Wellsprings of Feminine Renewal X: The Seasons of a Woman’s Life: Mother, Daughter, Adult Woman, Crone

Meg Wilbur, Tina Stromsted, and Dorothy Anderson
November 4-10, 2013

“Every mother contains her daughter in herself and every daughter her mother — every woman extends backward into her mother and forward into her daughter”.   CG Jung

This fall, as autumn leaves turn to gold, we invite you to join us at beautiful La Casa de Maria. A sacred retreat center, it offers soulful renewal with its gardens, fountains, labyrinth, and woodland walks. Here, in celebration of a decade of Wellsprings, we will explore the ancient, yet compelling story of Demeter and Persephone. This tale of the deep feminine is a myth for all time and for all women.

As our avenue into the psyche, this living myth illuminates the very matrix of our lives, that first relationship between mother and daughter. It is the primal ground from which we all emerge, physically, emotionally, and psychically. This story reveals the passages we each face in our personal journey toward individuation.

We will see how our naive ‘maiden’ must separate from her identity with ‘mother’ — a separation which often thrusts us into an initiatory descent into an “underworld” experience of “hades.” There we encounter our shadow, and engage our ‘opposite’ — the masculine (inner and/or outer). Only after navigating this cycle, sometimes repeatedly, may we discard our persona masks, and find in our mirror the face of our Adult Woman, she who is our authentic self, she who carries the seeds of our Crone.

How do we allow the mother in us to release, help the daughter in us to develop, and embody our wise old woman? We may share belly laughs with the ribald goddess Baubo – and seek wisdom from fiery Hekate at her crossroads. Meeting these figures in the past shaped our metal. Can they help us now to realize our inner “Persephone,” Queen of light and dark who is at home in both realms? A vital woman, she is One-in- herself, living her seasons with grace.

This intensive offers the chance to revisit the universal pilgrimage from innocence to womanhood to crone-hood. As we retrace our personal journey, we seek its hidden meaning and treasures — and also discover where we perhaps got lost, or abandoned those treasures. We can celebrate ourselves as survivors — and also affirm ourselves as seekers in this present season of our lives.

This myth brings us full circle, to the very core of BodySoul work. For 2000 years it was the basis for rituals held at Eleusis in Greece. Today our modern intensives follow this ancient arc of feminine initiation, of descent and renewal. We will engage the guidance of the unconscious through dreams, bodily states, discussion, and creativity. Authentic Movement helps us connect with buried energies and open to our inner dance. Simple, playful vocal explorations help release our true voice through relaxation, breathing, and sounding. The approach is attuned to the individual, and does not involve performance. Enhanced by music and the arts, these dynamic processes support self-discovery, integration, and individuation in a safe and nurturing space.

It is fitting that we come full circle, because, as the seasons turn, this will be the last Wellsprings of Feminine Renewal. We as facilitators find that after more than ten years, our own “seasons” too are shifting, and our energies are drawn in new directions. While this intensive may hold the sadness of endings, of winter — it will also bring the celebration of Persephone’s return from the underworld, ushering in sunlight and flowers. We invite you to join us in seeking renewal, and discovering that even in the midst of winter there is within us an eternal spring!


Old and new participants will be warmly welcomed to this ‘last Wellsprings dance’. Please note that enrollment is limited and early application is strongly recommended.


Thank you for your interest in this program. This program is now full.  If you would like to be placed on a waiting list, please email the Marion Woodman Foundation Program Office at office@mwoodmanfoundation.org with your name, phone number and program that you are interested in.  PLEASE DO NOT TRY TO SEND MONEY AT THIS TIME. If a space becomes available you will be contacted.



Open to women with at least 50 hours Jungian analysis/therapy and 50 hours active bodywork (such as yoga, tai chi, Authentic Movement, Feldenkrais, 5Rhythms – bodywork that uses imagery and/or conscious attention), or consent of instructor.


La Casa de Maria Retreat and Conference Center, Santa Barbara, California

Location Description:

La Casa de Maria Retreat Center is located near Santa Barbara, California (approximately 90 miles north of Los Angeles).

La Casa de Maria can be found at the end of a winding lane canopied in dense foliage, leading from the Upper Village in Montecito. The Center is set in a secret garden, guarded by woodlands and the tumbling waters of the San Ysidro Creek, its ambience is that of a much-loved country house through which many generations have passed and left their mark.

At almost every turn it holds surprises to delight the eyes, layered with love over the years.  A fountain here, a sculpture there, rare specimen trees and shrubs in magnificent maturity, chickens scratching in the organic vegetable gardens.  Shady vistas down woodland paths, views over orange groves and across meadows scented with wild fennel will take your breath away.



Fee includes 6 nights lodging and all meals (from dinner the first night/November 4 thru breakfast the last day/November 10)

Single room: $2,700 (limited number of single rooms available)
Double room : $2,550
Triple room: $2,400 (limited number of triple rooms available)

Refund Policy:

If you cancel before August 5, 2013, we will refund your fee less $100. After August 5, 2013 we cannot refund your fee unless we can replace you in the program. We will do our best to do this. If we can replace you (after August 5, 2013), we will refund your fee less $250 plus any charges incurred at the facility. We must have notice of cancellation in writing.

Programs will not be canceled if one of the instructors can’t attend. If any instructor is unable to attend, a similarly qualified colleague will substitute. We cannot refund your fee if one of the instructors cannot participate. Once enrolled, if you must transfer to a different program, a $100 transfer fee will be charged.


40 hours of continuing education units, approved by California State Boards, are offered to MFTs, LCSWs, and RNs. Most US states accept these CEUs. Please check with your state licensing board.