Event: Day Conference: Spiritualities and the Sacredness of the Divine Feminine in Scotland:
experiential explorations and cultural celebrations.

Evening Cultural Event: Stories, Poetry, Music, Chanting, Dance and Movement.

Facilitators: Gillian Allan, Phyllida Anam-Aire, Lilian Helen Brzoska, Dr MaryCatherine Burgess, Dr Emma Dymock, Suzanne Dance, Margot Daru-Elliott, Dr Georgiana Cameron-Gaiduschek De Danu, and Rev Ali Newell.
Venue: Sanctuary, Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EL.
Date: Saturday 14 November 2015.
Time: Registration: 9.30am-10am. Day Conference: 10am-5.30pm.
Registration: 6.30pm-7pm. Evening Event: 7pm-9pm.
Event Description:

The purpose of this conference is to:

1. learn about and explore the roots, contemporary expressions, challenges, opportunities, and issues of Spirituality and the Sacredness of the Divine Feminine in Scotland; and

2. provide a forum for networking among those who are interested in issues of Spirituality and the Sacredness of the Divine Feminine in Scotland, and more widely; and

3. facilitate open and mutually respectful enquiry and communication among scholars, spiritual practitioners, and the wider public regarding the nature of Spirituality and the Sacredness of the Divine Feminine in Scotland in relationship to spirituality in its diversity.

The primary themes that we are inviting the presenters/speakers to explore are:

1. Landscape and Nature, and/or

2. Evolving Expressions of the Divine Feminine.

Diversity of understandings and experiences:

Different people and spiritualities will have varied understandings and experiences of the divine feminine, goddess, mother, etc, and we are not assuming any one understanding, but rather we are holding a space and inviting in diverse understandings and experiences among those who participate.

For conference presenters/speakers, we are asking their 60-minute sessions to include approximately:

30 minutes of speaking;

10 minutes for Q & A;
10 minutes for participants to share in groups of three their own experiences of the Divine Feminine; and
10 minutes for large group cross-sharing


Tea/coffee/biscuits will be provided throughout the day.

Participants will either bring their own packed lunch or eat out in one of the nearby cafes.

Organised by the Edinburgh International Centre for Spirituality and Peace, EICSP, Scottish Charity, SC038996.

Co-chairs: Neill Walker and MaryCatherine Burgess.

Date: Saturday 14 November 2015.

Venue: Sanctuary, Augustine United Church, 41 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, EH1 1EL.

Proposed Schedule:

9.30am-10am: Arrive and Registration.

10am-10.15am: Welcome and Setting Intentions for the Day.

10.15am-10.30am: Opening Ceremony of Welcome

10.30am-11.30am: Dr MaryCatherine Burgess

Divine Feminine in Mythic History, Memory, and Experience in Scotland

11.30am-11.45am: Break.

11.45am-12.45pm: Rev Ali Newell.


St Bridget as an icon into the Divine Feminine

12.45pm-1pm: Ceremony of Remembering the Divine Feminine in People, especially the Witches

1pm-2.15pm: Lunch break.

2.15pm-2.30pm: Ceremony of Connecting to the Divine Feminine in Landscape and Place

2.30pm-3.30pm: Dr Georgiana Cameron-Gaiduschek De Danu.

The Morrigan

While some people translate her name to mean the Phantom Queen, the correct meaning is the Great Queen. After the Battle of Magh Tuireadh, she said a prayer to bring peace up to heaven and heaven to earth. As the Great Queen and the Great Mother of us all, she holds the polarities between order and chaos, and facilitates our union with the Divine.

3.30pm-3.45pm: Break.

3.45pm-4.45pm: Dr Emma Dymock.

Yellow-Haired Girls and Old Well-Keepers: 20th Century Manifestations of the Divine Feminine in Scottish Gaelic Poetry

Gaelic poetry in the 20th century reveals a community in a state of flux – the landscape, culture and language of the Gael has been beset with many issues and painful historical events, and perhaps as a reflection of these experiences, a modernist sense of dislocation and exploration of self-identity feature in the work of a number of Gaelic poets, including Sorley MacLean, Derick Thomson and Iain Crichton Smith. It is significant that these poets often turn to various manifestations of the Feminine – Muse, Sovereignty Goddess, Divine Lover and Crone – as a means of accessing both personal and collective memory. This presentation will survey some of the ways in which the Divine Feminine acts as a link to the past and as a challenger at the gateway into the future for modern Gaelic poets.

Dr. Emma Dymock gained a PhD, focussing on the poetry of Sorley MacLean, in the Department of Celtic and Scottish Studies at the University of Edinburgh, where she now teaches classes in Gaelic language, literature and culture. She has co-edited, with Christopher Whyte, Caoir Gheal Leumraich/ White Leaping Flame: Sorley MacLean Collected Poems and has published various articles and book chapters on Gaelic literature. She has a particular research interest in landscape and symbolism in modern Scottish literature.

4.45pm-5.05pm: Facilitated Group Reflection and Integration: Dr MaryCatherine Burgess. 

5.05pm-5.20pm: Closing Ceremony of the Divine Feminine in Healing and Wholing

5.20pm-5.30pm: Re-connecting back with the World

Evening Cultural Celebration:

6.30pm-7pm: Arrive and Registration.

7pm-9pm approx: Stories, Poetry, Music, Chanting, Dance and Movement

Lilian Helen Brzoska: Song

Emma Dymock: Poetry/Music

Suzanne Dance: Performance

Claudia Goncalves: Reading and a Prayer

Margot Daru-Elliott: Story

Georgiana Cameron-Gaiduschek De Danu: Chanting

Phyllida Anam-Aire: Song

MaryCatherine Burgess: Music/Dance and Movement


Divine Feminine in Scotland, Saturday 14 November 2015

Cost: Day Conference: £25/£20 (Concessions)/£10 (Students).
Evening Event: £10/£8 (Concessions)/£5 (Students).

Contact: Neill Walker, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., 0131 331 4469.

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