Nature in the Human Being. The Human Being in Nature
Friday, November 11 – Sunday, November 13, 2011 in Harlemville, NY
Presentations by Craig Holdrege of the Nature Institute &
Ethan Roland of Appleseed Permaculture
This will be a conference of presentations, discussions and guided activities.
To deepen our work as Anthroposophical scholars & friends thru the transformation of our relationship with nature — our friend and ally in the search for the Higher Self.
If we do not have a loving and authentic relationship with nature how can we feel called to care for it, be in relationship with it and be responsible across from it? How can we possibly create just laws to protect the biosphere if we are afraid of it?
There is vast, untapped potential in a landscape. So often we see our world as what herbalists call ‘the green wall,’ where we actually do not see anything but a sea of green, a patch of weeds, a stand of timber, or an intimidating wilderness.
This also applies so readily to our lives when we embody a one-tracked awareness, believing that having a career is the only reality, or suburbia, or the next cool music. It can be tremendously difficult to decipher the complexity of what it means to be alive, the great awareness it takes to know a place and love it, inside and out, to find new ways of walking (which evolve into what are actually old ways of walking) on this Earth, to find our truths and follow our hearts, trusting ourselves completely.
When we can open ourselves up, be it through permaculture, Goethean science, primitive skills, or other exercises based in nature, we can learn to see like the Earth, which reveals and inspires the greatness and awe of eternal truth and beauty. With new eyes we can then move from scarcity to abundance, which brings us from antipathy to sympathy, caring for the Earth, for each other, for ourselves.
We are seeking: a new way of seeing in this world in order to experience mother nature afresh, to utilize our human ability to see with wide eyes, to find the microcosm within the macrocosm, to learn how to follow our hearts through connecting with nature. This is what we intend to inspire in people within a Think OutWord weekend rooted in ecology. We think Goethe would approve.
What to Bring
* A short (1 min.) story of a transformative experience you’ve had with nature
* A large pot-luck dish with some ingredients that you’ve grown or that were
grown near you
* Warm clothes appropriate for the season. We will be spending time outdoors.
* A sleeping bag and pad as some folks will be on couches, etc.
* A travel mug
* A song or game that you’d like to lead and teach to the whole group
* (optional) Equipment for the Nightwalking exercise if you choose to do it. See
the instructions and recommended reading on the Think OutWord website for
* (optional) A nature-based skill that you’d like to teach to a small group of people
during the weekend
* Something to sit on, around the bonfire and during the outdoor observation
* Notebook &/or sketch pad
This weekend has been financed by others who have contributed to the work of Think OutWord in the past. There will be a time at the end of this event to make financial contributions to support TOW’s future events.
“Doing Goethean Science” by Craig Holdrege, 27 pgs:
Functional Threefoldness in the Human Organism and Human Society, Adonis Press, 2011, Ch. 1 and 2:
Principles of Permaculture
Events During the Weekend
Goethean Phenomenology: Craig Holdrege has spent many years at the Nature Institute thinking about the implications of our society’s use of the reductionism inherent in the standard scientific method. He will contrast this with a refreshingly non-mechanical scientific phenomenology first developed by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe at turn of the 19th century and lead us in an exercise in this method.
Permaculture: Ethan Roland of Appleseed Permaculture will give a talk on the principles and practices of permaculture, followed by a walking tour of Hawthorne Valley with an eye towards the potential that permaculture design could bring to the farm & school.
Ecological Governance: Nathaniel Williams will be presenting an analysis of the difference between social systems that are based on a mechanistic paradigm, vs. ones that might be developed based on an attunement to ecological systems.
Observation Exercises: There will be a couple of different exercises to help us to see how we perceive the world.
Skill Share: In the spirit of our weekend we have allotted a time and space for people to bring, share, and teach skills that come out of an impulse with nature. If you are inspired to teach and share with the group a skill that you feel excited about please contact us. We only ask that you bring any materials necessary to teach your skill, unless otherwise arranged. We have access to tables, chairs, kitchen, water, indoor space, outdoor spaceŠ We will break into small groups, each group going to a different “skill-shop”. Some examples of possible activities include: moccasin making, salve making, nature sculpture, intro to ecological wastewater water treatment design, and Art of Mentor work. Contact Karin (732) 718-0840.
Nightwalking: This optional night-time exercise will use a specially adapted hat to teach people how to walk in the dark. The technique uses peripheral vision linked to the subconscious mind to navigate. Instructions for making a Nightwalking hat and a description of the Nightwalking practice can be downloaded here: How To Make a Nightwalking Cap
Evening Presentations: Craig Holdrege and Ethan Roland will speak on Saturday evening in a public forum on the global implications of Goethean science and permaculture.