(Herbal, Floral, Vegetable and Meditative)
The Gardens Themselves
Gardening is another medium, like Yoga or The Dance, in which we cultivate
both inner and outer Sacred Space.
The way of the curve of the garden path, like the way of the curve of the dancer's neck,
imparts much to both the witness and gardener or the dancer.
So too, the line of the raked sand or the line of the pieces of grass in a raked walkway,
like the line of a hem or a neck line or a dash of color on an article of clothing,
imparts much to the witness as well as to the one who rakes or who wears the clothing.
Gardening, for many reasons, is both an inner and an outewr activity---
both a personal and a social, tribal or environmental activity.
We are not an estate. Our history
is as a working organic market garden.
Our gardens reflect this.
They can be, albeit warm feeling, rather scruffy.
As well as open fields in which we will grow much of our commercial crops,
there are the landscaped gardens.
These are comprised of a number of thematic gardens.
There is the
which plays with light and dark as well as with reflections.
The Medicine Wheel Garden,
a grass circle about eighty feet in diameter with a fire pit in the center and doors to the four directions. During the dedication ceremony to this garden, in which I was alone at midnight, five black bear showed up. These were the first bear seen on our farm in thirty years.
There is the
The Caudeuses or Thematic Herb Garden,
This garden has aboutforty bedsseparated by intertwining paths
that mirror the cadeuces, the medical symbol, the symbol of the staff carried by the Crone's of the Neolithic Temples.
It signifies to some the two serpents of the kundalini entwining up the spine.
It is also known as Hermes Staff.. Each bed is somewhat thematic following the spine and the body.
Near the top of the Herb Garden
are is the
Vision Quest Bed.
The herbs in this bed were traditionally sacred to one culture or another.
This bed contains Yarrow (of the divinatory Chinese IChing). Woad (sacred to the celts the druids and the neolithic Shiela Na Gig), The Sactred Sage - Artemesia species -(of the Native American plains tribes), Datura (of the Mexican Brujo), and true Wormwood (sacred to both the Hebrews and the Palestinians when they were one people, before the two sons of Abraham), as well as other herbs.
Further down there is, for instance,
Female Tonic Bed
which, of course, has raspberry, feverfew, ladies mantle and the like.
The Triple Goddess Garden
(a set of three circles thematically Maiden, Mother and Crone.)
The Moon Garden is a sunken sand garden about 60 feet in diameter. Much of our dancing occurs here.
Though wonderful for moonlight dancing, this sunken sand garden is a challange to grow anything in except perhaps chamomile or ambrosia and the such.
There is also the large, traditional
planted each May during our annual Planting Party of corn and sunflowers.
This is a half mile walk in and out. It is, of course, most wondeful during August when the sunflowers and corns are rich and full and towering high above the heads of thoise who walk the labyrinth.
Then there is also the
a smaller traditional christian mystic, celtic or creten labyrinth which, for its smaller size, makes it more accesable for daily meditations.
Unfortunately, I have not yet
scanned pictures of these gardens.
Now that Winter is upon us, though, perhaps I will find the time to do this.
Yoga, Sacred Dance, Music, Herbalism,
Herbalism, Wholistic Diet and Healing,
Wildcrafting, Gardening and Creating Sacred Space
are all a part of the day in which we create our Lifestyle Integration.
Participants may come for a day,
a weekend, a week, a month or two
or for the full cycle (May 1st through October 1st)
More info on The Summer Program.
For more information on Touchstone and Her activities
Go to the Touchstone Farm & Yoga Center Main Page