Eleanor Buchan, 25 January 2015

Called by Eleanor Buchan

How do you make a space sacred?
Why do you make a space sacred?
How do you hold that without being embarrassed?

We look to art to open us to other perspectives. Arguably, in all art we seek the liberation of ourselves and others. Can collective rituals tune us all to the same vibration? ie. ferry us all across from the profane world to the sacred, in which acts of transformation and liberation and healing can take place.

Recent experience put me into contact with a clinical hypnotist who is experimenting with asking the audience to take responsibility for their own experience in ‘showing up’ and allowing the great moment of collective consciousness to happen. That the performers (musicians, storytellers, actors etc) are not the only ones responsible for creating a magical and transformational experience, but that the audience must agree also to open the space. A space is sacred because we call it so and extra-ordinary things can happen because we will it so. Leaving space in the performance for the unexpected. Allowing flow in a performance. (the antidote for the fellow actor who says: “Why did you do your line differently tonight?”)

Sacred= ‘set aside’. A defined time and space is set aside in order for something to happen - often a healing experience for the community. Arguably, this is also what theatre is. Much is based on ancient ritual

Shamanism is an eco-centric world view. Means the “Hollow Bone” . Shamanic practice removes the ‘pretend as if you have a stone in your stomach which we can remove“ and lives instead that you ”have a stone in your stomach that we can remove". It is anther kind of truth. A lot of people have the sense that THAT is the more real world. Many of us would like to have a foot in both worlds and move easily between the two. The world is a bigger place/space when you look at it from the shamanic point of view.

The land loves to be sung to. Gratitude is a live theme and you can say thank you to all the world and everything in it because everything is live energy (and vibration).

The function of the clown as another kind of shamanism: the fool can sometimes be the only way from the people at the bottom to get through to the people at the top- truth tellers.

Paying attention - perhaps that makes something sacred.

The problem of the word ’sacred' and how quickly it turns people off. Are there other words that might mean the same but are less loaded and more easily swallowed for some people?

A further session of two people followed: in which we discussed how to create a safe

‘sacred’ rehearsal room and how to invite the audience into that. What rituals are required? How to make a meaningful ritual in a group? How to bond us together as one?


Art as healing, Ritual, Sacred, Theatre as healing, Shamanism, Safe spaces, ritual