The story of Animist Ecology.
A little background and our learning philosophy.
In the spring of 2015, I began teaching a fusion of ecology, meditation and ancient history on what I called Spirit Quest Adventures in Stanley Park near my home in Vancouver, British Columbia.
I had always gone to the forest to unplug and reconnect and I instantly fell in love with teaching ecology in the forest. These quests soon grew into weekly adventures and then nature retreats in the mountain wilderness on the British Columbian coast.
In 2017, I did my first retreat abroad in Koh Phangan, Thailand and since then I've been leading retreat and adventure experiences all over the world.
On each of these immersive learning adventures, I use experiential learning techniques to help participants develop deeper ecological awareness. We study how natural ecosystems thrive while also cultivating a calm and clear mind to enjoy things as they are. This way we feel more immersed in our present moment experience.
I find it helpful to apply these 3 mindfulness principles to daily experience to think less and feel a deeper sense of immersion:
1. Non-judgement (acceptance of what is)
2. Non-identification (we are not our thoughts)
3. Non-resistance (deeper feeling and embodiment)
I believe that nature is our best teacher when develop a deeper relationship the natural forces around u. What we need to learn most is what we have forgotten, which is our connection to nature and the sacredness of life. To solve our global ecological crisis, I believe we require a new form of consciousness where we can develop a collective identity as an integral part of nature.
I believe what has been lost is what is today called Animism, which is the ancient worldview and way of being in nature of human beings before the rise of agriculture and city-states. Animism involves directly experiencing for yourself by honouring the "felt presence" of your immediate experience and exploring the power of your senses by developing deeper relationships with the other beings around you.
It is a powerful antidote to the dangerous sense of alienation and separation from nature often experienced in the modern world.
Photos from our adventures and retreats.