(Photo Essay) Sisterhood in OZ by Leslene della-Madre

I am so grateful that my four-part essay on Awe/stralia was posted here on the Mago blog. It was such an a-mazing journey in so many ways and will always stay with me as a life-changing event for me. I am delighted to be able now to offer another kind of view of this wonderful adventure. This photo journal is a focus on sisterhood. I was blessed and fortunate to cross paths with over 150 women; this is a tribute to them and is dedicated to the Indigenous Aboriginal women who remain the gatekeepers of the wisdom of the Universal Feminine.  I was so deeply moved by the support, love and presence of the women I had the honor of working with. For me, restoring sisterhood is the medicine that will heal us all.

Elder Indigenous Women Not to be reproduced without permission of the Kapululangu Aboriginal Women's Association.
Kapululangu Indigenous Women Elders
Not to be reproduced without permission of
the Kapululangu Aboriginal Women’s Association.
These are some of the remaining women elders in Balgo in Western Australia of the Kapululango Aboriginal Women’s Association. They are “pre contact” women who were born before the “whitefella” came. While I was not able to go and be with them during Women’s Law Camp after touring in OZ, I still feel a profound connection with them. I encourage any of you lovely women to go and be with them if you can during their annual teaching camps. More about them can be learned here: 
The Red Tent at the School of Shamanic Midwifery in the beautiful mountains outside of Sydney where my journey first began.
The Red Tent at the School of Shamanic Midwifery in the beautiful mountains outside of Sydney where my journey first began.

Embarking on a sacred journey of reclaiming Sacred Womb Wisdom, the Shamanic Path of Re-membering.

Womb Wisdom: Re-membering our Sacred Shamanic Path
Womb Wisdom: Re-membering our Sacred Shamanic Path
Womb Altar
Womb Altar

Co-creating a sacred altar allows us to share our invocations and focuses our attention and intention for our time together. Our altar inside the Red Tent.

In our first workshop, we learned how the body of woman is the holograph of the YoniVerse and how womb wisdom is the root of all knowing.

Sacred Geometry and the Fractal Womb
Sacred Geometry and the Fractal Womb

Women’s shamanic mysteries are the holiest of the holies. While they have been usurped and co-opted for the last 5000 years, the secrets remain in our DNA. It is time to re-member them and to trust our sovereignty as daughters of the Great Mother.

Circle of Women as Shaman
Circle of Women as Shaman

One of the important aspects of my work is to share with women the ancient experience of the circle of women as the original shaman — the collective healing force in the community.  In feeling our collective synergy, our magic is ignited and our wisdom emerges from a place of resonance. This is something I feel Aboriginal women know very deeply.

Goddess Oracle
Goddess Oracle

We also created a “goddess oracle” where the bleeding women in our circle were asked to sit together (if they wanted to) and answer questions that were posed to them by the other women.

We basked in the spontaneous womb wisdom that emerged from the wise blood of our sisters.

The experience of the shaman deepened as the circle of women gathered momentum as the workshops continued.

Singing the Sacred Songs of Aboriginal Land at Moon Court in the Blue Mountains
Singing the Sacred Songs of Aboriginal Land at Moon Court in the Blue Mountains

 Many of us who gather in circle work use sacred talking objects when speaking. The woman speaking holds the object and others listen to her without interrupting. In our workshops, I introduced the “talking vulva” sacred object that I sculpted in one of my workshops in Belgium.

The Sacred Talking Vulva
The Sacred Talking Vulva

This sacred vulva has been held by many women and she has a voice! Though it is a side view, notice how her shape resembles the shape and figure of the Virgin Mary. Mary is really the vulva! And the prayer mudra we make with our hands with which we are all familiar is the vulva as well!

Sacred Familiar
Sacred Familiar

What would a circle of women be without a temple familiar? Glenys’ cat, Ishtar, blessed us with her undivided attention!

As part of the Mothering the Dying workshops, I offered power points with images and text inviting us to view a female based cosmology, which I feel resonates with what Helen is teaching us about Mago.

Exquisite Dragon/egg fruit
Exquisite Dragon/egg fruit
What Came First,  the Dragon or the Egg?
Which Came First,
the Dragon or the Egg?

For me, one of the important aspects of this cosmology is re-visioning the symbolism of dragon and serpent power. So, getting to eat a dragon fruit was sublime!

Being in Awe/stralia, with my feet touching her ground, I was flooded by waves of ancestral connection I could not have experienced in any other way. Restory-ing Medusa in our workshops was very much about realizing the connection with the Dreamtime and the Rainbow Serpent — the meanings of which I am only beginning to understand as time passes since my journey.
Ngalyod, the Rainbow Serpent
Ngalyod, the Rainbow Serpent
In introducing a female based cosmology in my work, I have come to understand more about the nature of the YoniVerse and creation that the Aboriginal indigenous people have understood since they appeared on Earth. They are the only people I am aware of who have an unbroken shamanic tradition of at least 50,000 years who understand what it means to live according to the laws of the Universal Feminine.
Awakening Medusa in Sacred Theater
Awakening Medusa in Sacred Theater

In my work, female cosmology is about undoing the so-called western “science” of the last one hundred years and taking another look at what a benevolent YoniVerse is — with all of her deep magic and mystery that cannot be disconnected or objectified by dualistic mechanistic theory.

Awakening Medusa in Sacred Theater
Awakening Medusa in Sacred Theater
Resonance, vibration, entanglement, music are all her language, ignited by the electrical forces of a magnificent presence that weaves a vast web of connection of all life — from atoms to galaxies, reflected everywhere around us in sacred geometry.
Trusting Sisters to Hold Us
Trusting Sisters to Hold Us

If we can realize creativity in these ways, our lives can be nurtured by brilliant cosmic joy and our understanding of death can be understood as a process we can deeply trust and that we are all held in a cosmic womb of the female sea — Mother PlasMA, the Rainbow Serpent, the Dragon, The Snake Goddess.

Dreamtime Sisters, Colleen Wallace Nungari
Dreamtime Sisters, Colleen Wallace Nungari
This video shows a clip from our invocation to Mane Padma. The very well-known Tibetan chant, “Om Mane Padma Hum”, means “Hail to the deity of the clitoris vagina”, which of course we rarely hear as the authentic translation (June Campbell, Traveller in Space: In Search of Female Wisdom in Tibetan Buddhism). It is most often translated as “the jewel in the lotus” which has been layered over with patriarchal interpretation. In our invocation we each allowed her presence to fill us and each woman shared her experience –without words (I am using words only in the very beginning before we went silent). The deep shamanic sharing that ensued was riveting, uniting all of us together in a liberating embodied awakening that felt as if she had been waiting a long time for us to re-member — liberating her from the confining depths of a narrow and inaccurate reality.
https://www.dropbox.com/s/url8uod8jrlkwyg/Leslene.MOV