the Eleusinian mysteries was a seed.
“…the seed of grain contains the secret of life in its invisible and visible forms.”
This makes my heart sing! Because Songlines isn’t about anything you learn—although you will learn plenty—it’s about the seed medicines you will receive from the 11 witches. These are the seeds you have longed for your whole life.
“…the cult of Eleusis satisfied the most sincere yearnings and the deepest longings of the human heart. The initiates returned from their pilgrimage to Eleusis full of joy and happiness, and the fear of death diminished, and a strengthened hope of a better life in the world of shadows.”
In page after page, I was surprised to see words and images that are central to Songlines. Take myrtle for example. Who knew that initiates were crowned with “wreathes of myrtle.” This word popped off the page because Emma and I just finished recording a thrilling bonus video on the sacred anointing oil Mary Magdalene dictated for Songlines. And ten guesses what is one of the three unusual essential oils she insisted on! Myrtle.
George even talks about this most elusive and evocative word: initiation:
“Initiation provides the archetypal pattern by which the psyche, whether in individuals or groups of people, is enabled to make a transition from one stage of development to another…”
Sure sounds like that holy moment when you know you are ready to welcome the 12th witch, the witch you’ve carried for lifetimes in a hidden recess of your soul, to come to life. Talk about a rebirth!
So, after pouring over George’s insights into what was probably humanity’s longest running and most sacred mystery school, I stopped to look up at Jeanne and bow my head.
“Yes Jeanne, yes. It is a mystery school. A new mystery school that holds the threads from the great mystery school of old.”
May the mysteries of Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches begin!
Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches opens Tuesday, June 21, the Summer Solstice, in a sacred ceremony at 2pm Eastern conducted by Sabin Bailey and Kahu Lahela. I will be leading a guided meditation into the Mirror of Memory to reveal the hidden labyrinth and open you to receive messages from the four moons and your 12th witch.
We will complete our mystery school a year later, on the Summer Solstice on sacred witch burial ground in England.
Don't worry if you cannot travel. As much of the festivities as possible will be recorded. And the entire community will gather online for a closing celebration in July.
Re-membering the Songlines of the Witches
to the rebirth of the ancient mystery school in a new day and a new way
PS: One of our mystic creators, Star Sister Marcia Wade, is hosting a live conversation with Emma and me next Friday, June 10 at 4pm Eastern to talk about the stunning celestial wisdom supporting us throughout Songlines.
If you'd like to join us, come to my professional Facebook page Wednesday through Friday to get the link. I will post the recording on my youtube channel next weekend.
You can read and share all my Notes from the Field from the blog section on my website.
You can hear me and Hyldemoer read Notes from the Field on YouTube.
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