Grandmothers of Cuyamungue Retreat and Council

A Gathering for Women 60 and Beyond
(Prior experience advised)

When: Thursday, September 12th, 4 pm, to Sunday, September 15th, 2 pm
Where: At Cuyamungue, the Felicitas D. Goodman Institute.
Cost: $350 includes meals and lodging at the Institute.
Contact Facilitator: Sue Birch Bannister,

This is a retreat for us, as Grandmothers – some by biology, all by rank of age and longevity within our community – connected by our spirit journey with the Ecstatic Trance Postures through Cuyamungue founder, Dr. Felicitas Goodman.  Felicitas’ work came to full fruition in the third, or Crone, stage of her life.  Grandmother to all of us in this practice, she began her journey when she was in her sixties, as she recovered the ecstatic trance posture experience for new generations.  Many of us were among those new generations when we first met Felicitas, first came to Cuyamungue, or first began the Ecstatic Trance practice.  Now we are the Grandmothers, the living ancestors, with a rich path of beauty behind us and ahead.

We enter the grandmother lodge as women elders have done through the ages and continue to do, gathering on cherished land to hold council, share stories and dreams, and bring visions for our communities and the generations to come. Our retreat allows time and space for singing and resting, dreaming and visiting the spirits, sitting on Earth under Sun, Moon, and Sky at Cuyamungue, laughing and walking, eating and sharing.

Together, and with the Spirit Grandmothers, we come to re-member and celebrate the mysteries of this archetype – this spiritual force – called Wisewoman, the Veiled One, Crone, Caillach, Fairy Godmother, Ancient One, Hagia Sophia, Holy Wisdom, Grandmother of All. In the spirit of Changing Woman, whose Navaho name is understood to mean “the woman who is transformed time and time again” I invite you to join us!

Susan Birch Bannister, M.A., J.D.
Sue began doing ecstatic trance work with Felicitias in 1993, which initiated an ongoing relationship with Felicitas, Cuyamungue, and the remarkable practice that Felicitas recovered. She started leading an Ecstatic Trance group at her Maryland home in 1995, which continues to meet two Sundays each month. The group has traveled together to Mexico, and Cuyamungue, and prepares a ceremony in celebration of the Winter Solstice each year.

Sue is a therapist in private practice for over 30 years.  Her practice is anchored in women’s issues, and includes dreamwork, family and Jungian therapy, earth traditions, and spirit journeying. She has led and facilitated groups in Ecstatic Trance, Dreamwork, Active Imagination, Women’s Circles, and Mediation.