touching the earth
This is where a person walks out early in the morning, spending several hours alone in a natural bush setting, being open to noticing external signs that may mirror one's inner life. The day is essentially a mini rite of passage which is made up of three stages severance, threshold and incorporation.
severance - leaving
preparation: It is said the day walk is best begun early in the morning of a new day, the dawn of a new state of awareness. Completing your packing the night before helps to reduce distractions.
intention: Perhaps the single facet of a day walk that most separates it from a 'simple walk in nature' is intention: mindful attention to the how, why, and what of one's inner life, and how they relate to the outer world. Preparation therefore, best begins in advance of the actual day. Ask yourself: What's up for me? Perhaps it's a relationship with something outside yourself: another person, a group of people, a job, a duty, a path-whatever. Or perhaps it's about something entirely your own: an unresolved emotion or uncertainty, a healing or unhealthy practice, a personal commitment to be made or rescinded.
threshold - solo time
solitude: So much of a person's self-definition is derived from outside relationships that mirror back who and what and why we are. A retreat to solitude offers a person the chance to explore, perhaps even shift, this self-definition. By removing oneself from the day to day, we allow something new to emerge.
ritual:A simple ceremony is created that marks the transition from the day to day to the sacred, then back again.
fasting: The most obvious part of fasting on the day walk is the act of not eating. However, you also are called to fast in other ways: from talking, from working, from being in outside relationship, from following habitual patterns. The act of fasting from food then becomes, at once, a physiological event and a metaphor for one's life, also asking us to consider what it is that truly nourishes us in our daily life.
nature:A day walk is an invitation for you to walk the Earth, becoming mindful of signs and symbols that have a charge, that choose your attention. What do these outer signs have to teach you about your inner life, your specific intention, what has brought you on this sacred walk? How is the outside world a mirror to your inner life, your inner struggle, your inner path? Walk, sit, journal, draw, sing, pray, look and listen to the land with intuition as your guide.
incorporation - return
storytelling: When we tell our inner stories out loud, we make them real, we give them shape, and we invite them back into the body, the corpus, of our lives. This will be done at the end of the walk within a safe group of fellow walkers. This is a group that will listen deeply, rather than the story being shared as a casual conversation, which can rob it of its power and connections to the storyteller's experience.
(Adapted with permission of Scott Eberle)
coming to our senses - a night and day in conversation with the mountain
New offering in Victoria
We invite you to spend 24 hours steeped in the presence and wisdom of Mount Wombat in the Strathbogie Ranges. This is an opportunity to create some space to reflect on what matters in your life. Perhaps you've overlooked something, forgotten to celebrate events in life, or stopped asking questions. Our cauldron of deep time in nature contains the elements of ceremony, of fasting, of solitude and contemplation, of intention, of reflection and storytelling.
A powerful mixture indeed.
upcoming day walks
Future dates for 2018 will be announced soon.
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top five regrets of the dying
I wish I hadn't worked so hard.
"This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children's youth and their partner's companionship. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence."