Scottish Country Dancing Dictionary

The Sacred Circle

Scottish Country Dance Instruction

THE SACRED CIRCLE (R8x32) 3C (4C set) Barry Skelton Celtic Book

1- 8 1s turn RH, cast (2s step up); 1s turn 1½ LH to face 1st corners
9-16 1s turn 1st corner RH, partner LH; turn 2nd corner RH, partner LH to end 1L followed by 1M facing 3M
17-20 1s dance ½ diagonal Alternating Tandem reel of 3 with 3M+2L. End 1M followed by 1L facing 3L
21-24 1s dance ½ diagonal Alternating Tandem reel of 3 with 3L+2M. 1M followed by 1M dance up centre to 2nd place and 1L turns about to face 1M
25-32 1s set, turn ¾ RH to 2nd place opposite side; All 3 couples chase clockwise ½ round to own side. 213

(MINICRIB. Dance crib compiled by Charles Upton, Deeside Caledonian Society, and his successors)

Dance Information

The term "Sacred Circle" has various meanings in different contexts. In the spiritual beliefs of many Native American tribes, including the Dakota Nations, Blackfoot Confederacy, Cree, Saulteaux, and Assiniboine nations in Canada, the Sacred Circle is a traditional symbolic circle that symbolizes harmony and the belief that life occurs within a series of circular movements. It incorporates aboriginal world views and is used as a self-conscious foundation for education and healing.

In a contemporary context, a Sacred Circle can also refer to a gathering of individuals, particularly women, who come together to share their stories, speak from the heart, and form connections. It is a space for deep inquiry, where participants can be seen and heard without judgment, fostering sisterhood and understanding.

The term "Sacred Circle" is also associated with ritual magic, where it represents a circle of space marked out by practitioners of some branches of ritual magic. This circle is believed to contain energy, form a sacred space, and provide magical protection.

In a far broader sense, the circle itself is a universal symbol of completeness, eternity, and the soul. It represents the infinite nature of energy and the inclusivity of the universe. The circle has no beginning and no end, making it a symbol of boundary, enclosure, and returning cycles.

The Ring Of Brodgar sacred circle
Sacred Circle - The Ring Of Brodgar

Image copyright Bob Jones under this Creative Commons Licence 2.0.

Back to the top of this Scottish Country Dancing Instructions 'The Sacred Circle' page