Dear Wild Nature Hearts
With migrating ducks and butterflies flitting about, the scent of cherry blossoms and lilac in the air, and brighter days, spring has Wild Nature Heart saying “Yes!” to the new season.
Quite a few new and vibrant leaves are emerging from Wild Nature Heart’s rested winter soil/soul, including developing more practical skills workshops (foraging, wild-crafting, backpacking, etc), beginning to grow a team to include collaborators with different skills and passions, weaving ecological/social justice values and indigenous struggles into programs, and launching a Wild Nature Heart school on Teachable.
But among the biggest news is that Katie Baptist, co-founder of Wild Nature Heart, is stepping down from her role as co-guide. It is with love and honoring her role in co-creating this business that we say goodbye and welcome her as one of Wild Nature Heart’s key cheerleaders. While we’ll miss her, it has opened up a re-imagining of what Wild Nature Heart is and what it can be. (See her heartfelt letter below.)
Wild Nature Heart is about re-connecting and living into our full selves so we can be of service in this time of transition. If we’re paying attention, the signals that we are in the midst of a Great Turning are abundant. We know we are facing ecological and cultural challenges of almost incomprehensible magnitude. But I don’t need to catalog what we are facing here, but rather point out that one way to look at breakdown is as a type of ‘positive disintegration’. That the the flip side of breakdown of the old is the build up of the new. Like the pupa stage of a butterfly, the entire body must disintegrate, before the imaginal buds form and the new creature (psyche/soul/butterfly/culture) emerges.
So also, if we’re paying attention, we can’t help but notice the phenomenal things taking place to re-connect us to the earth and to each other. Think Greta Thunberg, the climate prodigy who helped launch and unite youth and their followers (the adults) across Europe (and deserves a Nobel Peace Prize). Think Extinction Rebellion in the UK, bringing decisive direct action to the streets to demand a new way. Think the Sunrise Movement and the New Green Deal in the United States, pushing for a new energy economy.
Think the return of species to native habitat and repatriation of land to indigenous people. In my neck of the woods (Humboldt County), several wonderful things have warmed my heart and signal a different way of relating: the return of Tuluwat (Indian) Island to the Wiyot tribe by the City of Eureka, the pending return of the condor to traditional Yurok territory in northwest California, and the removal (and slated removal) of several dams on the Eel and Klamath Rivers. These types of renewals are happening across the globe, though they don’t get the ink and airtime they deserve.
Think earth elder and teacher Joanna Macy, who marked her own great turning this week by celebrating her 90th birthday this week (See below). And think all the ‘regular’ (read: extraordinary) people stepping into their power, lending their gifts, passion, and love to the Great Turning.
The paths to re-belonging and recovery are here. We and the earth need all of us to live our most whole and alive selves during this time.
One of the joys of this work is having the privilege to hold the space for people to encounter their own soul growth and unfurling in and with wild nature. When done with heart-centered intention and presence, the most magical things happen: we start hearing and honoring our true voices more clearly, our sometimes fragmented selves start to align in powerful ways, healing and re-connection naturally unfolds, and our inherent creative impulses emerge. I feel deeply the sacred responsibility of holding space for this magic to happen and am honored to be able to witness and mirror the transformations and learnings. I am excited to be able to offer many opportunities in the coming months, ranging from 1-on-1 Inner Wilderness Coaching and custom backpacking trips to workshops on wild writing, foraging, council circle, and deep belonging. See a bit more about each below and I hope to explore with you soon!
Read the rest of the newsletter here:
In all the best and wild mysteries,
Director of Creative Earthiness