131 McDowell Street, Suite 302, Asheville, NC
You are invited to join us as we gather to eat, drink, laugh, talk, play and listen to stories in celebration of the Winter Solstice. Please bring your own beverage and an hors d'oeuvre or treat to share.
Winter solstice is on December 21st. It is the shortest day and the longest night of the year. Traditionally, it is a time of both foreboding and expectancy, as the longest night leads to the revival of the sun. To help us embrace the darkness and entice the sun to appear, we will be joined by a wonderful Asheville Storyteller, Levi Gardner.
About our evening, Levi offered the following:
"It is as if there is a room in each individual human psyche where the deeper forms and energies of a larger collective of images and emotions gather and seek expression. Ancient in their content and wisdom, symbolic in their messages and indications, and at once humorous and wise in their effects on individual awareness, tales from the cultural history of humanity work like dreams to open the doors to this room of depth and mystery. Fairy tales, myths, and certain folk tales are like fragments of this deep and grand imaginative vision of what it is to be human and alive in the complexities of any age.
Stories take us into the heart of what is real and what matters. They take us into imagination, emotion and the prevailing dramas shaping our own stories and visions. It has been said that stories are not just our way of dreaming our lives into being, but a way of waking up to the urgency and crisis at hand in history and our personal existence. Human community emerges from the expression of stories from this mysterious room of depth and imagination. They strip away the veils that separate us from what or who is most alive, and perhaps most neglected, within us.
Ancient wisdom and archaic dramas disclose what is immanently important to our day to day worlds and lives, and tell us the truth from a different angle when we listen to what opens within us in the presence of ancient stories."
Levi has been telling stories since shortly after he learned language. In that, he's no different from the rest of us. But he was exposed to a great story teller in the late 80s and early 90s named Michael Meade, a Schenachie of Irish descent with a vast reservoir of tales, fairy stories and myths from dozens of cultures that awaken imagination and move emotion through the use of language and rhythm. Levi stole from Michael his method of playing a drum and telling a story, and he's been continuing this purloining of narrative imagination ever since. Educated in literature and poetry, he has been for the last nearly 40 years of his life working with persons struggling with addictive illness and seeking a spiritual awakening - something a good story can often help to achieve. He has an adult son who is a writer in Chicago, and lives with his wife and 8 rescue dogs in Swannanoa year round. His favorite movie, Miracle of 34th St. will be viewed by him any number of times during the coming holidays. Magic, he believes, is the one thing in life about which it is acceptable to be insatiable.
Please feel free to bring your own stories of darkness and light to share as well.
A donation, which will go to our guest storyteller and to help with Meetup costs, would be appreciated, but is not necessary in order to attend.