The Still Life: discover doorways in downtime

At the heart of this programme lies an invitation to the ‘solo’ - a 24-hour solitary immersion into deep nature, awe and wonder. Inspired by the traditional Vision Quest, the ‘solo’ has been practiced by many people and cultures across time. It’s a unique way of opening to a bigger perspective and reconnecting with what matters most.

Living in a time where we spend increasing amounts of time indoors and online, this programme promotes slowing down and creating space in nature. Our days involve working with nature-based practices – tools and techniques from ancient traditions – to support stillness, connection and openness. Over these days we also share stories to support our solo time. We do so in the way that our ancestors did before us – around fires, making time to listen deeply, always with the help of nature.

Our time together includes wild swimming, awe-inspired landscapes, nature connection practices, meditation and techniques of council and ceremony - ways to communicate from the heart and share stories around a roaring fire.

This retreat is also a great first step for those considering a full-length vision quest.

Make space in your life, Get some perspective, navigate change, go deeper on your path, connect with awe and wonder.

This immersion begins with grounding and opening up the senses and the intelligence of the body; a process about letting go as much as it is about trying to achieve anything. This balance of presence and relaxation, or yin and yang, is at the heart of everything we do, the world doesn’t need more ‘striving’ or ‘pushing’.

After the 24 hour solo, we return to our base camp, to share stories and insights from the experience, and to explore how to take any lessons back home and to work. As part of this integration phase, we also arrange a group call in the months after the programme.

Why fast on a 24 hour Solo?

Fasting helps us enter ‘betwixt and between’ state. The shift in perception that emerges can help us to be more present to ourselves and Nature’s messages. Fasting is recommended and optional.

If you'd like to know more do feel free to get in touch. Adrian and I are both very happy to have a conversation about the details of this programme and our approach.


Dates:

Tuesday 15th October – Sunday 20th October 2019

Location and Travel:

The base-camp has a wild-wood, fire-pit, beautiful river running through and is right on the edge of a dormant volcano and the largest beech forest in Europe.

The programme will take place in a mountainous remote area of Tuscany, Italy. The nearest transport hub is Pisa, from which trains run to the city of Grosseto. Grosseto is where you will be picked up and dropped off.

Costs:

Full price is £625, Early Bird price is £550 (before 31st MAY 2019),

Bursaries: £450*

This includes: Transfers to and from Grosseto, accommodation which is camping (with your own tent), all guiding and tuition, all meals and a group call three months after the programme has finished, to reconnect and share.


guides

Adrian and Natasha offer 1:1 mentoring sessions as a support to ground these experiences into everyday life.

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Natasha Lythgoe

I guide individuals and groups through life transitions with nature. With over fifteen years experience leading programmes that connect people back to their true nature, The Art of ReWilding weaves together the main threads of my life; creativity, dharma (truth), mythic journeys, the intelligence of the body and nature.

My passion is for workshops that support you to embark upon your path, change it or go deeper into the path you are already on. Programmes that bring you into a profound encounter with nature, making time and space to find a bigger perspective and connect with what matters most in life.

Underpinning everything is a care for deep ecology and community. When we act with ecological self interest not only do we support ourselves, our families but also the wider community of life.

I am a member of the Wilderness Guides Council, an accredited Mindfulness teacher and an ordained Buddhist nun. I have a PGCE, a Masters in Fine Art and am currently training with Stephen Gilligan in generative therapies.

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Adrian Kowal

Adrian is a wilderness guide, adventurer and grower of movements. Through his long and deep interest in wellbeing and inquiry, he blends together practices for more balanced living, contemplative tools for self-knowledge and an intimate playful way of experiencing our inner and outer landscapes.

Adrian has been catalyzed by his guide training with John P. Milton, leads men’s groups and is passionate about creating safe containers in the groups that he leads to enable more intimate levels of sharing.

What really gets Adrian passionate is exploring remote rivers, introducing the joys of wild camping to others, ‘up-side-down’ fires and time alone in the wilderness.