Letter of Instruction for the
2022 Fall Ceremony

The Gathering of the Gifts

Thank you for joining us for the fourth ceremony of the year: The Gathering of the Gifts sponsored by The Hearts of Fire Council. This ceremony will take place on Saturday Oct 15th, 2022 from dawn to dusk (or as much time as you can put aside).

As we wrote in the announcement letter: “Since the (energy) seeds that were forged in the vast stillness of last winter have finally grown and matured, and are ready for harvest. It is time for each of us to take an inventory of what we have created with the year. Some things are obvious while others are not and will require some reflection. This ceremony will offer a process by which you can gain a clear-eyed view of what your spiritual vision has created throughout the year. During the ceremony, we will look into four areas of life; physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. We will examine each so that we can consciously gather all that we have accomplished into a single focus of success as well as the challenges we have faced. It is often in facing and resolving our challenges that the greatest gifts are discovered!”

Naturally, when viewed through the lens of the physical mind and senses, many of our experiences are seen as anything but a ‘gift’. There have been many struggles, much pain and frustration, perhaps hurts of a physical or emotional nature throughout the year. However, I want to submit to you that this is only the case when viewed through a dark lens. This dark lens is the accumulated negativity that we house in what is called the “unconscious mind.” It contains the judgments, beliefs, stories and hurts and pain of our lifetime’s experience. This lens ‘darkens’ our interpretation of the events of our life.

There is another way to look, a unique focus, that opens a different reflection on the events of our life. Awakening that faculty is the purpose of this ceremony. You see, there are many perspectives through which we can look at our experiences. The physical perspective tells the story of our body; the emotional perspective tells the story of our emotional life and health; the mental perspective tells the story of the mind, its thoughts and plans; and the spiritual perspective reveals the presence and action of Spirit: love, life, intelligence, wholeness, and purpose. Of course, the deepest and most comprehensive perspective is that of Spirit and we will use that perspective broadly. In order to gain a complete view of our year, we will include all the perspectives. That is the process described below.

The purpose of the first part of the ceremony is to gather the harvest of your year in a single place, one where you can contemplate the totality of the year’s effort and accomplishments. This is the starting point. After that, the culmination of the ceremony, part two, is to apply a unique and new perspective on the “what happened” in the physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual. In doing so, we see through the false interpretations of the dark ‘lens’ to a more transparent, and therefore a more accurate perspective on the events of our life – as Gifts.

Opening Prayers

Begin with opening prayers at dawn your local time on the 15th. Connect with heartfelt prayer and a call for help and guidance for the day’s ceremony from the totality of Life around you. Send the prayer to the Creator/God/Life/Spirit (synonyms), to the spiritual forces that surround you, to the realms of intelligence, feeling, and the physical forces of your life. This prayer can be a pure yearning and opening of the heart or a verbal prayer from the heart. It should be a halting expression of the moment, not written before and rehearsed! It could include a pipe ceremony, sweat lodge, or any other powerful form of prayer that resonates with you. With this prayer, we begin a transcendence of the self as we are putting aside our usual, limiting self-centered perspective to gain the perspective of these other, more comprehensive forces around us. There is no perfection here, just a deep yearning for a broader perspective on the events of our life.

Building the Mandala

We will create a ceremonial space in which to gather the symbols of the events of the year. (This step can be done in advance if you like.) A circular mandala or altar type structure is suggested, however as always, these instructions are meant as guidelines, please follow your heart and fit these instructions to meet your circumstances.

The mandala should be round (preferably) and about 2 to 3 feet in diameter—though it can be considerably larger if you have the space. If it is an altar, it should be raised up several inches from the ground’s surface. At the center of the mandala, place a small, unlit candle or prepare a small fire. This will be the true center of the ceremony and will not be lit until Part Three: Completion, described below.

Around this central fire, define two concentric rings, one about half-way to the outer edge of the mandala, and the other at the outer edge, creating an inner circle and an outer ring. Outside of this, mark the four directions with a stick or stone if outside, or just a mark on the paper or cloth. Then draw four lines on the outer ring defining a space to the east, south, west, and north. Note the lines themselves are not in those directions but define spaces that face those directions. The east quadrant represents the physical realm, the south represents the emotional realm, the west represents the mental realm, while the north represents the spiritual realm. Please refer to the digram below for a basic visual representation.

With this structure in place we are ready to begin the Gathering.

Part One: The Gathering

As you begin to think back on your year, since late winter or early spring, collect items/symbols of all of the events of the year and place them in your mandala/altar. You can start with the most impactful first, the happiest, the worst, as you think of them – it doesn't need to be chronological. There is no “right way” only what works for you. Personally, I usually begin with the most impactful as that is what comes to mind first. Those can be events of great happiness—a marriage, a relationship, a breakthrough, a healing, etc, or it can be something traumatic--the loss of a loved one, an illness or injury, a difficult relationship, an addiction whether physical or emotional, etc. Gather the events as you think of them – everything that comes up, not just the things you think or feel are important.

How to Gather: There is a particular way we want you to gather them. With each event you recall you can wander around the area and find some object to represent the event. It needs to be burnable and easy to move if needed, and it needs to trigger your memory of the specific event hours later when we get to the culmination of the ceremony. How you do this will depend on if you are indoors or outdoors. We will provide suggestions of options to consider for different circumstances- but be creative while staying aligned with the overall intent of the ceremony.

One suggestion laughingly made by someone in the Waters of Life series, is to use post-it notes! This is actually quite ideal as you can briefly write the event down, it is movable and burnable, and it can be used inside or outside! You can also attach a post-it note to a symbolic item from your nature wander (stick, pinecone, flower etc) if that appeals to you. Whatever you decide to do, it is important that you are sure to be able to remember what it represents at the end of the day for the conclusion of the ceremony.

Basicallly, as you write, or wander, recall the event with a certain detail. You don’t have to “relive” it, but lightly recall everything about how you originally experienced it. As I said, this is not a reliving of the event or an intellectual analysis of it, but an internal gathering of the event to include it's energy in the ceremony. Bringing it to memory in this way is all that we seek. This could take seconds or just a few minutes for each event.

When complete, place the representative item/post-it in the most strongly correlated quadrant of the outer ring of the mandala – physical, mental, emotional, spiritual. Clearly, each event includes elements of all the realms, so to select one quadrant means simply to select how it impacted you most strongly, or where it started. For instance, an illness would probably be in the physical realm even though there are strong emotional components to it. Again, you can’t do it wrong, just go by how it feels to you and don't over think it. Our purpose is purely to gather all the events in one place where they can be viewed as one whole. We are beginning to build a picture, a story-line if you will.

When you have gone through the year and feel complete with this part of the ceremony you will have a visual representation of the events of the past year, gathered in quadrants in the outer ring.

Part Two: The Gifts

The heart of the ceremony begins now; the preparations are complete. In order to discover the hidden gifts within our experience, we begin by picking up each item on the mandala one at a time and applying a special perspective to each – we look with a new lens defined by truth and law, rooted in love.

When you first pick up an item, you might feel a light upwelling of memory and feeling, perhaps similar to what you felt in the Gathering portion of the ceremony. This reveals the old way, the dark lens. Most people experience life through filters (stories) defined by past experiences, but those filters are largely unconscious and create a distorted reflection of what we call experience. To turn these experiences into a gift, we want to see this event through the perspective of this new lens.

What is this new lens? It has three parts.

The first part is the perspective of God, or pure Spirit. When God began to create the universe, He/She had no thing to create/build with other than his or her own essence, pure Spirit! There was nothing else in existence! So part of our perspective is that everything is comprised of pure Spirit and therefore cannot be random or meaningless. Though we certainly may not know what it means we know that it is made of the loving and guiding substance of God. This lens gives us the perspective of eternity.

Parts two and three are made of pure Spiritual law (I use that term exactly: a law is eternally True). Part two says, “Life works with you and for you all of the time, whether you know it or not!” Life is a vast interconnected network of communication so what we need for our next step in our growth is being communicated to this network and the response arrives as soon as we are actually ready for it, (though not necessarily when we want it). At first this law requires a little bit of faith as it isn’t necessarily intuitive. However, after using it for awhile, you will find it does become instinctive and more and more obvious. This lens gives us the perspective of a friendly universe.

The third part of the perspective is the law, “your life experience is a perfect reflection, or mirror, of your inner, unconscious and conscious mind”. This perspective mandates that there are no accidents, nothing is unnecessary, nothing is random or capricious! If you are happy, there is a brightness in your mind that is being reflected. If you are unhappy, the opposite is true. This is part of the steering mechanism of your life that allows you to always sense something deeper going on within you that corresponds to outer experience. This understanding allows you to sense what is your next step on your life path.

Actually, all three of these are similar and related. They all say the Divine is present, the Divine is lovingly guiding you (though sometimes in uncomfortable ways), and that the Divine is showing you your inner nature and what needs to change if you want your life to change. This is the lens we will now use on each event gathered on the mandala. A powerful perspective through which to view your life!

So again, pick up each item in the mandala, one at a time, and look at it, but now from the perspective of the new lens described above. In other words, ask “what if all this is true? What might this reveal about this incident that I hadn’t seen or thought of before?” In other words, look first through the understanding that omnipresent God permeates this experience and so it is perfect. Second realize that this experience is for your benefit, right now, though you may not realize it yet. And third, recognize that this experience is there to reveal your inner world to you and to help you see the next steps on your spiritual journey. The second two aspects of this perspective can be difficult to embrace if the experience seems negative, so always emphasize the first part, the infinite presence of God.

This is a gentle inquiry, a soft prodding into the event. We are not looking for something radical to appear but for a softness, or spaciousness to lighten our awareness of it. It is entertaining a “what if?” openness of inquiry. Some events might open up dramatically right away to reveal their spiritual depths, while some might elude any shift of how we see it. The point is the investigation; the point is that this new perspective is rooted in Truth so will ultimately, and in the right time, open the heart of every experience to its deeper place in eternity and it's connection to all of life.

This process may take some minutes to give each experience the opportunity to be seen all the way to its heart. No matter what happens, whether a breakthrough insight or no shift, after a few minutes with one item, place it down on the mandala in the central, inner circle. You have seen it fully as an integrated event, so it can no longer be dealt with as a fragment of experience. It belongs in the central circle. Repeat this with every event in the outer ring.

Part Three: Completion

Around dusk, light the central fire (or candle) and pick up each post-it note or item, one at a time, briefly revisit the fullest perspective that is becoming habitual now, and embrace a sense of gratitude for the presence of God and Law in each experience of your life. Then place it in the fire and watch it burn off all the surface, physical aspect of the experience. Be aware that the fire is returning the event to the eternal Void and Stillness where the power contained in your experience is released and recycled to your ongoing journeys.

Closing Prayer

Burn all the events within the mandala. When this is complete, sit by the fire for a few moments and simply open to the perspective we have been exploring. Then release yourself to the silence that has opened within you. And enjoy the fire for as long you like.

In Conclusion

My only warning is not to try too hard with any event or to “force” the perspective shift. Truth is always stronger than our resistances so persistence will win the prize. Don’t take too long looking at each event from the new perspective; you don’t want to wear yourself out as that will merely block the subtle perceptions we need for the other events. Rest when you need.

If you don't have the ability to put aside the full 12 hours from dawn to dusk, do what you can. Do not rush this process, honour the space we have created together, however long you have.

If you are indoors or can’t have a fire, consider using post-it notes and burning them in a BBQ or fire proof container on a balcony. Adapt these instructions for your personal circumstances.

Zoom Calls

There will be an optional pre-ceremony call on Thursday October 13th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time, to answer any questions you may have about the process. It is important that we take some time together to clarify this process if needed. This ceremony is ultimately quite simple—despite this long descriptive letter!

There will also be an optional post-ceremony call. This is a great time to share experiences and hear from others which helps to deepens one's own learning and awareness. This will take place on Thursday October 17th at 8:00 PM Eastern Time. The zoom information needed to connect to both of these calls is included at the end of this email.

We will be recording both calls and will post them on the ceremony page of our website afterwards, in case you can’t attend. You can access it with through the button below.

Ceremony Website

Whether we see you or not, we are excited to have you join us for this ceremony. Our efforts here have an impact on a broader scale. It will go a long way to reintroducing this perspective back to society in order to help heal the superficial perspectives that are swirling within people right now. But mostly it will awaken a new, broader, deeper perspective on your life, and that is its own reward. To move more consciously in harmony with the Truth.


Malcolm Ringwalt
and The Ceremony Committee of the Hearts of Fire Council


Thursday October 13th - 8:00PM Eastern Time

Join Zoom Meeting < alendar&usd=2&usg=AOvVaw2mtQmb_ndZ-kMPapHuqf27>

Meeting ID: 870 0634 0632

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Thursday October 17th, 8:00PM Eastern Time

Join Zoom Meeting < alendar&usd=2&usg=AOvVaw1ElKugvVaK9BcPeewvO0d8>

Meeting ID: 898 0143 3689

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