April 2013

Letter from the President – April 2013
by Paul Robear

Greetings from Cuyamungue!  I took the above photo as I arrived at the Institute to prepare for our upcoming workshop season. For those not familiar with the land here, it is located in the Pojoaque valley about fifteen miles north of Santa Fe. The Cuyamungue Institute has its home on 280 acres of mountain desert, adjoining the reservation land of the Pojoaque Pueblo. I always enjoy driving the winding road, to crest the last hill and see the collection of traditional adobe-style buildings nestled so beautifully into the landscape.

It was in 1978 that Dr. Felicitas Goodman officially established the Cuyamungue Institute, making this year our 35th anniversary. As always, we feel great anticipation, and home-coming, as we once again gather at this magical place. All our workshops are based on the discovery that ancient ritual postures can lead us into this alternate reality, an expanded field of consciousness — a spirit journey — when performed in conjunction with the proper rhythmic percussive sound, such as a rattle or drum. We call this particular activation of our innate ability to shift our physiology to sustain this state, the Cuyamungue Method. Take a look at our full schedule of  workshops, find the right one for you, and come adventure with us!  Please contact us if you have any questions.

As always, I’d like to hear about your experiences. We continue to collect stories from both beginners and advanced practitioners.This newsletter, and our website, is our community forum for sharing our experiences, and much much more, as you will see in the array of articles from our many contributors. Email us with your experiences at experiences@cuyamungueinstitute.com. More questions? Get in touch with me. We’d love to learn more about you, how you got here, and how the Cuyamungue Method has enhanced your life.

In this issue:

  • Article: Ancient Mask Dance Rituals – a worldwide phenomenon by Paul Robear
  • Update: Cuyamungue International – Certified Instructor programs in Chile
  • Article: The Brain and Ecstatic Trance by Belinda  Gore
  • Article: Spirit Canoe: A paddling Ritual by Sara Wycoff and Richard Gossett
  • Matching Donations: Make every dollar go twice as far, til June 1st. Donate now!
  • From Spirit through Art: Express Your Creative Genius – a Workshop
  • In Memoriam: Robert Detzler, Founder of the Spiritual Response Association.
  • Workshops and Events: Note updates, additions, and changes to our schedule

SCROLL DOWN for Articles and Links

Ancient Mask – 7000 BCE

Ancient Mask Dance Rituals – a worldwide phenomenon by Paul Robear
The use of a mask during ritual is found both ancient and modern cultures in all parts of world. There is something in the human experience that compels us to perform similar rituals no matter where a culture exists. Though unique to each culture, masks share many characteristics– the first being, they are not merely a disguise. In ritual they are part of a transformation: to create, amplify or fulfill the wearer’s identity or sense of inner spirituality. They provide the wearer with the means to transcend their personality and enter an alternate state of consciousness. Looking through the eyes of an animal mask enhances an alternative awareness of the world. Here is an ancient practice that has survived to the present, as many indigenous cultures continue to perform danced ceremonies, spirit masked, allowing the spirit of the animal to enter the dancer while in the mask. While the earliest masks we have are 9,000 years old, the making of masks, as part of the Shamanic Tradition depicted in ancient art, dates back 35,000 years… Continue to full article

Cuyamungue International – Update from Chile. 

On behalf of the Cuyamungue Institute, we want to thank Belinda Gore, our Director of Training and certification,  for  her dedication and commitment to sharing this work with others. Belinda just returned from Chile where she conducted several workshops and completed Instructor certification training of Paula Olivares and Margaret O’Rourke. Congratulation to you both!  Here is Belinda’s report: 

Sister Margaret

Our Thanks to Margaret O’Rourke, the Cuyamungue Institute has a strong and vital presence in Chile. As a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph, Margaret has been working in Chile for the past twenty-five years and at 83,  She is going to retire to Los Angeles this May. Margaret discovered Felictas Goodman in 1998 and attended her first ecstatic postures workshop at the Institute with Felicitas when she was in the U.S. for her home visit. After having taught many workshops and participated in the facilitator training twice, Margaret is finally
receiving her certificate as an instructor. All of us at the Cuyamungue Institute are deeply grateful for her commitment in teaching ecstatic postures in Chile and for encouraging so many others to continue her work when she retires.

During this trip, Paula Olivares Gallardo has also completed her training as an Instructor and we held a graduation where she received her certificate. Paula has been my translator for every workshop in Chile and recently we co-taught the posture-based “Good Dying” workshop that we designed to support the development of a hospice program in Chile. Continue to full article

The Brain and Ecstatic Trance by Belinda  Gore
Senior teachers around the world are invited to become members of the Certified Instructors Network and to participate in conference calls to discuss new research and review information that relates to teaching The Cuyamungue Method and our practice of Ecstatic Trance. Recently we had a great discussion about how the brain functions during the expanded state of consciousness that we call Ecstatic Trance…  Continue to full article

A Great Time to Donate with Matching Donations
You have the opportunity to make every dollar you contribute to the ongoing activities at CI, count not once, but twice, with Barbara and Gerry Clow’s generous Matching Funds Campaign. But hurry, this ends June 1st.Did you know you can use your credit card to make a Paypal donation? You do not need to have a Paypal account. You earn miles while CI earns an extra dollar for every one that you contribute! Here’s the link and instructions on making your Paypal donation:  https://www.cuyamungueinstitute.com/make-a-donation/


Spirit Canoe: A paddling ritual for getting us there and bringing us home.
by  Sara Wycoff and Richard Gossett

A sculpture strongly caught our attention when visiting the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston some years ago. It can be seen on line in the thumbnail photos of the museum’s collection. The museum calls it “Seated Male Figure, Mexico, Jalisco, Ameca –Erzatian Style, 300 BC – AD 200.” From the museum: “Frozen in mid-action, this figure’s twisted torso accentuates the implied motion. Other figures from Jalisco take this position as well, suggesting that it was a ritualized pose with some symbolic significance.” While parallel in time to the Aztecs, archeologists find there is a diverse set of styles in Western Mexico during this time period.

What initially caught our attentions at the museum was the expression on the face of this piece. The figure is looking slightly away, his eyes stretched wide open, his mouth also open, as if in an expression of surprise. When we assumed the facial expression, our intuition was that this figure was experiencing surprise and wonder, a sense of “Mysterium, Tremendium, et Facinans” Rudolf Otto… Continue to Full Article

From Spirit through Art: Express Your Creative Genius – a Workshop
The need for ecstasy is as imperative as the need for food. Civilizations of antiquity were aware of this and the postures seen in ancient art are doorways into ecstasy. This workshop will use those postures to open a creative avenue from deep within each of us. Write a poem, sing, dance draw, sculpt, act…explore, following whatever path the postures reveal for you. Then we will come together and weave a tapestry of art acknowledging our place in the universe. Join us for what we know will be a powerful experience. Through art, we acknowledge the vision and gifts received from Spirit, enjoying the flow of bountiful creativity. Also we create personal mandalas (“sacred circles” in Sanskrit) will be offered to facilitate insight, healing and self-expression… Continue to full article


Robert Deztler – July 4, 1926 – April 2, 2013

We want to acknowledge the passing of Robert Detzlter, Founder of the The Spiritual Response Association.

Laura and I befriended Robert after interviewing him on Laura’s radio program. Robert developed Spiritual Response Therapy (SRT) on the premise that everyone has experienced previous existences, and that Negative energy and limiting beliefs established then, as well as in the present, can keep an individual from realizing their full potential.

His dedication to these principles paid off. SRA has 140 certified teachers and 125 certified consultants working in 45 countries, including 13 ordained minister/leaders worldwide. They have a monthly newsletter with about 7000 subscribers and is translated into eight languages. Good work Robert!

Robert Detzler peacefully passed on April 2, 2013. He was surrounded by three generations of his family and so many of your heartfelt prayers and spirits. Blessings.

Invest in yourself! Here is the 2013 workshop schedule at the Cuyamungue Institute.

May 3 –  6: Soul Retrieval Workshop – Ki Salmen. In situations of shock, great pain or abuse a person’s life can become so unbearable that soul parts become lost. This work of retrieving soul parts with Body-Postures is a profound self healing process. The exciting news is: you can do it all yourself.   More Workshop Information …   Contact Ki

June 20 – 23: Solstice Celebration: Initiatory Training Workshop – Paul Robear and Laura Lee. A powerful, compacted introduction to this work. You will be introduced to a succession of trance experiences and initiation. Enjoy the power of the group experience. More Information

July 6: Cuyamungue Explorers Club – This is an afternoon gathering for those who are familiar with the practice of the Cuyamungue Method and want to participate in new posture research and verification. Hosted by Paul Robear and Laura Lee. Contact Paul Robear

July 18 -21: From Spirit through Art: Express Your Creative Genius.:  Jackie Haworth, Stephanie Stephens, Rae LeCompte. The need for ecstasy is as imperative as the need for food.  Civilizations of antiquity were aware of this and the postures seen in ancient art are doorways into ecstasy.  This workshop will use those  postures to open a creative avenue from deep within each of us.  Write a poem, sing, dance draw, sculpt, act…explore,  following whatever path the postures reveal for you. Then we will come together and weave a tapestry of art acknowledging our place in the universe.  Join us for what we know will be a powerful experience.  Through art, we acknowledge the vision and gifts received from Spirit, enjoying the flow of bountiful creativity.  More Information

July 24 -28: Cuyamungue Board of Directors Meeting

July 31 – August 4: The Power of Animal Spirit Guides – Nick Brink – Identifying a spirit guide, generally an animal spirit guide, to supplement the process towards healing, personal growth and going beyond in accessing the Universal Mind. Contact Nick Brink

August 22 – 25: Authentic Movement & Ecstatic Postures – Bat-Sheva Koren – Authentic Movement creates a space where one can be present in PURE consciousness in the process of transitioning from stillness to movement and back. Holding a Ritual Body Posture facilitated by a rhythm opens an entry into the realm of the Spirit. Both guide our journey to a place where the role of the witness and the mover in the experience may be revealed. If one chooses to listen, the Spirit may guide the experiencing of the alternate reality as complementary to the daily one. Contact Bat-Sheva

August 28 – September 1: Masked Trance Dance – Paul Robear, Laura Lee. Adventure into the depth of inspiration and intuitive guidance as we make masks, costumes, and our experiences will create a mythic story and end in a creation a sacred dance . Contact Paul Robear

September 4- 8: Instructor Training and Certification – Belinda Gore and Paul Robear. How to teach the safe and simple six-step process, known as the Cuyamungue Method. Contact Belinda

September 12 – 15: Gathering of the Grandmothers – Susan Bannister.  A retreat for the “Grandmothers” (60 and up) of Cuyamungue. Following in the footsteps of Dr. Goodman, this is an opportunity for us as grandmothers to gather to share in the wisdom tradition of women elders. Contact Susan Bannister

September 19 – 22: Ancient Egyptian Body Postures – Meredith McCord and Jill Schumacher. Delve deep into Egyptian ecstatic body postures, healing postures and Ancient Egyptian Teachings. Their website is http://www.egyptianhealing.com/

October 3 – 6: First Annual Men’s Conclave – Paul Robear. The time has come for the men of the institute to gather and share the power of the Cuyamungue Method as a group. This will the first time in the history of the Institute that an all male event will be conducted at the Institute. Email me directly at paulrobear@cuyamungueinstitute.com for more information.

Want to more information? Email us and we will answer your questions and connect you directly with the workshop instructor(s).


Retrieving the Powers of The Ecstatic Experience,
July 11 -14, 2013 – Millheim, PA More Information


Solstice Celebration – June 19th – 22nd
Felicitas Goodman, founder of Cuyamungue Institute
Planning is now underway. Join the Centennial Mailing List if you would like to attend.

2014 marks the 100th anniversary of Felicitas’ arrival on this planet. We want to mark the year with special, international events at Cuyamungue to honor her life and work, welcoming all cultures, languages and including all those around the world who are carrying on her legacy. Our hope is to come together, both in person and via the Internet, to share stories of Felicitas and what her work means to us. This event is open to all, and we need your ideas and participation. We may need to add temporary accommodations and gathering spaces, and for those who desire more comfortable. private accommodations, the beautiful new Hilton at Buffalo Thunder is a short distance away and very reasonable priced. We can negotiate a group of rooms depending on the demand.

If you are inspired to suggest activities and participate on the committee that plans and executes this event, do let me know. It won’t happen without people stepping forward and making it happen! Email me directly at paulrobear@cuyamungueinstitute.com

We need your support! The Cuyamungue Institute, like many non-profit organizations, has limited resources. We are proud of the scope of work we have already accomplished, but this is just the beginning — there is much more to do! Here’s how you can participate:

  • Be a Volunteer – Ask about existing, on-going projects you can help with. Or suggest projects that you can work on, fund, or both!
  • Attend workshops at the Institute – Bless yourself and CI Workshop fees directly support maintenance of the land and buildings.
  • Personal Donations – 100% of your donations and gifts go directly to the Institute, and are tax deductible.
  • Corporate Donations – Your company can have a tremendous impact. Ask us how we can bring our work to your visionaries and leaders!

Also consider making a donation by clicking here. Ongoing research and new applications of this work is only possible with donations made by people like you. Laura Lee, our Director of Outreach and Development, is available to answer your questions and to provide more information. Contact her at lauralee@cuyamungueinstitute.com

Thanks for reading! Please forward this to your friends and acquaintances who will enjoy learning more about us — and please let me hear from you! I am most happy answer andy and all questions about the Institute or the Cuyamungue Method. We welcome all correspondence. Email me directly at paulrobear@cuyamungueinstitute.com .

Paul Robear
President / Executive Director
Cuyamungue – The Felicitas D. Goodman Institute
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