Friday - 18 October 2019
Habitat Canterbury (Uniting Church) 2 Mont Albert Road, Canterbury, 3126 (map Here)
7.00pm - 7.45pm Discussion Group
Facilitated by Annette Lowe/Mary Duffy
Main Lecture at 8.00pm.
The Sacred Act of Pilgrimage
Guest speaker: Dr Maya Ward
Pilgrimage is the act of sacred travel. In Australia, it is ironic that many venture overseas to walk popular pilgrimage routes, unaware of and unconnected to the ancient history of sacred walking that undergirds this entire continent. Yet the violent settlement history of Australia means that deep and soulful connection to place can be a fraught and complex thing.
Maya sought to explore these issues in depth by walking the length of the Yarra River from the sea to the source. She traveled along a Wurundjeri Songline, a sacred path in existence for perhaps 40,000 years, now fractured with fences and private ownership. She traveled with the blessing of Melbourne’s Wurundjeri people and the support of many river lovers, and her 21 day pilgrimage was a powerful experience of reconciliation, surprising in it’s initiatory intensity, resulting in a profoundly deepened experience of place, water, and rivers.
Her understanding that pilgrimage is a doorway into the archetypal nature of walking, precipitated by her embodied immersion in this most ancient way of moving, led to her desire to share her experience. Her book, The Comfort of Water, seeks to build bridges of respect and understanding between indigenous knowledge and European wisdom traditions, including depth psychology. In this talk, Maya will also share her understanding of archetypal experience, enriched through her recent PhD studies of evolutionary biology and neuroscience.
Four Rivers ran out of the Garden of Eden. We return by the one that was at our backs when we left. ~Barbara Hannah.
‘River Walk’ Workshop this Sunday 20th October.
FOR MORE INFORMATION AND BOOKING CLICK HERE
Dr Maya Ward has worked for 30 years in deepening belonging and connection to place through writing, dancing, designing and teaching. Her PhD in Creative Writing explored the ecological and evolutionary underpinning to archetypal experience, referencing neuroscience, psychology and shamanistic metaphysics, which will soon be published as a book.
She has studied internationally with Jungian psychologists Arnold and Amy Mindell and is grateful to have been a student of a number of indigenous elders. Her memoir The Comfort of Water: A River Pilgrimage, published by Transit Lounge, is an account of her 21-day journey from the sea to the source of the Yarra River, following the length of a Wurundjeri Songline.
This book is taught in universities around Australia, and was shortlisted by the State Library for the 2012 Year of Reading Award. She has worked as an urban designer, permaculture teacher and in bushland revegetation. Currently she lives on the banks of the Yarra and co-creates pilgrimage-based ritual, teaches dance, and grows food with her home community in the mountain village of Warburton.
Her website is: www.mayaward.com.au
Admission (at the door, no booking required): Members: free, Non members: $20, Concession: $10*
*(Students with photo ID & holders of Australian Pension and/or Health Care card)