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Seminars, conferences and online resources on psychotherapy and human relationships
Transpersonal Narratives in Eco-Psychology

With Sophy Banks, James Barrett, Caroline Brazier, Marion Green, Professor Jeremy Holmes, Dr Justine Huxley, Emma Palmer, Paul Maiteny, Rev Peter Owen-Jones, Mary-Jayne Rust, Toni Spencer and Nick Totton

Friday 24, Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 November 2017 - Eden Project

Friday 24 November 2017

17.00   Optional gathering in the Eden Project Visitor Centre Cafe
(a light meal can be bought here until 18.00)
18.00   Registration opens in The Gallery
18.30   Mary-Jayne Rust

Being in Relationship with the Earth: A Spiritual Path?
If climate change is a symptom of our dysfunctional relationship with the earth, a step towards healing includes spending time on the land, listening to, and communing with, the other-than-human world. This opens the door to a different order of reality, an experience of living inside a conscious, sacred matrix: an ancient way of being. Along the way there may be many difficult and painful encounters with the shadow of our dominant culture; when this is honoured our ecological crisis can then become an extraordinary portal of modern times.
19.20   Open Space session - led by Toni Spencer

What's of interest, here and now? Finding connections, deepening presence: Open Space session
What are the conversations and connections that want to happen as we enter the flow of this conference? This first Open Space offers an opportunity for us to find out. Open Space is an embodiment of life's participatory nature. It offers a simple structure within which we can explore what has heart and meaning.

We will find ourselves in various conversations and configurations arising from our diversity and shared resonances. It's a wilder kind of space where we are free to follow what nourishes, what inspires, what flirts with us. This opening session will include time to help us land more deeply together before we venture in to the unknown as a new group.
21.00   End of evening

Saturday 25 November 2017

09.30   Coffee and registration (The Gallery)
10.30   Morning ceremony led by Nick Totton (Mediterranean Biome)
11.00   Caroline Brazier

Ecotherapy: using Buddhist approaches to foster reconnection
Different spiritualities conceptualise the human-ecosystem relationship differently and this has consequences in terms of our approach to planetary matters. Buddhism suggests that craving, aversion and non-seeing are foundational in building 'conditioned mind', the system of psychological defences which fosters the sense of personal autonomy and entitlement. Our existential fears create states of alienation and disconnection, leading to destructiveness and despair. After exploring these themes, this talk will offer a Buddhist model of ecotherapy, taking into account the three levels of personal, cultural and global conditioning. This way of working through reconnection with the planet can be applied in everyday therapeutic practice.
12.00   Coffee
12.30   Emma Palmer

Excellent knowledge and a wild fox (transformative) spirit
"Excellent knowledge and a wild fox (transformative) spirit" are the qualities Zen Master Dogen recommended to his followers in 13th century Japan. This still seems like sage counsel for ecopsychologists in the 21st century. This key note will be an exploration of practice and work at the interface of ecopsychology and ecodharma, drawing on clinical experience. How does the wisdom of Buddhist practice illuminate our ecotherapy practice? And what can learning from the emerging field of ecopsychology add to Buddhist practice? This talk will include moments of stillness, letting us embody the transformative spirits abiding here at the Eden project.
13.15   Discussion
13.45   Lunch (Delegates to buy own lunch in Eden cafes)
15:15   Workshops

(Select and sign up for one option when you register in the morning)

Workshop 1: Seed Room - Education building
Prof Jeremy Holmes
Eco-spirituality - an attachment perspective
Jeremy Holmes shall explore: A) If there is a spiritual dimension to psychotherapy, and if so what it might look like. B) Whether secular spirituality is a valid concept, or an oxymoron. C) The role of 'nature' in the psyche and the reciprocal relationship between psychological and ecological health. He does not claim to have answers, but this interactive workshop will lead to creative conversations on these themes.

Workshop 2: Discovery Room - Education building
Sophy Banks
Inner Transition - Integrating spiritual, psychological and earth based wisdom at the heart of the Transition movement
What happens when a movement for change that focuses on action rather than process and infrastructure more than worldview, attempts to integrate insights and practices from inner traditions? In this workshop Sophy shares her journey as Inner Transition coordinator for the Transition movement for many years. From co-founding the Heart and Soul group of Transition Town Totnes in 2006, to training people around the world in the Transition model, and involving the central organisation in its own process of integrating inner and outer, she will share some of the challenges, insights and learnings that emerged. Bring your head, heart and hands to experience and contribute to the enquiry.

Workshop 3: Pod Room - Education building
Marion Green
Our spiritual relationship to Nature, Change and Related Grief
This workshop is an opportunity for therapists to explore our spiritual and philosophical relationship to Nature and changes occurring in the natural world. We will place particular emphasis on honouring Nature, exploring our appreciation for its generosity and our sense of loss and grief as we contemplate the exploitation of the environment in which we are each participant; through climate change and differing attitudes to stewardship of the earth. We will work individually and as a group, creating expressions of our affinity to Nature, our gratitude and our grief; using sound, movement, words, art making and found objects - indoors and outside.

Workshop 4: Outside
Nick Totton
Medicine walk
Loosely derived from Native American practices, the Medicine Walk is a way of asking the other-than-human for insight into a life issue. The task is to move through a territory holding a question about one's life, and attend to what one encounters. A full scale medicine walk lasts at least from dawn to sunset, but can be longer; it will involve an alternation of walking and resting. So this will be a very miniature version, but one which many people find worthwhile. "The walk is a mirror that reflects the signs and symbols of your inward quest. ... As you wander, become aware of Nature's awareness of you. Signs and symbols indicating your life purpose, inherent gifts, personal values or fears, will present themselves. As you discern the beauty of life and the reality of death in the world around you, ask yourself: Who are my people?" (Stephen Foster and Meredith Little, The Roaring of the Sacred River). This workshop will take place outside, in a beautiful woodland area near the Eden Project. You will need good shoes and weather-appropriate clothing.

17.30   End of day
18.00   Site closes
Sunday 26 November 2017

08.30 - 09.45   Social Dreaming Matrix

Led by James Barrett
In a social dreaming matrix dreams are spoken and we notice the responses in our imaginations and speak of these. The dreams are not interpreted. They are regarded as belonging to the matrix created by the Transpersonal Ecopsychology and the Spiritual Traditions conference, Eden and all who come. Dreams are inhabitants of the spirit world as real as landscape, plants, animals, you and me. If we hold the dreams in interested consideration they may unfold giving us new thoughts. We are rewarded by our participation in what we have objectified as nature.
For more information:
09.30   Coffee and registration (The Gallery)
10.00   Paul Maiteny

Ecopsychological desire, conscience and guidance in the trans-personal Judaic, Christian and Islamic tradition
Judaic, Christian and Islamic traditions are normally presented as justifying exploitation of other-than-human nature as resources for human consumption. However, when read according to teachings of prophets, mystics and sages, they are seen to offer ecosystemic guidance for human living that is more sustaining - both psycho-spiritually and ecologically - than the prevailing consumptive approach to seeking meaningfulness. This inner work, that has to be conscious and chosen, aims at discerning roles that align with and support the transpersonal Body of Earth. Corresponding wisdom that is often more familiar today in eastern and shamanic forms will also be considered. This inter-spiritual equivalence is no surprise given that, as one species, we are engaged in essentially the same questing and questioning, and it is important to recognise the depth of ecosystemic wisdom articulated in all spiritual traditions, including those that have been distorted to justify exploitation and destruction. To do so could make a significant difference to shifting attitudes and worldviews in these very same cultures.
10.45   Dr Justine Huxley

Rewilding the psyche, rewilding our Earth
For thousands of years, humanity has separated heaven from earth, spirit from matter. This psychological split may have had a role in our evolution, but has now become dangerously out of balance and lies beneath the multiple global crises we now face. We urgently need to rewild the depths our own psyches, integrating our instinctual wisdom, our indigenous selves and the other lost parts of ourselves, while simultaneously rewilding our eco-systems, re-engineering our relationship with the natural world so that every element of an eco-system has its place, and that we recognise the Earth as a living sacred being. If we are alive on this plant today, there is a direct relationship between our personal healing and our global healing. We cannot successfully transform the destruction until we do that work both inwardly and outwardly. Coming back into relationship with the Earth as sacred, we can transcend our self-centred hubris, that brings us nothing but pain and isolation, and rediscover a much deeper sense of belonging and our place in the natural order. Spiritual wisdom, psychological understanding, and practical action need to come together and be completely integrated before we can transform our world.
11:30:   Coffee
12.00   Rev Peter Owen-Jones

The talk is about reflecting what we know to be true in practice. And how this practice effectively serves to both deepen and awaken our sense of being in the current and oncoming crisis.
13.00   Lunch (Delegates to buy own lunch in Eden cafes)
14:30   Workshops

(Select one and sign up for this on the conference noticeboard when you register on arrival)

Workshop 1: Seed Room - Education building
Caroline Brazier
Naikan for the Planet
Naikan is a Japanese therapeutic approach involving a process of life-review. Derived originally from a practice used in training Buddhist priests, it focuses on parental relationships, often revealing feelings of gratitude and regret. Naikan has been adapted to one-to-one therapy and groups in Japan and the West. This workshop will use the three primary Naikan questions to explore our relationship to the planet, the ultimate parent of humanity, asking: What has the Earth done for me? What have I done in return? What troubles have I caused the Earth? Using solitary reflection in nature, it will conclude with shared celebration.

Workshop 2: Pod Room - Education building
Open Space - facilitated by Toni Spencer
Embodying the inquiry: Open Space session
This session is an opportunity to explore and share whatever is emerging for us from the conference so far, or whatever is still longing to be spoken. We invite our diversity to express itself, allowing for sessions to include non-verbal movement, being outdoors, requests for peer support or simply hanging out with good people (trees, plants...) and seeing what wants to happen. We will listen and see what happens...

Workshop 3: Discovery Room - Education building
Paul Maiteny
Becoming an Eco-systemic being: what clues do the ancestral traditions provide?
This workshop is a development and deepening of Paul's keynote talk given this morning.

Workshop 4: TBC
Justine Huxley
Rewilding our spirituality, rewilding our Earth
Using a combination of Jungian shadow work, simple spiritual ecology practices, breathwork, story sharing and deep listening techniques we will retrieve lost parts of ourselves and enliven our own instinctual nature. We will share simple practices that help us live in relationship to the Earth and honor the sacred dimension of life. We will explore how the bringing together of spirit and matter can be the foundation of both inner and outer activism and ecological transformation.

17.00   Closing ceremony - Nick Totton
17.30   End of conference

Click here to book
You will be taken to a secure web server where your payment will be processed.
Please read our booking conditions before making your booking

Self-funded: £250
Self-funded: (with the online CPD module Eco-Psychotherapy): £300
Self-funded: £160 (Ecopsychology UK members)
Self-funded x 2: £295
Self-funded x 2: £240 (Ecopsychology UK members)
Organisationally-funded: £300

Fees include access to all talks and workshops; handouts, tea/coffee and access to the Eden Project.
CPD Hours

Certificates of attendance for 15 hours will be provided at the event

The Eden Project
St Austell
PL24 2SG

The Eden Project website
Accommodation near The Eden Project

Friday 24 November 2017
Registration 19.00hrs
End 21.30hrs

Saturday 25 November 2017
Registration 09.30hrs
End 17.30hrs

Sunday 26 November 2017
Social Dreaming Matrix 08.30
Registration 09.30hrs
End 17.30hrs