Just a brief note — as a result of a last minute cancellation we have one remaining spot in the July 11 – 14 Horses of the 4 Directions workshop. The following is the description of this workshop that appeared in the April 2011 Epona newsletter:
Horses of the Four Directions
A special advanced workshop leading up to the July full moon will also feature gentle activities and meditations with the horses, with two special guest facilitators from the Northern Arizona/Western New Mexico Dine’ (Navajo) nation sharing traditional horse-related stories, songs, prayers and ceremonies.
“For several years now, people who’ve attended advanced workshops like Black Horse Wisdom and Rasa Dance have wanted to come back for even more advanced work on a similar consciousness expanding theme,” Linda says. “I’m very pleased and honored to be able to offer a brand new workshop, a collaboration with a profound and compassionate medicine man and his apprentice from the Dine’ tradition who are steeped in the wisdom of the horse.”
Horses of the Four Directions: A Sacred Path of Remembrance, Gratitude, and Transformation will take place July 11 through 14, again from noon to 9 p.m. Indoor and outdoor activities will offer a direct connection to the Dine’ history and creation of the horse, as well as the spiritual teachings associated with these highly respected four-legged beings. The workshop will be facilitated and supported by Harrison Jim, Gino Antonio, Kathleen McGarry, Linda Kohanov and the Epona Herd.
Harrison Jim is a widely respected advocate for the integration of cultural teachings and healing ceremonies in residential treatment centers, outpatient treatment programs, educational and counseling programs for mental health and substance abuse issues. He is a Traditional Counselor certified with the Dine’ Hat-aali Association of Window Rock, Arizona, and a certified Peacemaker with the Navajo Nation. Harrison co-founded the renowned traditional program Hinaa’h Bits’os (Eagle Plume Society) of the Na’nizhoozhi Center incorporated in Gallup, New Mexico. Recognized as a Native Scholar by the University of New Mexico in 2000, he also developed a traditionally-based healing program for adolescents at the Fort Defiance Indian Hospital’s Adolescent Care Unit.
Gino Antonio, one of Harrison’s apprentices, is an innovative cultural leader in his own right. Gino and his wife Molly founded Pollen Tracks/Pollen Circles, a native-based organization that weaves culture, adventure, service and environmental stewardship into an indigenous holistic learning experience drawing on the Navajo philosophy of wellness, which addresses the emotional, mental, physical and spiritual aspects of the individual.
“It was truly a blessing to meet Gino and Harrison,” Linda says. “Gino contacted me in 2009 after reading The Tao of Equus, and offered to come to Epona to bless the horses and the Epona work. I was quite astonished, honored, and a little bit nervous to meet them, as you might imagine. Their enthusiasm, kindness, and dignity were inspiring. Over dinner that first night, they shared from the heart stories of their personal hardships and triumphs. But what was really astonishing was how oddly at home I felt as they moved seamlessly back and forth between the world of practical reality and the mythic ancestral otherworld. For the Dine’ it seems, there’s no separation between the two. I’m looking forward to the workshop we will create together this July.”
The workshop staff will also feature Epona Approved Instructor Kathleen McGarry, a recent graduate who has made significant inroads in taking this work to a variety of Native American tribes, gaining introductions and support from Navajo, Apache and Hopi leaders, the White Bison Wellbriety organization, and members of the 13 Indigenous Grandmothers.
This workshop is limited to ten participants who’ve attended at least one of the following advanced Epona workshops (Black Horse Wisdom, Rasa Dance, EASE, or the Epona Apprenticeship Program). This special offering is already starting to fill by word-of-mouth. (It will not be formally listed on the website.) To register, contact Sue Smades at 520-455-5908 or firstname.lastname@example.org.