Workshops / Education:

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the group-based nature of the work, no workshops or education programmes are currently planned. Please see the Online Learning and Plant-directed Research Group pages for other current programmes.

More information will be posted here when it becomes available.

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Keeping Quiet

by Pablo Neruda

 

Now we will count to twelve
and we will all keep still
for once on the face of the earth,
let’s not speak in any language;
let’s stop for a second,
and not move our arms so much.
It would be an exotic moment
without rush, without engines;
we would all be together
in a sudden strangeness.
Fishermen in the cold sea
would not harm whales
and the man gathering salt
would not look at his hurt hands.
Those who prepare green wars,
wars with gas, wars with fire,
victories with no survivors,
would put on clean clothes
and walk about with their brothers
in the shade, doing nothing.
What I want should not be confused with total inactivity.
Life is what it is about;
I want no truck with death.
If we were not so single-minded
about keeping our lives moving,
and for once could do nothing,
perhaps a huge silence
might interrupt this sadness
of never understanding ourselves
and of threatening ourselves with death.
Perhaps the earth can teach us
as when everything seems dead
and later proves to be alive.

 

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"we are adequately equipped for all our genuine earthly needs if we trust our senses, and develop them in such a way that they continue to prove worthy of our confidence"

       J W Goethe

If we want to live with the earth in truly sustainable ways, we need to learn about life processes and the nature of living things themselves. What's more, this learning must be experienced and felt, and not simply learnt as dis-embodied concepts or ideas. Only then can we begin to make life-affirming and life-giving decisions about our futures and lives. 

The approach I take to education and teaching is phenomenon-centered and experiential. My passion is to facilitate experiences of the qualities and dynamic nature of the living world. Nature is full of diversity, complexity and creativity and coming into contact with this multiplicity invokes responses in ourselves that we would otherwise not encounter. In this way, personal encounters with natural phenomena provide scope for individual growth and to better understand our place in the world. 

I focus on 3 broad areas of education;

  • The environment and natural phenomena

  • Personal reflection through engagement with natural phenomena

  • Social forms and practices inspired by living processes that support collaboration and cooperation

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"....much of what has gone wrong with the world is the result of education that alienates us from life in the name of human domination, fragments instead of unifies, over emphasises success and careers, separates feeling from intellect and the practical from the theoretical, and unleashes on the world minds ignorant of their own ignorance."

David Orr

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