Posted on Dec 13, 2006

In the Dust of the Ancestors

A Jewish Shamanic Tour of the Land of Israel
Rabbi Gershon Winkler
and Ravi Miriam Maron, R.N., M.A.

(photo credit - Felice Feingold)


November 1-12, 2007

$2750 if paying by credit card,
$2500 if paying by check, cash, or money order.
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Cost is $2500 if paying by check, cash, or money order, $2750 if paying on-line by credit card. Cost includes all meals, lodging, tours, program-related transportation within Israel, and tuition; does not include airfare to and from Tel Aviv which you must arrange on your own)A minimum nonrefundable deposit of $1000 is required
 (refundable only if Walking Stick Foundation cancels the trip).Do not purchase airline tickets before September 15, 2007 unless we inform you otherwise. We will not be responsible for any losses incurred from tickets purchased prior to September 15, 2007  in the event we end up having to cancel this trip. Please Note: There will be some rugged walking, so please consult your physician if you have a medical problem that might be aggravated by arid climate conditions or extended uphill and downhill wilderness treks.To register, send your name, address, phone number, e-mail address, notations about any special dietary restrictions, along with your deposit or the full amount in U.S. dollars payable to Walking Stick Foundation, to:

Walking Stick Foundation
POB 1865
Cuba, NM  87013

If you are paying by credit card, you will notice that your amount due has been increased by 9%, the amount the credit card company keeps from your payment, i.e., our loss unless it’s replaced.Questions?  E-mail us at or call us at (505) 289-3344

About the JourneyTen delightful days of engaging the wisdom and experience of the Four Winds in what the ancient Kabbalists called “Land of the Deer.”

This is not a commercialized tour, but a spiritual quest, a rare opportunity to recapture the aboriginal, earth-based spirituality of the Jewish people on the very soil that gave birth to them over thirty-eight hundred years go.  You will also encounter a growing movement of Israelis seeking to recover the long-lost indigenous ways of our people as part of a serious attempt to bring much needed joy, peace, and healing to the land and its inhabitants.We will travel as a close knit group of friends being hosted in each region in accommodations ranging from hotel-style rooms in cities to guest houses on kibbutzim. At each sacred site, Gershon and Miriam will share deep teachings from the Jewish tradition as well as lead us in chant, drum, sacred dance, movement, and ceremony to help us blend with the voices and the spirits of the ancestors. Our guide, Dovid Ringler, will tickle us with his humor, stories, and light-heartedness, as he leads us along roads less traveled and through caverns and ancient underground ritual pools known to few.

We will begin our journey in the relaxed atmosphere of Kibbutz Shoresh en-route from the airport toward the Galilean Hills. Here we will Jacuzzi, swim, spoil ourselves every which way, in preparation for the sacred journey ahead as follows:

North – Tsahfon
“The Place of Concealment”
Sefad, Maron, Galilean Hills

North is where the eagle dwells, and the place of Water, holding the power of mystery and elusiveness. We will settle down at Moshav Amirim -- a rural vegetarian community overlooking the Sea of Galilee -- while we visit the tombs of the ancient rabbis whose teachings we will be sharing. We will also wander around the old mystical city of Sefad, home to the most important medieval kabbalists, and the nearby Galilean mountains where the mystics and sorcerers of our people were nourished and inspired by the mystery wisdom of North.

East – Kehdem
“The Place of Beginning”
Jerusalem and the Dead Sea

East is where the lion dwells, and the place of Breath, both symbolic of the powers needed for new beginnings. We will visit the longest-running point of controversy on the face of the earth: Yerushlayim, which ironically means: “that which will show you peace.” We will walk the recently-excavated underground tunnels that reveal 2300-year-old streets and the deeply-embedded foundation stones of the ancient temple wall. After visiting these and other sacred sites of Jerusalem, including an underground cavern in which several of the ancient Hebrew prophets are entombed, we will drop south to the Dead Sea to cleanse ourselves with earthiness and to salt ourselves with endurance. Salt is indestructible, never spoils, and holds the power preservation. In Jerusalem we lodge at the Mt. Zion Hotel.

South – Dahrom and Nehggev
“the place of cleansing and transcending”
Qumran and Ein Gedi

South is where the Inner Self dwells, and the place of Fire. We will lodge near the Dead Sea at Kibbutz Al’mog.  While nestled in this arid and incredibly scenic region of the Judean Desert, we will hike into deep canyons replete with mystery and history dating from the era of King David to the period of the Essenes whose caves and dwelling ruins we will visit. We will visit the waterfalls and nature preserve of Ein Gedi and then head up to the last stronghold of the Second Jewish Commonwealth: Masada. There we will walk through the ruins of ancient Roman palatial quarters that were built for Nero before the rebellion, and the ruins of the homes, ritual pools, synagogue, and meeting places of the Jewish rebels and their families who later took refuge there.

West – Ma’arav
“The Place of Merging”
Tel Aviv, Caeserea and Yafo

West is where the buffalo dwells, and the place of Earth, symbolic of our wild, unbridled side, our merging side where all of our lights and shadows merge to dance in unison, no holds barred, and bring our deepest seed self to fruition. Here we will visit the ancient port city of Yaffo and then blend our spiritual selves with our physical selves in the market whirlwind and nightlife of Tel Aviv.  We will lodge at the Astor Hotel in Tel Aviv, and from there visit the ancient Roman ruins of Caeserea and remnants of the even more ancient Egyptian presence in Yafo. West is where it all ends, where the sun vanishes into the horizon, where we all merge into the mystery of the next moment, into the uncertainty of the future, bringing along with us the clarity of south, the inspiration of east, and the north wind’s gift of the capacity to surrender to the unknown. From west, we head home.

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