Mindfulness And The Natural World

A lovely generous freebie for TODAY ONLY! For use on Kindle or your Kindle app on your devices. Mindfulness by Claire Thompson is probably familiar reading for a lot of you. If not, I believe it should be. Even being familiar it jogs a lot of reminders too. Very easy to read and flows very well.  My one concern with books like these is that I still feel the writer is dealing with an Us and Nature situation. Maybe, I do this in presentations too. I always feel the real exercise and training is how to train our ego into not thinking ‘Us and Nature’ and break down that illusion that we are either superior to it, or humble guests of it.  I tend to think it is not about connecting to nature, but about disconnecting from our refusal, or surrender, to recognise we are part of it all.  I look at this ‘connect with nature’ thought we carry and think it is like the ridiculousness of the branding of ‘Organic Fruit and Vegetables’ leaving us to maybe think all other veggies are no

Stories And Trust

How I so believe in this, and work with this ... the therapeutic power of stories.  I tend to feel quite an empathy for people, and even a bit of sadness for them, when people bombard me with the “where are your ‘facts’ ...”. Even worse is when people declare “These are the facts!!!” ... and perhaps refer me to a Wiki page.  This is because I never personally believe in the existence of ‘facts’, well not in a worded presentation called ‘facts’. As I often quickly respond, “What are facts today, are fictional stories tomorrow”.  Perhaps the most challenging of all is when people say “what you are saying is just a bunch of lies”. My reaction is ‘sigh, they have perhaps not discovered the life enrichment and wisdom inspiring magic of stories.’ Personally, I cannot possibly see how truth can be conveyed with words ... yet truth is mighty from our synthesis of senses. I find it is stories that can pause us and encourage our senses to talk to us rather than words. From that sense synthesis,

Replacing Emotional Isolation with Natural Connection

This is a wonderful video that is. perfect for our, badly named, ‘isolation’ time. To me this slowed down time  is a perfect opportunity to ‘smell the roses’, as it was once said. A time for moments to learn how to ditch our linear academic taught languages, that can taunt us with a lot of fear, offence, intimidation, and other abuses. ... and return us back to the language of our senses and sense the other beautiful carriers of life around us. By doing so rebuild our connections we once carried as a species ... when we did not have people to teach us linear languages. This is an essential simple video instruction from Jon Young The graphic above is from Jon's presentation I love the part of bringing forward the stories formed by our senses back into our linear language, our tool for sharing with others, as a way they may listen to not just from words but with all senses, not just their ears. Reminds me of some of the Bards In The Woods meet-ups we used to do where

Sioned Jones - A Mentor for Us Growing More Native Trees?

all photos in this article by Sioned Jones Justice or Regime Control? Sioned Jones managed to get attention in the Irish media, and some UK media, despite the media focus being on Coronavirus, USA election, and post-Brexit developments. To recap. the first headline was  'Sioned Jones convicted of stealing logs after 20 years of felling non-native trees in Cork'. Sioned lives in the village of Kilkeal, near Bantry, famous for various ancient megalithic sites and the wonderful Future Forests nursery. On land above her cottage, the state-owned forestry company Coillte planted a plantation of Sitka spruce, a non-native species that Sioned considered to be a 'dark, dank threat to biodiversity'.. So she got a chainsaw and started cutting, and cutting. She cut few trees at first, then dozens, then hundreds. Then in their place she planted native broadleaf trees, birch, hazel, oak, alder, crab apple and rowan. Sioned ended up engaged a 'guerrilla' re-wil

I Am Back - Visions For 2020

Cut Down By Strokes I have been quiet because over Christmas I suffered two strokes. One on Christmas Day last year, and another more serious one during the early morning of the 27th December. After a couple of weeks in hospital I was transferred top the excellent St. John's Hospital Sligo for rehabilitation and lots of useful physiotherapy work. I was discharged and allowed home Friday 7th February, and was able to vote on 8th February. My current condition is that I am itching to get back into action but I still have some limitations that will heal over the coming months. I can walk around Carrowcrory Cottage without support, but still need a crutch to get around the gardens. I went around a supermarket a couple of days ago and was very comfortable shopping holding onto a shopping trolley. I want to get back to the local market though. Beyond Fatigue I had a more paralytic stroke 10 years ago but recovered from that quite quickly, and I do not remember the fatig

More Trees On The Land

My Own Three Tree Passions Since being hugely inspired by the people I met at the Tree Festival in Co. Leitrim, at the end of August, and.synthesised in with my own lifelong woodland passions, these three passions have surfaced to the top with me. Forest Schooling, that is for all ages and not limited to games and wonders for the children, but a whole psyche and value transformation for anyone. Being among woodland, or any native wilderness such as coast, savannah. prairie etc. and that being our sacred space of faith, inspiration, esteem, confidence, self-love for shared love, sensing, listening, vision, expression, and creation. How to create or be part of a Tree Sanctuary and by doing so also increase the native tree cover of our lands for CO2 absorption, physical healing and protection, mental healing and protection, and dream catching and using. The Wonderful 'Trees On The Land' 'Trees On The Land' is an amazing charity, In short, each year, on you

Is Ireland Planting More Native Trees?

600,000 native trees around Ireland within 3 years New Irish Government policy is to plant 600,000 native trees around Ireland within 3 years, edged on by the Green Party. Looks like good news at first glance. My first reaction was that this would bring Ireland in line with Scottish policy that has proven to be a huge success, and was also steered by a Green Party motion and lobbying. Forest education and tourism has become successful and is expanding rapidly in Scotland. It’s Ireland’s time now ... but! I read about this elsewhere and, sadly ... Is this merely a Government Spin?  Looking closely, the policy is for 22 million trees to be planted each year, but 600,000 native trees planted over 3 years. This means 200,000 native trees planted per year. Put the native trees planted against the 22 million trees planted per year, and that still keeps Ireland at around 1% native tree forestry? This is certainly not like the recent Ethiopia tree planting action. There is also

Explore Our Hubs and Portals

Introduction & links to our Hubs and Portals collection. I sort of maintain quite a collection of hub and portal sites for myself and Claire Roche, but really do not do much with them until the daylight shortens, and here we are just after Equinox and I am getting into the swing of this again. Some are new, some with little content yet, but please subscribe to the ones you like, and I will make a lot of effort to load these better this winter. ... Enjoy exploring :-) Carrowcrory Cottage & Labyrinth Gardens Our main portal. The base of all of the projects, work, and service we do. From here we host our Sunday Sessions. Each of these session topics will eventually have their own pages and portals. Claire Roche hosts mid-week Afternoons here with an introductory Tree Labyrinth Garden Session, Afternoon Tea, and a performance of her enchanting stories, songs and harps. Eventually, a side portal explaining more about the Labyrinth Gardens and the trees, plants, and her

Us and Trees - What we can do

I am working on this article for our next Sunday Session. Though this is not finished, I feel this needs to out there for you to read and contemplate while I still work on editing and improving this.  It was a rainy day today, so I working on this awhile,  I still have not had time to get more photos posted into this article. I do not think this will be possible now well into next week. Eventually, some video clips will arrive here too, in the near future.  Please bookmark and re-visit this article when you can. Also, consider attending our Sunday Session of this at Carrowcrory next Sunday afternoon from 2pm.  If you cannot attend that please  contac t me for future dates .  Please RSVP in advance here, to attend as we can only host 25 people. Woodland Cover In Ireland? At the remarkable first Woodland Festival in Co. Leitrim, this month, I learned a lot more about tree and woodland cover. The conversations I had with people within what seems to be a limited tree passion

Using The Tree Labyrinth Garden

At Sunday Sessions At Carrowcrory Labyrinth Gardens we now have a Dancing Lady Herb Spiral Labyrinth Garden, Triple Spiral Lavender Garden, Fire Dance Garden, Fruit Serpent Garden and the Queen of them all, the Tree Labyrinth Garden. On most Sunday afternoons between April and end of October we host Sunday Sessions. Through these, we explore folklore, most of it being local. We suggest ideas from them for guiding our current life choices. Our Sunday Sessions are micro vision quest journeys. First, a folklore story or genre is explored. Then some contemplation on this is combined with our invited Tree Labyrinth experience. Together, this can inspire the creation of poetry, or at least some journaling, to express and perhaps understand the folklore more. The Tree Labyrinth Dream Allow me to introduce the origins of the Tree Labyrinth Garden that started as a repeated dream and then became an expression of ancient mythologies combined with local folklore. The starting