At The Sacred Voyage, we consider safety and trust of the utmost importance in the work that we do, and in which we are able to support participants in their deepest processes. This is why we have written an integrity code, which clearly and concisely lists what you can expect from guides and ceremony leaders, and perhaps more importantly, what we won’t do.
(scroll down to read more about our integrity code)
The Sacred Voyage has formulated a code of integrity to provide a safe setting for our ceremony leaders, guides, and participants. Our organization consists of 15 experienced ceremony leaders and 85 guides who support our ceremony leaders on a voluntary basis.
Our goals are to guide our participants in the process of becoming ‘whole’ as described in detail in the book The Sacred Voyage.
Our aim is to help people discover where they are wounded and emotionally blocked and to help them discover how to heal and recover the connection with their deepest being.
The Sacred Voyage is unique in her vision and working methods. The essence is that our participants are spiritually guided through different layers of youth traumas and blockages. Traumas and blockages that have caused a disconnection with their essence of being.
Ceremony leaders and guides of The Sacred Voyage create a spiritual and therapeutically environment in which it is their task to trace blockages, give the participants space to transform so they can reconnect with their essence and let love flow through their life again.
Ceremony leaders and guides are well aware of their role, they provide a safe environment and during a Voyage, they are lovingly present to guide the participants in their deepest trauma and pain.
Our ceremony leaders and guides work in a warm, humane and connective way and are willing and able to look at themselves and their own shadows. They are all firmly grounded and unlike shamanistic settings or religious settings, they do not do our work under the influence of a spirit-enhancing agent.
There is an ability to self-reflect and the ability to work from the heart.
The Sacred Voyage
We acknowledge 5 basic needs (formulated by Pesso) that form the guiding principles in the work of the Sacred Voyage.
Place (your physical place but also your place
in the group)
Nutrition (symbolic of love and attention)
The ceremony leaders and guides of The Sacred voyage are tasked to guide the participants to his or her core of their essence of being. Using specific working methods, the soul will be set free of setbacks, blockages and (youth) traumas gathered in life. The voyage will always be made from a place of safety and freedom.
The participant is often not safely attached to his or her essence of being which has caused trauma or blockages. A participant is often not consciously aware of this unsafe attachment.
Our ceremony leaders and guides are aware of this and will provide a safe setting for the participant to travel in.
It is the participant’s own choice whether he or she decides to participate in the voyage. If the participant chooses to travel, the guides will take them under their responsibility and protection.
The guide is very capable of bearing his or her own process. If during the guiding of intense processes, the need arises for the guide to be helped in matters concerning personal themes, then the guide will be supported by the team of guides and ceremony leaders.
The guide will always remain in open communication with the team members as well as with him- or herself. To ensure the safety of the process in the setting of the Sacred Voyage, a guide should address colleagues concerning possible undesirable behavior. The guide is willing to reflect upon him- or herself and is aware of the human process. Within the team of guides, we work from an an open mind and an open heart. The central theme is distance versus closeness and the balancing of these in relation to the participants.
There are 15 ground principles in the code of honor of the Sacred Voyage that we use to give meaning to participants, ceremonial leaders, and guides:
1. Free from doctrine. The ceremony leaders and guides do not guide out of any doctrine. There is a spiritual setting where our ceremony leaders and guides use a methodology and learning with a clear purpose. The participant is free to experience spirituality and religion in his or her own way. The principle approach of the Sacred Voyage is that every human being has a soul that connects him or her to a greater being of that same essence of being. It is that soul or the essential being that is released with our work. How you wish to choose to name the spiritual connection with the divine is not important to us but we will respect it. We believe in unity within diversity.
2. Living intimacy.
For participants, ceremony leaders and guides there are boundaries concerning intimacy. Anything that lacks the intention of professional guidance within the setting of the Sacred Voyage is not accepted. The work of the guide is known for physical contact and touch when needed. This contact is meant to evoke trust and relaxation meant to allow the participant to engage in intense emotional processes. We are aware that our setting differs from a regular therapeutic setting where physical distance between client and therapist is the normality. Specifically, in the case of regression, we offer physical/bodily support to soothe and comfort the participant in his or her deepest fears, offering the chance to heal the trauma that lies hidden underneath. We are with the participant as long as he or she need us. And we leave once he or she can bear the process by his or herself. So, what we specifically do not do is seek sexual contact or perform sexual acts, kiss on the mouth, touch intimate parts of the body or stay with a participant longer than is necessary for their process. The safety and the process of the participants are the primary concern above all else and the guidance should reflect this.
3. The needs of the participant.
We will listen to and respect the needs of the participant. If a personal need for a participant conflicts with the goal of the ceremony it will kindly be restricted while we clearly explain why. It should be clear that randomness and misuse of power are not at play and that all is aimed at protecting the goal of the setting and the process of the participant. The guides actions are always in the service of the process of the participant.
4. An accepting attitude.
The guide is accepting and will set boundaries. All that is, is welcome to be. Sadness, pain, love or tears. Ceremony leaders and guides feel what is needed for the participants and will clearly set boundaries to protect the safety of all.
5. The role of the ceremony leader and guide.
The ceremony leader and guide are aware of his or her role. They are an essential part of the group and of the process.
6. The freedom of the participant.
The participant may at any moment after participating in a voyage or a retreat give feedback to point out what he or she experienced as uncomfortable. If the participant finds his or herself stuck in a process after a voyage or retreat they may always contact us to talk about this.
The participant is able to receive aftercare via The Sacred Voyage. We could provide a Skype conversation or in person. A process often progresses beyond a weekend or a retreat. Initial inquiries with the Sacred Voyage or ceremony leader will be free of charge. If additional integration sessions are needed The Sacred Voyage can facilitate these for a reasonable fee.
8. Participants, please feel welcome.
The participant may show him- or herself in connection with others. He or she is welcome. Also, those sides of the participant that he or she may not like to show or sides that he or she is ashamed of. We offer this welcome in trust, safety, and consciousness.
9. Distance and closeness.
The participant, ceremony leader, and guide should feel their boundaries and their needs. Balancing these among each other is important.
10. Transference and countertransference.
As a ceremony leader or guide, you are aware of the dynamics of transference and counter-transference. ‘Am I acting out of my own need or from the need of the participant?’
11. The ceremony leader and guide are capable of taking care of his or her own processes. This allows the participant to completely relax and give in to the process.
The ceremony leader and guides, as well as the participants, have boundaries. The participant decides the level and form of intimate or physical contact that he or she is willing to make or accept (while considering point 2). The participant makes a conscious choice to make a Sacred Voyage and go into a deep process. The ceremony leader and guide helps in this voyage of discovery and protects the safety and the boundaries of the participant and his or her fellow participants. A “no” of the ceremony leader and one of the guides is binding and is to be obeyed.
13. Support. You are who you are with your light and shadow sides. This applies equally to the participants as to the ceremony leaders and guides. The guides have a support role. Because he or she has experienced similar processes, he or she can support the participant in uncovering his or her disowned shadow sides, see them and embrace them. This is the goal of the Sacred Voyage and in our setting, this is the true meaning of becoming whole.
14. Norms and values.
The participant is free to explore his or her own norms and values in the safety of our setting.
15. Education and training.
Ceremony leaders and guides are trained within the Sacred Voyage. They participate in our in-depth year training program and the following team-training-days. Ceremony leaders are people with years of experience guiding and often are also professionally trained and work in the field of healthcare and personal development.
When a situation occurs where the code of honor is not respected, The Sacred Voyage expects you as a participant or team member to take responsibility to report this into our organization or to the responsible ceremony leader.
In case of any behavior that is, or is suspected to have crossed boundaries, we will have our disputes committee investigate the incident, mediate between the parties and take suitable action. Our organization strives towards openness, honesty, and transparency. The Sacred Voyage regards safety and integrity as paramount to the work we do and take these issues very seriously.