Paths are the magical workings that we engage in during our time at
witchcamp. It’s a multi-day intensive guided by a path facilitator(s), like a magical themed workshop. A path is a study of magic and ritual, and can include many types of engagement – trance work, healing, singing & chanting, storytelling, guided visualization, energy work, group check ins & shares, ancestral work, working with the elements & directions, working with particular spirits & deities, and/or land connection. Paths are an opportunity to engage in community based magic in a smaller group based around a specific topic, and to learn some related skills of magic and ritual work.
To honor the container and the building’ nature of path, we ask that one commits to one path for the duration of camp.
The Paths this year include:
- Elements of Magic
- Courting the Beloved Wild
- The Goddess Path: Lady of the Beasts
- Ancestor Wounds and Healing
- Sounds of the Soul: Working With Ritual Music and Soundscaping as a Catalyst for Change in Our Time
Scroll down for Path descriptions and facilitator bios!
Elements of Magic
For beginners and all levels of practitioners
With the art of Magic, we deepen our vision and focus our will, empowering ourselves to act in the world.
In this fun and engaging path, we practice Magic, Witchcraft, & Goddess spirituality by working with the Elements of Magic; Earth, Air, Fire, Water, and Spirit. Immersive techniques include: Creating magical space, structuring ritual, trance, spell crafting, working with energy, & using our bodies and our imaginations.
Group experience follows Feminist Consensus Process.
Pre-requisite: Please read the first six chapters of The Spiral Dance by Starhawk
Rose May Dance has taught Reclaiming classes since 1981 & helped birth Reclaiming witch camps. Rose is a healer, hypnotherapist, nature worshipper and an observer of birds. Vote for Rose.
Laurel Lazuli has been teaching Reclaiming classes for almost twenty years. She is a healer and works magic with beloved covens. She fancies cemeteries, poetry, the night sky, and communing with the ancestors.
Courting the Beloved Wild
“We are human only in contact, and conviviality, with what is not human.”
― David Abram, The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World
How do we court a relationship with our powerful allies in the other-than-human world? Using trance journeys, dreamwork, and devotional art practices, we will explore respectful connection with our animal allies. Consent culture and humility will be our framework for forging long-term ally relationships that are mutually beneficial and sustaining. Tools ranging from scientific field guides to colorful art supplies will help us understand what we have to offer to the natural world as we seek its wisdom and aid. Come learn the skills of spiritual courtship and devotion that build the connection and trust necessary to create effective allyship with our other-than-human kin. Participants are encouraged to bring magickal art-making, music making tools/instruments, and journals to this path (path leaders will also provide some art materials).
Murphy Robinson is a priestex, wilderness guide, outdoor skills teacher, hunter, and forager. They have been involved in Reclaiming witchcamps since 2005, and their areas of magical study include trance journeying, rune magic, historical norse paganism, death priestessing, and the sacred hunt. Close relationship with deities and spirit allies informs their life and work, and they work most frequently with the Huntress, the Lord of the Dead, and the Stag. They live on a mountainside in central Vermont, where they teach archery, ethical hunting, and traditional woodscraft skills at their feminist wilderness skills school: www.mountainsongexpeditions.com.
erok is a poet, artist, activist, uncle and lover of the wilds who lives and works in the upper Winooski River watershed of the Western Abenaki homeland (Vermont). erok works as a wilderness mentor, a community rites of passage guide, a ritual (and meeting!) facilitator, a graphic designer, gardener, storyteller, kids camp councilor and puppeteer. He’s looking forward to working with folks at camp to strengthen our shared magick and relationships with the wild.
The Goddess Path: Lady of the Beasts
Since ancient times, animals have been the avatars of the Goddess, representing her and serving her in the world of humans. In the tale of the Brementown musicians, the Goddess manifests through for ordinary farm animals: Hecate’s faithful dog, Rhiannon’s tireless donkey, Sekhmet’s cunning cat, and Astarte’s vociferous rooster.
As we continue along the Goddess Path, we get to know these goddesses on a deeper level. Who are these goddesses, where is their sacred influence most strongly felt in our lives and our communities, and what do they have to teach us about how to do the work of the world?
Through visioning, experiential, and shape-shifting exercises, we connect with Hecate, Rhiannon, Sekhmet, and Astarte, and embody them as their animal companions. We also discover our own animal goddess voices, learning how to express their unique power and wisdom. Together, we join our voices in a triumphant chorus, proclaiming and celebrating our strong, safe, and sustainable community just like the Brementown musicians did in the story.
Day One: Hecate and the Dogs of Hell
Day Two: Rhiannon and the Horse No One Can Catch
Day Three: Sekhmet and the Lioness of the Sun
Day Four: Astarte and the Bird of Paradise
Rev. Dr. Anu Dudley teaches History of the Goddess at the University of Maine. She is Education Coordinator at the Temple of the Feminine Divine in Bangor. She produces the weekly radio feature , “Earthwise: Reflections on Earth-based spirituality” for WERU-FM. Anu is a founding member of the Wild Maine Witchcamp.
Rev. Mandi Gearhart works at UMaine’s Student Accessibilty Services and is a co-facilitator for the Iseum Musicum program at the Temple of the Feminine Divine(ToFD) in Bangor. Mandi designed and taught the 6 week course Warding 101 through the ToFD in 2018. They specialize in the magical work of building and maintaining wards as well as aspecting with deity.
Ancestor Wounds and Healing
We believe that to create wholeness in community, we need to reconnect with the spirits of our ancestors, and begin to heal the brokenness in those relationships. This path will guide us–through shared conversation and experiential ritual–into a magical intention of opening to the blessings of our ancestors and healing the wounds we carry. We will use the cycle of the Work that Reconnects of Joanna Macy, (gratitude, honoring our pain, seeing with new eyes, and going forth) as well as experiential magical practice, chanting and music, and decolonizing analysis to guide us. We also will explore the meanings and powers of queer ancestors, those who are not connected to us through biology but spirit. We will go forth with a renewed sense of our location within the circle of time and place.
We as path leaders are white queer women committed to anti-racism, and our identities and ancestries frame the work as we engage in it. We intend to create a container open to anyone who wishes to explore the wisdom and wounds of their ancestors, but recognize that the wounds of our particular ancestors may intersect in painful ways. We cannot create true belonging or right relationship with the earth without reckoning with the colonization process, the stolen captivity of the land in which we now reside, as well as, for those who are not in their indigenous lands, our ancestors’ loss of their own original lands. There will be room for feeling this pain, in a braver/safer space, trusting in the power of truth and spirit and consent to guide us. Participants are invited to bring photos or other items to add to our ancestors altar.
*If you think you might like to participate in the Ancestor Wounds & Healing Path, we invite you to bring an item for our ancestor altar: it could be symbolic of your ancestor’s culture, a photo or memento, or anything else that is meaningful in your relationship to ancestors, however you might define that.*
Myke Johnson is a 66 year old white lesbian feminist activist, a witch since 1979, and for twenty years served as a Unitarian Universalist minister in Massachusetts and Portland, Maine. She now lives, writes, and gardens in occupied Wabanaki territory, in so-called Portland. She is the author of Finding Our Way Home: A Spiritual Journey into Earth Community, and blogs at https://findingourwayhome.blog. She has led workshops and rituals for 40 years on earth-centered spirituality, anti-racism, lesbian liberation, and earth activism. She is a member of the Decolonizing Faith project of Maine-Wabanaki REACH. She has been blogging about her own journey of reconnecting with her ancestors of many heritages, including German, East Frisian, Austrian, French Canadian, Scottish and Innu/Montagnais.
Sylvia Stormwalker is a 35-year-old white genderqueer neurodivergent trans woman residing in occupied Wabanaki territory on Machigonne peninsula overlooking the North Atlantic in so-called Portland, Maine. She is a witch, anarchist, community herbalist, gardener, and feral defender of the woods, wild, and water. She has been involved in social and environmental justice activism since her teens. Sylvia has been facilitating The Work that Reconnects for seven years and has increasingly focused on incorporating an unsettling/intersectional feminist anti-racist analysis into that work. Sylvia has participated in a Maine-Wabanaki REACH ally-ship group since 2014. She believes that the magic of trans and queer folks is integral to the project of collective liberation and facilitates gatherings where LGBTQIA+ folks can feel our collective power and magic. Sylvia’s ancestors are German, English, mixed European and unknown.
Sounds of the Soul
Working With Ritual Music and Soundscaping as a Catalyst for Change in Our Time
This path will work with Sound as a vehicle for transformation, in ritual and revolution, in regeneration, and in our resilience. Like the musicians of Bremen, we’ll form a band born of the necessity of this moment, nurture relationships of mutual aid, and co-create our collective spells. We will be looking at ritual as a container to foster transformation, and music and sound as tools in our witch’s belt that can help us hold and support that transformation.
This will be a concrete, skill sharing, experience. We’ll examine ways to design and use sound containers, the ways in which improvisation can be used as a catalyst for spellwork, and how sound is one of the most potent avenues to the divine. We will also step outside the ritual circle and explore ways in which musical techniques can be used to support political actions, community transformation, and the well being of those who engage in such work. We will play with sound as a method of Self-care and catharsis– magic that can sustain us while we work to make change in our lives and in the world. Some concrete skill sets that might be emphasized: chant writing, improvisation, vocal projection/techniques, percussion, and drumming (both for trance and energy raising).
Join us in this path as we experiment with sound, shape and shift energy, and change ourselves and our world through music. In this cauldron of sound and silence, we come together like the Bremantown Musicans, and co-create both the transformation we want, and the sustenance we need.
A musician, sex worker, queer feminist, make-up artist, body painter, and mother, Orion is a witch who walks many, seemingly disparate, paths. Yet it is there, in the BETWEEN spaces, the liminal places that delineate an edge, that they believe the most potent magic lies. Orion has been practicing their own brand of edge-walking for over 25 years. In 2003 they became a part of the Reclaiming tradition, and in 2005 they began facilitating local workshops in New York. Since then they have been privileged to find a place amongst the supportive ommunity of Spiralheart, and they feel grateful to be joining the community of Wild Maine once again. Orion is most drawn to magic and ritual that asks us to examine our jagged edges and rough places; where there’s fear, there’s power. A singer for social justice, Orion’s favorite spell-work includes sacred sound and medicinal self-expression, shadow work, the archetype of the Sacred Harlot, and the Elements. They are dedicated to using these tools for radical positive change, personal transformation, and the empowerment of all. Previously a poly-amorous lover of all divine beings, Orion now works exclusively with Medusa. To read more about Orion’s Sex Work, activism, & personal practice, you can peruse their blog; Body of Indulgence @ www.bodyofindulgence.com.
Jude Elf lives for paradigm shifts, lightbulb moments, ecstatic transformative ritual and deep personal magic. I delight in sharing my passion for connecting to the divine through music, dance, and
song. A life long activist, I love the alchemy of mixing magic with the work of the great turning, combining spell work, stewardship, egalitarian group process, non-violent action, and emancipated sexuality. I’m a song catcher, fire spinner, green witch and moon dancer, who teaches magic and sacred sexuality, and offers support with rites of passage. I help organize and teach at Reclaiming Witchcamps including JeWitch Camp, and with Kidsfest, help facilitate large public rituals that gather the community to turn the wheel and honor the seasons. I live at Milkweed Farm, in Northern Vermont where I delight in the fey and elements of nature and foment beautiful revolution through art and community.