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These are the raw notes from the 2006 Dandelion Gathering meeting where BIRCH was formed.

Birch meeting set up
Names and places
Grounding by Pandora/grove
Explanation of beginnings of reclaiming and exploration of how coming together/falling apart/transformation/rebirth is essential for growth
Explanation of birch vision by Selchie
Calling in elements and recognition by those aspecting/representing five sacred things
Star charges those people to make sure that those without voice to speak are represented in this meeting/empower them to interrupt meeting to remind us of what needs to be said by the elements/seen by us/heard by us
Invitation to call in allies/deities
What is asking to be present
Etc – logistics; tending, reminder of time as ally; bigger task to do than we have time to do it with
Stay focused, stay brief, notice what others have already said, twinkle pls don’t repeat
5 agreements: if willing twinkle or nodding
We are in sacred space and hold that throughout meeting
We come to this space with open heart and open minds
We let people finish what they are saying (facilitators can interrupt)
We hold each other in respect
We self facilitate ourselves
We encourage twinkling rather than repeating what others have said
Self facilitating: notice when you are about to speak: concise and constructive, are you taking up more space than others, take responsibility for the process
Pandora: let’s take 5 minutes to talk in pairs about hopes and fears about this process come back and call out what has been shared
-birch won’t birth
Birch will become decision making body
Hope strengthen networks in midst of ecological change
Hope take good even if it’s old
Fear we will water down what we have to make it palatable to broader community
Hope we are magnificent enuf to bridge paradox of having body that is functionally decision making in some realms and not in all realms
Hope that delegates can rotate and participate so it feels that eveyroe has opportunity
Hope that we can name w hat needs to be named for sake of process
Hope that spark our creativity to creat new spaces
Hope birch as framework
Fear of usual suspects we are it
Hope we do something whatever it looks
Fear we will talk endlessly
Hope cross pollination with other like minded groups so as not to recreate the wheel
Hope we will do this w
Hope we will understand ongoing process and not feel rushed to produce something just to do it
Hope to heal some of communities that have fallen apart
I fear all talk and no action
Hope that doesn’t happen
Hope that whatever goes on process gets communicated as clearly and transparently and effectively as possible
Hope to bring energy back to communities and truly share
Hope that what we create/continue create is a model for other spiritual communities
Hope we can continue to come back to what really matters and what brings us together
Hope we can be seen as us ad not them
Fear what brings us together may not be strong enough
Not meeting - how about an “us”-ing
Fear we will all wind up mad at each other
Hope that doesn’t happen
Hope we recognize activism in all its many diverse ways – we are all one/all reclaiming/all one
Reminder of bio-brew magic still bubbling:  sweetness/nutrients still working away for us and for the healing of the earth

Moving right along
Star: some have come here perhaps charged by their communities to gived messages to group: now is the time for that
-Macha from Alberta reclaiming: insert their statement here please
Jude representing RTITS:
-elfin webspinner from reclaiming.org/bay area wheel agreed that the site can and should be anything that is needed to support reclaimng worldwide
-nyx from Chicago reclaiming/open yahoo group to all of us - *ask her for address
Chicago Reclaiming says I long for understanding of others * ask her
Ravyn Stanfield rep Portland or teaching cell – bringing request for possibility of creation of something called an egregore ???? some symbolic magicial piece created on astral plan for reclaiming/similar to clan house – people can access wherever/whoever – this magical place to access could come out of this meeting
Jason asked to bring message from Florida reclaiming: where tree roots meet earth and earth meets sky those intersections are where real juice of where Reclaiming comes from: the wild edges
Hawkeye rep Ithaca reclaiming: concern of something that centralizes communication – easies access to events/community/way to bring new people in, in an easy way
Donald: range of responses from original list of questions he sent out over various list serves: solitaries amongst us asked not to be forgotten in this process
Pat from Vancouver – bringing their voices: mixed feelings about formation of BIRCH/some resistance to institutionalized/feeling f structure – jaded from other institutional processes/fear of cliques and power issues , but some need for some sort of structure; seen as portal for inter community exchange; witchcamp is place they go to charge batteries and ripple effect throughout yet just as many folks in reclaiming have not been to wtichcamp and see it as elitist thing they can’t afford to come to
Marcos with sharing from pagan cluster: affirmation that activism is integral part of our tradition and we hope birch will facilitate that/hope that birch will help cluster keep magic as part of their activism/affirm that there is many kinds of diverse/personal activism and that birch can  facilitate that understanding and connection
Yarrow rep spiral heart: wants to be sure that resources involve din doing birch are worth expending/twinkles to many kinds of activism
Elaine speaking for concerns of northern California rural folks: ditto solitaries/ditto way to be connected to larger whole/appreciation that Reclaiming is clean and sober space (lots of twinkles), concern for possible shift away from that
Anna rep forming group in northern Ontario new to reclaiming/appreciate ways to connect/tools to facilitate that/can birch help Canadian teachers looking at issues of cross border issues
Grove reiterates clean and sober path coming out of 12 step community
Pandora we don‘t need to be fixed/we want to be connected
Star: European community  - growing and thriving/German women’s camp; English camp; all European camp; winter witchcamp in Spain (seeding reclaiming in Spain); lots of reclaiming connections in Europe: how can birch function to help connect different geographic/cultural/magical traditions and ways of doing things

Star: let’s take a moment and focus on what needs BIRCH might serve/what do we need this for?
Marcos:  some needs – need for connection; need for visibility – vehicle for making reclaiming more visible tradition – would facilitate our activism
Hoping that birch could facilitate training of communities in any number of sways: ho to do fabulous demo/costume advice/consensus training/conflict resolution/
Concern and hope we could find way to communicate quickly thru reclaiming not necessarily depending upon email/www that might collapse
Nyx: in actions/people from other faith communities have actions that are viewed in different light than pagan cluster actions – we s reclaiming should stand in our faith community to partake of respect that is ours to have
Water says; check your posture/keep your heart open/take heart breaths together (right now)
Donald: hears real need to develop other professions in reclaiming besides teachers (farmers/facilitators/homemakers/etc etc) deep concern to have place of informational exchange
Pat: economics of getting together; serious concern – personal money/fuel/etc.
Sustainability of entire process: could dandelion continue and pull together whatever comes out of this/larger get together of BIRCH/WCC/and all other clan/tribe members
Nyx: conversation in Chicago Reclaiming about teachers – personally not sure how teaching works, do core courses need to be vetted/approved and by whom?
AIR: feel breath of ancestors
Copper: over and over again coming up both here and in bay area community: need to share community building skills – how do we create world we want to step into now?
Elfin: growth path in reclaiming not being to leave it
Shel: from a conversation yesterday: marketing arm to put out who we are/conversations about welcoming people in who are drawn to Reclaiming/outreach with welcome committee J
FIRE: flames of transformation burn brightly
Selchie: in Wild Ginger comm. We have as many different understandings of Reclaiming as there are people in the group; hoping birch will encompass that diversity of relationships between us
April c: sees a need and perhaps birch is place to address it; need to strengthen the elders and their role and support them to have training to step into elderhood and cronehood in most helpful ways
Andy: in bunch of communities folks want to start Reclaiming covens/seems to not have structure for covens forming
Ravyn the red: local community land stewardship projects – value we hold and letting local communities figure out how that looks
Chelidion: r has oases of many folks who are authorities/resources/tools and these have not been as well sued as they might have – can we connect ourselves with better way to share these tools/methods of support/bits of excellence we all carry in our home communities
Martin: consider children and families with children, naming vwc process of opening up to all ages
Shel: trust fund for seed money for old age homes
Zoe Redbear: strongly believes local communities are our back bone – focus on local should be important/assumption of top down bringing/develop local grass roots communities – so diverse/recognition of that/nourish that locally
Morgana: Tejas community has been fed thru interaction with other communities- ideas/friendship/network/hope for BIRCH for more of that sharing interaction/open dialog for all communities/learn more from everybody
Share what we have with others
Feral: publications like RQ that arrive in mailbox seem important to Colorado folks
Toni: we need to build in a liver/somehow to get rid of toxins
Marcos: is there an agenda?
Star: posted on wall (cleverly hidden)
Now move into clarify of intention of BIRCH
Star: needs to facilitate material resources/abundance and sharing of that/landbased community place/youth outreach
Ethnic diversity
Seth: broad reflection on our tradition as it develops
Anna: evangelical of more openness
Elfin: way for more men to learn our gentle ways
Facilitators pass it along to next team:
Ross and April C
Plan for next piece: break into groups of 7/groups that you have some affinity with: we will try to come up with intention for birch in small groups
Request that at end of time group has written 3 sentences or less intention with only one preposition per sentence /perfect punctuation an then share with larger group
20 minutes to do it
First break
Chaotic affinity self identification ensues
EARTH: before doing this/grounding as group again and some connection
Break into small groups
FIRE: process be passionate
AIR: Stay focused
Small groups to report out intention and will be scribed (GET LATER**)
Process of combining similar sentences of different groups intentions as described by April
Intentions read out/Ross notices beauty and harmony and similarity of all the intentions/now it’s time to close this circle by asking elements if have anything to say
Grove with process suggestion: is there small group of people willing to serve larger group/reading all these statements and compiling friendly composite?
Additional process suggestion by Star: once these intentions are written up/please go and look at them – if something deeply important indicate with a circle or spiral for yes that’s right on/important to me/whatever
Beth out because it’s 12 o’clock
EARTH: connection is the sacred work of living and this work is supported by the earth
FIRE: asks that process be in alignment with our deepest passions
WATER: know that you are loved and held; keep your heart open
AIR: may we erupt in spontaneous and joyful laughter
So let’s do that right now
Ross invites participation for anyone with more ideas – meet with group over lunch to help synthesize

Continue to part 2

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