2023 Sacred Waters Retreat
Chief Iyanifa Fajembola Fatunmise also known as Yeye Luisah Teish is an American author of African and African-diaspora spiritual cultures. She also is an affluent ritualist, keynote speaker, and spiritual advisor on a global scale. Primarily known for Jambalaya: The Natural Woman’s Book of Personal Charms and Practical Rituals, a women’s spirituality classic published in 1985 by Harper & Row Publishers. This book has been translated into German, Spanish, and Dutch. As of 2021, the work can be purchased on Audible.com narrated in her own voice.
She has contributed to 40 anthologies, most notably Spiritual Guidance Across Religions: A Sourcebook for Spiritual Directors and Other Professionals Providing Counsel to People of Differing Faith Traditions. Magazines such as Ms. Essence, Sage Woman, and the Yoga Journal have provided further accessibility to her poetry, and essays. Her articles and artworks appear in Coreopsis: Journal of Myth and Theater, and the Cascadia Subduction Zone Journal of Speculative Fiction.
As an Oshun priestess (Yoruba Goddess of Love and Sensuality), Yeye continues to officiate over spiritual retreats, rituals, and workshops that span over forty years since her introduction into the Ifa spiritual practice. She is also the Chief Elder for the Counsel of Sacred Waters Retreat LLC. which holds sacred space and ancestral healing & restoration training for marginalized communities of women.
Yeye holds an honorary Ph.D. from the International Institute of Integral Human Sciences.
Queen Mother Osunnike Anke is a natural healer, spiritual intuitive/seeress, priestess of the ancient West African goddess Osun, co-founder and president of the Institute of Whole Life Healing, a non-profit designed to assist individuals and groups in remembering their Original Greatness, Life’s Purpose, and Divinity. She is also the founder of One Million Wombs United, a universal mission uniquely designed to reignite the Sacred Feminine luminosity within the wombs of a “critical mass” of Consciously Evolving Empowered Women called to give birth to a New World.
Queen Mother Osunnike’s passionate life’s purpose for over 30 years is creatively assisting women in healing and transmuting mind, body, ancestral, social, sexual, and cultural trauma so they can liberate the dormant Sacred Transformative Power within their wombs. She KNOWS that as healed, whole, liberated, and UNITED women – we have the Innate POWER to change our world.
Queen Mother Osunnike has also just released her best seller memoir, “Tapestry of My Soul – Rebirthing the Sacred Sexual Feminine Mysteries”.
Priestess Stephanie Rose Bird is a painter and the author of several bestselling books on earth spirituality, Hoodoo, and anthropology, including Sticks, Stones, Roots and Bones, 365 Days of Hoodoo, Light, Bright and Damned Near White, and African American Magick. Priestess Bird, who holds a BFA cum laude, and MFA, is a devotee of the Divinely Feminine. She is an Elder, Eclectic Pagan, Magick-maker and keeper of the spiritual wisdom of her indigenous African ancestors. Her work centers around the nexus of earth wisdom and the legacy of black cultural heritage.
Dr. K. Zauditu-Selassie is a retired Professor of English. A 2009-2010 Fulbright Scholar at the University of Cocody in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, has been a National Endowment for the Humanities Dissertation fellow, an NEH seminar and institute participant, a National Council for Black Studies fellow at the University of Ghana, Legon, a Fulbright-Hays fellow in Cairo, Egypt, a Fulbright-Hays seminar participant in the Republic of South Africa, a New York University Scholar-In Residence, a Mellon fellow at the Gorée Institute in Dakar, Senegal, and a Fulbright-Hays Scholar in the Republic of South Africa. Dr. Zauditu-Selassie has lived, studied, lectured,
and traveled extensively throughout Africa, South America, and the Caribbean.
A cultural critic and motivational speaker, she is the author of, “I Got a Home in Dat Rock: Memory, Orisa, and Yoruba Spiritual Identity in African American Literature” in Orisa: Yoruba Gods and Spiritual Identity in Africa and the Diaspora, as well as several journal articles including, “Step and Fetch It: Zora Neale Hurston’s Reclamation of African Ontology in Their Eyes Were Watching God,” “Women Who Know Things: African Epistemologies, Ecocriticism, and Female Spiritual Authority in the Novels of Toni Morrison,” and “Every Goodbye Ain’t Gone: Using Adinkra Symbols to Frame Critical Agenda in African Diasporic Literature,” and other essays.
Prophetess Mary Ayodele
Mary Ayodele is a Prophetess and Community Herbalist. As Foundress of the Institute of Africana Cosmology, she preserves and teaches Africana healing wisdom in conferences, classes, and consultations globally. Mary’s training in plant based healing began in her Grandma’s garden as a little tot of ’bout two or three years old and continued around the world as an initiate and scholar in West and Central African spiritual traditions. Currently, she keeps house in the Gulf of Mexico Bioregion/Houston TX and Southwest Nigeria.
Mary has presented Africana folk medicine workshops at Seattle Pacific University, the Smithsonian Institution , the Afro-Botany Immersion Conference, and presented papers at the Breakin Black, Reaching Back Conference at CUNY and the African and Diasporic Religious Studies Association. Mary is a featured contributor in the psychology textbook Root Psychology: A Diverse Assessment regarding the intersectionality of embodied Ancestral earth based healing in the Africana diaspora and several other publications and radio shows.
Nara Ziwa-River Medicine
By centering ancestral spiritual resiliency, we will explore the different blessed waters on Earth, their different spiritual properties and healing attributes including how to recognize, interact and gather them and when. Group and personal exercises that apply Nara Ziwa to personal and familial well being and stability will be shared. Reclamation of our heritage as water keepers, well finders/tenders, and sacred alchemists as part of the dance of dealing with transformative times will be enjoyed.
Courtney Alexander is a multi-media artist, creative director, and writer
with a Bachelor’s in Studio Art from the University of South Florida. In her
past work she dug into issues of duality, hypersexuality, and self-awareness;
a much more personal dialogue which served to create vulnerability and
explore the complex nature of her existence.
Her paintings and sculptures are abstract and experimental, allowing for a more tactile sensory experience. The Dust II Onyx Tarot Deck is a natural progression in her exploration of identity and her largest project to date. Her next mission is to create a non-profit publishing platform that caters to minority and marginalized artists who desire to create uplifting and educational products for their communities.
Self Discovery is Ancestral Discovery: Bridging the Sacred Journey and Creative Process
Dust II Onyx: A Melanated Tarot deck is the first illustrated tarot deck by an African American artist, created by interdisciplinary artist Courtney Alexander. This session highlights Alexander’s journey through bridging her art and spiritual journey, ancestral healing through art-making, the myths of what artistic freedom looks like, and the role sacred art plays in collective healing. Attendees will learn through hands-on demonstrations and exercises in uninhibited creation.
We are all sacred beings who carry in our DNA an array of experiences, through multiple existences. The distractions of our western lives, surviving as marginalized people at multiple intersections, carrying intergenerational traumas. These experiences inform how, why, or if we even can create; yet you still feel that urge, that yearning, that calling, to produce. “What do I create?” “Why am I supposed to do this?” “How do I even begin?” Before you know it, “Dr. Whatsweisenhow” has convinced you to stop before you even begin.
Iya Angelique “Sobande” Greer is a Tennessee-based Master Herbalist, Holistic Nutritionist & Wellness Strategist with more than 30yrs in the field. A practicing Ozainista & Priestess of Shango since the 1990’s. She is also the founder for the first African American School of Herbalism in the United States – The NCB School of Herbalism & Holistic Health. Additionally, she is the Visionary Powerhouse behind Sacred Waters Retreats LLC., The Afro Botany Immersion Conference and Ax Blade Calabash LLC.
Iya Sobande is a world travelled speaker & consultant who maintains a private practice near Nashville Tennessee.
Iya Sobande & her husband Priest Baba Cliff “Akinrinola” Greer have spent their lives in deep commitment to honoring their path, family, ancestors, and the community. They are the parents of three grown daughters & five amazing grandchildren.
Their work is currently centered around:
-Curating & Facilitating Sacred Spaces for Healing
-Teaching & Training Small Groups & Collectives
-Performing Sacred Rites and Ceremonies for Individuals & Groups
Shana Nunnelly is an Atlanta-based sound bath facilitator and wellness entrepreneur who offers space for relaxation and rest. A practicing Buddhist and a West African High Priestess of Mami Wata. Shana’s connection with spirit is passed down from her ancestral lineage. In 2015 after 20 years of being a hair stylist and salon owner, she sought a deeper way to connect and serve her clients and in 2017 discovered sound meditations. After a year of devout training and mentorship with Danielle Hall of Sound Embrace health, she began to hold space and teach sound meditation to others.
Shana says “In 2015 I sought a deeper way to connect with my clients at HoneeComb Salon that would empower them to seek or deepen their connection with wholeness. In my search, I found my long-term practice of meditation deepened with sound baths and sought to offer my clients a satisfying connection with the peace, truth, and wisdom they crave. Being able to provide a space and place for people to forge deeper, more meaningful connections with themselves is my life’s work. It’s my privilege to serve as a healer with layers of life experience as a hairstylist, entrepreneur, and mindfulness coach, all my passions intersect to create a conduit of healing for individuals and small groups.”
Shana teamed up with Iya Sobande in 2012 to extend the vision and sucess for Sacred Waters Retreat LLC.
Flora Domenis a Yoga Teacher and Ayurvedic Therapist, specialized in Lifestyle, Nutrition & Vedic Psychology with over 27 years of experience infused by Earth traditions from around the globe.
Ayurveda’s millenary tools for modern guidance
Dr. La Toya Davis
Dr. La Toya Davis is an energy healer, self-empowerment coach, and spiritual intuitive. A Palera and initiated Egbe Priestess, Dr. La Toya has been transforming lives for over 20 years.
Throughout her career, she has helped spiritual women release fear, guilt, and conditioning to show up as their most authentic self. She has helped hundreds of women strengthen their intuition and connect with their personal power to create a self-empowered Soul aligned life full of abundance, joy, and ease!
Dr. La Toya’s dedication to providing women tools to reclaim their spiritual power has helped them become the authority in their own lives. When working with individual clients through her business, CHI Healing Institute, Dr. La Toya always aims to resolve karmic debt, restore soul loss, and help her clients move into a life of alignment.
Dr. La Toya’s commitment to connect, elevate, and heal led her to create CHI Healing Institute. Her experience as a spirit medium initiated into various African Traditional Religious systems, as well as her understanding of Energy Healing and Universal Laws, has given her amazing techniques that provide amazing results time after time. She heals through personal healing rituals, ancestral lineage healing work, Reiki sessions, Soul Realignment work through the Akashic Records, Akashic Record readings, and spiritual empowerment workshops.
My Ancestors’ Keepers: Ancestral Lineage Healing
Join Dr. La Toya as we discuss the way trauma can be passed down within the ancestral lineage. During this workshop we will embark on a healing ceremony and session focused on your ancestral lineage. Each participant will be able to focus on identifying, releasing, and transmuting a trauma or pattern that has impacted their lineage.
Come and join as we Connect, Elevate, and Heal.
Naomi Hanna is an Indigenous Seminole and Gullah Geeche wombman that found her healing through Creative Arts, Herbalism, Permaculture, and Capoeira Angola Martial Arts. She has traveled to 6 different countries and spent time with 3 indigenous communities. In 2018, Hanna earned her certificate in Permaculture Design. In 2019, she traveled to Uganda Africa to teach her first co-led PDC course and now teaches Permaculture online from an Indigenous lens. Hanna has been studying herbalism and dream therapy and now practices Holistic Health Coaching with Clients in Miami, Florida.
Dreaming with Plant Spirits
Learn the proper rituals of convening with plant spirits in Lucid dreams by using indigenous herbalism and spiritual methods.
S.J. Boyce resides in the Middle Tennessee area. She considers her spirituality and family to be most important to her. If she isn’t spending time with her friends and family, you can almost always find her relaxing, reading a good book, or listening to great live music. The Other Side of a Murder is S.J.’s first novel.
Writing Your First Book
Writing an entire book can be an intimidating task, especially for novice writers. It requires hard work, dedication, and intense discipline. Even for progressive writers of bestsellers, one of the hardest parts of the writing process can be simply sitting down to write the first page. If you take it one step at a time, one day at a time, writing a book is an achievable goal.
This class will help new authors overcome the intimidating parts of writing a book, allowing them to stay focused and develop their voices to communicate to their readers.
Maati "Sanovia" Muhammad
Maati Sanovia Haleemah Muhammad is a committed yogini, community activist, performing poet and passionate speaker. She is the founder of Ka Vibrations Yoga, offering Goddess workshops, retreats and certifications.
She is a Shaktii Yogini, offering a platform that serves the empowerment of women. You can expect High vibrational gatherings, at any of her offerings. She has chosen the title of Maati, because of her path is to uphold the principles and traditions of the Ancient Goddess of ancient Kemet, Maat. Some of these are balance, righteousness, truth and harmony. She believes that the power of women, when awakened, is magical.
Sanovia Muhammad, is a Retired Registered Nurse. She serviced the community in this profession for 30 years, primarily in Labor and Delivery. She is the womb mama of six and the community mama of many more. She also has seven biological grandchildren at the time of this writing. This is her 1st book and probably, she says her last. This book was an endeavor of love orchestrated by the untimely murder of her mama, Dr. Vergie Rasheedah Muhammad.
Kemetic Yoga is excellent for connecting with ancestral wisdom and a deep knowing that we all possess. This practice incudes three basic Kemetic sequences. The movements are slow and with the breath. This form of yoga is adaptable for all ages and body types. See you at sunrise!.
Stephanie Seibert is a certified yoga instructor, vibrational sound practitioner and is currently in the process of becoming a licensed massage therapist. Through her 10 years of yoga practice, she was introduced to the transformative power of sound healing.
She began her journey to facilitate safe spaces of rest for others by completing a mentorship with Sound Therapist & Co-Founder of Sacred Waters Retreats Shana Nunnelly in Atlanta, Ga. Because of this dedicated personal practice of deep listening through yoga, breathwork, and vibrational sound she’s able to offer time for rest and reflection, creating space for each person to find their own way.
Grounding Circle & Sound Bath
Come take a pause as Stephanie creates space for receiving and deep listening through rest. Time together will include Yoga Nidra Centering, guided meditation, Breathwork & sound bath. Suitable for all ages.
Attendees are encouraged to bring a journal, something to write with, and anything that would help them feel comfortable. Ex. yoga mat, blanket, pillow/bolster, socks, sweater, eye mask, something to drink.
Wilnise Francois, a Wholistic Herbalist, has over a decade of experience working with the modality of allopathic healing. As founder and curator of small business, Well Fed Apothecary, she has been working to revolutionize the cultural concurrence between earth’s botanical plants and heaven’s celestial bodies. While collaborating with physicians and caregivers worldwide, her role as an herbalist extended with the merging of treatment methods from her traditional Haitian practices and her studies of Western herbalism.
Her healing successes range from, NFL star Jeremiah Owusu koramoah, Miami Dade County City Commissioner Marlien Basiten and more.
In honor of the people’s optimal level of health and wellness, she has vowed her life to continue bridging the gap between the sacred indigenous knowledge and the modernized technology of our world.
Her aim is to integrate the very love our herbs show us and implement that essence into our daily lives, creating a lifestyle of health and wellness.
Herbalism and its cultural influence on Wilnise as a first-generation Haitian American shape the healing modality she follows today, a blend of western folk medicine rooted in ancestral herbal maji.
” Kitchen Alchemy and Our Ancestral Spiritual Ties to Food”.
Well Fed Apothecary’s mission is to reteach our healthy relationship to foods and how accessible our medicines are even in the new world.