What is the Woman’s Dance?
The Woman’s dance is a 3 day Ceremony for women in which we celebrate life. The First Woman’s Dance was held in 1995 in Texas, led by Mary Elizabeth Thunder. After Thunder had a series of Visions (Thunder's Vision) in 1994, she went to her teachers and Elders to ask permission to start the Woman’s Dance. It has been a beautiful healing journey ever since.
In 2002 the Woman’s Dance was held in Europe for the first time, since then we have danced in Switzerland, France, Italy and Egypt. The coming years we will Dance in Germany.
The Woman’s Dance is a 5 day event. We arrive Wednesday late afternoon to set up our tents, share a meal and get to know each other.
On Thursday the days of preparation start. We build the ceremony up together, do the physical work but also the spiritual work. Together we create a Sacred Space, in which we feel safe to be in touch with and explore who we are as Woman.
During the days of preparation we will have sharing circles and teaching circles. Besides that we will also sit around the drum to practice the songs we sing during the Ceremonial rounds. We have invited a few Elders and teachers to share their wisdom and knowledge with us during the teaching circles.
Some of the topics are; The Womb Blessing, How to be in contact with inner knowing/wisdom, global healing and balance, Deeper healing into who we are as women from within, Menstruation and the 3 phases of the womb, female Ceremony and Spirituality.
Although the 3 days of the dance have a basic ceremonial structure there is a lot of room for other things. During the sharing circles we decide together what we are going to do. For example maybe somebody wants to share yoga sessions before breakfast, or we like to start the day with some good music and freestyle dance.
The first Dancing round, the entry round, will be Thursday night. For this round all women wear a white dress or, if you are uncomfortable with that, a white outfit. The rest of the dance you can wear what you like. Wear what makes you happy and makes you feel in touch with your femininity, in your own unique way.
During the days of the dance we laugh, we cry, we pray, we heal and send ripples of love, compassion and healing into the world.
Abuse, trauma and oppression cause changes in the DNA which are genetically passed on to the next generations. Through Sacred Dance we can start to heal and bring our DNA back to its original state. This does not only has an effect on ourselves, it will travel 7 generations back and forwards.
The last round of the Dance, the closing round will be Saturday late afternoon, followed by a feast. Sunday is the day of completion and this will end around 14.00 h.
Rites of passage
During the Dancing days we also do female ceremonies. Thunder learned about the female ceremonies in the course of many years and integrated some of them into the Woman’s Dance. Among those Ceremonies are the rites of passage in a Woman’s life; The baby blessing, becoming woman-the start of menstruation, becoming a mother, and becoming a grandmother /wise Woman-menopause.
If you would like to ask for a rite of passage, let us know so we can help you prepare. This year we only offer the rites for becoming a Mother or Grandmother.
A new cycle and a new beginning
This year we are starting a new cycle of deeper healing of the feminine. To make a deeper connection with who we are as a woman from within. To reclaim what was never really lost.
We always have women of all ages participating in the Woman’s dance, still in the mothers belly, babies, girls, teenagers, women, mothers and grandmothers. But for the first year of this new cycle we have decided that this year is for women of 18 year and older. Together we are going to create new consciousness and energy for the younger ones to step into in the coming years.
Our Mother Earth is off balance and on fire and this is reflecting what is going on with the feminine. Thousands of years of oppression of the female is burning us up. In a time where we thought we had achieved more balance, we are facing a period in which the abuse only seems to become more severe. The violence against women and nature starts to become more excessive; increase of (deathly) domestic violence, rape culture, female cancer, pollution and female rights that are turned back to rules and regulations against those rights, and so on. We feel it is time, more than ever, to become the change we are praying for. Not by war, violence, overpowering or control but by becoming our strength. By remembering who we are, we can start to nurture our planet and humanity back to the Sacredness of life.
We are looking forward to do this together!
We always have a group of men that come to support the Women and the Dance. They help with what is needed, they cook delicious food, they clean, chop wood etc. Normally they also look after the children, but this year there will be no children there.
If you have a male partner or good friend who would like to come and support, let us know. We are in need of more supporters!
" Yes, I want to remind people that in the Indigenous Traditions, women are very important. Not because we are told we are important but because we know that since forever and always, we have had the power and the capacity to give birth, raise women and men and to take care of the earth. 'Mary E. Thunder'