The High Priestess and Sister Mud go on a dream trip

Posted by on 06.13.08 | 10 Comments
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Some may think of a great trip as going to Bali or Greece. Those destinations are fine–but a road trip with a girl friend to a lovely retreat center to work with dreams–ours and others–now there’s a dream trip! No spa or pedicures, but our souls were nourished and our spirits lightened.

My friend Maria Wattier and I took a road trip from Bend, Oregon to Danville, California last weekend (June 6-9) to attend a weekend retreat at the San Damiano Franciscan Retreat Center. The title of the annual workshop was “Dreams: Gardens in the Spiritual Desert” with Dr. Jeremy Taylor as teacher/facilitator.

What a wonderful retreat and road trip! Maria (a high priestess in a dream theatre we both participated in) is in training to be a certified Dream Worker with Dr. Taylor’s Marin Institute for Projective Dreamwork. And I was along for the ride. Did either of us take a ‘real’ camera? Of course not. All the below pictures were taken on my T-Mobile Dash phone…so pardon the quality, but you may just get a sense of the fun, sweetness and adventure we had!

First the trip down was a dreamscape that could be titled: “Beth’s in love with a mountain” Note: I am proud of my addiction and sure some new mountain will sweep me away sometime soon–I’m just fickle that way.

Oregon was green and lush even this late in the spring. Northern California was its usual gorgeous self. Friday was a severe-clear day for viewing Mount Shasta, a spectacular volcanic mountain–the southernmost and largest of the Cascade Range. I love living close to volcanoes. They make me feel safe. (That sounds like a blog post coming on!)


I took pictures of each side of the mountain as far as I could see it–through the front window, out the side window!


Here’s dear Maria, putting up with me and my silly telephone-camera.

And then! After nine delightful hours in the car–we were at the retreat center, up in the hills above Danville in the Oakland area.


Lovely San Damiano Franciscan Retreat Center. Amazing place, peace and abundance of spirit everywhere.

The next part of the trip could be called ‘The Dream of the Dreamers”

st. francis on his cell phone

Here’s St. Francis on his cell phone. It’s actually a new brand called ‘a little bird told me’ being offered by Spirit Phones.


The Franciscans are not much for pomp or religious piety. Inside the beautiful chapel is this stained glass art of outreach in an urban landscape and the struggles of Everyman.


My favorites..the Canterbury Bells just outside the cafeteria where the food was fresh, simple and delicious.


The rest of the cast…


Here is a far away shot looking down at the simple but lovely labyrinth, the pond and the organic garden. What luxurious simplicity!

And then the dreams…and those sweet and profound dreamers! Big thanks to Jeremy, the Teaching Assistants and the dreamers for their honesty, humor and dedication to the process of spirit and soul unfolding in these ‘streams in the spiritual desert’.

The home trip dream could be called ‘Heading for the Barn’ –feeling the familiar pull to be home, in our own beds, back to our routines.

The sculptures below are from a Veteran’s Memorial in the shadow of Mt. Shasta. Beautiful, peaceful, spiritual place. I want to go back and really sit with the sculptures, the desert garden and cemetery sometime soon.




And then we are home again in our beloved Oregon, with our significant others, pets and our own gardens and lovely homes. Filled up, nourished and sent back out into the world!

Sister Mud (from the projective part I played in someone’s dream theatre at the workshop)

aka Beth, VTH Host (from a projective part I play in my own dream theatre)




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