Queer Quest

Lima East (Strathbogie Region) 18 – 28 March 2019

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Nature reminds us that being Queer* is natural and something to be celebrated! Showing up as who we are in our own unique queer form is a celebration of nature’s diversity and honours our profound connection to the natural world.

Many earth-based cultures recognize the need for diversity and honor queer community members as gatekeepers to the ‘other world’, as edge walkers and a source of connection between the community, nature and the mystery. With rapid changes we see in both human culture and our environment, now is the time to come back to our roots and the gifts that the queer community brings to the world. Connecting deeply to yourself, accepting all of who you are, and bringing your unique queer gifts is both a radical act of rebellion against forces of hate and division, and a radical act of communion with all living things!

Join us in circle and under the stars for this ceremonial rite of passage, designed specifically for the LGBTQIA+ community. Coming together, to step fully into the multifaceted person you are and be witnessed by the community, is healing for everyone. Here is what others have said about the Queer Quest over the years:

In sacred circles before, I have found an ally or two, another queer person who understands in some fundamental way some part of my story. But to sit in sacred space with an entire group that shares that common thread, that common understanding of shame and fear and celebration, that is a gift that I had no idea until I stepped into that space that my soul was craving.” -Alicia B., 2014

Every Queer person on the planet needs to do this program. This is the most important work for yourself, your community and the earth.” -Quinn F., 2015

The Queer Quest was like coming home to a fullness and richness of myself and community I had never known before but longed for so deeply.” -Nadya Z. 2017

Claiming a seat in the council of fellow queer questers was empowering and affirming to my spiritual, psychological, ancestral, and physical bodies in ways I could not have anticipated. QQ gifted me what I didn’t know I was missing and needing so deeply: a rite of passage to bring intention and worthiness to the journey I am on as a trans adult.” Luca T-S. 2017

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I couldn’t encapsulate the experience of my Queer Quest into a few sentences any more than I could distill down a proper explication of the sun, moon, clouds, rain, sadness, joy, life and death all onto the face of a postage stamp.” -Paul F., 2018

As an elder cis-gendered man who now considers himself primarily gay, the opportunity to be around people of all ages and identities was a profound learning and spiritual experience.” -Steve B. 2018

This will be the seventh year this program has been offered, and the first time in Australia. If you are feeling the call, the need to be in queer community and do deep, personal work for yourself, your community and the earth, then this program is right and the time is now.

Financial exchange: Tuition: Sliding scale of $950 – $1950
Deposit: $250 (Non-refundable & non-transferrable unless program is cancelled)
Extra Fees: Camping Fees approx $100 (TBC)

There will be partial scholarships available through The School of Lost Borders. If money is an issue, we encourage you to get in contact with us.

To secure your place, the first steps are to enroll (by emailing Kiri) and put down a deposit:

via direct debit – Kiri Bear (Bendigo Bank) BSB 633000 Account # 132 045 501 (add ‘QQ’ and your name in the description)
or via Paypal – kiri.bear@gmail.com

For questions around this process and about QQ, please email Kiri at kiri.bear@gmail.com.

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This event will run on the lands of the Taungurung and Yorta-Yorta people and we acknowledge that sovereignty has never been ceded. We acknowledge the first peoples of this land, their culture, practices, rich knowledge of and deep connection to country. We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging, and offer our gratitude for their ongoing custodianship.

Program overview: The Queer Quest is held in the lineage of The School of Lost Borders. Ruth Wharton and Pedro McMillan (US) will be guiding this program with Melissa Turnbull and Kiri Bear (Melbourne based) assisting.

This 10 day program is divided into three sections; severance, threshold time, and incorporation. The first days are a time of ‘severance’ or separation from your daily life, leaving behind what no longer serves, and a time where you will be wholly seen and witness each other’s unique queer stories while setting an intention for your solo. The threshold time is your solo time of four days and nights out in the beautiful Victorian bush. Finally, the days spent after the solo time are the first days of your incorporation experience where you will share your story and begin to celebrate the fullness of who you are and all you bring to this world.

Logistics: We encourage people to arrive on the late afternoon/evening of the day before we officially start. That means you will arrive on Sunday March 17th. The ceremony will end by mid-afternoon on Thursday March 28th. Before making travel plans, please communicate with the organisers so you don’t miss any important time on the land or with the group.

Practical preparation: Please plan to bring enough food and equipment to be self-sufficient. You will need to bring a tent and clothing suitable for a full range of weather. We request that all participants purchase the vision fast handbook, “The Trail to the Sacred Mountain” available from Lost Borders Press (www.lostborderspress.com) to help with preparation. If you are unable to find or need some gear, please ask as we can often help.

We look forward to seeing you out on the land!

*We recognize and honor that the word “queer” has been used in the past as a derogatory term and is still hurtful for some in the LGBTQIA+ community. Many LGBTQIA+ organizations and communities have reclaimed the word “queer” and this has been both empowering and uniting of the multiple complex identities within the community. We use the word here as an inclusive term and shortcut for the LGBTQIA+ and ever changing lettering.