When I did my group-work training 18 years ago, a very wise facilitator taught me to ‘hold the intention’ of what I would like the group I was facilitating to achieve.
I thought long and hard about what I wanted to achieve with the new women’s group … having run one many years ago, I was very aware of the power created by the wisdom of women when they opened their hearts to each other in a safe and non-judgemental environment.
It sounded a bit bland to just call this new group a ‘Women’s Group’ – it didn’t reflect the depth of wisdom and soul-connection I have witnessed in the past. I chose to call it a Women’s Healing Circle. To me, circles represent unity, wholeness and infinity – creating and holding a place for people to explore and heal – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. We all have so much ‘potential’ locked away deep inside of us – when do we take the time to explore and re-discover who we really are.
Mandalas are circles. Mandala is an ancient Sanskrit word that means ‘sacred circle’. Psychologists say that mandalas are symbolic of essential qualities like oneness, emptiness, and the creative power of the feminine. According to Carl Jung, a mandala is the symbol of an archetypal self that directs and challenges an individual to reach their full potential. The inside circles of a mandala represent the spiritual centre and the outside circles represent the physical body. Reintegration of the inner and outer self is important – in other words, a balance between the inner self and the outside world is important.
This is the type of space we are creating at Cancer Support WA for women to come and engage with each other.
This group will create a space where we can invite guest facilitators to share with us – bringing their experiences and wisdom. Groups are a powerful means of healing, connecting people and re-assuring them that they are not alone on this journey called ‘life’. Groups foster a sense of belonging, and relating to a peer group reduces anxiety, increases self-expression and develops a willingness to try new ideas.
So, using the mandala as the focus and symbol of the new Woman’s Healing Circle, come and join us.
Women’s Healing Circle Group is held every Wednesday from 10am to 12pm at Cancer Support WA, 80 Railway Street, Cottesloe.
For more information about this group please call (08) 9384 3544 or visit www.cancersupportwa.org.au
By Cathy Brown, Client Services Leader and Wellness Facilitator at Cancer Support WA