I hope you are keeping well in these times of transition and finding some space for reflection, both internal and external. The times they are a changing. Despite difficulties for a great many, this is a period of transformation for society, our minds, habits and our economic system. We are in between worlds now, a difficult space to inhabit but a profound experience to exist within. We can now begin to define the new future; let’s make it a beautiful one.
While we have had a more apparent abundance of time, many have turned to nature and its inspiring powers of revival and regeneration. We have started to notice what has previously passed us by and the Spring has been particularly dazzling this year, with wildlife moving into areas that have been uninhabitable amidst our speedy, industrial lives, with time to notice the seasons changing.
The diminished speed, extra free time, awareness and consideration of food systems and human health make it a fabulous time to introduce this new series of blogs (and courses) aimed to develop our appreciation of the wild through the ancient arts of foraging and bushcraft. For me, elements of these two practices have become lessons in mindfulness, nutrition, nature, community and self. They have given me a sense of place wherever I am, permitting an understanding and appreciation of the word indigenous. Knowing this landscape a little more each day, I begin to belong within it.
These blogs and practices all aim to give a little insight into the nature that surrounds us, to encourage participation in the wild environment, be it a national park, local woodland, a public footpath, a hedgerow or the wildness in our own minds. As one of my favourite thinkers Charles Eisenstein says, these are an ‘invitation to adventure’. These adventures into foraging and beyond will help connect us to true nature wherever we are.
Through development of an understanding of the wild, we can begin to dispel our fears of it, our disconnection to it and instead develop a deep connection, compassion or even oneness with it. A previously misunderstood plant becomes history, folklore, food, medicine and tool.
These blogs are simply an introduction. They do not aim to replace a quality guide, be it a person or a book. My aim is to open up the world of mindfulness, the art of foraging and the practice of bushcraft in new light, because I believe a lifestyle lived with a deep appreciation and connection to such ancient wisdom may be the way to end this age of separation.
I hope you enjoy the series. Please keep an eye open for upcoming events, starting Spring 2021. As an experiment in Dana Economy (give what you can, take what you need), all courses will have no fixed cost attached to them but will instead be gift based. The Dana Economy aims to transform the consumer basis of a server/served to a contribution for continued creation: courses are not taught but co-created with everyone who participates in them. I will write a full section on the Dana Economy before I launch any courses.