Hello holistic fair!
Photo credits: James Allan
It’s that time again - twice yearly, Arrowtown’s Athenaeum Hall opens its doors to the weird, the wonderful, and the downright normal world of wellness. Saturday 15th April marks the first of this year’s holistic spiritual fairs and an event that’s truly making its mark on the lakes district calendar.
But wait a minute... I have some questions. What exactly does holistic mean? Merriam-Webster tell us it’s about wholeness – in medicine, the wholeness of mind and body as an operating system, and in ecology the role of humanity as part of the planet’s eco-system. Everywhere we look we’re told that we’re not separate, apart, alone – we’re made up of the same particles of energy as the rest of the universe, and physics tells us energy can be transformed, but never created or destroyed. So holism is the understanding that everything is interconnected, everything is a part of the whole, and the whole is ongoing.
So what about the word spiritual? It’s a word that’s often misunderstood. Simply put, it’s the idea that mind and body alone don’t have all the answers, that maybe there’s another component that makes us tick – like dark matter, it’s something we can’t see, we struggle to define, and yet we have to call it something, so we call it spirit... or simply love. A spiritual path is not a religious one (though it may run alongside it), it’s about questioning life, seeking more than just what we see in front of us, and of making choices based on what we don’t know as much as what we do.
Add the two concepts together and the result is a fair centred around wholeness, wellness, exploration, open-minds, and connecting with the community. Whether you’re a crystal chick, an intrepid self-explorer, a quantum physics buff, open to healing, or just curious – there’s something here for you.
I caught-up with Jenny Geelan, a regular stall holder, to get her perspective on the event, and find out why she loves to come back, time and time again.
Q. As a returning practitioner, what’s the attraction for you?
A. Engaging with the community; new people as well as regulars that come back. It’s great visibility, and also important to me to be part of an event that supports Happiness House – such a well known local charity.
Q. What would you say is the main attraction for visitors?
A. I think that Queenstown is growing as a spiritual destination, and it’s a chance for the public to meet a number of holistic practitioners and ask questions. People are curious about what goes on, and it’s a great opportunity to have a chat in a non-judgemental, relaxed environment.
Q. What do you do at the fair, and how does it help people?
A. Personally, I give private intuitive guidance. People come along with all kinds of questions on all sorts of levels, and I give them a mini-reading – honestly, every single person goes away with an answer... that and a free hug!
Q. What are you looking forward to most?
A. Meeting people again, catching up with stall holders, spending the day doing what I love and am passionate about. I get such a sense of satisfaction when someone I’m talking to has a realisation, or really feels the support I offer – it makes my day.
Q. How do you think the event benefits the lakes district in general?
A. There’s a lot of networking that goes on around other events and activities in the area - many of which aren’t highly publicised - and clients tell me they look forward to this meeting of like-minds, of family.
Q. What would you say to anyone who is unsure about coming to a spiritual event?
A. I would encourage people from all walks of life to come along – if you’re curious, want to know more about self-development, have questions about your life you’ve been unable to find answers to, or would simply like clarity about what’s ahead, just come along!
So whilst you’re soaking up the autumn colours of the walkways (getting in the mood for the autumn festival), perusing proud historic buildings, and tucking into some of the delightful cuisine Arrowtown has to offer, why not spare a little time to explore your own being, your own je ne sais quoi, and your own (oxymoron) wholeness. I recommend you bring some cash along, you just never know what you’ll be drawn to – a reading, a crystal, or a bit of early Christmas shopping - I’ve surprised myself before! However, the Arrowtown Holistic Spiritual Fair as an event is free to explore, with all koha/dana/donations going to Happiness House, a very worthwhile cause, supporting families and individuals in the Wakatipu area.
Words by Cas Wylde
For more information visit: www.caswylde.com
For more information visit: https://www.facebook.com/Holistic-Spiritual-Fair-930620270326664/