INFORMATION, PREPARATION & GUIDELINES FOR DANCERS
Any woman over the age of 16 and in a stable mental and emotional state that allows her to participate in this prayer is welcome. Do you want to be a dancer at the ceremony? Please take a close look at the Preparation, Guidelines and Registration sections on this Website.
It is very important for us to keep mentioning that this is a very profound and transformative prayer, ritual and ceremony. This is not a festival, rainbow gathering or recreational entertainment. Everyone is welcome and it is important to us that you are aware of the depth of this prayer. So please read all the information well. THANK YOU!
General Information Overview
The Moondance as a prayer is a path. We make a binding promise to walk this path for (at least) four years in order to go through the circle of the four directions.
During the dance the women fast. We work with the feminine essence, the lunar power and with the nurturing and soft energies of the Goddess, which is not intrusive. During the ceremony we always get a few drops of honey and you are also allowed to bring your own honey jar to regulate and support your sugar balance during the day.
At sunset and sunrise we have sweat lodges. In between we dance the whole night in a ceremonial circle, in traditional formations to the mother drum and the prayer chants. We rest in our tents during the day.
We wear ceremonial clothing which you prepare in advance. Another preparation is the prayer bundles that you take with you to the ceremony. You can find instructions on how to do this below.
PLEASE READ THIS WHOLE PAGE CAREFULLY, THANK YOU & WELCOME!
This year, the four Moondance ceremony days are from 9th to 13th Aug 2022.
ARRIVAL DANCERS*: Monday 8. from 9am to Tuesday 9. August2 p.m. at the latest! (It is recommended to arrive the day before so that your body and system can settle in and you have enough energy and strength to dance the first night.)
OPENING CEREMONY: Tuesday 9thAugust at 18:00pm.
CLOSING EVENT: Saturday 13th August at 10am
DEPARTURE: Saturday 13thAugust no later than 18:00 p.m
*If you want to arrive before August 8th, you can do so as a DANCER/HELPER. We are in full construction & preparation and everyone who is already on the land is helping out. So if you want to help and arrive before the 8thAugust, please mention your arrival date in the registration form. The Cost per day is 20 euros (for the 3 meals a day) and must be transferred in advance together with your Payment for the dance. You can ONLY arrive for the coordination, organization and smooth preparation IF YOU have REGISTERED BEFORE AUGUST 8TH . Thank you for your understanding and collaboration.
CARRIERS OF AN ELEMENT
From the second year of dance you can carry an element (air, fire, water or earth), work with it, learn from it and serve the dance with it. If you feel called to carry an Element, please send an email with the subject "ELEMENT" to: email@example.com
The clothing consists of three parts, a skirt, a long blouse and a poncho, all of which should be made of white fabric, preferably cotton or some other natural material.
The clothing bears the symbol of the "Moondance Atlachinolli Meztli" on the front of the poncho, which is given to you when you arrive at the reception.
The skirt, the blouse and the poncho each have a blue and a red stripe along the lower end of the garment (see pictures). These are sewn on by you yourself as a dancer in advance. The red band represents fire and the blue band represents water. Together they meet and rise as a healing vapor, like the name 'Atlachinolli Meztli'! It doesn't matter which color comes first, but having both ribbons is important! They can be sewn on straight or in a serpentine motion or patterns, by hand or machine as you prefer. The width is also up to you. It is important that the dancers have these ribbons sewn onto their white ceremonial attire before arriving on land!
The Clothing should be admired by the dancer, be comfortable and respectful. It is a ritual setting, so no short skirts or tight tops please. Also, when it's cold, you may want to wear warm clothes UNDER these pieces, so it's good if they're loose enough.
- a headband that will be given to you at the beginning of the dance
- a crown of sage and flowers
A cloth (belt) may be worn around the waist, coyoles (ankle rattles) for the feet, rattles, owl feathers or night bird feathers are welcome.
Keep in mind that in the Austrian summer it can get cold at night. Please prepare yourself accordingly and take enough warm white things with you, e.g. white scarf, hat, gloves, pullover, thermal underwear, legwarmers etc. Other items of equipment are mentioned in the list of TO BRING WITH YOU.
"In a circle we are all equal. When you are in a circle, there is no one in front of you. Nobody is behind you. no one is above you no one is below you The sacred circle is there to create unity."
Dave Chief Oglala Lakota
The dancers empower and assert themselves through their prayers, which consist of small squares of fabric (natural materials!) filled with tobacco, herbs and/or healing elements for the woman.
The prayers should be prepared by the dancers before the dance, with their personal intentions. It is recommended to visualize a review or summary of our history, emotions and experiences. All of this should then metaphorically go into the little bags.
13 prayers are spoken for each color or direction, so a total of 52 prayers! Optionally, 13 additional prayers of the color green can be made, which stand for our mother earth.
It is very important to choose a quiet moment of introspection to do the prayers. The special moment can also be enhanced by lighting copal, incense sticks and/or a candle to create a sacred space.
What you need:
• about ten feet of wool or twine
• Yellow, white, red, blue and green fabric
How to make your prayers:
Take some tobacco or herbs, hold them to heaven/earth/to your heart and say your prayer into it. Allow as much space and time as needed for each prayer/blessing.
Then put the tobacco into the fabric square and fold the fabric to make a small packet (as shown in the pictures). Knot the string around it. Make sure the packet is folded so that no tobacco can fall out. The string must be enough for all 52/65 prayers, i.e. form a long prayer string and should not be cut during the prayer making! If you run out of string anyway, simply tie another string to it with a knot.
You can then tie your finished prayers around a branch/stick. So you can transport them better. At the ceremony, all of our prayers will be hung around the ceremony site. They hold, protect and energize our circle. IMPORTANT: Please don't wrap your string with the prayers too complicated around the stick, because you have to unwrap it again!
Each color stands for a different direction and therefore a different quality.
Start with yellow (east), then white (north), then red (west), then blue (south). Optionally another 13 in green for the earth. Complete a color/direction/prayer blessing (all 13 prayers of a color) before moving on to the next color/direction prayer blessing. You can take a break whenever you need it.
Yellow/ the East - TLAHUIZTLAMPA : QUETZALCOATL lives here, symbolizing intelligence, knowledge and wisdom. It is the place of light, brightness and confidence to step forward with determination when darkness falls upon us. He radiates security and friendliness. The place of the rising sun, the new beginning, the new birth, the seed, the dawn, the light to come.
White / the North - MICTLAMPA: TEZCATLIPOCA "the smoking mirror" lives here Mictlancihuatl and Mictlantecuhtli, the lords of the dead. It is the site of the genetic memory of our ancestors. A place where our ancestors rest in silence. It is also the place where we can ask for physical, mental, emotional and spiritual healing. It conveys a sense of deep reflection and a spirit of constant renewal. Place of our ancestors, prayer, chanupa (sacred pipe) and white buffalo calf woman.
Red/ the west - CIHUATLAMPA: XIPETOTEC lives here, the Lord of life, death and resurrection. The direction of magnificence when the sun goes down it's a blessing for the next day. She stands for renewal. It is also the place of the warrior and earth women and the cihuateteo ("Divine Women"), where the spirits of women who died in childbirth live. This is where the energy that is needed at birth or in battle/war resides. Transmission of the qualities of sensitivity, intuition and the ability to command and manage. The place of the setting sun, of letting go, of death, of the warrior.
Blue/ the south - HUITZTLAMPA: blue or black color where HUITZILOPOCHTLI lives, the hummingbird on the left symbolizes will, joy, children and family. It is also said to be the place of thorns, the place of medicine. Place of wisdom that comes from discipline. Confers the quality of knowledge to recognize the transcendent and valuable. The place of relationships, of kinship, of family, of children, of the inner child, of playfulness.
Green/ Pachamama: TONANZINTLALLI Mother Earth - TOTATZINTLALLI Father Earth: Healing, Thanks, Blessings, Prayers for this great planet, for Mother/Father Earth, coming from your heart. Each dancer dances for her tribe and her people.
There is nothing more powerful than a humble person, with a warrior spirit, who is motivated by a greater purpose.
PREPARE FOR FASTING
In order to make the 4-day fasting as easy as possible for your body and especially your mind, it is pleasant if you have already changed your diet before the ceremony begins.
Refined sugar, caffeine, nicotine, wheat and alcohol should be avoided one to three days before the start of the ceremony in order not to be additionally burdened with withdrawal waves during the dance. Raw food the day before and on the day of the ceremony itself provides a comfortable transition.
Fasting days can also be scheduled weeks before the dance to slowly get to know this state and to have a familiar experience available. It is relatively important to arrive at the ceremony well rested and centered. Two days before and two days after the ceremony should be enough time to adjust to the process.
And of course, drinking plenty of water before the ceremony helps!
• Towels/cloth to wipe you off after the sweatlodge (dirt and sweat) - no showering during the ceremony!
• Sweat lodge clothing (T-shirt, dress, towel/lungi) recommended, min. 2 pairs!
• Flip flops/shoes to go from tent to sweatlodge with if you need them
• Camping gear
• Tarp (protection against rain or sun)
• Rain gear, rain boots, waterproof poncho (white or transparent, large plastic bag)
• Needle and thread to sew the symbol onto the poncho
• Body paints and a mirror
• Electrolyte drink: lemons, salt and honey
• Rubbish bag for your personal rubbish
• Tissue/toilet paper for your use in the tent
• optional: thermos bottle
There will be enough water on land. There are Taps and streams all around. If you come by car and it is possible, please still bring a 5 liter bottle of water with you to wash your hands and face with at your tent. We don't shower during the four days! So the water you bring or collect (bring a drinking bottle) is there for basic hygiene.
The Moondance as a prayer is a path. We make a binding promise to walk this path for (at least) four years in order to go through the circle of the four cardinal points.
Every year of dance is precious and we see our bodies change as a result while our hearts blossom.
If you are unable to attend for a year (illness, birth, etc.), this can be brought up in communication with the council.
Our first promise is for four years. After these these four years in the same circle, one is given a stick that symbolizes the path of the four creative energies (earth, water, air and fire).
After this it can be decided whether to remain in the same circle of dance to further complete a total of seven years of dance and thus begin a new cycle with new symbols representing the promise of a mature woman, leader of herself, her emotions and the temazcal (sweat lodge.
If it is your willingness and heart's desire to continue to the nine years, the vow is accomplished and one can be empowered to open a new lunar cycle. To do this, you have to complete the nine years in Danza on the one hand and get the approval of the council on the other.
DURING THE DANCE
During the dance the women fast. We work with the feminine essence, the lunar power and with the nurturing and soft energies of the Goddess, which is not intrusive. That's why we don't enforce 200% fasting. During the ceremony we always get a few drops of honey and you are also allowed to bring your own honey jar to regulate and support your sugar balance during the day. Please don't worry, this is more than enough to keep you strong. We drink enough water during the day and we can make our own electrolyte drinks from salt, water, honey and lemon. That helps us to get through the four days with the many sweatlodges. The sweatlodges themselves are a wonderful field of regeneration, although the Food might even seem strange after four days of strengthening your mind, body and spirit.
In the case of pregnant or breastfeeding women, it is allowed to eat and drink well according to their condition. Pregnant and breastfeeding women can also eat cooked food in the children's and helpers' camp.
In the event of a pregnancy that is less than three months old, participation is only permitted at your own risk (as everything is still very sensitive at this point in the pregnancy and the baby needs a lot of rest and stability to grow and thrive).
If underage women (under the age of 16) want to take part in the dance, a special agreement with the parents is required in order to be able to determine the conditions for this. Please contact us!
Each participant is responsible for her own health and is asked to communicate any special condition to the Council (medication, emotional or mental states, pregnancy or miscarriage, general illnesses or chronic illnesses and any other special cases).
Inside and outside the circle, women are encouraged to care for, support and respect one another in order to maintain unity, balance and harmony while also responsibly respecting each individual's privacy and freedom, as well as safety and integrity of all persons who are around and in the dance.
It is obligatory for all Moondancers who join the circle to attend all Sweatlodges before and after the nightly ceremonies until the ceremony is over four days later. If this promise is intentionally broken and there is an absence in one of the sweatlodges, the council is predestined to decide to stop this behavior since the promise applies from the first to the eighth sweatlodge and in the healing field of the ceremony the purification process should not be interrrupted.
For discipline and Safety Reasons, the dancers are required to remain in the circle at night during the resting breaks. Permission to leave can only be requested in urgent cases, with the intention of returning as soon as possible. Toilet visits are planned by the leaders during breaks in the ceremony and not at personal will during the course of the ceremony.
The clothing consists of three parts, a skirt, a long blouse and a poncho, all made of white fabric (preferably cotton or some other natural material).
The clothing bears the symbols of the "Moondance Atlachinolli Meztli" on the front of the cloak. You will then be given the patch directly on site.
Both the skirt and the wrap (poncho) have stripes in blue and red along the lower end of the garment (see pictures), which are sewn on by the dancers in advance. These symbolize the elements of water and fire. Red and blue ribbons of variable thickness are accepted.
Clothing should please the dancer, be comfortable and respectful. It is a ritual setting, so no short skirts or tight tops please. May the holiness be preserved and remain focused.
Pieces of jewelry or accessories are optional:
• You will receive a headband, which will be given at the beginning of the ceremony, and a crown of sage and flowers (also available locally). In addition, a hat or headscarf is required to protect against the cold.
• A cloth (belt) can be worn around the waist and rattles or anklets around the feet. Owl feathers or feathers from other nocturnal birds are allowed.
• Bring a rattle!
- The pipe, also known as “Chanupa” in our circle, is one of the elements of our ceremony and the oldest prayer of our work. Already our ancestors have used the Pipe/CHanupa as a medium between us, the physical world and the Great Spirit. The Pipe allows us to raise our prayers and take them to the great Creator of the Universe. We consider the spirit of natural tobacco as a means to offer our prayers.
- When entering the circle of the "Moondance Atlachinolli Meztli" in the first year, each participant is given her Chanupa./Pipe. This sacred object of prayer is considered a loan until the dancer has completed her four year promise to participate in the Moondance.
- Only after the four years does the pipe become the dancer's property - with the promise to protect, respect, pray and use it adequately, thus feeling the connection to the circle of the moondance wherever the dancer is.
- Not all women may choose to keep or receive the pipe. In this particular case, she must be returned to the guardian grandmother/Moondance Council during the four-day ceremony.
- If, for whatever reason, a dancer cannot or does not want to keep the scheduled time of the dance (4years dancing or 4days dancing), she promises to return the pipe to the Grandmothers' Council. A few words directly to you, if this applies to you: Dear Sister, if for any reason you decide not to continue the Moondance path in our Atlachinolli Meztli Circle, or if you do not feel that you are praying your Sacred Pipe Chanupa, we ask you with much love and respect, to return the pipe. As we said the day we gave you the pipe, it is not yours until you have completed your fourth year in our Moondance Circle. In accordance with this commitment we have made, please send us your pipe well packaged and protected to this address: Loreto Maldonado, Feldgasse 34, 3422 Hadersfeld, Austria.
- The pipe must always be in good condition and all parts should be clean in order to be able to use it. The dancer should always carry tobacco, matches and a bag for the pipe.
- The Moondancer basically does her work at night, so it must be noted that the pipe is only smoked at night or in special cases in closed rooms.
- The tobacco in the pipe represents the dancer's prayer and should be smoked until empty.
- The pipe should be filled with tobacco before entering the circle and must not be refilled within the ceremonial circle.
THE SWEATLODGE - TEMAZCALLI
⁃ The Moondance is a group ceremony that seeks profound prayer and introspection for the dancer's growth as a woman. Part of our prayer is the work with the medicine of the temazcal (sweatlodge). There will be eight sweatlodges in total throughout the ceremony; at sunset before the dance night and at sunrise after the dance night.
⁃ In the prayer of the ceremony we also heal and cleanse our body, so all sweatlodges should be attended during the four days of the ceremony.
⁃ To avoid judgment and prejudice, respect is asked for the dress and behavior of the dancers throughout the ceremony.
⁃ Longer dresses or blouses and long skirts and shawls are requested in order to preserve the woman's body for herself and thus to deepen and align the process. Public nudity is therefore not welcome in this context.
⁃ All participants must be present at the lighting of the Sacred Fire for the first sweatlodge and the Opening Ceremony. It is not possible to enter the ceremony at a later stage. It is not possible to only be there from the second sweatlodge onwards. If there is a justifiable reason for missing a sweatlodge, the grandmothers will take care of it after the first night.
⁃ If the dancer does not enter the sweatlodge and dance circle for any reason, or has to leave before the ceremony is complete, the dance will be canceled and may be repeated the following year.
SISTERS FROM OTHER MOONDANCE CIRCLES
Sisters who also dance in another Moondance circle can dance at the Atlachinolli Meztli Moondance for one year without being bound. Your four-year bond remains with your previous mother circle.
You will be wearing the patches/symbols from the Austrian Moondance Atlachinolli Meztli, which you will receive on arrival at the venue. Your skirt and poncho should then also have the red and blue ribbon on the edge for the Moondance Atlachinolli Meztli.
Please bring your own Moondance Chanupa given to you at your previous circle! You will not get a second Chanupa! Please also point out in the registration letter that you have already received a Chanupa from another Moondance circle.
About the Pipe from other Circles
To all the sisters who want to join our Atlachinolli Meztli circle and are already wearing a Chanupa from another Moondance circle:
Each case must be treated individually and clarified individually, but in general it can be said:
Case 1: You have been carrying your pipe with you for more than four years and would like to dance in Austria as an external guest dancer for just one year.
We kindly ask you to email us your request and let us know in which circle you are dancing and that you only want to dance in our circle for one year. With regard to registration and payment, the conditions for second and third year dancers apply to you. Everything must be done within the official registration period!
Case 2: You have had your pipe with you for more than four years and wish to join our circle to complete your nine year cycle.
We ask you to send us your request by email and let us know in which circle you danced and what your reasons are for changing dance circles and ending your commitment in the Atlachinolli Meztli dance circle.
At the venue you get in touch with the Moondance Council. If you like, you can bring a symbolic gift that will be gladly accepted. You keep your pipe in honor of your four (or more) years of dancing. These dance years are counted as part of your path. With regard to registration and payment, the conditions for second or third year dancers apply to you. Everything must be done within the official registration period! You will receive the glyph of our circle for the dance on Site.
Case 3: You have had your pipe for less than four years and you want to join the Atlachinolli Meztli dance circle.
We kindly ask you to send us your request by email and let us know which dance circle you are from and why you want to change circles and end your commitment to the Atlachinolli Meztli dance circle. You are required to return your Chanupa to the circle from which you received it. You will receive a new Chanupa during the first sweatlodge of the ceremony, which will connect you to our circle. You will start with your first year of dancing and only when you have completed your first four years in Austria will your previous years of dancing in your original circle be credited to you.
With regard to registration and payment, the conditions for first-time dancers apply to you! Everything must be done within the official registration period! You will receive the glyph of our circle for your dance on site.
Thank you for your understanding and cooperation in respect for all prayer circles
There will be medicine women in the ceremony to care of you when you are in deep process or when you are feeling extreme tiredness. The medicine used is homeopathic, homemade or made from natural herbal ingredients that are used to relieve muscle and organ pain, accompanied by headaches, fatigue, etc. There are drops, tinctures, globules or small candies that the medicine women carry with them through the night. These women are knowledgeable, experienced and very sensitive and gentle. You can relax and know we are in good hands with them.
It is mandatory under Austrian law to have an ambulance and fire brigade on the event site. This ambulance will be on call for emergencies throughout the ceremony. A car will also be available, which will always be accessible for quick transport to the nearest hospital. We do not believe and do not wish for such extreme cases, but we consider it responsible and conscious to have this medical care ready for any healing situation.
During the dance there are different tented areas for the dancers, the singers and the many areas of support.
The dancing women may only stay in the allocated area during the four days and nights of the ceremony. Staying anywhere else is strictly prohibited, regardless of how convenient or close the opportunity is. It is important to avoid distractions and external contact with non-dancing individuals (such as family and friends) during the ceremony in order not to disrupt the energetic processes. The lunar space we generate is very deep and highly meditative. So we keep the energy focused on our prayers.
NO CAMPING IN THE FOREST! We have a wonderful land placed at our disposal. There are special camping areas (dancers, fire eagles, watermen, helpers, children) on the meadows, but camping in the forest is not possible! We respect that and ask for your support!
BEHAVIOR AROUND THE CEREMONY CIRCLE
• No smoking
• No drugs
• No loud conversations
• No eating or showing of food
• No disruption or disruption of ceremonies
• No cellphone use
BEHAVIOR ON SITE
• It is forbidden to consume alcoholic beverages, marijuana, any kind of neurotoxins or hallucinogens including cigarettes as we are in a process of cleansing our body to expand our consciousness. The common tobacco used during the dance takes on a sacred character and is seen as a connection to the essences of the universe.
• Since the Moondance is a multidimensional ceremony, it is forbidden to use video cameras, cell phones, still cameras, and electrical recording devices to record songs or other music. In the event that someone is caught doing it, regardless of whether it is a dancer, visitor or helper, the material created will be taken away from the person immediately.
• The spreading of newspaper articles or advertising material is prohibited.
No Selling of Products during the Ceremony: If you have beautiful items you would like to sell, please wait until the end of the ceremony. We ask that you follow these Council Agreements and thank you for your understanding and cooperation.
• The companions, friends or male family members who want to accompany the dancer and support her in her work as well as want to be present during the nightly ceremony must remain outside the circle at all times and are not allowed to enter it at any time and for no reason.
AFTER THE CEREMONY
We recommend that you organize a good landing site for the first time after the ceremony, where you can recover for two to three nights, get deep sleep and come to rest, to process your experience and allow it to be well integrated. Nature, healthy food and lots of fruit are the perfect support for this. Lots of sleep and rest, nature and good and healthy food are the perfect way to integrate the Moondance days together.
OUR ATTITUDE - EXCLUSION
The person (dancer, helper or visitor) who does not follow the disciplinary rules, whether outside or inside the circle, is invited to leave the place. The dancers, firemen, watermen, helpers and visitors must always respect each other, otherwise they are asked to leave the place. The council is free to regulate the behavior of the dancers, firemen, watermen, helpers and visitors.
If there was disrespect in the dancer's behavior, the council would have the final say in deciding whether or not to allow this person to remain in the circle.
It is important that everyone respects the property of others. No abuse of any kind will be tolerated.
RESPECT & UNITY
The elements of Mother Nature are water, earth, wind and fire and every Moondancer's pledge is to protect and respect these with love - wherever she goes, with the vision that these elements will also be part of the legacy for the next generations to come. Inside and outside the circle, dancers, fellow human beings, visitors and family should support, respect and care for one another so that unity, balance and harmony are maintained in our work. At the same time, privacy and freedom of personal responsibility must be respected. May the awareness of safety and integrity be present from all of us.
The dancers are asked to help with any preparations for the camp. We also ask for deep understanding and cooperation in the event of any spontaneous rescheduling. At the end of the dance, everyone is asked to help clean up the Space. The Space should be left as we found it. For organizational reasons, we ask all dancers to take their rubbish with them when they leave.
No form of discrimination or cult practice towards the dancer is permitted, neither in terms of skin color, nationality, language or religion, as we are all equal and equal in terms of our rights and duties and the same moon enlightens and touches us equally.
We hereby call on all women and men who feel the urge to sing, dance, pray with all their might for nature and the cosmos. As our ancestors said, "Sing, dance, sow, and respect for creation."
The earth that makes us human with her gifts will only continue to thrive if we become aware of her love.
Let's celebrate the dance, walk the path with clarity, always with respect! With all love and respect let us raise our prayers together with discipline, love and joy!
OMETEOTL (We Are One - I recognize the generating power of creation in you, me and everything)
And now: Welcome!! Welcome everyone to the “Moondance Atlachinolli Meztli”!
ONE HEART, AHO, AHA, AUUUUUUUUUW!
"Bless my feet that my walk may be a prayer upon mother earth."
MONDTANZ 2022: 9.-13 AUGUST
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