Beyond Your Wildest Dreams: Get Acquainted with The Wild Woman Project
What do you think of when you read the words “Wild Woman Project”? For me, the words freedom, confidence, seduction, awakening, fire and strength came to mind. I quickly learned that those words only skimmed the surface of this movement. When a close friend of mine told me about the Wild Woman Project, I was immediately intrigued. So, when I received an invite to a Wild Woman event, I couldn’t hit RSVP fast enough. The women I met at this event were amazing. They possessed the qualities of every word I describe and then some. I also had the pleasure of meeting the creator Chris Maddox (as seen in photo 1). A woman who, to me, has the ability to bring the same zest, confidence and heart she would have dancing around in the privacy of her own bedroom, to her everyday life. That sealed the deal for me. I wanted to be a part of this. That was almost a year ago. Since then, the Wild Woman project became a part of my life and it’s honestly, one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I recently had the pleasure of interviewing the founder and creator of the project, Chris Maddox, to gain the answers to the question that I know is burning your tongue right now: What exactly is The Wild Woman Project?
thalo: Describe “The Wild Woman Project”
Chris Maddox: The Wild Woman Project is a movement that calls women to use the tools of courage, vulnerability and true community to allow themselves to be WILD.
WILD means existing in a state of nature, undomesticated, uncivilized, untamed.
When women become wild (radically authentic, radically true to self) they start living by their innate wisdom, instead of just trying to live up the expectations created by parents, teachers, societal norms and maybe most powerfully: Media/Marketing.
th: How did it start or did you start the project?
CM: The name came first. Then there was the vision.
In the summer of 2011, I got this very strong vision, which stays with me and is a compass for the project: Women gathering in sisterhood, consciously creating their lives and creating strong relationships in their local communities.
I saw women gathering in circles under the new moon each month all over the world with the intention to listen deeply to themselves and each other.
When we come together as women, we amplify our power. In the vision, these women are connecting in their local communities, as well as connecting to their sister circles happening around the globe.
In that vision of coming together, we have the opportunity to awaken a long lost sense of sisterhood and the divine feminine, which throughout history has been largely oppressed.
So, I started by training a small group of women in NYC to lead their own Circles and eventually created an Online Circle Leadership Training Course so anyone with a computer could participate.
I figured out how to build a website. And since then, the whole process has been about figuring how to do stuff I don’t know how to do. The teaching part is easy, natural…everything else is done with a blend of resourcefulness, passion, coffee and the generosity of those who believe in this work.
th: What do you hope to accomplish with this movement?
CM: My aim is to help reawaken the lost art of the local village that has been really absent in the Industrial Age.
The shame researcher, Brene Brown teaches that one of our deepest human needs is to belong. I totally agree. There is a sense of true purpose and fulfillment that comes in true community. We belong.
We’ve been programmed to believe that the source of happiness comes from the amount of money in our savings account, the glamour of our jobs, status, how we look, what we wear. Those external things care for very little of our actual fulfillment
th: What’s your favorite component of the Wild Woman Project?
CM: Standing back, I love the circles. I love what they are doing in the way of bringing people together, connecting communities and making them stronger.
And personally, I love the creative freedom that the umbrella of living WILDly affords me. There is no part of what I am doing within the project that feels inauthentic. I feel truly free to be of great service and have great fun.
th: Who inspires you?
CM: The mad ones. I am always inspired by the lives of people who are called crazy by the majority. Often the mad ones are innovators, pressing the complacency buttons of their day. It takes courage to be called crazy and to not let that knock you over.
th: If you could chose one word, one word to describe everything that this project means to you, everything that this project is all about… what would it be?
CM: RADICAL TRUTH. I know that’s 2 words. I’m not so good with rules.
The Moon Circle is an essential component of the Wild Woman Project. I look forward to each moon circle like a child looks forward to Christmas morning. Every month, I take the time to give myself this little treat under the inspirational guidance of my Brooklyn circle leader, Meredith Edwards (as seen in photo 2).
th: What exactly is a moon circle?
Meredith Edwards: A moon circle is an intimate gathering and community for those looking to soulfully connect. Through meditation, creative visualizations, rituals, and support for one another, we search deep within ourselves and set monthly intentions based on a specific theme.
th: Why did you want to become a circle leader?
ME: In today’s western, success driven culture in which we’re constantly moving and doing, it’s easy to lose sight of what is driving us in the first place. I wanted to create a safe and supportive space to reflect and check in with ourselves, a place to ask the important questions: What do I want and where am I going? Is this serving me? I believe now more than ever it’s necessary to take time out to listen to ourselves and each other. I believe in the great power of community and the power of setting intentions.
th: Do you have a favorite moment as a circle leader?
ME: Sometimes there are ‘magic moments’ in circle. It’s hard to express in words because it’s more a sense or feeling. It’s a feeling of unity, ease and connectedness as a whole when everyone has surrendered into the flow of the circle. These magic moments often happen during the creative visualizations or when we’re sharing our intentions during ritual.
th: What has The Wild Woman Project helped you to discover about yourself?
ME: The Wild Woman Project helped me discover a deeper, richer, and clearer awareness of myself. It awakened and strengthened my soul’s core allowing me to connect back to my truest sense of self after a stressful time in my life. This project encourages and inspires me to be the woman I want to be in the world, the woman I know I am (as seen in photo 3).
th: What do you hope to give as a circle leader?
ME: I hope to create a safe, sacred, non-judgmental space for people to be seen, heard, and valued. I hope women leave feeling encouraged, inspired, and more centered than when they arrived. I hope to sustain a thriving village in my community.
th: Describe the goddess cards and how they are used in the moon circle.
ME: During circle, everyone draws one Goddess card as their “Goddess of the month”. Each card represents one Goddess and contains specific messages for you at that particular time. I encourage circlers to look beyond the written word at the imagery, the symbols, the colors, and the Goddess herself. We are our own best intuitive compass, and often the first things that come to us speak volumes. We journal on the card we receive and what it means to us. I believe that while we choose a Goddess, the Goddess also chooses us.
th: Do you have a favorite Goddess?
ME: I don’t play favorites, but there are some whom I bat my lashes, mostly because they have provided the perfect messages for me at a particular time. Butterfly Maiden (Transformation - as seen in photo 4) and Guinevere (True Love) have lit me up and made excellent guides.
th: What would you say to those who are skeptical about the WW Project and Moon Circles?
ME: The Wild Woman Project and Moon Circles cater to the warriors of our time, those who are interested in digging below the surface to grow and serve themselves and others. It is for the truth seekers, the change makers, and the open hearted, practices that take great courage, vulnerability, and faith. Like everything, it may not appeal to you, and maybe just not at the time, but the project and its services are rooted in goodness and do not exclude any person or belief system.
th: If you could define the moon circles in one word, what would it be?
Still wondering what the Wild Woman Project is? Well, I definitely recommend you come and find out. In truth, I feel like the Wild Woman Project is exactly what you make it. This movement helped me to take a deeper look inside myself. All of those qualities that I admired about “strong women” were inside me. WWP helped them to burn brighter without apology. Plus it gave me a wonderful community of sisters that I look forward to circling with every month. It’s an experience; an untamed, exhilarating, soulful experience. So what do you think? Want to get WILD?
For more information on The Wild Woman Project, please visit www.thewildwomanproject.com
Photo 1 (Chris Maddox) courtesy of www.thewildwomanproject.com
Photo 2 (Meredith Edwards) courtesy of www.thewildwomanproject.com
Photo 3 (women) courtesy of http://www.meetup.com/The-WILD-Woman-Project/events/142454092/
Photo 4(Butterfly Maiden) courtesy of http://wildwitchyju.blogspot.com/2011/03/goddess-oracle-cards-doreen-virtue_02.html