Guidelines and Codes of Practice
The co-creative circle is a place of learning, held in a sacred way within the medicine sphere. The focus is not on a teacher but towards the centre of the circle and within oneself.
Every circle is unique because we are individually unique and when we come together we bring that difference forward. Each circle is influenced by time and by place, so this also brings its unique flavour to the work. Finally, each circle is different because of the purpose that brings the group together. I suggest for creating strong work together that you create a closed circle for a number of meeting times before opening it again. Circles are powerful places of learning and each circle builds naturally on the one before it.
photo by Deah Swift
It is helpful that people respect the timing and learn to arrive on time.
There is a transition between arriving and beginning the circle.
Think of this gathering time prior to the sacred time to be between 15 and 30 minutes.
If someone is invariably late you may need to be clear and begin at a particular time and not wait for this person. Some people experience a lot of resistance to the work and this can show up in arrival times.
A circle needs to invite in all those that come. Everyone has a place in the circle and a contribution to make. It is a good process to create the altar together to prepare the space together.
Starting with prayer, giving thanks and walking the directions, presents the spiritual nature and intent of the work that brings people together.
The rakau/talking stick needs to have a place in the circle and be used in a respectful way. If the rakau is being used in a way where there is not enough awareness or there is disrespect, the facilitator may interrupt the speaker carefully and respectfully. This has been one of the difficulties I have had to attend to – I have always had deep faith in the power of the rakau, but in some circumstances I have had to interrupt a speaker and bring them into an awareness of what they may be saying or doing. This is rarely done and I do now practice this in particular teaching processes.
In each circle there needs to be a beginning and a completion. This allows for the teaching to occur in the sacred and allows an integration at the end into the ordinary.
Each person in the circle is equal.
When doing spiritual journeying or deep meditation, children and babies are sensitive and vulnerable to energies moving in the etheric through adult process and work. I strongly recommend that sacred circle work be for adults and not for children and babies.
If you are running a circle in your home you need to clear and clean the space beforehand, and open your home to people so that they feel comfortable and at ease. Communicate to everyone where the bathroom is, and kitchen, and be clear which areas of your home are private. Set up clear boundaries so that everyone is aware of when they should arrive and when they should leave. At the end of the circle, clear the energy and speak an intention of bringing it back as a home.
If you are running a circle in a public space you should clear the area before you begin and after you finish. You can involve the group in this process.
If, as a group, you have a space designated for sacred work, the place may become tapu or sacred. If this is the case, as a group you will need to put in place the protocol of use of the space. This means that the space retains an energy of the sacred purpose and those entering the space respect this and partake in that particular sacred purpose.
Lasavia is about creating self-responsibility and self-reflection; I also want to suggest kindness and care are also important attributes. Often though there are people who may want to join a circle but may want a lot from the facilitator. Be observant of what happens within sacred circle and what happens outside of the circle. Be thoughtful about how you feed hunger and communicate clearly and respectfully when boundaries are crossed.
As a facilitator you may observe actions and see how a person is behaving that may not be in alignment or that they are in an illusion. It’s important to be with your own truth in these moments and to be patient. Listen deeply to your heart and to your words. Check your timing and ultimately trust the process within the medicine sphere. Remember you might be bringing some wisdom forward, but it is up to the person whether they partake in that. Do not force your own perception over theirs, rather offer it up.
Many people who are new to this work do not understand how to be with sacred objects. It is up to the facilitator to share the protocol of handling sacred objects.
In exploring the meaning of symbols or interpreting a journey, do not give feedback immediately. Draw out the person’s own understanding first. Then if you sense that there is something you see that may be helpful for them, ask them first if it is ok to share your insights, remind them that your insights could be for yourself or for others in the room and not just for them. Allow the opportunity for them to respond if you give feedback. This is how we learn together. This is in alignment with creating self-reflection first and developing self-responsibility.
Sometimes it is important to remind people in the circle that the experiences of others shared within circle are not to be shared outside of the circle. I usually suggest that participants can share their own experiences outside of circle if they need to. If a circle has been impacted by gossip, it is helpful to gather together in sacred circle and ask each person to share from their heart in a truthful and respectful way what they need to communicate. This often reveals mis-communication.
As a facilitator; be aware if the truth is overwhelming or painful and give space for each person to be listened to. If it is directed towards you, try your best not to be reactionary, rather look at your mistakes (if you have made any) as an action for change and self-reflection.
If you are being projected on, it is also a powerful teaching and worth looking within how you wear that projection or how that is a pattern coming up in your life. Be truthful and communicate from your perception of the events. Often you may need to access an inner strength and a way of stepping out of those old patterns. Be sure that you connect with your mentor and get support.