ReWilding Retreat: Based on Bill Plotkin’s work,Wild Mind: A Field Guide to the Human Psyche, this 4-day intensive is an experiential exploration of our human psyche, its capacity to strengthen inner ressources while being in deep relationship with the natural world.
In this intensive, we will work with Bill Plotkin's Nature-Based Map of the Human Psyche. We will access what we call the four facets of the Self, or dimensions of human wholeness, as well as the four sets of fragmented or wounded personalities that are formed early in life. We will uncover the depths and potentials that our psyche holds, cultivate them and integrate them into our life.
Dr. Stéphanie Marchal is a registered psychologist working with families and individuals in Victoria. Her practice focuses on the parent-child relationship and attachment, trans-generational trauma, and the protective capacity of caregivers. She is a mother and a wilderness personal guide currently training with Animas Valley Institute. She works with people toward recovering their wholeness and uncovering their gifts, and has experienced wilderness as a powerful ally in these tasks.
Sarah Frizelle is a counselor in private practice in Victoria BC and offers holistic counselling to individuals, couples and families. She has worked with youth in roles of educator, psychotherapist and wilderness guide for over 25 years, sometimes combining all three roles in nature-based therapy or eco-psychology with individuals and groups.
Sarah’s motivation is to support positive personal, family and cultural level changes. She embraces the idea of transformative learning and is dedicated to unleash the creative gifts and potential of people to heal and transform our world, in order to counter narratives of bleakness and despair, inspire creativity, collaboration and innovation.
Wholeness and fragments
We will be working with the four facets of wholeness and the four fragments of the psyche as taught by Bill Plotkin, founder of Animas Valley Institute, and author of Soulcraft: Crossing into the Mysteries of Nature and Psych & Wild Mind: A Field Guide to the Human Psyche.
We work with the four facets of our innate human potential, that make up our psychological wholeness. They reflect the qualities of the natural world.
The subpersonalities are the wounded and sometimes hidden fragments of our human psyches - such as our "inner" Victim, Rebel, Critic, Tyrant, or Addict - each of them attempts to protect us from further injury.
Ressource in the map's North: Capacity for nurture
The North is our source for genuine caregiving that is resourceful. nourishing, and generative. Working with the North aspect fosters our capacity to give nurturing love.
Ressource in the map's East: Inner peace
The East teaches us to be aware and to sense the world with clear eyes, holding the bigger picture without becoming overwhelmed. It is where the awe and wisdom in us live.
Ressource in the map's South: Belonging
The South brings us to a sense of deep belonging in the world. It is connected to our emotional life, capacity for joy, bodily sensations and engagement in our surroundings. The south love is embodied and passionate.
Ressource in the map's West: Purpose
The West is where our imagination lives. It tends to call us to what feels at once fascinating and daunting, stirring within us a sense of anticipation and aliveness, such as with romance, passions, or dreams.
Backing Gowlland Tod Provincial Park, which itself goes into the Saanich inlet, and Mount work, the Centre is acres upon acres of beautiful private forests and hills.
Nearby lake, ocean and mountain access all directly from the property.Just 25 minutes from Victoria, it’s home to beautiful forests of Cedars, Arbutus, Fir and Maple; mossy bluffs, a seasonal creek and waterfall; Ravens, Wrens and Cooper's Hawks.
A setting to support exploration and integration
Using the Four Facets of Wholeness and a variety of practices, including time on the land, group ritual and ceremony, council, art and others, we will learn to integrate our resources into our lives.
Please refer to the registration page for the sliding scale. Pay according to your means. People paying at the higher end of the sliding scale will support those with more humble means' ability to experience this retreat, scholarships and land restoration work.
30% non-refundable deposit will reserve a spot (includes a 30 min pre-retreat check-in and intention setting for new participants and one hour post-retreat individual integration session with either guide, after multi-day retreats). The remaining balance will be due one month before the events.
We are asking that you leave mind-altering substances, including cannabis, home.
For multi-day retreats, participants are camping and have access to a full kitchen to support meal preparation and full bath. To support a sense of community, we will each be responsible for one group meal, in teams of two. Details will be sent. We have found that this process brings a sense of gratitude, responsibility and togetherness, and it makes these retreats affordable (catering would be a few hundred dollars extra per person).
Cancellation policy: the reservation fee (30%) is not refundable as it helps with the cost of booking the site.
House of Ancestors October 23-27th 2024
Grief Grove Sunday November 19th, 2023
What participants say
"I highly recommend this program for anybody interested in developing a deeper, more soulful connection to themselves and to the natural world. Sarah and Stephanie were brilliant facilitators, and had great capacity in holding a strong container for profound exploration."
"The Wild Mind retreat was an amazing experience. By the end, I felt a new balance in my being and have been living with a new sense of wholeness since. The land - Earth Spring - was an incredible place to be for this retreat. I felt the land respond to each invitation journeyed and was blown away by the deep connection I felt throughout the entire retreat. The facilitation was excellent. I felt comfortable with and inspired by both Stephanie and Sarah and did bring very intimate inquiries to them that were held with a refreshing sense of welcome as they guided me to be curious and engage with what was showing itself."
"Using Bill Plotkin's Wild Mind framework, I could feel myself sink deeper into the facets of my animal self, and engage those to feel and own these often hidden parts of myself. At times frightening, at others liberating, this retreat is certainly never boring!"
"I highly recommend this retreat for anyone who is interested into diving deep into their own psyche. Committing 100% to the experience is highly recommended."
"Stephanie and Sarah are skilled guides who are offering a journey into one's wild psyche that is not to be missed. They take care to light the path, yet are not afraid to let you wander yourself as you discover the gifts which await. A truly important offering at this critical time in our collective human story."
"The Wild Mind retreat provides an opportunity to build deep connection with the land and ourselves. Even as a facilitator myself of deep nature connection and self awareness, I found learning about the Wild Mind map illuminating and incredibly effective. I left the retreat understanding myself and the people in my life so much better. I felt like I had a new practical and tangible tool with which to navigate this human journey and confidently heal parts of myself that I didn't previously understand in this way. I'd recommend this experience to anyone who's bravely seeking a journey of wholeness and healing in connection to nature."
- Alaina Hallett, Director of Thriving Roots Wilderness School.