Spring Retreat

  • GSV 2021 Spring Retreat

    Spring Retreat

    Growing the Seeds of Hope and Reconnecting with


    Self, Sangha, & Sacred Cosmos

    May 7-9, 2021


    A virtual Zoom-based experience

    $35 registration fee


    Additional donations for the GSV Scholarship Fund and/or The Mountain can also be made in the registration portal.

    Register now!

    Dear Siblings,

    Instead of sending out a “last call for the conference,” I wanted to write you a personal note. I have a question for you.

    Why come to one more Zoom conference, when everything in you wants to rush out into the world and be together with people you love?

    Thirty years of experience as a breathworker, trauma therapist, and spiritual healer have taught me:

    integration is everything —

    And integration absolutely requires a few moments of catching our breaths together, harvesting our learning, healing our wounds, and setting a new course together.

    And this is a chance to do exactly that.

    It’s like the time at the end of a breath session, when the music quiets and you rest from the hard work of catharsis, journeying, and visioning … and let everything you’ve experienced soak into your bones and crystalize into a few clear insights to guide your life as you rise.

    We’ve created the GSV Virtual Spring Retreat to do just this. I’ve asked some of the most seasoned teachers, facilitators, and mischief-makers in our community to come together, to share their own stories of hope and reconnection, and support you in reflecting on your own. People who’ve done the hard work of integrating their own journeys and the even harder work of helping others, do the same.

    We’ve all been through it this year. Many of us ache to “get back to normal.” The funny thing is, though, we don’t “get back to normal” after traumatic experiences — we either heal and grow, harvesting our own discoveries and changing the course of our lives — or we stay braced against the powerful changes inside ourselves and around us.

    There is extraordinary power in our community. I hope you’ll join us in harnessing and celebrating it.

    And I think it’s gonna be a helluva lot of fun.

    Come, come, whoever you are! Wanderer, worshiper, lover of men,
    Whatever your race, class, culture or color,
    serostatus or sexual wounds,
    whatever you struggle with, heart, mind, body or soul …

    whether you’re gay, bi, questioning, queer, or transgender,
    single or partnered, poly or simply perplexed;
    religious or atheist, spiritual, awestruck,
    addicted, recovering, or reaching for heaven on earth,
    outrageous or quiet, flamboyant or shy, prophetic or peaceful,
    elder or newbie or somewhere between …

    we welcome your sorrows, we welcome your joys,
    we welcome your hunger, we welcome your gifts
    we welcome your stories and questions and yearnings …
    we welcome you home.

    Registration closes on Wednesday, May 5

    Register now!

    See you in Zoomland! Oh, and bring a rock.

    Hunter Flournoy
    GSV Spring Convener

    PS: The opinions expressed above are solely the conclusions of the convener, arising from his own rather unusual if somewhat extensive experience, and should not be taken to represent the opinions of the larger community of GSV, the GSV Council, its membership, humanity, or the galactic federation of planets … 😂

  • GSV 2021 Spring Retreat

    Spring Retreat

    Growing the Seeds of Hope and Reconnecting with


    Self, Sangha, & Sacred Cosmos

    May 7-9, 2021


    A virtual Zoom-based experience

    $35 registration fee


    Additional donations for the GSV Scholarship Fund and/or The Mountain can also be made in the registration portal.

    Register now!

    “For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land …” —from The Song of Songs

    My Beautiful Far-Flung Family,

    Are you ready to cultivate the seeds of hope?

    Are you ready to reconnect with the parts of yourself that have gone into hibernation?

    Are you ready to reconnect with the sacred community that yearns to feel your presence, and the sacred cosmos that yearns for your creativity, passion, and activism?

    How can we live into our yearning patiently, even when we want to leap into each others’ arms?

    Spring has come, and after a year of cultivating resilience in the face of deep division, isolation, and deprivation for so many of us, the time for hope and patient reconnection has come.

    I invite you to join me for our Spring Retreat—yes, still virtual—but a crucial time for coming together to envision our next steps for creating a new world together. We will draw hope from deep within, from each other, and from the sacred cosmos in which we live and move and have our being—and walk forward with one heart!

    “Then it was spring; and in spring anything may happen. Absolutely anything.” —e.e. cummings

    Our time together will be devoted to asking the important questions of our time, celebrating the rich web of connections that sustain and encourage us, reawakening our hearts, bodies, minds, and spirits, and cultivating hope.

    We will begin our time together with laughter, heart-sharing, embodied breathwork, and ceremony on Friday Evening, followed by an open time of sharing the poetry, songs, and stories that have given us hope in the last year.

    One feature of this year’s virtual spring retreat will be the opportunity to deepen our experience of sharing and reconnection by participating in stable breakout groups. As well, a virtual “rocking-chair porch” will be provided so that we can visit with friends old and new.

    Saturday and Sunday Mornings will begin with a beautiful breathwork and movement meditation and Tai Chi with Paul Plate.

    Saturday Morning and Saturday Afternoon, Mahan-Kalpa Khalsa, Andrew Elias Ramer, and I will share the stories of our own journeys of hope and reconnection, drawing from our rich histories of deep spiritual exploration and sacred erotic activism, including over twenty years of combined experience shepherding GSV’s Sacred Touch Working Circle. These stories will be interspersed with Qs & As as well as opportunities to reflect in breakout groups on your own journey of hope and reconnection. We will complete the afternoon with opportunities for gentle breathwork, restorative yoga and harp music with David Jones and Teddy Jones, and an opportunity for deeper reflection with TS Pennington and Allen Lomax.

    Saturday Evening will offer an opportunity for a playful and inspiring workshop, Authentic Relationship, with Sequoia, a dear friend of James Broughton, a transformational life coach, and a long-time teacher of sacred touch and authentic relationship.

    Sunday Morning, we will close with conversations about hope, our individual and collective vision for the next year, a final breathwork experience, and our closing circle.

    I hope you will join me for a playful, joyful, and profound weekend together of growing the seeds of hope!

    All my love,
    Hunter Flournoy
    GSV 2021 Spring Convener and Mischief-Maker

    Register now!


    Spring Retreat

  • GSV 2021 Spring Retreat

    Spring Retreat

    Growing the Seeds of Hope and Reconnecting with


    Self, Sangha, & Sacred Cosmos

    May 7-9, 2021


    A virtual Zoom-based experience

    $35 registration fee


    Additional donations for the GSV Scholarship Fund and/or The Mountain can also be made in the registration portal.

    Register now!

    “For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land …” —from The Song of Songs

    My Beautiful Far-Flung Family,

    Are you ready to cultivate the seeds of hope?

    Are you ready to reconnect with the parts of yourself that have gone into hibernation?

    Are you ready to reconnect with the sacred community that yearns to feel your presence, and the sacred cosmos that yearns for your creativity, passion, and activism?

    How can we live into our yearning patiently, even when we want to leap into each others’ arms?

    Spring has come, and after a year of cultivating resilience in the face of deep division, isolation, and deprivation for so many of us, the time for hope and patient reconnection has come.

    I invite you to join me for our Spring Retreat—yes, still virtual—but a crucial time for coming together to envision our next steps for creating a new world together. We will draw hope from deep within, from each other, and from the sacred cosmos in which we live and move and have our being—and walk forward with one heart!

    “Then it was spring; and in spring anything may happen. Absolutely anything.” —e.e. cummings

    Our time together will be devoted to asking the important questions of our time, celebrating the rich web of connections that sustain and encourage us, reawakening our hearts, bodies, minds, and spirits, and cultivating hope.

    We will begin our time together with laughter, heart-sharing, embodied breathwork, and ceremony on Friday Evening, followed by an open time of sharing the poetry, songs, and stories that have given us hope in the last year.

    Saturday and Sunday Mornings will begin with a beautiful breathwork and movement meditation, and Tai Chi with Paul Plate. Saturday Morning and Saturday Afternoon, Mahan-Kalpa Khalsa and I will share the stories of our own journeys of hope and reconnection, drawing from our rich histories of deep spiritual exploration and sacred erotic activism, including over twenty years of combined experience shepherding GSV’s Sacred Touch committee. These stories will be interspersed with Q&A and opportunities to reflect in breakout groups on your own journey of hope and reconnection. We will complete the afternoon with opportunities for gentle breathwork and restorative yoga and harp music with David Jones and Teddy Jones, and an opportunity for deeper reflection with TS Pennington and Allen Lomax. Saturday Evening will offer an opportunity for a playful and inspiring workshop, Nourish Your Heart, with John Sorozcak, a long-time facilitator in California Men’s Gatherings. Sunday Morning we will close with conversations on our individual and collective vision for the next year, a final breathwork experience, and our closing circle.

    One feature of this year’s virtual spring retreat will be the opportunity to deepen our experience of sharing and reconnection by participating in stable breakout groups. As well, a virtual “rocking-chair porch” will be provided so that we can visit with friends old and new.

    Financial assistance, in the form of scholarships, is available. The financial assistance application submission deadline is April 22, 2021. Our hope is that anyone who resonates with our mission and community, and who has a desire to attend, can join us at our gatherings. To that end, we offer financial assistance through the Raven Wolfdancer Financial Assistance Fund. Please go to the Financial Assistance page on the Gay Spirit Visions website for more information about financial assistance (scholarships) and for a link to the GSV financial assistance application form. Remember, the financial assistance application submission deadline is April 22, 2021.

    I hope you will join me for a playful, joyful, and profound weekend together of growing the seeds of hope!

    All my love,
    Hunter Flournoy, GSV 2021 Spring Convener and Mischief-Maker

    Register now!


    Spring Retreat

  • GSV Virtual Spring Retreat:  In the Wellspring of Queer Resilience: Listening to the Wisdom of Our Ancestors

    2020 Spring Retreat
    Dear Gentle Ones,

    Our Spring GSV Virtual Gathering begins this coming weekend on Friday evening, May 15th, at 7:00 p.m. EDT.

    I am pleased to share with you that we have an outstanding series of workshops planned for you on Saturday, May 16th, with Hunter Flournoy, Andrew Ramer, and David and Teddy Jones.

    Across space and time, we will have the opportunity to create the gentle, warm, and playful community just like we have so enjoyed all these years previously on our beloved mountaintop. This year we open arms and hearts to each other wherever we are and welcome each other as we hold sacred presence with ourselves and with our community. Our capacity is 50 people. There are about 12 spaces still available. Please register today!
    https://www.themountainrlc.org/gsv-spring-online

    Once you have registered, you will receive an email from me later this week with Zoom links for each session. We recommend you familiarize yourself with Zoom before participating.

    With grateful anticipation of our meeting,

    Mark Medlin, Convener
    Virtual Spring GSV Gathering 2020
    ________________________________________

    In the Wellspring of Queer Resilience: Listening to the Wisdom of Our Ancestors


    Virtual Spring GSV Gathering — May 15-17, 2020

    Friday Evening
    7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. EDT
    Welcome and In-Gathering
    Welcome — Mark Medlin
    Fire Bridging — Scotty Simons
    Calling in the Directions — Selected Siblings
    Heart Weaving — Mark Medlin
    Musical Reflection — Bob Strain
    Heart Circle — Paul Plate

    Saturday
    Opportunities for Connection and Celebration
    9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m. EDT
    GSV Council Town Hall Meeting

    Join your presiding elder, Jason Buchanan, and members of the GSV Council as they talk about our organization and community. You will also hear from a representative from The Mountain and have an opportunity to ask questions.

    10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. EDT
    Rooting and Rising: Discovering our Deepest Resiliency and Truest Visions
    with Hunter Flournoy

    In this turning of the worlds, each of us must root deep in the tremendous strength of the Great Mystery, the Sacred Earth, the community of those we love, the healing power of our own body and breath, and the truest visions of our hearts. In this 90-minute workshop, we will explore each of these through stories, sharing, and practical exercises. Come ready to move, to breathe, to share and bear witness to the incredible strength we can create together.
    Hunter
    Hunter Flournoy is a two-spirited healer, life-coach, breathworker, writer, and master facilitator with a passionate commitment to building community for soulful GBTQ men and helping them change their lives. He is the vision-keeper for Spirit Journeys and a devoted member of our Gay Spirit Visions community.

    12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. EDT
    Optional Virtual Saturday Lunch
    Click on the lunchtime Zoom link and be randomly grouped with four other siblings for an hour’s informal conversation as you dine together in front of your computer.

    2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. EDT
    In the Temple of Father Earth: Embodying the Wisdom of our Gay Ancestors
    with Andrew Ramer

    We are living in a time of unprecedented challenges, caught between the global threats of climate change and the microscopic threats of a new virus. This time invites us to deepen into ourselves, whoever we are, and invites us as men who love men to tap into our own deep archetypal wisdom.

    This workshop emerges from the teachings found in Andrew Ramer’s book Two Flutes Playing. After an introduction to the session, we will go on a guided journey of connection with our ancient gay ancestors, designed to support our own embodied elderhood. We will end with an open conversation about our work of global healing and the ways that we can support each other.
    Andrew
    Andrew Ramer spoke at the first GSV gathering with Harry Hay and Franklin Abbott. In addition to Two Flutes Playing he is the author of Queering the Text and Fragments of the Brooklyn Talmud, a comic kweerish dystopian exploration of texts and stories. andrewramer.com

    4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. EDT
    Yoga with Affirmations for Challenging Times | Men’s Yoga and Harp Meditation
    with David and Teddy Jones

    Your session is a mixture of gentle active yoga as well as restorative yoga. Please have a blanket or big towel, a yoga mat and a strap or belt. Here is your opportunity to stretch and unwind after a full day of reflection and connection. Yoga and meditation will enable you to integrate all your awareness and learning in embodiment.
    David & Teddy
    David Jones has been teaching in the greater Nashville area for eleven years. During much of this time he also taught at The Recovery Ranch, a drug and alcohol treatment center. In the recent year he began working at Milestones at Onsite with a focus in trauma recovery. He offers a basic hatha class, a light vinyasa flow accessible to all levels. His focus has become restorative yoga. He teaches spiritual and restorative workshops regularly.

    Teddy Jones is an acoustic harpist who specializes in original music created for special events and ceremonies. His recordings are improvisations that can be used for meditation, stress release, massage, yoga, and healing.

    Sunday
    Celebration for Preparing Ourselves for Action in the World

    10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. EDT
    Releasing the Directions – Mark Medlin and Selected Siblings
    Musical Reflection – Bob Strain
    Heart Circle – Paul Plate
    Closing Song: Dear Friends, Queer Friends – Wendall Johnson

    12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. EDT
    Optional Virtual Sunday Lunch
    Click on the lunchtime Zoom link and be randomly grouped with four other siblings for an hour’s informal conversation as you dine together in front of your computer.

  • GSV Virtual Spring Retreat: Announcement Concerning Registration

    Greetings Siblings,

    We have been made aware that the registration process has a few unexpected issues concerning payment for this Spring Conference. We are currently working with The Mountain to clear up the confusion in the registration process. It has always been our intention to offer this conference *free of charge* and that any donation, including the suggested donation, to the mountain is totally optional, though appreciated. Your registration is sufficient for attendance.

    We are all learning from this new experience and working out the kinks, so if more concerns arise, please reach out so that we are able to address them as best we can and make things right.

    With love and appreciation for all of you in this community,
    Your Trusted Council of Elders

  • GSV Virtual Spring Retreat: In the Wellspring of Queer Resilience: Listening to the Wisdom of Our Ancestors

    2020 Spring Retreat
    Dear Siblings,

    Greetings, heartfelt appreciation, and comforting hugs to each of you. How much has changed since my previous letter to you announcing the GSV spring retreat which was to have been held live and in person, face-to-face, and heart-to-heart, at The Mountain Retreat and Learning Center on May 8th through 10th. However, as you may have already been aware, The Mountain has cancelled all live and in person events and is temporarily closed in accordance with the North Carolina governor’s Stay At Home order.

    Instead, I’m delighted to announce that we are holding the first ever GSV Virtual Spring Retreat! It will be held in four 90-minute Zoom sessions on May 15th, 16th & 17th .

    Like so many other organizations, we have been working to reorient ourselves around a meaningful and engaging live Zoom video communications experience that we can use to explore and experiment with together. In venturing into this new technology-based way of being, we are each called upon to breathe even more deeply, to be patient with ourselves, and each other, and to be open to the moving of gay spiritedness between us across space and time to create community and connection.

    The draft agenda for our virtual spring retreat, subject to last minute changes, appears below.

    If you’ve never participated in a Zoom event before, please consider watching the following video tutorial prior to Friday evening’s opening event so that you will be more at ease and present.
    https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362193-Joining-a-Meeting

    Some basic suggestions:
    1. When you are using Zoom, make sure that the light on your face is brighter than the light in the background; otherwise, we can’t see your bright eyes and beautiful smile.

    2. Make sure the environment you are in — whether outside or inside — is completely quiet with no music or noise in the background.

    3. Using a 4″ x 6″ index card or something similar, write the name you wish to be called by with a black magic marker, or print your name in large print, so you can hold it up as needed during a session. You’ll understand more about this during the event.

    Rainbow

    Registration information:


    To participate in this virtual event, please register through The Mountain Learning and Retreat Center at this website link: https://www.themountainrlc.org/gsv-spring-online. As you complete the registration process on The Mountain’s website, we suggest you consider giving a donation to The Mountain of about $69.00. In honor of The Mountain’s 30 years of service to our community, we invite you to consider making an additional donation. In any case, please know that no one will be turned away for any reason because of financial constraints. Because this virtual experience is new for all of us, total registration is limited to 50 siblings.

    I welcome your presence as we create space together, leaning in to sustaining connection even across space and time.

    With gratitude for each of you and for our living, breathing community,

    Mark Medlin (Rainbow Sprinkles)
    Convenor, GSV Spring Retreat 2020

    In the Wellspring of Queer Resilience: Listening to the Wisdom of Our Ancestors


    Gay Spirit Visions Virtual Spring Retreat


    May 15-17, 2020


    Agenda

    Friday, May 15th
    7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
    Welcome and In-Gathering
    Welcome – Mark Medlin
    Calling In the Directions – Selected Siblings
    In-Gathering Music – Bob Strain
    Heart Weaving – Mark Medlin
    Heart Circle – Paul Plate

    Saturday, May 16th
    9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
    GSV Council Town Hall Meeting,
    Jason Buchanan, Presiding Elder

    10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
    Opportunities for Connection and Celebration
    Two or three options to be determined.

    12:00 Noon – 1:00 p.m.
    Optional Virtual Saturday Lunch
    Click on the lunchtime Zoom link and be randomly grouped with four other siblings for an hour’s informal conversation as you dine together in front of your computer.

    2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
    Opportunities for Connection and Celebration
    Two or three options to be determined.

    Sunday, May 17th
    10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
    Celebration for Preparing Ourselves for Action in the World
    Naming of the Fall 2020 GSV Conference Convener
    Closing Music – Bob Strain
    Heart Circle – Paul Plate
    Releasing the Directions – Mark Medlin
    Closing Song – Wendell Johnson

    12:00 Noon – 1:00 p.m.
    Optional Virtual Sunday Lunch
    Click on the lunchtime Zoom link and be randomly grouped with four other siblings for an hour’s informal conversation as you dine together in front of your computer.

  • GSV COVID-19 Official Announcement

    2020 Spring Retreat
    Greetings Siblings!

    The Gay Spirit Visions Council has been in discussion for the last month on how to respond to the changes COVID-19 has made in our gathering practices. As you may have already seen on The Mountain’s website, the Spring Retreat at The Mountain has been cancelled. We cannot in good conscience hold a gathering of this nature at this time with such an intimate family such as yourselves. We have hesitated to make the announcement official until we had something for you as an alternative.

    There’s been a debate on whether we should simply cancel the Spring Retreat and do nothing until the Fall Conference, assuming things recover by then. However, during this time of physical isolation, where many are struggling to get their social and spiritual needs met, having a spirit-based community of like-minded people such as Gay Spirit Visions to connect with was worth stepping into the unknown to try to make happen for you all. Additionally, if the current epidemic cannot be controlled in this country by September, we might miss out completely on our Fall Conference as well.

    Right now, the council is in discussion with our Spring Convener about the possibility of a virtual Spring Retreat so that we may connect safely with our community in these difficult times. We know that we need something more than a Facebook group and an e-mail list to make a gathering. We are still brainstorming and running logistics on possibilities for what this might look like and how best to implement it. We’ve decided it’s worth pursuing because it’s an exercise in adaptability for our organization and it gives us experience for handling similar circumstances in the future. We’re trying to keep options open, setting signposts and benchmarks for what may come.

    In our daily lives, many of us are struggling to connect with our friends and family in satisfying ways. We understand a virtual gathering is not the same as hugging our siblings, but right now, it’s what is safe. Again, we’ll be upfront with you. We don’t know what this is going to look like. In truth, we don’t even know if we can pull it off. We have a lot of ideas and we’re trying to find the tangible things that we need in order to manifest our ideas (and to determine which ideas we are even able to implement), and one thing is becoming very apparent: we’re going to need a lot of help if we want to make this happen.

    Most of our ideas come back to the importance of video conferencing to make this happen. That involves someone hosting it. One person cannot host an entire weekend. Our main limitation right now in this regard is the number of people who are willing and able to volunteer to facilitate for a specific amount of time, if we want to make it approximate a weekend retreat.

    We’re also currently focusing on making the heart-to-heart connection happen above all else, which we believe to be at the core of the GSV experience. However, we are still open to potential workshops as long as they can be conducted over a digital medium. It may be difficult-to-impossible to have a traditional Heart Circle, so we’re trying to figure out an appropriate alternative, depending on how many people might attend the gathering. Again, all these ideas are subject to change as we sit down and continue working through what’s feasible and what’s not. Trust us, if we could, we would want nothing more than to give you a full gathering at The Mountain in a safe way, but right now we can’t.

    It will be different. It may be very imperfect. But if we can get together for even a single two-hour gathering, we’re calling it a success. The more help we have, the more we can do. But if we don’t have help, we cannot guarantee that there will be even that to look forward to. So, if you have a desire and willingness to help make this happen, we strongly urge you to reach out to us.

    The best part is you don’t have to leave the comfort of your bed to help!

    If you are a member of a GSV Working Circle, please consider how you might translate your work at The Mountain to a digital medium.

    Please contact Council@gayspiritvisions.org or Markcmedlin@gmail.com with your intent to be of service, or if you have questions. (Probably, though, we don’t have many solid answers right now.)

    Thank you for your patience and for your compassionate understanding as we try to navigate the waters of this difficult time.

    From The Council, with Love,

    Jason Buchanan, Presiding Elder
    Robert “Bear of the RO” McDonald, Elder of Finance
    John Rivest, Elder of Records
    Randy Taylor
    Bruce “Dandy” Tidwell
    Jonny “Mothra” Gray
    Mackie “Luna Farfalla” Obando
    Neil Burns
    David Cable

  • GSV 2020 Spring Retreat

    In the Wellspring of Queer Resilience: Listening to the Wisdom of Our Ancestors


    2020 Spring Retreat

    May 8 – 10, 2020


    The Mountain Retreat and Learning Center ~ Highlands, NC


    2020 Spring Retreat

    Register Now!


    Beloved Siblings,

    These days, there’s a lot of buzz in the personal development and corporate professionalism arenas about the idea of “resilience.” However, in gay circles I don’t hear much about our inner strengths and how to cultivate and enrich these and then take them to the streets in new and impactful ways that will make a difference to our community.

    As the beauty of spring 2020 unfolds, I invite you to climb the mountain and step out into a weekend of reflection and healthy community as together we go within to explore our inner strengths. We will also venture out to explore nature in order to gain a deeper knowledge of the unique queer resilience that each of us draws on and expresses as we navigate through the challenges and uncertainties of our daily lives. It will be a time to deepen our inner knowing, ground ourselves to our warm and gentle planet, and feel the bonds between us.

    When you go within, what awareness do you notice about your greatest strength? How do you express it? How does it help you navigate challenges? What would help you nourish it more? What other strengths might you have that you may be unaware of? How could these support you?

    One of our elders, Andrew Ramer, introduced us years ago in his book Two Flutes Playing to four primary clans in which men who love men express our consciousness in the world: scouts, flute players, shamans, and hunters. It’s time now for us to revisit these spirits and to explore ways to draw strength from their wisdom for our present day challenges and quandaries. At the Winter Meditation this year, I felt a visceral connection to the radiant well ancients in one of the workshop experiences. It made me curious about engaging in dialogue with them. I wanted to know more about what the positive ancestral energies would say in answer to our most heartfelt questions. In community with you, I invite you to join me in finding out.

    In this spring retreat, we will celebrate our connection to nature, aliveness, sacred sexuality, and to embodying our centered and authentic spirit in everyday life. Let’s celebrate renewal and rebirth in the beauty of spring that moves into the fullness of summer green.

    Now calling for workshop leaders for the aforementioned topics and anything else that your intuition and your spirits tell you needs to be at our spring retreat. Please contact me at markcmedlin@gmail.com directly or council@gayspiritvisions.org with workshop requests, proposals, and further questions.

    If you are interested in helping with the retreat in any way before, during, or after the retreat, consider reaching out to me directly at markcmedlin@gmail.com or to the council at council@gayspiritvisions.org for more information about ways to be of assistance. Helping is a great opportunity to meet other people. Fire us an email too if you have any other questions, comments, or concerns.

    And don’t forget, GSV offers financial assistance through the Raven Wolfdancer Financial Assistance Fund. GSV recognizes that economic circumstances may impose undue financial hardships on some and prevent them from attending our gatherings. The assistance we offer is designed to help offset the cost of attending a gathering. Additionally, most of us are happy to carpool. Please do not hesitate to ask for assistance. Why else are we here but to help one another?

    With appreciation for all that we are in life together,

    Mark C. Medlin, Convener
    GSV Spring Retreat 2020

    Register Now!

    Copyright © 2020 Gay Spirit Visions, All rights reserved.

  • GSV 2019 Spring Retreat: Awaken Our Magick

    Awaken Our Magick


    GSV 2019 Spring Retreat

    April 12 – 14, 2019


    The Mountain Retreat and Learning Center, Highlands, NC


    GSV 2019 Spring Retreat
    Loving members of my ever-extending family,

    The time is nigh to awaken with the opening of the green world all around us. We humans often think we live by our own rules, but it is usually nature which holds final sway. Every spring is a time to shoot out of the insulating casings we’ve built around ourselves to survive harsh times with our delicate petals of infinite colors to attract the next step of our life’s journey.

    The natural die-back of the winter is coming to a close. We have made our necessary sacrifices, and into that void, we thrust our being with the beating hearts of all our ancestors, our brothers and sisters of the natural world, and all our future realities, spun from our favorite dreams and woven into a growing community with our intentions, desires, experiences, and joys. I offer this spring retreat to you as an opportunity to build yourself a gossamer web of connections between past and future, self and other, heaven and earth, and space and form, built upon acceptance, understanding, and appreciation.

    The world is such that we are interdependent beings, reliant on one another, whether we want to be or not. What kind of world can we create when we consciously come together? What limitations are left in life when we open our hearts to loving all beings? What do we want our lives, our words, and our worlds to become? Is it possible to separate the you from the understanding I have of myself? What part of nature exists independent of everything else? What can possibly live in a vacuum?

    Coming together is not just a fun and fanciful idea. It is actually impossible NOT to do. You choose not to come together with one being, and that forces you to come together with something else. When we consciously come together and share our thoughts, hopes, fears, and desires, we can reach much farther than we could ever go by ourselves. Alternately, when we view ourselves as independent, suddenly all our resources are scarce, everyone is an Other, and if I cannot do it myself, it cannot be done. These are all lies. You know this to be true.

    So set the old beliefs aside. Come and explore with us what life could be like, if only a taste, a sweet possibility, a temptation of another way to live. Or come and dive deep into our swiftly spiritual waters, if wading is not enough to quench your thirst. We all carry a bucket of beliefs with us wherever we go and if we pool these waters together, we begin to see that anything is possible.

    There is always more room in this mountain lagoon for your beliefs. Let’s dissolve the destructive and limiting beliefs, take their component parts and rebuild our inner world with grace and kindness. Let’s share our truths, our theories, our experiences, and our techniques, and knit our worlds together tighter and stronger. There is love in this labor that yearns for release. Why not share it with those who are sure to cherish it?

    You are welcome here. You will always be welcome here. You are felt in your absence, even if you have not yet walked these paths. Come as you are. Come with all of yourself. There is no need to be anything more or anything less that exactly who you are, in all your shame, glory, courage, or lack thereof. Generations of wisdom run through your veins, whether you know it or not. Like buds in spring, open yourself to the truth that you are already everything you need to be. For yourself, for us, for the world.

    This is a liminal event. Yes, it exists in a specific place and time, but really, it’s where and when it’s not taking place that’s important: your daily life. Yes, it’s both real and very temporary. We cannot live in this space. It’s an infinite space, where anything can become anything else, so long as you believe that it can. This is something for you to use to break out of the winter cocoon of your spirit (regardless of how long you’ve been sleeping) and reenter your everyday reenergized.

    Yes, change can be scary, but it can also be fun. And yes, change can be hard, but it can be so rewarding. Come and explore the possibility of what your magicks bring to community. We’ll be here for you, and you’ll be here for us, and isn’t this give and receive in the same act really something sublime?

    If you are interested in helping out with the retreat in any way during, before, or after the retreat, which is a great opportunity to really inject your magicky goodness into this and meet other people, consider reaching out to me directly at J.L.Buchanan@gmail.com or at council@gayspiritvisions.org for more information in ways to be of assistance. Fire us an email too, if you have any other questions, comments, or concerns.

    Remember, we do offer financial assistance, if finances are an obstacle. And most of us are happy to carpool. Please do not hesitate to lean on us. Why else are we here but to rely on one another?

    With love, light, and the indomitable spirit of play,
    Jason Lloyd Buchanan, Convener
    GSV Spring Retreat, 2019

    Register for the 2019 Spring Retreat

  • GSV Spring Retreat: Awaken Our Magick

    Awaken Our Magick


    GSV 2019 Spring Retreat

    April 12 – 14, 2019


    The Mountain Retreat and Learning Center, Highlands, NC


    GSV 2019 Spring Retreat
    Most exalted siblings,

    The Spring Conference approaches and the liminal window it promises shudders in the winds of your coming change. Will you be here with us when we open this window and usher in our wildest dreams? We can do more together. Add your voice to ours and let the universe hear what you have to say.

    If not here, where? If not now, when?

    Spring is the perfect time to clean out our skeletons and take stock of what we’re left with after winter has finished whitening our world. The crocuses bloom, the daffodils creep, and the lilies of the valley pop along with the spring beauties while the song of the spring peepers trail close behind. It is time to shed our snow-stiffened snake skins and burn ourselves back to life with phoenix fire.

    Here at The Mountain, I offer a space and a place for you to warm yourself with like-minded magicians of all walks of life. To swap mental seeds for your inner garden and explore what you may have been too nervous to try alone or in the past. You are more powerful than you know. You can do this and anything after. We are creating an opportunity for you to stand in your power, unafraid of your own God-self, supported by all of us who follow a similar path.

    Maybe you’re unsure of what you have to offer. Come anyway. Your openness is a gift as good as, if not better than, any expertise you may or may not claim to have, but we often know more than we think we do. Even a small thing we pick up along the way has the power to change another person’s world. One of the tricks of magick is that you have to believe you’re fully capable of changing the world. If you feel you’re not there, come anyway. We’ll believe in you for you. The universe loves to play.

    And play we shall.

    Intermixed with weekend workshops will be free-form exploration in solo or spontaneous groupwork through the establishment of designated and open play spaces throughout the conference for various fields of spirituality, such as connecting to spirits, creating rituals of your own, sharing healing touch with others, and discussing concepts in a cozy and relaxed atmosphere. Wherever you are, you will find both mentors and seekers in whatever flavor you come: non-theist, poly-theist, mono-theist, medium, healer, psychic, shaman, spiritualist, practitioner, priest, dreamer, channeler, alchemist, mage, meditator, wizard, witch, writer, whatever. There is a place for you here.

    We still have space for more workshops. Show your brothers what you can do; show them how to do it for themselves. Please contact J.L.Buchanan@gmail.com directly or council@gayspiritvisions.org with requests and further questions.

    Looking forward to magicking with you,
    Jason Lloyd Buchanan, Convener
    GSV Spring Retreat, 2019

    Register for the 2019 Spring Retreat