IN THE SPRING OF 2012 I had the good fortune of co-leading with Noirin Ni Riaian, a women’s experiential depth psychology retreat entitled, “To the Waters and the Wild: A Journey of Adventure and Renewal.“ As part of the annual Jung in Ireland Tour that Aryeh Maidenbaum and Diana Rubin create each year through their innovative organization, The New York Center for Jungian Studies, we entered into a week of experiential alchemical work of courting the subtle body with the spirits of the place and the Celtic imagination to enchant us. While staying a week on retreat at the Rathmullen House on the Innishowen peninsula, an Atlantic inlet of Lough Swilly, we enjoyed the pristine beaches steps from the hotel, along with sacred sites including the Beltany Stone Circle, one of Ireland’s most stellar ancient standing stone circles.
Specifically, while looking into the ancient song of Amergin, the Celtic world’s first bard poet’s utterance of great shamanic power, celebrating the great “ I am” in the world soul itself, we then took up our pens and found the voices within speaking to us the mysteries in response to that first line
“I Am. . . ” however it might whisper to us. This was followed by adding the echo, “If you are _____, I am ______” and the poetry that poured forth was at times a healing balm and at times tremendously energizing as veiled parts of the psyche spoke forth. We also tracked the unfolding imagination within that responded to the first line, “If I could wake the dead. . . .” The poetic offerings surprised us and stretched us and created a shared field of complexity with fresh perceptions appearing like new eyes of light born up out of the darkness of the psyche. Our hope is that the spirits that gathered with us,
and inspired us here, also spark your imaginative fire, as you dear reader,
find your way into these pages.
–excerpt from Introduction by Monika Wikman