Uniting contemplative practice and nature-based practice
The birds have vanished into the sky.
And now the last cloud drains away.
We sit together the mountain and I,
Until only the mountain remains.
- Li Po
Elders within both indigenous societies and contemplative traditions have long sought out the refuge of the wider natural world in order to become more intimate with a larger ground of belonging. These sages and elders of old deeply understood that the nature of their own minds was not separate from mountains and rivers and the great wide Earth.
In this day-long retreat we join this long tradition of exploring the gifts of nature-based practice and contemplative practice, coming closer to the inner landscape of our own minds whilst deepening our intimacy with the wider natural world, experiencing the mutuality of these ways of deepening presence to life.
Meditation instruction will be offered around the four foundations of mindfulness alongside a range of nature-based practices that complement these foundations. Such an apprenticeship to Mind and Nature is by necessity a life-long journey, and yet on this long road it can be useful to make the time where one’s day is given over fully to this endeavour.
This day will be useful for those wishing to deepen their own practice in these fields as well as those involved in sharing this work to others. It is particularly directed to those exploring the common ground between contemplative practice and nature-based practice.
Like all programs at Wildwise, this work is offered as a support in meeting the times we are living through and to contribute toward, in Charles Eisenstein’s words, “The more beautiful world our hearts know is possible’. We live in a time where the marriage of outer engagement and inner understanding is an essential feature of the movement toward a mutually beneficial human presence on this earth, as well as the ground for individual flourishing. This day-long retreat is an opportunity to explore this through slowing down and settling into a rhythm and quality of presence that supports us in remembering what is most important, what nourishes us and allows us to more freely bring ourselves to this life.
Course Leader: Rupert Marques
Rupert Marques has worked within the field of experiential environmental education for the past fifteen years with an emphasis in outdoor education. He trained extensively and subsequently worked as a guide with the School of Lost borders in the U.S. offering contemporary wilderness rites of passage. From 2016-2019 Rupert lived and worked at Ecodharma, a contemplative retreat community in the Spanish Pyrenees dedicated to supporting social justice and ecological sustainability. At Ecodharma Rupert directed the Nature based Practice strand of work, marrying contemplative practice with a range of approaches within the field of experiential ecopsychology.
How to Book
Online booking coming soon. In the meantime register your interest here.
Do not try to save the whole world or do anything grandiose.
Instead, create a clearing in the dense forest of your life
and wait there patiently,
until the song that is your life
falls into your own cupped hands
and you recognize and greet it.
Only then will you know how to give yourself
To this world
So worthy of rescue.
- Martha Postlewaite