ECOPSYCHOLOGY & MINDFULNESS IN NATURE

Mindfulness in Nature

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  • Mindfulness in Nature

Ecopsychology has been defined by the roots of the word to mean:

"Knowing that the earth is home to the soul”
Oikos=Home / Psyche=Soul / Logos=Knowledge

Our modern ways of living, working, and interacting make this difficult to remember. This disconnection contributes to the sense of dis-ease that takes a toll on our health, well-being and on the natural world that sustains us. The study and practice of Ecopsychology is about how we can restore our connection to the natural world to heal ourselves and see more clearly the interconnectedness of things.

Bringing the principles and reverence of mindfulness into the practice of reconnecting with nature can enhance the therapeutic benefits of both. It can be as simple as going into nature with our senses open and just noticing what is going on in both our inner world and the world around us. Not striving to get somewhere in particular or trying to analyse and understand everything cognitively. But rather just allowing ourselves to simply be and observe our experience. This different mode of being can make us more receptive to sensing wonder and awe, while helping us feel more grounded, connected and at ease. Practicing nature connection with the support of a group and guidance of a teacher, can be particularly enriching and insightful, as it provides a container for reflecting on stories lived and insights gained.

This one-day workshop will introduce some key principles and practices of ecopsychology and mindful nature connection. We will alternate between time spent outside and regrouping indoors, exploring throughout the day the following:

  • What is Ecopsychology? Introducing a framework of the field and why it is so needed in these times.
  • How do we experientially connect with nature using mindfulness? Grounding in the body, tethering our attention out, and noticing what arises.
  • Key principles and modes of mindful nature connection: anchoring, staying curious, just being, going with the flow, knowing by heart, trusting, taking care, allowing what is, sensing wonder.
  • Mindful wandering: giving ourselves permission to be offline while setting the intention to pay attention, with the attitudes of mindfulness as we walk slowly or sit for a while.
  • Expanding awareness: making the connection between our inner wellbeing and that of the world around us.
  • Reflecting and connecting as a group.
  • Rituals and ideas for bringing more nature connection into your routine beyond the workshop.

The day will include periods of silent exploration, as well as traditional teaching, guided mindfulness and nature connection practices, poetry readings, and group reflection. No previous mindfulness or ecopsychology experience required.