Rhythmwood Soul Journey – Dance of the Feminine Spirit

//Rhythmwood Soul Journey – Dance of the Feminine Spirit
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A women’s 12 week experiential journey of inner discovery through body, heart and soul.

Includes a 6 day retreat experience at the beautiful, earthy dance studio Rhythmwood on the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario, Canada.
July 8 – 13, 2017

The Feminine Spirit is being called forth in the world today, now more than ever! As the keepers of this flame we need to stand rooted and strong to affect change for ourselves, for our families and communities, and for the earth itself. Rhythmwood Soul Journey is an invitation to deep dive into self discovery, to deepen the connection to the wisdom of your body, to find your authentic voice, and to engage the power of presence, coming into the fullness of who you truly are. The journey begins inside you. And there is so much to discover here!

Through Conscious Dance, Embodiment Practices, Expressive Arts, Personal Inquiry, Meditation, Poetry, Ceremony, Healing Arts, Communing with Nature and Sitting in a Circle of Sacred Sisterhood, we travel this path together.

There are many pathways to expansion. Here are some of the ones we will travel together on the Rhythmwood Soul Journey.

Your Inner Wild Woman

In the work of Clarissa Pinkola Estes and her book, Women Who Run With the Wolves, we learn about the many cultural stories of the Wild Woman Archetype. This Woman is in touch with her natural, instinctual self. The wild nature she was born with is intact. She knows herself well, trusts her intuition and understands what she needs to thrive. She takes time for herself, honours the cyclical nature of life, and returns to nature so she can hear the call of her own wild heart.

In many ways we have lost this connection to our instinctual selves. Yet this Wild Woman is waking up and remembering that there is another way, one that comes from within. Because this innate wisdom comes from inside of us we need only to give it time and attention to rebirth this part of ourselves. I believe that there are three essential elements we need to return home to our wild inner self.

First is to spend intimate, quality time with ourselves; embodied, awake and aware. We come to know ourselves deeply through our body, to feel our own presence and build a strong sense of self. We need to spend time in the inner landscape of our body and life.

Second is to spend time in nature. It is here, in the quiet space of the woods, in the fields, by the water, under the stars… that we begin to hear the whisperings of our own hearts and souls. Nature has a way of bringing us back to our roots.

Third is to spend time with other women, our tribe so to speak. Here we look for those who are like-minded and on a similar journey. We consciously work to build trust and recognize that we are essentially a reflection of each other. We learn to be of service through deep listening, honouring, uplifting, encouraging and supporting one another. We are not on this journey alone. It is essential that we build connections!

Embodiment Practice: Finding Personal Power and Presence

Personal power comes from knowing yourself. It comes from understanding how to be present to your own life, to those around you and to what is happening in the moment. Embodiment practice is a way of bringing awareness and presence into your being. When you are awake within your own body, you remember that this moment is precious!

When you are present within your own body and life, you have a confidence and a knowing that cannot be found through any external forces. This is an inside job, it’s about you having the experience of yourself. Nobody can tell you or give you all the right words to understand it. These can be helpful pointers to guide you along the path, they can show you the direction in which to seek, but you can only know this truth through direct experience. It is a knowing in your body. This is a presence that you, and those around you, will feel and know to be true!

Your Inner Capacity to Heal and Be Whole

Your body has a natural gravitation toward wholeness. Your body can help you to heal on many levels, not just the physical. Moving your body will help you to process your life experiences. All of these need to be integrated and understood from a personal perspective. Movement is an excellent way to do this! The body holds memories and emotions. When you dance you are able to access deeper parts of yourself and can integrate and process these aspects of yourself through movement.

Dance offers a unique pathway to wholeness without necessarily having to talk or go into thinking mode. Talking can be helpful but often we need something deeper to move us forward. When we are able to turn off the voices in our head, by bringing our awareness into our body, we can connect more clearly to our intuition, body intelligence, and our inner capacity to heal and be whole.

Your Soul Journey Experience

Over the course of 12 weeks you will work through personal inquiries that will help you expand your personal awareness. Empowerment and Embodiment are featured throughout this time of self discovery. Every other week you will be given an assignment, a topic for personal exploration and reflection. Each week following this the group will meet through an online video platform to share, listen, engage and learn from each other. This time will also serve to build bonds of connection and trust between us!

In the featured retreat experience, July 8th to 13th, we will come together as a group for a deep dive immersion at Rhythmwood. At this time we will each be well engaged in our own personal Soul Journey and with the group energy already in motion, we will deepen into the next part of the experience together.

Here we will engage in daily Conscious Dance sessions which will give focus to our inner journey. We will deepen the experience though art making, poetry, journal writing, story telling and embodiment practices. We will honour the Feminine Spirit with our Full Moon Fire Ceremony on Sunday night. We will spend time immersed in the wild and beautiful nature around us. We will swim in cool waters, eat delicious food and be nourished by our bonds of connection. Through this journey we will find transformation and wholeness.

The journey does not end here. When our time at Rhythmwood closes we will consciously step out to travel back to our own homes and lives. Yet we will be changed. From our experience we will take with us a new sense of belonging in the world. And this will become our new way of dancing through life, touching others, and creating opportunities for change and love. As individuals we continue our inner journeying and in August we meet again in our online video setting, to re-engage and celebrate the Dance of the Feminine Spirit!

What to Expect When You’re at Rhythmwood

Rhythmwood, located on the beautiful Bruce Peninsula in Ontario, Canada, is an amazing homestead and dance studio that has been consciously created and hand built by Wendy & Rick Roman. It’s evolution is an amazing story of dreams and determination that took place over the last 27 years. The wild nature that surrounds us here is the perfect place to find inner grounding and support; from the land, from the water, from the trees and the fresh air.

While at Rhythmwood you will spend your time between the straw bale earthen dance studio, the hand built log and stone home and the forested landscape. The nearby lake is always an option at the end of our afternoons. The lunches (included) will always be home made, mostly home grown and consciously prepared by Rick, who is Wendy’s partner and collaborator. He is chef, gardener, master natural builder and co-creator of the Rhythmwood Homestead. He is known for his delicious, wholesome food as well as his good nature and sense of humour!

Our movement and exploration sessions will take place in the beautiful earthen studio. This is our sanctuary for the week, our sacred space to dive deep into the journey; to explore, dance, express, share and create. When you step into this space you will feel a sense of the sacred surrounding you. This is where the inner work happens. Where magic and mystery come together to move us forward on our Soul Journey.

This is a comfortable space as the straw bale walls offer natural insulation against the heat. The earthen floors are covered with martial arts mats to offer extra cushioning for your feet and joints. This is a very private space for our inner journeying, held by the surrounding 50 acres of forest. The only occasional visitor, who can sometimes be found resting at the back door, is our little dog Bindi, and perhaps a couple of the chickens!

One of our very special offerings this week will be the Sunday evening Full Moon Fire Ceremony. This offers an opportunity through sacred ritual to send our prayers and intentions upward and outward; to drum, sing, share and connect under the magic of the full moon.

Another unique offering during this week is the Monday night Nia class on the Beach. Our local community has been gathering to dance on the beach for the last 13 years. It is our summer tradition and you will be our special guests while you are with us at Rhythmwood!

Your Guide for the Journey

Wendy Roman is a Conscious Movement Facilitator with a life long love of dance. She is a Nia Black Belt Teacher, a Dance Our Way Home Facilitator (women’s sacred dance), and recently graduated from the Soul Motion Leadership Program. She has been teaching movement since 2003. Wendy loves sharing her passion and building community through dance!

A Message From Wendy

This body of work comes from a culmination of my many passions. Essentially it all comes down to my desire to help empower others. From my early years as a Doula, to the many years of practice as an energy worker, I have always believed that the power any one individual needs to heal and grow, comes from within.

Yet, there must be extended connection too. I remember well my early years of being a mother and the challenges I felt there. And then through times of loss, the need I felt to reach out to others, to connect and build a lifeline for myself. It was then, 17 years ago, that I helped to create a women’s circle in our community. During these years I have been supported by this circle of women as well as been given an opportunity to serve and grow.

In 2003 I rediscovered my love of dance. It felt like coming home! When I was young I studied movement and dance, loving the feeling of moving across the floor with the rhythms of music deep in my body. When I became an adult I stopped dancing as life took me down other pathways. It was Nia that first brought me back to my body and I quickly began studying this movement practice. I decided to teach and after 7 years of training I became a Black Belt teacher. Still, I wanted more. I realized that there was always yet another level deeper that dance could take me into myself.

I continued my journey into the power of ecstatic and conscious dance by first studying Dance Our Way Home and then moving into the Soul Motion Leadership Program. I am a life long learner. Through these years I have been fortunate to learn from some of the very best movement teachers: Roberta Mohler, Carlos Rosas, Debbie Rosas, Erica Ross, Vinn Arjuna Marti, Michael Molin Skelton & Aletia Alvarez. I am honoured by the rich gifts these teachers have given to me. They have shown me the way in. I now carry these teachings onward and am so happy to share them with you as they merge and flow together in new and meaningful ways.

I welcome you to dance with me in the dance sanctuary at Rhythmwood. Join me in my movement laboratory! Together we will journey deeper into the body, into the soul and into this gift of life.

Overview of Program Dates – May 18th to August 10th, 2017

How it works – Every other week you will be sent an assignment, through e-mail, for personal exploration and reflection (marked in green above). The following week we will meet online as a group to expand and integrate our experience (marked in blue above). The retreat experience begins on Saturday evening of July 8th, and runs until late afternoon of Thursday July 13th (marked in purple above).

Program Includes:

Pre and Post Program Materials
4 Online Group Meet Up Sessions
6 Day Retreat Experience at Rhythmwood
5 Delicious Home Made Lunches
Conscious Dance Sessions and other Somatic Explorations
Full Moon Fire Ceremony
Nia Class on the Beach

Your Investment & Application

Investment is $1195 + HST – Early Bird Saves $200 (paid by Feb 28, 2017)

Space is limited to 12 participants only

1 Scholarship Position Available*

Due to the intimate nature of this course all applicants must have an interview with Wendy. Once you have been accepted into the program a $300 non-refundable deposit will be required to hold your spot in the program.

Balance is due April 18, 2017. To receive the Early Bird rate, and save $200, balance must be paid in full by Feb 28, 2017. Payment plan option available.

Fee does not include accommodation. Options range from affordable sleeping bag option to private room.

*Scholarship, for those in financial need, is $800 off tuition and includes full meal plan at Rhythmwood at no extra charge. This is a work exchange position. One space only.

Feel free to CONTACT Wendy if you have any questions about this program.

Cancellation Policy

The $300 deposit is a non-refundable fee required to reserve your place in the program. Should you cancel your registration more than 30 days prior to the program start date, the deposit will be credited to your account for future use toward a program at Rhythmwood within 24 months. Should you cancel your registration less than 30 days prior to the program start date, you will incur a cancellation fee of $300 which will be deducted from your total. The remaining balance will be credited to your account for future use toward a program at Rhythmwood within 24 months.

Rhythmwood – A Story of Moving Back to the Land

In their mid 20’s and disillusioned with the idea of living life with a mortgage and debt, Wendy & Rick decided to try something different. They sold their house, quit their city jobs, bought a 50 acre parcel of land and moved to the Bruce Peninsula. They wanted to live a simpler life and be more self sufficient, growing their own food and developing basic living skills. Their philosophy was that if they could do the work themselves, they would have less debt and more time to follow their passions, bringing them a life of greater freedom.

Their first project was to build a home for themselves using local materials found on their property. They selectively harvested trees to use for building materials and consciously left as little impact on the land as possible. The trees were used to create the log walls, posts, beams, board and batten, shingles, ceiling, floor and railings. Stone was gathered to build the foundation and hearth space. They developed many skills as they went along, basically learning through books, asking questions and just jumping into the experience hands first. They also learned never to underestimate the value of taking the first small step!

Two and a half years later their project was complete and they moved into their hand made log home. This led them to a lifestyle of freedom and happiness, and many more building projects! After creating gardens, trails, outbuildings and anaddition to the house, they moved onto the next big project which was creating the straw bale building that now holds the dance studio of Rhythmwood. Natural and earth friendly materials were used to create this one-of-a-kind space. The walls of this beautiful studio are coated inside and out with an earthen plaster giving the space a warm adobe feel. The deep window wells create a delightful space for sitting and relaxing, and the natural earthen floors are beautiful and soft to dance on.

Today Rhythmwood offers a unique opportunity for people to come together for a full experience of education, adventure, inner exploration, good food, friendship and fun. You can choose from a large range of opportunities such as Wendy’s movement classes and heart centred dance retreats, to courses on natural building and sustainable living practices. Our programs attract people from around the world to learn, move and grow.

About the Bruce Peninsula

Located in the Great Lakes region of Ontario, Canada, the Bruce Peninsula is the traditional land of the Anishnaabe Saugeen First Nations and the Chippewas of Nawash. It is a place of incredible wild beauty that is surrounded by theturquoise waters of Georgian Bay and Lake Huron. It contains two national parks (one of them an underwater marine park), several nature reserves and a unique bird observatory. The rugged limestone cliffs of the Niagara Escarpment run up the eastern shoreline and hold a major part of the world renowned Bruce Trail. The Bruce Peninsula is a World Biosphere with over 40 species of wild orchids and the oldest trees east of the Rockies. It is also a Dark Sky Preserve where you will see the most incredible night skies!

Rhythmwood is located half way up the peninsula, just outside of Lion’s Head. We offer regular movement classes, retreat opportunities, courses in natural building and we welcome you to stay with us at our Bed & Breakfast.