Activities for all the Family
Who are the Dance Leaders this year?
DANCES OF UNIVERSAL PEACE
These deceptively simple dances, sometimes called body prayers or moving meditations, which can be joyful and yet profoundly life-changing, are inspired by the wisdom and sacred phrases of a number of spiritual traditions. More about the Dances of Universal Peace...
Circle Dancing, with live music, happens every evening. The Circle Dance Band welcomes all musicians. Dance, Play, Sing, or just watch and enjoy the atmosphere and the sunset.
Explore your cycle of energy through this type of freeform dance and personal growth practice.
Alan is offering 4 workshops to prepare the musicians for a live wave.
These are wonderful 'playshops' that allow musicians to share their improvisation and experience. Although the aim is to be ready for the 'live session', each session is unique in itself. We will have a core of experienced musicians, who can inspire less experienced, aspiring musicians in the process of playing for the Wave, acycle of the 5 rhythms Flowing, Staccato, Chaos, Lyrical and Stillness.
The live Wave
This year will be a continuation of this dance of 'qualities of movement'. We will start this Alchemical process, by creating a safe space to work, expressing our fire, releasing what needs to go, and from the empty, growing anew, to maturity; only to then find the still place, in balance.
These workshops are open to all, but please bear in mind that a large number of people moving to a brisk rhythm can be dangerous, it becomes a collective effort to keep a space safe, and to keep participants aware that the practice is all about being totally focussed on the 'here and now'. We have been good at doing this in previous years and we know it's been a great session when we feel a deep sense of calm at the end.
'ECSTASY WITHOUT DRUGS'.
We have a long history of using dance to effect altered states for the benefit of all beings and so, naturally, would adapt to incorporate ecstatic dance into our programme. Sacred Arts has only 'real musicians' so our dance band is open to all natural improvisation musicians and is called "We are DJ". We will also have a Cacao ceremony. Musicians, voices and Dancers are very welcome"
Who are the Voice Teachers this year?
Enjoy the friendship and the sense of community.
Sacred Arts Camp Voice sessions are groups in which everyone feels relaxed and welcome. We learn songs by ear and sing in a circle, both of which encourage people to be fully engaged, listening and singing with each other, away from printed music.
We’ll sing a variety of songs from many traditions, including those which celebrate the changing seasons, our relationships with each other, with nature and the earth that gives us life.
If you are a closet crooner or a complete beginner, we’ll provide a safe space to help you to find your voice and enjoy the thrill of singing with others, creating glorious harmonies and fascinating rhythms.
When you sing, your brain releases feel-good chemicals including endorphins which makes singing an effective mood lifter.
Research shows that one effect of singing together is that singers' heart rates become synchronized, falling into a shared rhythm guided by the song's tempo. Singing with a group develops a sense of community and belonging.
The word Bhajan refers to devotional song with a spiritual theme among Indian religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism.
It is a Sanskrit word derived from the root bhaj, which means "share, participate, belong to" and also indicates "devotion, homage, faith or love".
We sing mantras from these traditions as a devotional practice, also known as Kirtan, to uplift the mind, open the heart and bring inner peace.
Krishna Das the well-known Kirtan singer expresses it well: “People say, ‘I’m singing to the Hindu deities,’ but what does that mean? What is a deity? It's like an older, deeper, bigger being. It's a space, a presence, a feeling. These names are the names of that place inside of us that is love, pure being, pure awareness, pure joy and our true nature.”
Everyone is welcome and no prior experience is needed. There is no need to be concerned about the quality of your singing voice. We are not performing but engaging in a heart-centred spiritual practice in which we help each other, through group attunement, to enter a devotional space where the songs sing through us. Bring a cushion or meditation stool to sit on and a water bottle.
Meditative harmonies sung in many different languages creating a sacred atmosphere.
Many creative activities will be on offer throughout the week. These may include Tie-dye, Woodwork, Drama, Felt Pictures, Collage, Upcycling, Clay Work and other craft workshops. Some activities may be age specific but most are suitable for all.
Make your own poi and learn how to use them. Hoop Dance and performance for all ages and abilities is popular.
This often takes place on the Village Green and sometimes, if we are lucky, we have musical accompaniment!
7pm is Story Time! Our team of Story Tellers will excite young and old with tales of the Unexpected! There are also Late Night Story sessions for those brave enough to attend!
We have a dedicated Table Tennis tent and offer coaching as well as a tournament through-out the week. In the afternoon there are Sports and Games on the Village Green - Volleyball, Dodgeball, Capture the Flag, Frisbee, Football and much more!
Who are the Spiriual Practice Teachers this year?
Sacred Arts Camp aims to bring together people from all over the world to discover our unity within diversity. We celebrate this diversity through various spiritual practices including: Sufi Practice, Yoga, Qi Gong and Mindfulness.
Qi means Energy, Gong means work.
Each morning I will lead a session of gentle stretching and breathing exercises with sound and concentration, seeking to wake up the body, and anchor the mind.
Nature provides for our body and it’s corresponding energy, but our ‘surface mind’ is easily distracted by our external senses. Where the mind goes, our energy follows and our system can become out of balance.
Qigong offers the opportunity to go deeper via the body, to reverse the process of dissipation in to the outer world by listening to our inner senses; movement sensations in the joints, muscle sensations, pain sensors, pressure and temperature sensations.
Through this process we re-establish connection to a deeper part of ourselves our ‘heart mind’, to our true nature.
The session will be outside if dry, so bring warm clothes and shoes. It’s suitable for everyone.
Morning yoga flow with Ty
A flowing morning practice,including a nourishing self-massage to wake up our camp body, warm up stretches, a few rounds of sun salutations, classic asana and finishing with savasana - relaxation and stillness.
All welcome to do as much or as little as feels right for you.
Do bring a few layers to peel on or off and maybe a cozy blanket / cushion for final relaxation. Bring your yoga mat if you have one, alternatively a sheepskin/ blanket or you can practice directly on the lovely carpets in the tent.
Offering us all the opportunity to lie our bones on the earth and drop into deep healing rest - otherwise known as Yoga Nidra. Every day we come together, flop on the ground and reboot our systems to song, music, silence and gentle guidance into the mystery of loveliness.
Sufi Practice Session
These are led morning meditation practices, including breathing practices, for example with the “Element Breaths”; connecting us to the beauty of the Earth, the flow of Water, warmth of Fire and the spirit of Air.
There will also be some slow meditative Zikr and Wazifa practices using the attunements based on the Ninety-Nine beautiful names of the Beloved.
Other teachers will be invited to lead some or part of these sessions.
Everyone is warmly welcome to join us. No previous experience required. We will together create sacred space….. held in silence.
Please bring something comfortable to sit on, cushions, back rests a warm shawl or blanket or a meditation stool etc.
“Come, come the Beloved has arrived! The rose garden is blooming, run and offer your life and the world to the rising Sun”. Rumi
Held early morning, these sessions will introduce the 'preliminary practices' of formless Mahamudra and will be include other teachings from that tradition as well as secular mindfulness.
Note: This becomes a closed group after 2-3 days as the process deepens.
Please bring something comfortable to sit on - cushion(s), back rests, meditation stool etc. and suitable clothing/blankets to suit the temperature.
Opportunities for musicians are many. Whatever your skill, you will be welcome to join in. There are practice sessions for musicians each day, for both the Dances of Universal Peace and Circle Dance. Other spontaneous opportunities arise through the week and you can share something at the Cabaret Finale. Drumming has a regular slot each evening, bring a drum or we can provide you with one.
Most days we have a Morning Gathering, an opportunity to share information and ideas and to come together as a community.
In addition to the programme we offer space for celebration and ritual.
There are Women's and Men's Spaces, sharing groups and opportunities for spontaneous gatherings.
"If you love to dance and sing this is the place to be. The Dances of Universal Peace,
circle dancing and singing workshops are held and lead by experienced leaders.
The musicians and music are wonderful and enhance the whole experience.
It is such a joy to be part of this camp." - Jan