October 29, 2019 Blog No Comments

It’s been a week of celebrations and rituals of all types. We celebrated my girlfriend’s birthday and engagement, our son’s swearing in as a lawyer, my husband’s work change, a wedding and Halloween. With more in the planning stages, I realized it’s a constant in our lives and I suspect in yours too.

What we don’t often consider is why this is important and how ritual prepares us to make the most of each rite of passage. This is on my mind as I prepare for my upcoming workshop, Clear and Relaunch on November 2-3, which includes a ceremony and ritual to clear out what no longer serves you before bringing in something better. See link for more details: https://www.facebook.com/events/794990530917875/ or Click here to register

Here are some thoughts on why ritual and celebration are important. See if it helps you have more respect to your next cause for celebration.

JOSEPH CAMPBELL’S THOUGHTS ON THE FUNCTION OF RITUAL

In “Joseph Campbell and the Power of Myth — The First Storytellers” with Bill Moyer (1988), Campbell takes us back to the early function of myth and how it helped us accept and make sense of the mysteries of birth, growth and death. The accompanying rituals were a way to create harmony between the mind, body, soul and all of nature.

“And since myth is a projection of the depth wisdom of the psyche, by participating in a ritual, participating in the myth, you are being, as it were, put in accord with that wisdom, which is the wisdom that is inherent within you anyhow. Your consciousness is being re-minded of the wisdom of your own life”

He also notes that our culture has lost the meaning and purpose of ritual, being more focused on the outer value and form of it and not the inner function. Reconnecting to ritual to commemorate the importance of a rite of passage is a way of taping back into your innate wisdom.

MAKING THE MOST OF RITES OF PASSAGE

In the “Clear and Relaunch” workshop, my goal is the give you time to reflect on what needs to change, why it’s important and create a space where you understand, respect and then release what no longer serves you.

So often we are forced to move quickly from one thing to another without time or reverence for what is occurring. When we give a change process special attention, it becomes a way to impress upon our subconsciousness that this is important. It brings it into consciousness, so the seriousness of the decision is sealed with an honoring process.

RELEASING THE OLD

As we face change, it is often the newness we celebrate, without much focus on what we are letting go of. A celebration is usually fixated on having a good time and if solemnness is added to the occasion, it seems stilted in contrast. But we need to remember why we celebrate.

Ritual gives you the opportunity to honor what you are releasing. Even things that are negative offer lessons and are the springboard for what you seek today. It helps to have a ceremony that acknowledges and gives thanks for what you are releasing as a way of sanctifying the change. In the Clear and Relaunch workshop, the “Clear” part of the workshop will honor the releasing with a traditional cleansing and purification ceremony I learned from the Ewe Tribe in Ghana, except you will do it at home instead of in front of people.

PREPARING FOR WHAT’S NEW

In ancient cultures and still present with the Ewe tribe in Ghana and many others, all change is precipitated by ceremony and rituals. Like confirmation rites in Christian churches and coming of age ceremonies in Indian tribes, once you have put aside what is old, you prepare to embrace what is new. The more attention is put on the process of learning and considering what you are about to embrace, the more significant it becomes.

In the Clear and Relaunch workshop, the “Relaunch” offers an opportunity to fully consider what wants to come in and flesh out the details. The more factors that are considered, like how it enhances you, who you can count on for support and what thoughts and behaviors are needed to make it reality, the more real it becomes. When all this is considered before action is taken, you are creating a literal energetic pathway for something new to arrive.

In the upcoming workshop, Clear and Relaunch, the sequence of ritual release of the old and celebration of the new is honored to make the change you seek more significant. It replicates the honoring process that Joseph Campbell speaks of in his review of the power of rituals. If this would be helpful to you as you seek any type of change in your life, you would enjoy and get a lot out of this workshop.

If this speaks to you, register before Friday!

DATE:            Sat. Nov 2 and Sun. Nov. 3rd

TIME:             11:00 – 2:00 – Lunch is included

LOCATION:   Centered 309 N. Ashland, Lexington, KY 

FEE:                Includes 2 lunches, handouts and materials for your clearing ceremony

REGISTER:     Advanced registration is needed – call Centered at 859-721-1841, go to   https://www.facebook.com/events/794990530917875/   or   Click here to register

Reach out and let me know if you are interested, I’d love to have you join this special workshop! Let it sanctify the change you want to make!

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Written by Connie Milligan, LCSW
If there is anything I’ve expressed that speaks to you, I’d love to hear from you. You can reach me at my email, connie [at] conniemilligan [dot] com