Avalon Men’s Circle
Every Wednesday evening at 7.00pm in the centre of Glastonbury UK.
Contact Miguel for more information.
Glastonbury Men’s Circle is based on The Way of Council which is an ancient spiritual practice of storytelling and deep conversation. Each man signs an Agreement which details some simple guidelines and responsibilities for those attending. There are usually between 6 and 12 men who attend so it is relatively intimate.
The process is a simple ceremony. On arrival we are smudged with smoke to cleanse our energetic field and this action symbolises a leaving at the door all the baggage of the world and the day’s events as we enter sacred space. We sit in a circle. Ceremony is opened with a calling in of the seven directions and candles at the centre of the circle are lit.
We dedicate our time to sharing what is alive in us by speaking with a level of vulnerability that is appropriate to each man. Our intention is to be the best version of ourselves possible and in the safe container of the circle we can begin to reclaim our full sovereignty as conscious men. A talking stick is used to indicate the speaker and this stick is held by each man as he speaks his truth. The stick moves around the circle clockwise. Plenty of silence between each and within each sharing, creates spaciousness for meaning—both spoken and unspoken—to be offered and received.
We hold the space with four intentions:
- Speak from the heart (truthfully, including your feelings).
- Listen from the heart (without judgment, with open mind).
- Be lean of expression (use only the necessary words).
- Be spontaneous (without replanning your response).
There are usually two rounds and in the second round men are encouraged to send out their prayers and blessings. The ceremony is closed with the extinguishing of the candles through one breath of all brothers together and then we then stand shoulder to shoulder and tone three Aums.
This is what the men are saying:
‘In the simple, direct act of sitting in this circle of men and sharing, through words and silence, vulnerability, joy, love, and everything in between, I experience a huge amount of powerful and essential healing and magic. The movement of stories in a circle around the central flames, and the movement of the shared silence and listening that holds space for those stories, has felt transformational in many directions, in many dimensions. A reconfiguration of what it means to be a man today, in touch with earth and sky and our own full natures, beings capable of relating in brotherhood, in seeking support and receiving it without competition. Capable of finding strength in softness, openness, and radical honesty. This goes deep into the roots of the earth, repatterning our relationship as a society to the great mother of all life. This circle helped me find a deep devotion to her, which has become a great source of strength. And in the weaving dance of connection between hearts, hearts that have known deep heaviness, I find beams of light prismatically shared and shared again and woven and rewoven, in all shades of light and dark, which from those foundations in the earth reach as prayers to the heavens and spirit and beyond. With integrity and purity and honour, this is a very beautiful magic that flows into the world in many surprising ways. This circle has helped me heal, accept, and love myself, and has been a vital resource in a journey of deep personal transformation and growth. It has helped me feel I can finally, at the age of nearly 40, become a man rather than a child. It supported me through the healing of deep ancestral trauma. It has given me courage, hope, and peace. It has shown me humility and bravery and truthfulness, reflected in the hearts around the circle and in my own. It helps me feel I’m not alone. I am extremely grateful for being so welcomed into community, for the understanding of community as one of the great powers of humanity, something we are capable of weaving together equally, which lifts every single member of it equally, and which also allows everyone the space they need. I pray that the profound and potent blessings of this circle become available to every member of our great community, humanity on earth. I know that the more of this medicine is available, the more healthy we will be, the more healthy the earth will be.’ -Parsifal
‘I attend men’s circle because my connection with man isn’t what it could be. Whether it’s society or my own neuroses, I see a lack of confidence in myself, to sit with men comfortably, naturally, without fear, without judgement. I attend men’s circle to practise being among men without need to prove anything, to practise acknowledging people like myself without need to fix their situation, to practise being compassionate, with no desire to prove how compassionate I can be. I attend men’s circle to remind myself of the power in being open and truthful. I attend to show myself what happens when I risk being vulnerable and exposed. When we brothers assemble in our simple ceremony, we are given chance to be ourselves, feel our emotions and let things go. In this practise of sharing and listening we heal our wounds, old and new, not with some far-out mystical ritual, but with the ordinary power of friendship and acceptance. Sometimes there is resistance, sometimes I would rather stay in my righteous anger, my resentment at the world, my child-like feelings of ‘why me’. Sometimes its uncomfortable to say these things out loud, to release the energy thats been building in me, but I know deep down that when I do, I will be doing a service to myself and everyone else in my life, and that I will be thanking the Lord I had the courage to attend this circle of men and open up.’ – Aaron
‘For me men’s circle is a space to be me and share what is really going on for me. I give myself permission to share whatever is alive in me without much fear of any judgements from others and/or without much pressure to impress anyone or to be man enough. It is a place where I usually feel safe to hangout with my wounded parts and where I let myself be seen in my struggle and vulnerability. It is a place where I practice compassionate listening and connect with other men who are also on the path.’ – Adeel