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What is Walking Stick?


    

We offer programs that highlight the aboriginal mystery wisdom of Judaism, and, on occasion, programs featuring Native American and other aboriginal traditions shared with participants by teachers indigenous to those paths. The teachings are combined with wilderness experience, ceremonies, chants, storytelling, and meditative journeying and entrancing movement, and are directed at helping individuals to enrich their lives with the wisdom of the ancients and the inspiration of the land. Our retreats, seminars, workshops, and ceremonies are conducted at locations across the United States and abroad by the invitation and co-sponsorship of communities and organizations across the denominational board.

The intented gift of these programs is to help participants to realize the magic of the ordinary, the gift of knowing that everything they strain so hard to discover so distant from where they are already standing, is actually right under their noses. This sort of learning encourages people to recognize their own preciousness, their own power and wisdom, and their own uniqueness. There is an ancient Jewish teaching that goes like this: "Every person needs to declare, 'Because of me alone would the entire universe have been worth creating."

Walking Stick's programs are particularly important in our current trying times because times like these can easily disempower us, cause us to feel impotent and helpless. Vulnerability is a wholesome thing when it leads to intimacy with others and honesty with ourselves, but it is a treacherous thing when it leads to fear and hopelessness. The wisdom of ancient peoples are very empowering because they largely grew out of dark times and situations that would make our paradigm seem like Disneyland. This is what gives these teachings the power they have. They do not come from the comfortable stimuli of carpeted academia, they come rather from the harsh reality of personal struggles. Moreover, they are teachings and ceremonies that restore us to our immutable core selves by connecting us to our common rootedness in the immutable earth.

Our workshops and retreats are primarily focused on Jewish Shamanism, ancient Jewish mystery wisdom that draws from rich, lesser-promulgated traditions of the Kabbalah that are more concerned with the teachings of birds and trees than with codes and creeds. This long-neglected dimension of Judaism grows out of an aboriginal mindset that is rooted deeply in the Jewish people's primordial relationship with and experience of our precious Earth, a knowledge that had to go underground for many centuries due to oppressive attitudes by dominant host cultures towards earthiness and sensuality, and anything smacking of paganism and pantheism. Walking Stick Foundation strives to restore these teachings in a user-friendly way, rendering accessible what has for too long remained buried in the archives of academia or stored in the memory banks of sages down the ages. Visit our Calendar page to find out where you can attend one of these workshops, or our Programs page to register for one of our retreats, classes, or workshop intensives.

Thank you for stopping by. Enjoy your stay. And may you be blessed in both your arriving and in your leaving.

     

Board of Directors:

Carl Hammerschlag, M.D.
David Carson, President
Rabbi Miriam Maron, R.N., M.A.
Rabbi Gershon Winkler, Executive Director
Richard Kozoll, M.D., Treasurer


Walking Stick Foundation

POB 1103

Cedar Glen, CA 92321

elkmesa@walkingstick.org