What is a sweat lodge?
A sweat lodge, or Inipi (in Lakota), Temazcal (Spanish/Hispanic) is a dome shaped structure usually made from wood and covered in blankets. There’s a fire outside where we heat the rocks. Those red hot rocks are then placed in the centre of the sweat lodge once we are inside. The image of the sweat lodge is that of the Womb of Mother Earth. We crawl on our hands and knees back into the 'Womb of Mother Earth' and go on a journey of healing, drumming, singing, praying, meditating. Many experience this as a deep purification and release of negative energy in the body, and an opening and awakening of life-affirming messages. It lasts between 2-3 hours. There are typically 4 rounds, and in each round we bring in fresh red hot rocks. They are placed in the central hole, referred to as the navel of the Temazcal in a sacred geometric design invoking the powers of nature and the spirit of our ancestors and all our relations. Once they’re placed, the door to the sweat lodge is closed and water is poured on the rocks by the person leading the sweat lodge. This is when prayers are made and songs are sung, using a drum and rattle alongside each song. Once we’ve finished the prayers and songs for that round, we bring in more rocks.
What can I get out of going to a sweat lodge?
A sweat lodge is a space for healing. Whatever your healing intention is, whether it is a physical condition, an emotional hang up or a crisis you wish to overcome, you can find great purification and shifts occur in the space of a sweat lodge. You will come out of the sweat lodge feeling lifted, lighter in your body, and many have reported big changes happening in their lives as a result. It's strongly encouraged that you come with a clear purpose and intention of what it is you'd like to work through.
What experience does John have with sweat lodges?
John has been going to sweat lodges for more than 25 years. His first sweat lodge was when he was 25 years old in Pine Ridge, South Dakota, on the Sioux Reservation. He sat alongside John Around Him, Wallace Black Elk and Wayne Two Swallows. Since then he has been leading sweat lodges for 25 years, trained by chiefs from Mexico and Ecuador, Aurelio Diaz Tepankalli and Carmen Vicente. His training as an apprentice required great attention to detail, repeated instruction, and considerable focus and dedication. He captured the essence of how to hold the space and move the energy within the Temazcal through the pouring of the water, prayer, and song. The most important lesson from Aurelio has been that of peace and dignity of each person. With Carmen’s teachings John recognised the absolute importance of clarity of intention within the healing space. John has since trained around 30 apprentices to hold and lead sweat lodges around the world. As John says, 'my second home is in the space of the sweat lodge." He is a master at facilitating the space and energetics, taking into account each person's needs for healing and transmitting the profound teachings of his own teachers.
Where can I find dates/prices for upcoming sweat lodges?
You'll find upcoming dates of monthly sweat lodges, as well as the yearly sweat lodge camp under the Calendar of events tab on our website.
You'll also find dates for the Qi Gong camps where we run sweat lodges too.
The monthly sweat lodge costs £50 per person.
The sweat lodge camp costs £400 per person (July 2023).
Both payable up to the day of the event in cash or bank transfer.
For the exact address, and any other info, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What should I bring?
Women are expected to wear a light cotton dress, or sari, inside the sweat lodge, and men wear swimming shorts. Bring a towel, a change of clothes, water with electrolytes, and/or coconut water, a hydrating, nutritive snack (fruit, nuts, miso soup) and if it's cold weather, a thermos is well appreciated.
Check the weather conditions beforehand and bear in mind the change of temperature from a very hot enclosed steamed space to the outdoors, especially in the cooler months. Bring a towel and warm clothes to change into; A warm hat and socks in the cooler months, as well as a thermal top.
Also bring your good nature, an openness to receive the powerful energetic healing, and your clear intention for joining the sweat lodge.
You may also choose to bring a song to sing and/or a prayer to share.