Two events in May see the return of our shamanic friends from Norway, including World Drum Project founders, White Cougar and Morten Wolf Storeide plus members of the brilliant shamanic band, Baalfolket. If that's enough to get your juices flowing already, go straight to our booking pages for the events at Wild Ways in Shropshire or at the Bishop's Wood Saxon Hall in Worcestershire, or download the printable booking forms: this one for Wild Ways; this one for Bishop's Wood, or contact Elaine by e-mail or on 01746 861992. However, if you'd like to know more, read on...
In the North of Norway dwell a people, the Saami, whose way of life traditionally revolved around reindeer herding and whose spirituality in such a harsh environment involved direct and frequent contact with the spirits of the land, the elements and the animals who lived with and around them. One of the primary ways in which they communed with these spirits was through trance states entered into via drumming. Those who made spirit journeys, often for purposes of healing, were called noaidi. The drums they made, and some still make, are never circular but always oval. They are usually painted, often with a pattern that divides the centre of their playing surface into four segments representing a four-fold division of the cosmos. Other common symbols feature the sun, so vital to life in the Arctic North, birds and other animals such as reindeer, bear and wolf. The drums reflect the world-view of the Saami, one that was animistic and polytheistic, viewed certain special places as particularly sacred and regarded proper relationships with spirit beings as essential to life. In other words, it was very like our understanding of Druidry.
At the BDO, we first came in contact with Norwegian shamanic folk through linking up with The World Drum. TWD was created by a Saami drum-maker, Birger Mikkelsen, following a vision that came to Kyrre Franck White Cougar. It travels around the world, becoming the focus for ceremonies in many lands and cultures, all focused on promoting peace and harmony with our Mother Earth. These travels are overseen by Morten Wolf Storeide. In April 2013, these two, along with Lena Paalviig Johnsen and Will Rubach of the shamanic band, Baalfolket, brought us an amazing ceremony centred on a healing plant called chaga. It was one of the most powerful events I've ever taken part in and you can read my account of it HERE.
In May 2014 White Cougar, Morten and Lena will be returning to the UK to offer workshops and their wonderful music, accompanied by Bobby Kure and Anita Dreyer, the other two members of Baalfolket. The workshops are on the theme of connecting with primordial power through sound and the soul of nature, drawing on the Saami understanding of the universe and relationships with spirits for healing and transformation. At Wild Ways, the weekend of May 9th-11th will begin with a chaga ceremony and will include an evening concert on the Saturday night. At Bishop's Wood on May 17th, a full day of workshops will also end with a concert of shamanic music featuring voices, didgeridoo and, of course, those amazing Saami drums. Each event has 45 places available. For more details of the weekend, Click HERE. For more on the one-day workshop, Click HERE. As this event begins fairly early in the morning and ends quite late, you might find it handy to have a place to stay. Elaine is offering overnight stays at Wild Ways on Friday 16th and on the 17th very cheaply. Contact her on 01746 861992 or by e-mail.
Based on our previous meetings with these inspiring, joyous, deeply magical folk, we're in for a real treat and very much hope that you can join us 😀