How We Got Started

Discover the path…..   then make it new

Discover the path is a community-based organization that was started in 1996 in recognition of the transitions in the life cycles of women.

A group of women with a vision of the future and in anticipation of the needs that each stage of life brings introduced Discover the path to a select group of 30 clients.

We opened with a weekend that had several alternative practitioners providing a sample of natural and energy related services that would enhance and support general well being.

The event was well supported.

We moved on over the next 2 years to include alternative health care information and support to women confronted with decision-making crises.  Some of the issues identified were breast cancer treatments, Menopause and related endocrine disturbances, diabetes, mental health and general well being.

We choose to affiliate with Sacred Medicine Sanctuary and Seventh Ray Press in the US, who provided products and information particularily in the area of breast cancer care.

In the year 2000, we saw the need to integrate a spiritual component to our services in recognition of the deeper needs expressed by clientele facing life affirming decisions.  Discover the path at Hestia’s Hearth was incorporated and affiliated with the International Assembly of Spiritual Healers and Earth Stewards (SHES).  This connection allowed us to find a medium acceptable to Faith, Religion, And Earth-Based Spirituality that would fulfill the needs of most of the women who seek our services.  This has been a powerful tool.  It has allowed the benefits of a feminine spiritual focus with positive role models from the distance and recent past.

In 2001 a permanent home was found for Discover the path at Hestia’s Hearth.  A Library of approximately 1800 books is being developed as well as a Centre for classes, teaching programs and meetings.

The future is here and the need for space to continue with our ultimate goal remains paramount.  Because we offer a unique grouping of services, we need the space to accommodate a more temporary, short-term client who may be traveling some distance for teaching, information or service.  Meal planning, Meditation, Therapy all require hands on teaching.  The value of juicing, for example, is important in the detoxification and support of tissues and organs stressed by drugs, and other treatment.  We want to pride ourselves on a homey atmosphere that creates a positive learning experience whether it be a day service or 3-5 day program.

Timeline

Date Action
1996 Discover the Path is born as a health and wellness service to accommodate the needs of women in transition
1997 Discover the Path gets a logo and opens its doors for its first wellness weekend
1999 Hestia’s Hearth is born.  This is the Sanctuary that will house the services of Discover the Path
1999 Discover the Path joins resources with Sacred Medicine Sanctuary, then located in New Mexico
2000 Discover the Path and Hestia’s Hearth join to form Discover the Path at Hestia’s Hearth Spiritual Organization Inc in association with the International Assembly of Spiritual Healers and Earth Stewards of Seattle, Washington
2001 A property is purchased to house Hestia’s Hearth
2003 The Board of Directors of Hestia’s Hearth agree in principle to create an Academy of Esoteric Arts and Sciences that will enable like minded individuals to be part of the rising need for Spiritual and Healing Arts.

 Our vision for the future

Provide accommodation for 3-5 women for daily visits and services.

Provide a satisfactory kitchen area that will enable teaching/training and meal planning

Allow a focus on healthy foods including a franchise for juicing and providing product to the clients and general public.

Allow private space for Energy Therapy, Therapeutic Counseling and Listening, quiet meditation

A home-like atmosphere for other related services within the larger community

For example:-

Lactation Consultant Services

Doula Services

Aromatherapy

Reflexology

Reiki

Computer Resources

Spiritual Conflict Resolution

Gentle spa therapies

All participants in Discover the path and Discover the Path at Hestia’s Hearth have been trained and certified in the various modalities that are offered. Where the training has not been completed in the introduction of new services, affiliates are available to provide specialized services.

The Principals in this venture are trained professionals who have been supporting the programs with personal capital and time.  The principals will continue to do so until the program is self-supporting.

Originally written in 2004:-

In fact, when this was originally written, we were well underway but unforseen circumstances created great change.  Now we are located in Creemore ON, and much of what we planned is still underway but we are working out of a different location.  Please visit us at www.discoverthepath.com to see how our vision has manifested.

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Why everywoman is a Goddess

“When I dare to be powerful—to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid”.

~ Audre Lorde, 1934-1992

This wonderful and inspiring quote from the celebrated Black Author and Poet, Audre Lorde, never fails to provide me with a deeper courage to face challenges that sometimes get me down. This gave me pause to really think about courage and what it means for women.  As I was researching the word courage, I fell in love with another word that is rich with meaning;  Agathology.

My Grandmother, who demonstrated enormous courage, in her day and time was named Agatha. I used to feel that her name was so old fashioned. She was also given the right to choose my name at birth and it was just as old-fashioned. I never used my given name until I was 19 and forced to change it from the family nick-name. Now, I wouldn’t have it any other way.  I suppose we sometimes have to grow into a name.

Agatha, like the name Judith, has strength, but there is a softness to Agatha that speaks of woman at her best, nurturing, providing for her family, out there protecting, doing what it takes to survive. This was very much my Grandmother’s way and how she had to live her life. So, I fell in love with Agathology, which means ‘an inquiry into the nature of good’.

There are so few references to this lovely word and its practice, Agathism and its adherents, Agathists. In adopting a philosophy (love of knowledge), related to the nature of good, I was inspired to learn about and appreciate the women and the stories of their life and their survival. I wanted to know how good can overcome evil and how we strive towards good in the absence of negativity. Further, I was inspired to write about them from their own words, out of the depths of their own pain and hope that other women will read the sometimes harrowing struggles and be inspired too.

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I started writing a series of stories and interviews about surviving to help give voice to women who didn’t have one.

 The dictionary defines survive as ‘live on’ endure subsist. None of these words can really describe what it means to overcome the despair of tremendous loss or breach insurmountable obstacles. Does one really live on after losing a life long partner, suddenly and cruelly? How does one endure the normalcy of everyday life after suffering the most inhumane physical and sexual abuse. Millions of women subsist in wealthy countries as well as poorer nations every day as they struggle to make a life for themselves and their children. The definition does not come close to describing the true meaning of a survivor. Hestia’s Hearth, our Sanctuary of healing,  thinks survivor is synonymous with courage!

Quite often the newspapers or TV tabloids will carry ‘human interest’ stories that provide the rest of us with the occasional reminder of the strength of the human spirit. Reading or hearing about the intimate and extraordinary things that ordinary people can do in the face of adversity is inspiring. When women find themselves surpassing even their own expectations and serving as role models for others, their story has a profound energy and quality.

Hestia’s Hearth is a quiet sanctuary in Southern Ontario which serves as the setting for intriguing interviews with ordinary women who have shown tremendous courage and fortitude. The subjects of these fireside conversations are the true heroes of Hestia’s Hearth. They are women from all walks of life and all parts of the world who, for the first time in some cases, will be sharing painful memories, courageous acts and hearts filled with spiritual presence.

I hope you will have a look at their stories.