Feri Camp

Returning from the first ever inter-lineage Feri Camp I was struck by how far we have come as a community. It had often been said that it seemed an impossible task to get two Feri initiates in a room together at the same time, a trend that began to change back in ’99 with the production of Witch Eye. After that there were a couple of “All Feri” Samhain gatherings, which consisted of initiates and their students. But old habits die hard; almost as soon as the trend toward community began, it receded again and such gatherings were but a memory.

I had talked to a few people about trying to set something up, but it never really materialized, in part because everyone is busy… in part because the time wasn’t right… and a large part because I am lazy and a terrible organizer. 😉

Luckily someone put the idea into Thorn‘s head, and she decided to organize an event and make it a place where different lines could share different perspectives, a value that I have long supported and worked toward with my own efforts in producing Witch Eye. We spent four days at Diana’s Grove in Missouri, an amazing and beautiful place in which we shared stories, food, ritual, and magick. It was truly an historic event. Thorn, Anaar, Michele Jackson, and myself shared our Feri magick with a diverse group of really amazing people, most of which were Feri students, but there were even some who had no formal face-to-face Feri training at all. This last part was especially important as it reflects a new trend in Feri. By making some Feri tools available to a wider audience, it is our belief that we are helping to make the world a better place. When more people align their Three Souls and mediate their own Divinity, then nothing less than evolution is at hand. Admittedly there is some resistance to this idea within the Feri community, but there is also a lot of support.

I had an opportunity to meet many amazing people, both initiates and students alike. I was struck by how respectful everyone was, and how dedicated they were to the Work. It was also a great opportunity to get to know my fellow teachers a bit better (OK… a LOT better… we shared a really small cabin after all… we probably know more about each other now than we had expected.) 😉

I was really happy to be able to work closely with Anaar as we taught a course together based on a Feri view of Sex. For three days we shared ritual and energy and I think that we were both pleasantly surprised at just how well we worked together. It’s funny… we’ve been friends for a few years now, and we have intense and satisfying conversations about Feri, life, art, and everything in between. I’ve been over at her house, and she’s been to mine… but we had never actually worked together. With that hurdle now joyously behind us I am hopeful that we will be able to do more of it in the future.

I was really excited to be able to be a part of rituals led by the other teachers, as well, taking note of what seemed different from my own practice, and what seemed the same. It was a constant reminder that Feri is about the energy, and not necessarily about the form. Feri is too wild and changeable to stick to one form for too long. Michele led a simple, beautiful (and amazingly powerful) ritual to honor the ancestors and also taught using artistic process. Anaar led a rite around a mandala created by her and her students, focused on expressing the desire of our own Divinity. Thorn taught devotional dance. I taught some core-Feri exercises. It was a Feri smörgåsbord. I think that there was something there for everyone, regardless of level of experience.

We invoked. We meditated. We drummed.  We danced. We sang. (On one occasion Thorn and some others started singing old Prince songs… let me tell you … you haven’t lived until you’ve heard Thorn sing “When Doves Cry” to the beat of a tribal drum around the bonfire. Or “Little Red Corvette”. Or “Darling Nikki”.) I figured it was time for me to leave when it later descended into show tunes and then finally “Jeremiah was a Bullfrog”. Peace out! (I love you, Thorn!) 😉

It went so well that I’m fairly certain that we will do it again next year. (So stay tuned!)

In the end I made some amazing connections and I learned a lot. I was reminded how much I enjoy teaching larger groups and so am now thinking about how to start doing that again. I’m even thinking that some level of travel might be good for me… getting me out of the house for a few days every now and again. I put the intention out there and let’s see what the Goddess has to say about it.

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36 responses to “Feri Camp

    • Actually, I think there may only have been one doowop girl, and one doowop boy (me). Or maybe I was too busy singing to notice. It was *really* impressive when the drummers started playing a 5-count beat, and Thorn only paused for a moment before shifting into “Everything’s All Right” from Jesus Christ Superstar. I couldn’t even *think* of a song in 5/4 time. Hopefully, this will become a FeriCamp tradition. (Hopefully, *FeriCamp* will become a tradition….) Thanks to Storm, Thorn, anaar, and Michelle (and Karina, who was there as an attendee) for sharing your experience and wisdom on this path!

      • Well damn–hopefully I will be there next year. I wouldn’t be much help with Prince, but if it has a two-CD soundtrack available, I’m golden.

  1. Storm,
    It was a pleasure and an honor to work with you, Anaar and Thorn. It was a pleasure and honor to work with those who attended as well. I too hope to be able to do this again. I wish Victor and Cora could meet them. I believe they would approve.
    Michele

    • Michele,
      The pleasure was all mine. You are an amazing preistess and witch! I hope to have an opportunity to work with you again in the near future. 🙂

  2. good on the whole buncha yous! i think it’s way past time to bring feri into the century of the fruitbat, or whatever this is we’re in.
    i see a future in which there will be a secret feri path for those who choose it, and open-source feri for those who choose it. and it’s absolutely nobody else’s damn business which path you or i or joe and mary newbie are called to, because the gods seek out the ones they will in the ways they will.
    love on ya!

  3. Storm,
    Your shining eyes still linger in my mind’s eye. I enjoyed meeting you so much that words will not suffice.
    It was almost my wet dream dancing and singing Prince with Thorn and all.
    It is painful to be back at work today. I’m so aware of mySelf and all that is around me. Life is fine, mighty fine.
    I really appreciate all of the new tools I am gathering in to my heart self.
    On the way home, I found a celtic skull at a (GASP) truck stop to place on my ancestor altar. I even began writing a couple of articles for Witcheye and some poetry. It was a loooong 16 hours home. But it was worth it.
    I saw OUR future this weekend.
    I’m eager to begin and the charge Nimue is sill with me.
    With Fierce Honor,
    Swansister

    • It was a pleasure to finally meet you and now be able to put a face to the online name! 🙂 Thank you for the thoughtfulness and caring that you brought into our shared space, and for your willingness to be open and share your heart.
      And congrats on finding the Celtic skull! That sounds awesome! I actually have a Celtic skull that is pewter-colored and it resides on my Grandmaster altar… It was a gift and I consecrated it the night that Victor died.

  4. lol. I love the idea of secret path and open source!
    I wanted to attend this gathering but the omens were against it. I long for the deeper, hidden parts of Feri. Will there be space for that next time if newbies are around?

      • Yes…and. I hear the charge, “for if that which you seek, you find not within yourself, you will never find it without.” And I ask if there is no ‘secret part or path’ of Feri, what are initiates referring to when they allude to this? Is it only to hold that Mystery that we ARE God?

      • Secrets in Feri…
        Some initiates believe that every aspect of the Feri tradition is a secret. Others feel differently. On an individual basis, both are correct. If the Goddess tells someone to be secretive about their practices, then they are correct in doing that. If She tells someone to be open about it, then that is exactly what they need to be doing. It is really nobody else’s business. I do not feel that I have the right to insist that others be more open about their Feri work just because the Goddess has commanded me to be that way… also I find it silly (and a bit sad, actually) that some would insist that I be more secretive just to make them feel better about their own boundaries. The Goddess commands us all differently. That’s what makes Feri powerful.
        According to Cora, there are only a few small things that are secret in Feri. And those things are only revealed after one is initiated. I find myself in resonance with this particular point of view.
        When the initiates refer to secrets in Feri, it is not the Mystery that ‘Thou art God/dess’… At least I hope not. That particular Mystery needs to be revealed over and over and over again. On a daily basis. We need to shout that one from the mountaintops. We need to make music and art to help us all remember that particular piece of Mysterious lore.
        The Secret is not part of Feri practice either. At least not in any fashion that would be significant for anyone who had not experienced the Feri initiation. The important part of Feri is the Work.
        In short the Feri secrets are unimportant to those who have not undergone the initiatory experience so they don’t even bear mentioning.

      • To explain my ‘yes’. I also long for those ‘deeper, hidden’ parts within myself to open up, for the path that has been obscured to become plain.

      • The Guardians are particularly useful in this… at least in how I was taught and practice. Invoke them and they will come. Ask them to show you. And then ask questions of your teachers and peers… there are many sources available to you that didn’t exist a few years ago. If one initiate wont answer a question, ask another! There are many choices available now.
        I am a big supporter of Pro-Choice Feri. 😉

      • clarifying question
        What do you mean by the :sigh:? When I read that I felt a little silly and stupid. 😦
        …and had a moment of not wanting you to think badly of me.

      • Re: clarifying question
        The sigh wasn’t so much directed at you. Sorry about that. I just hear “but what about more lore?” or “what about the deeper stuff” in some form or another from people interested in Feri with enough frequency that I feel like these questions are missing the point. For one thing, who’s lore and who’s deeper stuff?
        Anaar and I (and now Storm and Michele) have been talking a lot lately about how Feri current is passed through the *practices*. The mysteries, the “deeper”, stuff really is inside of us and the practices bring that out – and bring out our ability to handle the deeper stuff.

      • Re: clarifying question
        Thank you for that. So, is the ‘road to Feri’ different for each person, since those mysteries are unique? I say yes, but want to ask anyway. :sheepish grin: I also have questions about what propels me to strive for something else out there, something that I don’t have yet, or feel that I don’t have. There is definately something about this work that beckons me from ahead, or beyond. I just don’t have the language to know what it is I’m hearing, or looking for.

  5. Sounds like it was great. I’d call you but I am all sickl like and it hurts to talk. I had been thinking about trying to go at the last minute, but then we got acall from Emily’s mom saying that her dad said he wasn’t going to be around much longer so that trip took precedence. Fortunately (and yet unfortunately at the same time) it was a false alarm, he had just had the flu really bad. EVERYONE had had the flu really bad. Now *I* have teh flu really bad. Ahhh……stupid fate, I poke it in its fate eye with a sharp fate pencil.

  6. I am so happy that I was able to attend Feri camp with my CovenTree mates and Willie. Path with Anaar and Storm was fantastic. Thorn, my daughter jumped with joy when I presented her with her signed CD and will not stop playing it over and over. My ears are feeling a bit woozy. I loved Michelle ancestor and art class. Thank you, Feri friends and teachers!!! Diana’s Grove is wonderful. I am still trying to get a few pups to WV. My driven down the road buddies shocked me when they would NOT let me fill the car with puppies??? LOL

  7. Storm,
    It was great to meet you and the other teachers. As a participant I thought everything went well. It was great to see the differences in Feri practices. I really appreciated the willingness of the teachers to share their practice and experience.
    And there is nothing wrong with Prince or Jeremiah was a Bullfrog. I was just sorry that my personal library of showtunes was lacking. =)
    Jillian (one of those non-students)

    • It was great meeting you too. I’m glad that you found the camp to be useful. I also was happy to be able to experience some of those Feri differences in an atmosphere that actually celebrated the diversity within our shared tradition. It seemed like we glimpsed the future of Feri… and I liked it! 🙂

  8. I’m friending you if that’s OK. am really, really wishing I’d been able to come to feri camp. between winter witch camp, midwest camp, and Thorn’s training starting in June, I was already committed elsewhere…

  9. Yes, I’m back on LJ
    Camp was amazing. It struck me as being much like the JKD camp I go to in the Summer . . . the equivilent of 4 months of work crammed into 4 days. As you said (more or less) it *is* an intensive.
    Honestly I’m still processing over much of it . . . all of it good but still needing to let it sink in and settle down.
    Hopefully this *will* happen again next year, I’m certainly looking forward to the possability.

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