Since making the decision six weeks ago to change our name, we've devoted a portion of our weekly band rehearsals to engaging in discussions and activities toward this aim. While we've made light of this process by sharing some of the joke-name suggestions with you all, in truth, these conversations have been rich and spiritually nourishing. Each week we would feel ourselves moving closer to the new name, trusting that it would arrive when it was supposed to, similar to the way in which a baby will be born when the time is right for her, regardless of the projected due dates or schedule of the mother. “I'm very excited about our naming process! It's been like writing or ritual – opening to spirit to see where She leads us.” (Lana)
The first phase of this process was a flurry of suggestions, a myriad of Divine Feminine, Nature and Cosmic imagery interweaving poetically, conveying different aspects of our individual and shared spiritual and creative essences. A couple weeks in, we engaged in a longer process in which we each answered a series of questions designed to deepen our understanding of our vision and purpose as a creative entity. The questions also invited exploration of the differences and similarities in our individual experiences and expressions of Spirit. “We are coming from the four directions and we have come together at the center to find our name.” (Dionne)
This process enabled us to learn more about ourselves and one another and to identify the areas where our four, unique spiritual paths overlap and entwine. From there, the process moved into the second phase in which we found one word that resonated with us all. Hooray! So we turned our attention to finding another word or words that would match with it to create our full band name. This resulted in more flurries and storms of suggestions. The process seemed to be expanding rather than honing in toward an end result. But we went with it. We trusted it. The baby comes when she's supposed to come, and the journey of gestation is powerful too. “Generating and sharing these potential names for the co-created entity that is our Sacred Feminine Music was steeping my psyche in imagery that was catalyzing deeper layers of spiritual healing and reclamation for me. I didn't realize there was more healing needed! The process of undoing patriarchal religious intrusion into our innate connection with Spirit is lifelong.” (Alison)
An important question we explored together was around the type of imagery that resonates with each of our experiences of the Divine Feminine. It was clear from our early brainstorming that each of us has her own connection to the Sacred that is expressed through a unique set of images and words. The diversity is beautiful... and finding the sweet spot of deep resonance for each of us was harder than you might think for four Goddess-music-making-intersectional-feminist-peace-loving-women. Perhaps this is because imagery and words merely reach toward a transmission of that which is essentially unspeakable, that which is ever so much more inclusive and expansive than a single image or name. The selection of a name is a narrowing down of that which is the opposite of narrowed-down. She is not merely your vision or mine, She is All That Is.
So, we've been sifting and sorting through words that evoke images of nature, the cosmos, the archetypal feminine, the human and relational feminine, the Divine, and more that defies categorization. And much
that overlaps the categories too. “I have enjoyed the creative process of generating all the options we could think of, even silly ones, and then narrowing down to those that felt true to our identity and mission. We had a lot of great conversations about who we are as a group and what we are doing by making this music!” (Kathleen)
It is safe to say that labor is under way and birth is imminent. As we bid farewell to the name “Devi Vaani,” our connection to the sacred feminine expressed through the Goddesses of India endures. Devi remains in our psyches and hearts and is as much a part of our essence now as She ever was. We are grateful for all She has given and inspired in us as we journey with Her into our future.