YÖRUK - THE CIRCLE
A journey through the seasonality of ourselves as nature
A TRAINING IN EMBODIED PRACTICE, MARCH - NOVEMBER 2020
An alchemy through the cycles of us as nature
A circle of connection
A circle of creativity
A circle of intuition
A sacred weaving of body, myth, ritual land and sky
“Deep within the human mind, there is a fascination with the circle because it satisfies some longing within us. It is one of the most universal and ancient shapes of the universe. The circle of time is never broken ..We come out of the unknown, we appear on earth, live here feed off the earth and eventually return to the unknown again. The ocean moves in this rhthym too; the tide comes in, turns and goes back again. It resembles the rhythm of the human breath which comes in, fills and then recedes back again” - John O’Donohue
The Circle is a journey into our authentic presence as an echo of the entire biological kingdom. The place we stand as a sacred channel between earth and sky where the cycle of all existence and the circle of all beginnings flows through us.
The embodied journey of The Circle is about connecting the personal and transpersonal realms of our being - the human with the non-human so that we can rekindle a holistic relationship between the planet and ourselves. Discovering an interconnection once again between our physical and ethereal bodies held within the eyes of the stars and the landscape as our ancestral guide.
WHY THIS IS IMPORTANT NOW
Modern culture has learnt to separate spirit from matter, land from sky, visions from truth, stars from beingness, death from birth and life from life itself. These messages of separation continue to spread fear, uncertainty and climate dissociation across the surface the world. Causing a sense of disillusionment and disconnection from our innate power and essence of being.
We are in the transition out of ‘the institutional’, which has for so long mislead us into a concept of valuing knowledge as one-directional. We are entering a new age in which we need to embrace rather than direct, to receive rather than project. We are in a time where the union of our subconscious and conscious selves has the power to guide us into a new wholeness and a trust in our deeper senses.
WE ARE THE CLIMATE and the time is now to find the tools we need to expand and transform the current states of our ‘climate in crisis’.
The Circle is a call to weave these ancient threads together again, to enter a journey ‘back to where we have not quite been’ into the cellular memory of our bodies and the earth. The Circle’ is a call for a deep remembrance of the interconnection between the human and non-human forms.
A call to the archetypal nomadic spirit within us, that instinctively journeys with the seasons and the planetary constellations following them and working with the myths and rituals that they offered.
"When we offer our experiences as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change. There are new mountains" - Ursula Le Guin
The Circle is a place of re-enchantment, heart connection and a moment to deepen our inner power. A place where our intuition acts as an anchor point to the present – The present in its ever-changing form and its continuous rooting of our spirit.
HOW WE JOURNEY
Creativity innately follows a rhythmically seasonal cycle – a circle not confined to the mind – instead one that summons our entire being into manifestation, response and flow. The Circle is a journey of authentic creativity one that weaves together ecology, esoteric practice, handheld knowledge and processes that we call the 4 lands, used together to summon our creative potential.
For The Circle we have crafted 4 modules that follow the arch of the year. Beginning on the Spring Equinox 2020 and following the cycle until November. The modules have developed from our deep listening to the land, to the seasonal cycles and the potent planetary transitions throughout the year.
The themes for the modules emerge from echoes of the archetypal experience of the healing journey. For the first module we meet the gateway, our threshold of potential. The second module we journey with the divine presence of wind and immerse ourselves in the voice of the ancestors that we carry through the meeting of the eagle spirit. In the third module we enter the song of the cave, the place we return to nurture our truth. For the fourth module we weave the Dragon of our creative potential.
Each module symbolises a threshold of transformation and an anchor point for honouring our own inner seasonality of change. The modules offer moments to meet ourselves as we meet the land as she changes, grows and surfaces. Your story and the story of the land, evolving side by side.
The Circle will bring together a unique combination of ceremonial practices, ritual work, yogic practices, movement, plant knowledge, astrology and land processes, alongside one to one sessions as part of an on going integration and transformation process. The training has been designed to support weaving the work into everyday life carrying the threads of embodiment into your everyday rituals.
The methods of teaching come as a culmination of processes held within the last decade of our socially engaged art practice, whilst taking inspiration from our on going studies/training into a variety of practices including shamanic work, astrology, movement medicine, somatic movement, kundalini yoga, psycho-magic, body-alchemy, sound therapy, biodynamic body listening and holistic dance.
These practices will be offered alongside learning seasonal work of land medicine from the Mount of Oaks community. This will include delving into biodynamic harvesting, balm making, preserving and natural building. Throughout The Circle we will collectively build a shared altar space in the land that evolves through each of the modules. Together the practices offer an experience of permaculture in its fullest sense.
THE GROUP AS A SET AND CHANGING CONSTELLATION
The Circle as a lived experience will be made up of a core constellation of participants who will journey throughout the cycle with additional places offered to migratory beings that will join for one module at a time – open to both new people and those who have journeyed with us before on a previous residency.
This way of forming the ongoing group is a way of working with the ‘real’ in the sense of creating a core-community that shape-shifts through the influence of temporary ‘inhabitants’. Together creating an in depth and socially real training in the different states of how to be a ‘receiver’, ‘an arrival’ a ‘newcomer’ and a core – all in support of the ongoing states of the transformation necessary to stay attuned to an authentic and constant state of presence. - A tuning of our understandings of group work and community as a practice.
MOUNT OF OAKS | ACCOMMODATION | THE SURROUNDING ENVIRONMENT
Is a deeply special place rich with biodiversity. The land in the valley of the Gardunha mountains is still owned and maintained by small scale family farmers - using traditional practices and low impact agriculture. Traditional shepherds still roam the land with their animals. Through The Circle this land will be experienced through the gifts of different seasons.
Mount of Oaks community have held the land in the valley for the last 14 years, listening deeply to its cycles and rhythms and learning from its whispers, planting and harvesting biodynamically and building the structures with their hands. Making medicines for people, animals and plants from the harvests.
The accommodation for the gathering will be on this land in shared bell tents, with solar showers and compost toilets. Meals for the training include foods from the land and natural spring water from the mountain. Each meal is prepared as delicious seasonal and organic offerings that tune to the processes and deepen the work each module journeys with.
YÖRÜK The Circle takes the journey through these surrounding mountains, rivers and lakes that are abundant with myths waiting to be heard. Offering a deeply special experience of being ensconced in the magic of the land and held within an ancient rhythm of our indigenous earth-spirits. A journey where we can feel and tune our innate power and embodied wisdom to become the change-makers of our time.
DATES AND MODULES
Meeting The Threshold of Potential
17th - 23rd March, Portugal
Voice of The Ancestors
14th - 20th July, Portugal
The Inner Sanctum
2nd - 8th September, Portugal
THE WEAVINGS OF DRAGONS
An Integration of Practices
The Sacredness of Everyday Life
20th-22nd November, UK
There will be two one-to-one sessions with
Eva and Isik between Module 2 and 3.
The training will be hosted by Isik and Eva
alongside the Mount of Oaks Community. To read
more about Eva and Isik, visit here.
HOW TO APPLY
No previous requirements are necessary for taking part. In the past we have been joined by artists, herbalists, administrators, scientists, curators, photographers and teachers.
To apply send us an email with your interest alongside a short paragraph about what drew you to this process.
On request, we will send you an application form to fill in. The majority of spaces will be available as year-long places with a few spaces available as one-off places for module 1 and 2. Please enquire further about this.
The payment for the programme can be paid in full on registration or through payment plans suitable to your needs. Concessions and bursaries are available for limited places so do get in touch with us. In the past participants have also successfully received funding to attend our courses.
The Circle full programme (including one to one sessions)
£1350 (Early bird if paid in full before 31st December 2019)
Food and accommodation
(option of bringing your own tent, which reduces the cost of the accommodation)
Limited migratory place for one module
Food and accommodation
(option of bringing your own tent, which reduces the cost of the accommodation)
The black and white photographs on this page were taken as medium format portraits by Ines Lechleitner during her participation in 4 yörük gatherings.
TESTIMONIALS FROM PREVIOUS PARTICIPANTS OF YÖRÜK
"I felt I was living an experience I had longed for, for a long time. I felt I was in a time out of time. The Mount of Oaks, and the sacred places you created for us seemed in another reality, elemental and mythical, yet comfortable and intimate.Meaningful actions, movement and words shared between the women constantly built the feel of the nomadic community - layer upon layer of richness over our days together. I loved how free the communication was. There was no need to explain what was real, what was imagined, felt or dreamed. This was such a vivid togetherness. Everything was so masterfully and meticulously taken care of, with such warmth and generosity - even the approaches and departures to the process. I'm not sure I have ever been so attentively cared for, and now I feel repaired somehow."
"Wow Wow Wow! Was an expression that I heard several times during my nomadic residency journey. I have experience in women’s circling and yoga practice, in permaculture, foraging and fooding cultures within intentional communities and in creative art practice but I have never experienced a residency which combined these elements in such rich, and delicate layers as this one. The food was prepared by a group of dedicated herbalists, chefs and spiritual journey makers and each daily menu was sympathetically considered in full appreciation of the day’s activities and unfolding. Eva and Isik held the residency beautifully and intelligently, and the unfolding was perfectly timed; gradual, energetic and profound. The Mount of Oaks community land is a vibrant addition to our ‘work' and the perfect stage for deep inner reflection and transformative magical processes. Thank you everyone for such a deeply positive experience."
"Yoruk was an experience in my life like no other I had previously encountered. It was a time of deep medicine, inner alchemical transformation, and a connection to ancient wisdom. The creative growth of inner self has already seeped into my artistic practice and has supported me in a truly difficult time in my personal life. I am so grateful for everything that took place there. My senses still recall all that surrounded me – the smell of incense and fire in the night air, the sweet taste of figs in the morning, the sounds of women chanting and laughing together, and the sight of eagles soaring above us as we reached the mountain top. I left feeling like I had not only witnessed a beautiful creative act unfold, but that I had been an artwork myself – arriving as a raw material, worked on and transformed by the land, the processes, the magic of that time."