All the Hemispheres

Leave the familiar for a while.
Let your senses and bodies stretch out

Like a welcomed season
Onto the meadow and shores and hills.

Open up to the Roof.
Make a new watermark on your excitement
And love.

Like a blooming night flower,
Bestow your vital fragrance of happiness
And giving
Upon our intimate assembly.

Change rooms in your mind for a day.

All the hemispheres in existence
Lie beside an equator
In your heart.

Greet Yourself
In your thousand other forms
As you mount the hidden tide and travel
Back home.

All the hemispheres in heaven
Are sitting around a fire

While stitching themselves together
Into the Great Circle inside of



Matrilumina Registration FAQ

How much will your March 3-8,2013 retreat cost?


What does that cost cover?
5 nights lodging in a shared, 3-person room at Esalen Institute, all meals from dinner Sunday through lunch Friday, access to Esalen’s entire property, sulfer baths and movement classes, and, most important, all of our retreat offerings. 

How do I register?
Click here for our registration form and payment information.

Can I make partial payments over time?
Unfortunately we are not able to offer this option at this time.

What if I change my mind? Will you offer refunds?
Refunds will only be available through December 31, 2012.

What if your retreat sells out before I’m able to register?
We will begin a waiting list the instant our retreat sells out. Our best advice to you is to be
patient and don’t fret! Based on our experience with our August 2012 retreat, we expect
there to be some re-shuffling of attendees, so it is very likely spots will open up between
registration and the retreat.

What if I want a single room?
Single rooms will not be available for this retreat.

Who will I be sharing a room with?
Once everyone is registered, we will create a private Facebook group so attendees can
begin to get to know one another. Then we will give everyone the option of specifying
roommate requests sometime in January 2013.

I am a gluten-free vegan - will there be options for me at Esalen’s dining hall?
There are options for everyone! Meat eaters, vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, you name it.

Any other questions? Email

Learning to Surrender

Here's my confession:  I don't really know exactly where we're going with Matrilumina. I'm not entirely sure what it is going to "be." As someone with nearly 17 years experience creating specific visions and seeing them through - building a brand, organizing gallery shows, writing books - this is not the most comfortable place for me. I like specifics, I like details. I like making lists and setting goals and knowing where I'm headed. I also know that, despite my love of the nitty gritty, I'm actually not really in charge. Whatever my dream or idea - that is what I need to let lead. I may have a "big picture" vision, but how I get there is not up to me. The path to whatever I'm wanting to create is going to reveal itself to me as I go, and I need to be willing to follow it.

I don't think it is just a coincidence that Matrilumina has come into being during a time of huge transition in my personal life. My husband retired - a bit unexpectedly - this past March, and a few weeks ago we moved from Santa Monica to Santa Barbara. Just as I felt our lives got flipped upside down when he returned to work after a 3-year hiatus in the fall of 2004 - when we moved from Santa Barbara to Santa Monica - I now feel like nearly every detail of the life we led down south has been left behind at our old address. My husband and I are now having to figure out so many new routines - his time day-to-day, our time together, time with our family (who now aren't right down the street), my work time, travel time, need for time alone. Everything is wide open, nothing much is known. We are feeling our way through this new life day by day, trying to see what works and what doesn't, with everything from walking our dog to washing our dishes. It has been messy, at times tense, but also joyful and life-affirming.

Between the move and my husband's retirement and Matrilumina and the fact that, at the moment, I have no real work-related deadlines in front of me (related note: I thrive on deadlines!), it looks as though my word of the year is surrender - to uncertainty, to the unknown, to possibility, to all that is right now. Where is Matrilumina headed? Well, we now have another retreat on the books for March 2013, but beyond that...I don't know! In all my years as an independent artist and writer, I'm not sure I have ever embarked upon a professional journey with so many unknowns, much less with two partners. I am usually such a stickler about these things - about wanting more specific direction and needing more certainty regarding potential partnerships. But this time, for some wondrous reason, it seems the thing I know most of all about Matrilumina is that I'm just along for the ride. My most important work in this is to trust, to let go, and let this take me where it will - into the sky or over the waterfall, where - no matter the ultimate outcome - the journey will be worthwhile, each moment a sacred gift.

Our next retreat will be at Esalen in Big Sur, March 3-8, 2013. Details will be posted in the next couple of weeks right here.

Blessings from Santa Barbara...Christine


It's with great honor for radiant womankind that we officially open up the doors on this site today. 

photo courtesy of Art, Books, Tea

Matrilumina is a very special creation and concept.
It's etymology is rooted in two words:
matrilineal- an adjective meaning inheritance through the female line,
and luminous- illuminated; radiating or reflecting light.

Our retreats and offerings are designed for women walking a path of light, you Beacons and Luminaries who illumine others and the world just by being YOU.

It is your nature to SHINE.

It is our nature to gather you in safe and sacred community and reflect your clear light and pure potential back at you.

We've created a space for the healers to heal, for the weary to rest, for the poets to inspire, for the photographers to capture, for the growing to thrive, for the driven to gain clarity-right at the edge of the world.

photo courtesy of Lorin Roche

Welcome to a haven on the cliffs of staggeringly beautiful seaside California: Big Sur has been called one of the greatest and most beautiful meetings of land and sea in the world.

Esalen is a world renown retreat center originally founded upon the study and development of human potential. Oh, Esalen. You had us at permaculture. At sulfur baths. At organic meals.

photo courtesy of Esalen

From the website:

Esalen. The word itself summons up tantalizing visions of adventure, of unexplored frontiers, of human possibilities yet to be realized. There is the wonder of the place itself, 120 acres of fertile land carved out between mountain and ocean, blessed by a cascading canyon stream and hot mineral springs gushing out of a seaside cliff. There is the delicate and subtle Big Sur air of a late afternoon in May, the midnight mist of July, the drenching February rain. There are October nights so clear the Milky Way can light your walk along the darkened garden path. And always there is the sound of the sea.
Visit our Gatherings page to learn more about upcoming retreats at Esalen, and other breathtaking locations.

photo courtesy of poketo

And always, there is the sound of the sea.

Love, Pixie


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