Vision and Growth
Letter from the Director,
Dear Friends and Supporters,
It is a lovely winter day where I am sitting, the room filling with warm sunlight. My chickens are nearby and my three hives are tucked in with insulation and black tarpaper which is warming in the sun. I wanted to take this reflective moment to write to all of you and share the deepening vision and marked growth of the College of the Melissae, share personal news AND, most excitedly, at the end of this blog I am offering a snippet from my book!
It has been a year of incredible inspiration, meaningful explorations, group bonding and growth, dreams realized and, on a personal note, one crazy hurdle after the next! Somehow despite car accidents, the death of a beloved pet, my phone and computer biting the dust at the same time, a forced move and health scare, all is well! I’ve got a sweet little van, a new quarter acre farm, a great health report, and two new redheaded chickens who have surprisingly turquoise ears! I have been working on the farm and chicken pens and enjoying a warm new home….and calming down after all of that.
Other more brilliant highlights include a very successful workshop at Findhorn in Forres Scotland, UK, with an additional opportunity to teach and meet the incredible community in Findhorn proper. Corwin Bell taught with me and it was wonderful to work alongside him and visit the Scottish countryside and seashore for a couple days afterward.
(Photo Above: Making candles at Findhorn)
I also had the rare opportunity to attend, present and speak at an International Conference in Istanbul, Turkey. Apimondia, run by a French organization is like the Olympics of beekeeping conference. Presenting here was a long-held goal of mine and was a thrilling opportunity to bring our studies to the world stage and not only spoke but presented a poster for exhibition. I crammed onto that poster, every symbol I could to trace the Sacred Bee to every culture possible.
When I walked to the podium and saw the people before me in African dress, the Saudi and Indian turbans, one cowboy hat, the burkas and sari, the rainbow of races and societies… I spoke to the one thing we all have in common, the Earth, and how the bee speaks Her language. I described how culture and thought may be more deeply inspired by these ancient societies and contributions than we give credit and that each beekeeper in the room has answered her call. with a deep desire to serve the bee. That the answer to the bee’s problems lie in our relationship to the Earth and, yes, the Divine Feminine. I spoke aloud to the Goddess of Artemis and how her Archetype moved through the world as a Bee Goddess. That we were standing on her land.
(Laura Bee presenting at Apimondia; International Scientific Beekeeping Congress, Istanbul, Turkey 2017)
It was such a short moment, but was an epic goal of mine and little did I know how much the Goddess Artemis would perfume the entire experience. In a picture (above) taken of me speaking at the event, my shadow, with a towering veil behind me, mirrors the shadow of the Artemises that stands in Selcuk, the site of my Initiation. In front of the world’s beekeepers, I re-introduced, to our apicultural community, the Sacred Origins of beekeeping and briefly touched on the thread alive in all of us.
This trip was deeply inspirational and informative and will no doubt help craft the College of the Melissae for years to come. My travels to Turkey were an initiation and a graduation. I will be going back with my traveling companion Rebecca Robertson of Asheville, NC. as the land of Artemis, the ancient city of Efes, the Sacre via Artemis and the Artemesian temples have been calling me ever since.
(Photo above: Temple of Artemis as seen from the rooftop of our pensione)
(Photo Above: Ancient road sign at Efes, )
(Photo Below: College of the Melissae Initiate and Contributor Rebecca Robertson and Director Laura Bee playing in the ruins at Efes, Turkey)
GROWTH & VISION
For the past six years we have been working toward a dual track. The general focus has been to simultaneously bring the concept of sacred ethics to the regular beekeeping world and to create an authentic Mystery School that studies the bee from a multitude of angles. When I began the College of the Melissae; Center for Sacred Beekeeping, I had a question: What would happen if we study the bee from all the ways we could? This thought developed into the Six-Fold Path; Science, Sacred, History, Mystery, Art/Medicine and Activism.