Sunday, September 21st,
1:00 pm to 4:00 PM
A Harvest Ritual facilitated by Katja Esser
There is some homework involved.
Please, check out the preparations below and take
some time with it.
The preparations are part of the feeding of the spirit world
and deepen the work we do.
Morning glories cling to the tall corn people, intertwined
they feverishly grow towards the sun.
Their short lived purple face tempts the hovering
humming birds, while the silky hair pours like milk out of
the corn’s tassel awaiting its pollination. A late summer
garden’s jungle of interconnectedness, where paths have
disappeared under the exploding leaves and swollen fruits
have become hard to reach. A
bustling, humming world of bees, crickets, and birds that
thrive in the wild thickets of Mustards, Beans, and Brussels
tomatoes await their summer tan as they hang heavily from
their stringy vines.
A lush garden overflowing with infinite yields of
flavors, textures, and nutrients, where seed made the
journey from sprout, to flower, to fruit only to mature into
seed again, so life can continue.
We honor the harvest, the completion of a growing
season as the fall approaches.
Honoring the Equinox is acknowledging the moment that the
sun rises opposite from where it is setting making the day
and night of equal length.
As light and darkness are inseparable, they come into
equilibrium in this short lived moment after which the
nights get longer.
It is the beginning of autumn, the season that
celebrates the culmination of its growing season before it
detaches from its outer form.
Ritual is the dance of interconnection that allows us to
feel our intimate participation in the drama of the
gather in sacred time and space to celebrate and ritualize
this moment and give thanks for the harvest and the seed
that assures the continuity of life.
We acknowledge the unseen forces and the elements as
it is no small feat for the sprout to come to fruit as many
do not make it and in a time of changing climate,
unsustainable agriculture, and increasing population this is
especially a concern.
In ritual we strengthen our connection with the
living world that surrounds us and recognize we are an
integral part of it.
We feed our relationship to the spirit world, to
bring us into balance and alignment with the Divine Order.
We live in a moment in time where the light is becoming
brighter and the darkness is getting deeper.
The deep seeded separation that is surfacing shows
all aspects of darkness that have not come into love yet.
To become love is to be connected and present to all
that is and have a compassionate response.
By embracing the darkness and the light we find
oneness, to judge these opposite forces we encounter
the trance of right and wrong, a stability is created that
does not allow for change, nor does it allow for love to
enter. We have
to love what is for the change to occur and invite what is
problematic to sit with us and talk to us.
As the light carries the seed of darkness, the
problem carries the seed of its solution, we just do not
know it yet and only through the engagement with that part
we can find the solution or the transformation.
Even when nature may indicate that it lets go, the
reality is that nothing is ever wasted and all gets
transformed to feed the new life.
We are in a mineral year according to the Dagara people of
West Africa, mineral being the element that holds the
records and stories of our planet; it is connected with
information and creative ideas.
Conductivity, memory, transmission, and foundation
are a few of the aspects of mineral.
This mineral year coincided with major portals that
challenged our core beliefs allowing for deep change to
occur. We are
being primed to move into our purpose to fulfill our
particular destined niche to assist in the evolution of
life. We are
raising our awareness, inform ourselves to move beyond our
are shifting consciousness as we move from a carbon to a
crystalline based frequency to become heart centered
transmitters of energy that see with clear vision.
We harvest our unique gifts from our particular
stories and experiences that have given us the exact tools
we need to fulfill our purpose.
Many times the worst that ever happened to us turned
out to be the thing that was needed most to move us in a new
have the ability to dialogue with the parts within ourselves
that we reject, separate, and project on the world around us
to get to know these parts and transform them to ultimately
support our mission in life.
The intention for this ritual
is to love and embrace what is, to give gratitude and
appreciation as we try to make sense of a world in deep
Everything is an expression of the Divine.
All is in perfect order placed in our midst to
continue to evolve and express.
All fruits have the function to hold the seed for
future life; all evolve through collecting data from trials,
adaptations, and collaborations to survive changing,
challenging or new environments.
Plants or other species of life respond to imbalances
and can pose a problem first before it figures out how to
fulfill a particular niche to restore the balance or answer
Symbiotic relationships in nature are win/win solutions.
We can look at the harvest in our world as a response
to a particular problem that has become the problem but
carries the solution inside.
It is our job to become conscious of our reaction to
the world around us and notice what it mirrors in us as we
separate and judge and feel it trigger our unconscious
The preparation and what to bring:
- Maybe you have already gone through this process this year
and you can just do the symbol on the cloth, if not this is
an opportunity to dive in a different way of relating to
parts of you.
We touched upon this at the Summer Solstice and we are
taking it a little deeper.
What we do not tolerate in ourselves we will not
tolerate in the world around us.
Look at an emotional response or trigger you are
having as you look at an aspect of the world in its current
For this exercise we are not looking for a heartfelt
You could try something that is not terribly loaded
and it may take some courage to look at that part in you
that you have not been aware of that keeps reacting and
blaming. I ask
you to have a conversation with the part of you that you
have rejected, the part of you that you criticize and judge.
Be curious about that part in you, respect,
acknowledge, and appreciate it.
Ask why it is there, what it is serving, what it is
Ask it all you want to know.
Sit in its company. Ask what it wants from you.
Get to know this part of you.
Do this dialogue in writing and clearly differentiate
between the part speaking and you speaking.
On a small white piece of natural fiber fabric
of about 10 inches square create a symbol of the original
part and a symbol of its transformation if any.
It can be two separate symbols, it can be the symbol
You may use both sides of the fabric.
You may draw it, sew it, it is up to you.
- Now have a conversation with that part of the world you
have been reacting to.
Ask it questions and see what answers would come to
you. You can
either do it by asking spirit or by creating a written
dialogue or by means of divinatory tools.
See if you can come to an honoring, appreciation,
respect or even can love it.
Take a life stick of about ½ inch thick and with a
length that goes from your elbow to your middle finger and
sharpen the point so it looks like an arrow.
Take white strips of natural fabric of about 1
½ inch wide and 1 ½ foot long and place these as streamers
over the length of the arrow.
One strip would contain words of what you love,
appreciate or honor in the situation or people we judged.
What message, prayer would you write on the second
strip that would be an invitation to a new outcome?
The third strip what seed of solution, or
contribution may you possibly envision because of this
is kind of having the genie out of the bottle and how do we
engage this genie to get to know it and may it have a seed
of the solution for us.
- Bring a fruit that symbolizes the internal or external
shifts that have occurred for you since the beginning of
- Bring your crystal of clear vision that you bring back
- Bring flowers to feed the spirit world.
- And bring drums if you have them.
Bring your own water and a potluck dish to share for
after the ritual.
Please, bring your own plate, flatware and cup.
- Please, bring the items at whatever stage they are in.
We do our best to fulfill the requirements.
Let it not deter you from coming if you did not get
America’s Stonehenge is privately owned but is open
to the public. The entry fee is $11 for adults. In addition
there is a suggested $5 donation per adult at the ritual
site to cover expenses.
Please, bring a friend and pass this
For more info
is an inspirational artist, mask and costume designer,
ritualist, teacher, photographer, and performer. She has
exhibited her work in the Netherlands, New York and Boston.
Katja has studied different forms of movement and voice. She
has created sacred ceremonies for the seasons since 1992 for
small and large groups of people of which the summer
solstice at America’s Stonehenge is most well known. She is
very involved in African based spirituality with Malidoma
Somé and the East Coast Village which has brought her to
Africa a few times.
She draws from a variety of great teachers such as Martin
Prechtel and Emilie Conrad. Katja creates rituals and gives
talks at colleges and universities. Katja has sung with
Bonesong, an improvisational sacred singing quartet that
sings in a cave. She performs with the Theater Behind The
Mask in schools through Young Audiences and at First Night.
She created a performance around ‘The Hidden Life of Trees’
with Ricardo Frota in which she appears in a full tree
costume that took her a year and half to make. Katja
launched last year her Apprenticeship program ‘Courting the
Living World’ in which participants activate their intimate
connection to self and planet.
Katja has an extensive website
at which her work can be viewed.