state theta galleries
state theta galleries
state theta galleries

Centre for the Development of Movement, Health and the Arts in East Lothian

Template Notice

Please note that due to the current COVID-19 situation, we hope to run this programme in September.

Workshop dates will be confirmed in August.

Yew Tree Mysteries

The Yew Mysteries

with Michael Dunning

We are very happy to announce that Michael Dunning will be back at State Theta Galleries offering Levels 1-3 of the Yew Mysteries Training during September 2020.

Due to the nature of Michael's training, workshops must be attended in sequence; if you have not completed Level 2 its not possible to register for Level 3.

You may also repeat a training at a very reduced rate if you have previously attended.

If you are interested in attending please:

  1. Subscribe to the State Theta Galleries Mailing List
  2. Complete the Enquiry page with the details of the programme you wish to attend.
  3. Payment details will be sent on completion of the above

Workshop details subject to change due to Covid 19.

We are taking registrations for this workshop however due to the current uncertainty regarding travel restrictions and social distancing we will make a final decision as to whether we can run an in-person workshop on 1st August.

Please register through the process outlined if you would like to be kept up to date and on the Yew Mysteries register.

We are not taking any payments until we are clear the workshop can run but if you have registered you will have a place.

If its is not possible to continue in person Michael will offer a free Zoom introduction teaching to the Yew Mysteries during the dates currently planned for the in-person program and we will reschedule hopefully for May 2021.

Further Information

Yew Mysteries One: The Sacred Yew - Tree of Eternity (one – day)
Level 1 - £120/£100 conc £90/£80 (Repeat Training )

Yew Mysteries Two: Essence of the Five Trees (one – day)
Level 2 - y £120/£100 conc £90/£80 (Repeat Training )

SEPTEMBER 27th - 28th LEVEL 3
Yew Mysteries Three: - The Shining Ones (two days)
Level 3 - £240/£200 conc £180/£160 (Repeat Training )


  • Level 1: 1 day £120/£100 conc £90/£80 (Repeat Training )
  • Level 1&2: 2 days £240/£200 conc £180/£160 (Repeat Training )
  • Level 3: 2 days £240/£200 conc £180/£160 (Repeat Training )

Refund Policy

Full refunds available excluding a Non refundable deposit £50 up to 6 weeks prior to event.

You can either take the whole training or work through the modules at your own timing, beginning with Level 1.

September 25th 2020

Yew Mysteries One - The Sacred Yew - Tree of Eternity

  • Introduction to the Sacred Yew Tree.
  • Yew Mysteries study - Origin & Meaning of the Yew Mysteries
  • Yew Mysteries praxis – Entering the consciousness realm of the ancient Yew
  • Ritual & individual work with local yews – Encountering the uncanny nature & healing potential of the Yew

September 26th 2020

Yew Mysteries Two - Essence of the Five Trees

  • The Yew Mysteries & the Otherworld (Annwn)
  • Yew Mysteries study - The Wisdom of the Yew in the Myth & Legend of the Tuatha de Dannan
  • Yew Mysteries praxis - Communicate and work with the elemental forces & beings of the Yew
  • Ritual and individual work with local yews - The Otherworld of the Yew Mysteries

September 27th - 28th 2020

Yew Mysteries Three - The Shining Ones

  • The Yew Mysteries & the Ancestors
  • Yew Mysteries study – The History, Meaning & Purpose of the Shining Ones of Yew
  • Yew Mysteries praxis – Embodying the otherworldly & ancestral consciousness - stream of the Shining Ones of Yew
  • Ritual and individual work with local yews – Embodiment of the Yew Mysteries


Michael Dunning.

Michael Dunning

For the last 20 years Michael has been developing an approach to craniosacral work that combines biodynamic principles with an ancient western, and largely forgotten mystery knowledge that he refers to as the Yew Mysteries.

Michael now lives in USA where he has been teaching both biodynamic cransiosacral and the Yew Mysteries since 2003. He has written about his experieces with the yew tree in the book Soul Companions and has contributed articles to various shamanic publications including Sacred Hoop and the Journal for Contemporary Shamanism. Michael is also a regular guest on spirituality and health themed radio shows through the USA.

Further Information

The Yew Mysteries were centered on the Yew tree (Taxus Baccatta) as the original Tree of Life. Many scholars now believe that the Norse World Tree, Yggdrasil was a yew and not an Ash, as had previously been assumed.

An Ash tree is neither evergreen nor long- lived. A Yew on the other hand is most certainly evergreen and can live for several thousands of years, if not eternally!

The oldest known word for the yew, Eya ( Hittite 1750BCE) means ‘eternity’ or ‘to be touched by eternity’. In the 15th century Irish Book of Lismore the age of the earth is linked to the Yew tree:

-- Three lifetimes of the yew for the world from its beginning to its end.

The Yew Mysteries Training begins with an introductory one - day workshop called
Yew Mysteries One - Yewshamanism

Introductory workshops are currently being offered in Abergavenny Wales, and in Ormiston, Scotland as well as in Seattle WA, USA. Upon completion of Yew Mysteries One students are eligible to participate in Yew Mysteries Two through Five at any training location.

yew tree panorama