Description: The workshop will include gathering in a circle to perform Agnihotra (or another fire ceremony if not at sunrise or sunset) and meditating as a group. The meditation will last for the length of the fire (usually 10 to 15 minutes), and we will have an open Q & A session and Satsung.
Presenter Bio: Gautham is an entrepreneur, attorney, spiritual disciple, community facilitator, and documentary film producer. He has been initiated as a disciple into a lineage of spiritual masters and has dedicated his life to sharing ancient knowledge to help empower spiritual seekers and revitalize nature.
Session Two – Thursday 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Workshop 2A Title: Fire Keeping – Physical and Spiritual Safety & Protocols
Presenter: Steve Lake
Description: A hands-on, instructive workshop on the history, safety and responsibility of fire keeping with a heavy accent on the spiritual and ceremonial practices and generally accepted, practical and spiritual protocols regarding the construction and servicing of a sweat lodge fire. Participants will be involved in the physical and ceremonial construction on an “inipi” fire and instructed on its tending and duties. This introductory workshop would not make anyone a “fire keeper”, but would provide insight and understanding for a deeper, safer practice.
Presenter Bio: I attended my first sweat lodge in September 2010. I participated in a monthly sweat lodge community and soon after began a daily 15-month training to become a “fire keeper” and a “water-pourer”. I subsequently built 72 monthly ceremonial fires and poured lodges with our own group until 2017. I have attended many other lodges as well, noting their practices and protocols for both the fire and lodge itself. I look forward to sharing some of this experience for the benefit, understanding and safety of others.
Workshop 2B Title: Crystal Gridding
Presenter: Nathan Schmoldt
Description: Crystal Gridding is like the Swiss Army knife of spiritual tools. It can be used for many things, such as creating a protective and positive energy space for where you live, assisting working with and connecting to spirit, empowering items that have been crafted, assisting with daily meditations, and can help with daily well-being. There are many, many more uses. It can be used, for the imagination is the limit. This is a tool for manifesting intent.
Presenter Bio: Nathan Schmoldt is a student of Kathy Two Hawks. Self-taught Crystal Gridding. Crafter of spiritual items. Have been on the spiritual path for 9 1/2 years and I have been grading crystals for eight of those years.
Description: Opening of sacred space, creating a multilayer tangible prayer imbuing each step and item with intention to create an offering (or hay way in Quechua) to be buried or transmuted in the fire as a gift to ourselves and to Pachamama. It will likely include, nuts, seeds, corn, feathers, chocolate, leaves, and many other items as well. I will be providing assistance with meaning for each item and helping participants with this aspect of the process if they would like any recommendations. I also recommend bringing any items from Mother Nature or power items that call to you to be included in your prayers to the great mother.
Presenter Bio: Noqa Kani Mathew Runningwolf Steele Miller, Qero Pampamesayoc – priest and mesa carrier within the lineage, Four Visions Market Brand Ambassador. Sacred Plant Medicine Retreat Facilitator.
Workshop 3B Title: Honoring Our Spirit Through Ceremony
Presenter: Catherine Rose Strecko
Description: Four ceremonies covering the four elements to honour our hearts and spirit. Water: we will hold a water ceremony with its teachings. Fire: we will use a drum voyage to connect to our light/inner fire through our hearts. Earth: we will discover A way to connect with Mother Earth under us. Air: How to shift our thoughts through gratitude. Each ceremony will be simple, and the participants will be able to do them at home after the gathering.
Presenter Bio: Catherine Rose Bear Heart Woman, Dancing Buffalo, has been facilitating sweat lodges, drum circles, women’s circles, ceremonies, workshops and shamanic teachings since 2002. She has been playing on a woman’s drum since 2010. She has received the wisdom and knowledge of ancestors from various teachers and elders through the many years. She lives her life in a very loving, generous and genuine way. “I believe we can co-create a new world of love, respect and acceptance through sharing our wisdom.”
Session Four – Thursday 5:00 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Workshop 4A Title: Honoring the Sacred Pipe
Presenter: Virgie Ravenhawk
Description: Canupah Wakan! Are you interested in learning more about sacred pipe ceremony and pipe carrying? This session will review the basics about the Sacred Pipe and the ceremony surrounding it. Come sit with our Elder Virgie Ravenhawk to learn about Sacred Pipe the Canupah Wakan!
Presenter Bio: Virgie Ravenhawk has been holding ceremony for many decades and has a strong circle in San Antonio with members nearing 80 in her clan family. Virgie is a renowned Native American Flute player and has grammy-nominated albums. She lives in San Antonio with her wife Debbie Drumhawk where they host ceremonies and drum circles as well as teaching circles and lodges. Virgie Ravenhawk innovated the Dry Sweat Lodge that allows everyone that is unable to sit in Inipi to benefit from the healing outside the lodge.
Workshop 4B Title: Healing Journeys
Presenter: Zonia Lucero
Description: A combination of breath, movement, somatic reprogramming, yoga Nidra, tapping, and hypnogogic guided meditation.
Presenter Bio: Zonia Lucero has a B.A. Education, M.A. Depth Psycholgy. Zonia has merged earth wisdoms and psychology as a practitioner in the healing arts for the last 30 years working at retreats centers and private practice. She has experience in Traumatic Incident Reduction, hypnogogic states, yoga, and body work.
Session Five – Friday, 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Workshop 5A Title: Herb Walk on the Mountain
Presenter: Kathy Two Hawks
Description: A walk around the area to identify what herbs and plants are safe or NOT to use for healing inside and out! Bring a notepad, pen or pencil, camera and questions!! Please bring water to drink and a walking stick.
Presenter Bio: I am a Pejuta Win of the Lakota Tradition. I was taught by my Great and Grand Mothers about healing and use of wild plants. I am a Master Herbalist, Medicine Woman, Sweat Lodge Leader, Mother and Grandmother to many. I am also a member of the G.O.C. Council.
Workshop Description: What is healing to you (each attendee)? What healing modality do you practice? We will discuss some of the many forms available to us: Plant Medicines, Reiki, Sound, Shamanic, Indigenous, and whatever else you are familiar with. This workshop will help you give and receive Divine Love by sharing it.
Presenter Bio: Mike Three Bears participates in many forms of spiritual practices and healing practices. He is called Grandfather Mike by the Canoncito Band of the Dine; attends weekly Purification Lodges, alternating between Lakota and Jicarilla Apache traditions; active in the Community of Love Church, attending 6 activities weekly; attended 3 of ADYASHANTI’S retreats; attended 13 of Grof’s Holotropic Breathwork retreats; started attending the GOC IN 1995 and has been greatly changed by it; in November 2022 joined the One Kidney Club.
Session Six – Friday 11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Workshop 6A Tittle: A Breath of Fresh Air
Presenter: Raymond Baca
Workshop Description: Join us for a workshop on the Creative elements and how they manifest in our lives. Learn how we can use them to help heal ourselves and strengthen our circles one breath at a time. We will share Dine teachings about the Creative forces and how we can use the breath to help us thrive and stay in the present moment. We encourage dialogue and active participation. Please wear comfortable clothing and you may bring a mat to lay on the ground or sit in a chair comfortably for the breathing part.
Please do not eat a heavy meal 2 or 3 hours before workshop.
Presenter Bio: RAYMOND “TWO BEARS” BACA: ENERGY VIBRATION INSTRUCTOR & SACRED CEREMONY FACILITATOR
My name is Raymond Alonzo “Two Bears” Baca. I consider myself a Christian Taoist, walking the Red Road. My path to healing was facilitated by my beautiful wife of 21 years who has loved me unconditionally and has patiently waited for my true self to unfold. I grew up in a loving home where my mother and father raised me quite differently. My mother instilled and reinforced Jesus Christ’s heart of love as my father taught me native ways of looking at nature and lessons that even now, I am learning & growing from. In my mid 20’s, I met my Sifu (father/teacher), David who would set me on the Red Road and teach me many paths to the Universal Life Energy that runs through all things. He would often tell his students that no religion has a monopoly on truth. Many teachers have come into my life since then, but the most profound teachers have been the plant teachers that have been teaching humanity since the beginning of time guiding us to the natural path back to our higher consciousness and true self. Creator has blessed me to be able to work in my local community to build strong relationships through ceremony & prayer.
To explore setting up a group session, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org Individual Mentoring I mentor Individuals interested in expanding self-knowledge and facilitating healing.
I also conduct traditional ceremonies for my relatives.Bundle Time- Women and Men’s Bundle see description listed earlier. Location of Bundle sessions is TBA.
Workshop 6B Title: Selve in a Box
Presenter: Reginah Water Spirit
Workshop Description: We will witness the tool of Selves In A Box, developed over many years by J.Tamar Stone. Learn what ‘vibrations’ or ‘inner selves’ may be primary or disowned for you. Having choice with awareness of how we operate in life is so important for our individual and collective wellbeing. Knowledge is power!
Presenter Bio: Keynote Speaker GOC 2023; “Stay The Course”. Co-author with Bear Heart of The Bear Is My Father, Muskogee Nation-Creek Tribe caretaker of Sacred Ways. Voice Dialogue -Art Therapy Techniques for Awareness/Consciousness training; Teacher/Workshop leader. Founder of Art In The Park drawing classes for youngsters, seniors and other persons; Shapes in Nature; realistic drawing skills course. Honored to teach for Native American Forum of NSA. Current member of Earth tribe founded by Will Teagle and Judith Yost, Wimberley, Texas.
Session Seven – Friday 1:20 p.m. – 2:20 p.m.
Workshop 7A Title: Moving Energy Through Chanting
Presenter: Laura Barrera
Workshop Description: Chanting is a tool for creating vibration and helping to move energy around in our bodies. It is very helpful in clearing our energy channels.
Presenter Bio: Laura Barrera has been attending the GOC since 2005. She is a practicing Buddhist with Rissho- Kosei Kai lay Buddhist Organization. The GOC is a place where all are practices come together as one.
Workshop 7B Title: Play the Native American Flute
Presenter: Gary Kendrick
Workshop Description: This workshop is primarily for beginning flute players, but all levels are welcome. The agenda is laid out below, but is flexible to the needs of the group.
To facilitate this workshop and simplify instruction a Northern Spirits A-minor flute is provided for you to use. If you wish to keep the flute please make a ten dollar ($10) donation to the GOC. This money goes directly to the GOC general fund and is used to help fund the event.
Introductions and stories.
A brief history of the Native American or North American Flute.
Fundamentals of playing the NAF with practice play-alongs and individual instruction.
I would like for the group to learn the classic Zuni Sunrise song or the Cherokee Morning Song. You will have the finger charts and time to practice. On Sunday morning at sunrise we will gather at the main circle to play this as a group.
Throughout the GOC I will be available to you for practice, additional instruction, or just hanging out. You are welcome to come by my camp anytime for practice and coffee.
Presenter Bio: I have been playing the Native American Flute for over 20 years and taught this workshop at the GOC in 2018. I approach the playing of the flute from the heart. I am not a musician, do not read music, and play no other instruments. Hopefully I can share my experience in such a way that others can learn and find their own voice within this most wonderful of instruments.
The Gathering of Circles is self-supported by the continued generosity and involvement of its participants for the past 29 years.
Every penny donated goes to continue the beautiful gathering that is GOC, as overseen monthly by a council of 19 unpaid volunteers.
GOC accepts donations and encourages participation in our fundraising activities. However, no fee is required to attend or participate.
We fund raise through our on the mountain raffle and Pancake Brunch and with a yearly themed souvenir T-shirt.
This years beautiful design was submitted by the talented Azure Sky Ramos.
As with most everything our suppliers have raised their prices slightly. A short sleeve is a donation of $22 and long sleeve is $27
It’s a great way to support your GOC and have a beautiful souvenir as well.
Shirts are only available in black this year to keep the cost down and highlight the beautiful design. Shipping is available (fees apply), otherwise you can save the charge and pick it up on the Mountain!
ORDERS MUST BE IN BY JULY 9TH. At that time all orders will be processed.
We are happy to have Gautham Bodepudi as this year’s keynote speaker.
Photo Credit: Isaac Prado
Gautham is an entrepreneur, attorney, spiritual disciple, community facilitator, and film producer.
From a young age, Gau has dedicated himself to the spiritual path. In 2009 he was initiated as a disciple into a lineage of spiritual masters, where he learned ancient Vedic practices and knowledge. Gau has dedicated his life to sharing this knowledge to help empower spiritual seekers and revitalize nature, to help create peace on earth and enable humanity to live sustainably with nature.
Gau co-founded Awaken Inner Fire and sits on the board for Fivefold Path Mission USA, non-profit organizations that are dedicated to sharing knowledge of Agnihotra, a Vedic fire practice that was lost for several millennia, but now revealed to humanity. Gau is a producer and director of Agnihotra Documentary, an investigative documentary on Agnihotra as a healing practice for the planet and our communities.
Professionally, Gau is a co-founder of IP EDGE, a patent asset management advisory that manages thousands of patent assets for Fortune 500 companies, and works with universities to commercialize and develop new technologies. Gau has written in the patent field for numerous publications, writing on patent policy and economics. Gau is a graduate from the University of Chicago School of Law.
At his core, Gau believes that if you dedicate yourself to the spiritual path, you can be successful in all aspects of life, and lives a life to demonstrate that principle.
It’s time for our GOC Planning Meeting. We are excited about several announcements and know that you will be as well.
First our 2023 Theme-Thanks to everyone who sent in suggestions or even thought about it. There were so, so many excellent suggestions, that would have been good themes, it was difficult for the council to decide. So, we came up with a Spirit guided mix that seems to embody many of the suggestions and their intent.
The result……..HONORING HEART AND SPIRIT
It is very wide open to interpretation. What does it mean to you? What questions, answers or actions pop into your mind when you think about this? Let’s see how we can manifest it together on the Mountain August 2nd-6th
Second T-shirt design-As always GOC will have T-shirts for 2023. There are so many creative, beautiful minds connected with this group. Let’s see what you can come up with for a T-shirt design based on our theme (preferably). Please submit a conceptual representation HERE. Please send in your wonderful ideas no later than Saturday March 4th.Your GOC council will narrow it down to 3 or so contenders to be decided by the entire group at the GOC 2023 Planning Meeting!
Third and possibly biggest announcement GOC planning meeting!
As in pre-covid years, we will gather in person again and make the meeting available on ZOOM. Your attendance in person would be greatly welcomed and appreciated if possible. Ed and Irene Ramos have graciously offered to host this years planning meeting at their place in Poteet, Texas Location 20 miles south of San Antonio, Texas.
There is room for camping/campers on their property and several motel options nearby if you are traveling from afar. The meeting itself will be at 2pm Central Time, Saturday, March 25th.You may choose to arrive on Friday, March 24th and attend our traditional meal gathering the night before (details to follow). Please RSVP below if you plan on attending in person or by Zoom https://www.cognitoforms.com/IreneRamos1/GOC2023PlanningMeeting
The Planning Meeting is essential in preparation for GOC on the mountain. Important decisions are made and volunteer and coordinator positions are filled. These roles are indispensable to the Gathering that we all know and love. So please volunteer, even to assist and learn. It is imperative that functions and operations of GOC on the mountain are passed on, spread out and picked-up by as many as possible. Here you can view the various opportunities volunteer areas. And as always feel free to reach out to me- email@example.com, Or any other council member, with questions, comments and/or suggestions for
The Gathering Of Circles is very excited to have published a book in 2020! It is called “Sacred Mountain – Sacred Home.” You can learn more below. You can click on the cover page below to view a sample of the book.
SACRED MOUNTAIN, SACRED HOME Taking the Mountain Home with Gratitude, Forgiveness and Love The Transcendent Wisdom of the Gathering of Circles Told Through the Stories of Many Whose Lives It Transformed Bob and Wanda Mama Uma Wade