Contemporary Animism: An Apprenticeship
In The Direction of Beauty
With Colin Campbell, Angharad Wynne, Sharon Blackie, Chris Bache, Carolyn Hillyer, Tiokasin Ghosthorse, Rachael Vaughan, Philip Shepherd and special guests to be announced. Curated and facilitated by Rachel Fleming and Emma George
With additional pre-recorded material from David Abram, Stephan Harding and Andy Letcher
|21st July - 26th February||Contemporary Animism - In the Direction of Beauty||View Details|
The Animating Force
The time has come for a radical change in worldview. The one we have created for ourselves, that of separation, materialism and success, no longer serves.
The time has come to consider what we may perhaps have left behind in the pockets of the world – in prehistory, in our esoteric traditions, in the indigenous practices that have survived to this day, in the deepest reaches of our psyches and the collective memory of our species, in the fragments of myth and the scribbled margins of our most ancient texts.
These pockets of remembering all tell of an animating force that binds us as humans to the soul of the world. This is a force that holds us within the places we live, that gives us agency beyond our individual striving, that talks of meaning and belonging and purpose. This is what helps us to hear and understand the forgotten language of the more-than-human world we are part of.
By understanding the animating force that runs through all of nature, by truly experiencing and learning to work with it like the magicians, the alchemists, the oracles of old – we become more human, more able to understand our role, our purpose, our gifts, our very belonging to this place and this life we live.
We reanimate ourselves, we re-enchant our lives and we recover our place within the evolving soul of the world. We are finally able to start to see what the future of our species may hold.
What to Expect
In this year-long apprenticeship we will be learning to work with this animating force, in service of the transformation of a worldview that has forgotten that such a force exists, that views this world as inanimate, and humans as a species that have evolved beyond nature. We will draw on hidden magical and soul-based practices, but also on the everyday experiences of community, stillness, intention, attention, movement, meditation, gratitude and prayer, to guide our way.
This programme builds on a conversation that has been live for one year. It starts in a different place to where it originally started, with a new group, and the new experience and interests you bring to the circle. But it does take advantage of a considerable body of pre-recorded talks and conversations, allowing us to delve even deeper together into our subject material.
Are you ready to go deeper, further – are you ready to take your place in a great transformation in what it is possible to believe? Join us.
Is this for you?
This is for anyone who believes that there is more magic and soul in the world than we are able to remember or locate in our daily lives. This is for those who feel that the natural world and its denizens are trying to communicate with us, and urging our species to remember something. This is for those who feel the need to belong, to dream, to act, to create, to believe … in a thriving life and future for all.
- 8 online sessions, July 2022 – March 2023 (see below)
- 1 Annual Confluence
- 8 online sessions, July 2022 – March 2023 (see below)
- Annual Confluence
- Residential 2: 22- 26 February 2023
Online Sessions Times: 7pm – 9.30pm UK time (Recordings will be available)
- 13 July 2022
- 14 September 2022
- 12 October 2022
- 16 November 2022
- 14 December 2022
- 18 January 2023
- 15 February 2023
- 15 March 2023
- 19 April 2023 – Annual Confluence, all day
21 July 2022 – 19 April 2023
Based online and in Devon, at Embercombe
Includes a residential week at Embercombe combined with the monthly Online Programme plus personal mentoring.
- Residential 2: 22 – 27 Feb 2023
ONLINE PROGRAMME: £600
Includes a 30 minute mentoring session with both Angharad and Colin
7pm – 9.30pm UK time (recordings will be made available) on:
13 July 2022
14 September 2022
12 October 2022
16 November 2022
14 December 2022
18 January 2023
15 February 2023
15 March 2023
19 April 2023 – Annual Confluence, all day
The lead contributors to this apprenticeship are Colin Campbell and Angharad Wynne, Rachel Fleming and Emma George
Their intention is to go deep, to explore, to exhume, to piece together the beliefs and practices of an animist worldview that is fit for the 21st Century, that will lead us back into relationship with the natural world itself.
Colin works with the wisdom traditions of South Africa, specifically those that are based on our relationships with the ancestors and spirits of nature. He looks at where these ancient indigenous practices collide and coalesce with the knowledge and belief systems of the west. Angharad teaches from the old Brethonic tradition of the British Isles, the spirit ways of the ancestors of this land, and how we can recover and remember them to help us restore balance in ourselves and with the world around us. Rachel has worked with animist education for many years, curating and designing educational experiences for Schumacher College and Embercombe, Emma is a poet, film-maker, myth enthusiast and the holder of our container.
They will be joined along the way by special guests from around the world who bring together old traditions, new insights, pieces of our missing jigsaw that will serve you regardless of your place and context.
Colin Campbell grew up in rural southeastern Botswana, the son of a renowned anthropologist and a creative healing mother. He is currently a practitioner of traditional African medicine, based in Cape Town, South Africa and the UK. He receives clients from all over the world, and facilitates international group processes relating to natural law, transformation, healing & personal power, sacred sites, and cross-cultural cosmology. His work bridges major world cities with ancestral homelands and forgotten wilderness, taking him from the Amazon Basin to Los Angeles, the sacred sites of Venda to the urban grit of Johannesburg, and remote Ethiopia to the City of London. Colin co-founded and co-runs a training school in Botswana for traditional doctors and sangomas with his brother Niall Campbell. He is also a lifelong artist and musician, his style once again bridging the traditional with the contemporary, the timeless with the timely, and the sounds of the sacred with the lyricism of electric rocking funk.
Angharad spent much of her youth exploring her Welsh homeland by foot and delving deeply into the western magic, healing and spiritual traditions in order to piece together the lost parts of her own indigenous culture. Connection and dialogue with with nature and landscape is central to her work as is the magic of everyday, the creation for meaningful ceremony for our lives today and sharing the spirituality and mythology of her homeland with others. A published author and poet, Angharad is also a storyteller who uses story as the starting point for deep enquiry and a source of timeless wisdom and healing. She regularly runs spiritual and creative retreats including the Return to Centre series for women, In the Footsteps of Ancestors, an annual pilgrimage following ‘Songlines’ across the sacred landscapes of Britain, and Dreaming the Land. She speaks widely about finding ‘the dreaming’ of place; of working with intuition, knowledge and landscape to draw together threads of spiritual practice which are connected and meaningful to and arise from specific geographical and cultural landscapes.
Dr. Sharon Blackie is an award-winning writer and international teacher whose work sits at the interface of psychology, mythology and ecology. Her highly acclaimed books, courses, lectures and workshops are focused on the development of the mythic imagination, and on the relevance of our native myths, fairy tales and folk traditions to the personal, social and environmental problems we face today. www.sharonblackie.net
Tiokasin Ghosthorse is a member of the Cheyenne River Lakota Nation of South Dakota and has a long history with Indigenous activism and advocacy. Tiokasin is the Founder, Host and Executive Producer of “First Voices Radio” (formerly “First Voices Indigenous Radio”) for the last 27 years in New York City and Seattle/Olympia, Washington. In 2016, he received a nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize from the International Institute of Peace Studies and Global Philosophy. Other recent recognitions include: Native Arts and Cultures Foundation National Fellowship in Music (2016), National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship Nominee (2017), Indigenous Music Award Nominee for Best Instrumental Album (2019) and National Native American Hall of Fame Nominee (2018, 2019). He was also awarded New York City’s Peacemaker of the Year in 2013. Tiokasin is a “perfectly flawed human being.”
Rachael Vaughan, MFT, is a licensed psychotherapist. She holds an MA in Depth Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute, California, as well as an MA in Linguistics from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. She has studied at the C.G. Jung Institute of San Francisco.Born in Asia and raised primarily in Europe, Rachael has a lifelong, passionate interest in issues of culture, identity and inclusion. She has a bilingual therapy practice in San Francisco and Marin county, seeing clients in English and French. She writes the Ethnopsychology Blog, and has studied French approaches to psychotherapy, such as ethnopsychiatry and genealogical psychology. Her teaching is informed by multiple cultural perspectives, as well as post-colonial and feminist theory.Rachael also holds a Permaculture Design Certificate and has an active interest in eco-psychology and plant-human communication.
Philip Shepherd is recognized as a leader in the global embodiment movement. He is the creator of The Embodied Present Process™ (TEPP), which he developed over 40 years of teaching embodiment practices, and shares worldwide in both in workshops and Facilitators Trainings. TEPP uniquely combines the two resources necessary for embodiment: effective practices, and a deep understanding of our culture’s blind spots, which tend to keep us in our heads. TEPP is based on Philip’s two books – Radical Wholeness and New Self, New World – which articulate the causes, perils and challenges of our culture’s disembodiment. Philip’s personal journey to embodiment includes cycling alone as a teenager through Europe, the Middle East, Iran, India and Japan; studying classical Japanese Noh Theater; co-founding an interdisciplinary theatre company; writing two internationally produced plays and a television documentary; and playing lead roles on stages in London, New York, Chicago and Toronto. In the non-Covid world, he travels the world sharing workshops and running year-long Facilitators Trainings with his co-director and wife Allyson Woodrooffe. His website and online courses are found at EmbodiedPresent.com, and he has a new book, Deep Fitness, coming out on October 12, 2021, which he co-authored with Andrei Yakovenko.
Carolyn has written 11 solo albums and co-created many others with her partner Nigel Shaw. Her early albums (House of the Weavers, Grandmother Turtle) have come to occupy an iconic place within women’s sacred music and other recordings (Weathered Edge, Ice, Cave of Elders, Wyched Womb) have, over three decades, defined the essence and edges of her unusual perspective on women’s spiritual journeys and ancient mythological landscape.
For over 25 years she has been teaching a series of powerful workshop journeys for women (now including an apprenticeship programme) that braid together ritual song and drum, intuitive ceremony, ancient initiations and direct interaction with wild land. She is founder of Thirteen Moons women’s festival.
Chris Bache, Ph.D. is professor emeritus in the department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at Youngstown State University where he taught for 33 years. He is also adjunct faculty at the California Institute of Integral Studies, Emeritus Fellow at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, and on the Advisory Board of Grof Legacy Training. Chris’ passion has been the study of the philosophical implications of nonordinary states of consciousness, especially psychedelic states. An award winning teacher and international speaker, Chris has written four books: Lifecycles – a study of reincarnation in light of contemporary consciousness research; Dark Night, Early Dawn – a pioneering work in psychedelic philosophy and collective consciousness; The Living Classroom – an exploration of collective fields of consciousness in teaching; and LSD and the Mind of the Universe – the story of his 20 year journey with LSD.