suffering and joy

 

 

Good Friday 2014 was a very memorable for those of us who spent from 10 am to 3 pm walking the gleniff horseshoe, Ballintrillick, Co. Sligo.reflecting on suffering and hope in our lives.The event included silence, sharing ritual, a death- rebirth experience and a ritual of letting go. The sun shone brightly and nature conspired with the tehme of suffering to ensure that participants could see a lamb being born. Covered in blood and afterbirth it soon was looking for milk.

 

Some of what participants shared included the following

“the first time i ever saw a lamb being born” ” gratitude and belonging, ” “a day of awe and wonder”, “really helped me to use my suffering and let go of something i have been carrying for years”

 

Easter Sunday 2014

 

12 people including children met at 5.45 on Streeetagh Beach to prepare and experience the sun rise. it was a remarkable life giving experience. participants  walked in an Eastern direction, sat on the sand dunes and watched the sun arise at 6.30, watched in silence and then shared. we ccontinued in a southern direction, then headed northwards and finally to the west. each direction has somethingto say to us about living and we as usual nature presented a few interesting scenes.

what they said ” my first time to witness the sun rise on the day we celebrate the son rising” ” my normal fear of dogs evaporated” ” it is so important to look in the right direction in order to see the sun rise. i wish politicans would assist the people to look in an Eastern direction rather than to Sligo County Council  to explain the strange decision regarding rights of way through the Lisadell Estate”. ” an uplifting experience”

Death-Rebirth Experience

GOOD FRIDAY 2014

Starts: 10am
Finishes: 3pm approx
Meeting point: Gleniff Horseshoe Mill
Directions: Travelling from Cliffoney towards Bundoran, turn right at
Gorevan’s pub and travel 3.1 miles uphill to Horseshoe Mill.

Hi fellow travellers, I have just returned from walking the horseshoe in preparation for our annual Good Friday experience. I am amazed at how invigorated and energised I feel despite the theme of death and letting go which I have chosen to explore this year. As Mitch Album reminds us in his best seller, “Tuesdays with Morrow” in order to live fully we must accept the reality of our dying one day.

This year will include a praise walk, a period where we will simply walk in a mindful way as if this was the last time we would walk this earth, a period walking and observing how nature lets go naturally into a new season. Participants will be invited to reflect on what they need to let go of at this stage of their lives. Examples which come to mind as I write include the following: letting go of anger or that which prevents me from expressing my anger, letting go of a grudge which demands so much energy in nursing it, letting go of needing to know the answer, letting go of sadness or allowing tears to flow, letting go of an addiction or pretending I do not have have an addiction, letting go of control or of self doubt.

Towards the end of the walk an opportunity will be provided to help people to experience a ritual of dying to something in this life which no longer serves us well. This might be something you will think about as you prepare for this walk. This letting go ceremony will be complimented by a ritual of new life which we will celebrate on Easter Sunday. (It is not necessary to attend the two events but doing so will enrich your experience significantly.)

We will be walking just over 5 miles together on a circular route around the Gleniff Horseshoe, a beautifully scenic spot. The first mile is uphill, but after that, the walking is easier, and it all takes place on a road surface except for the last part which is relatively.

There will be a stop for refreshments if people want to bring food, although I would encourage those who can, to fast. Sometimes when we fast we realise that there is other food available which is very life giving. Please bring a hot drink and wear warm, waterproof clothing – preferably layers – and comfortable walking shoes. The walk will proceed regardless of weather conditions, so come prepared! April can bring all four seasons in one day…please bring a note book and pencil as there will be opportunities to journal a little.

If you are interested in attending, please let me know by phone (0863663276) or email.

Easter Sunday 2014– Sunrise at Streedagh

The early breeze before dawn
Is the keeper of secrets.
Don’t go back to sleep!
It is time for prayer, it is time to ask for
What you really need.
Don’t go back to sleep!
The door of the One who created the world
Is always open.
Don’t go back to sleep. (Rumi)

Starts: 6am
Finishes 8am approx
Meeting point: Streedagh Beach car park
Directions: Coming from Sligo, turn left in Grange village just after Supervalu
and after about a mile, turn right for Streedagh; follow road right to the end.

This will be a celebration of joy and new life, participants can prepare for this event by reflecting on some of these questions : what is being born in me these days? What gift is dormant in me waiting for an invitation to come alive again? What is bursting to get out?

The morning will begin by a little ritual of coming into life, coming out of the tomb of whatever tends to limit us.

Hopefully we will get a chance to watch a sunrise together, to stand in silence and wait for the dawn, to witness the miracle of a new day. Regardless of the visibility the sun will rise!! We will walk in the four directions, not at the same time of course!!!! Receiving and asking for the gifts each direction has to offer including wisdom, nurture, transformation and the ability to be fully at home in the human body and in the natural world.

We plan to conclude the morning with food and hot drinks. Please bring something for breakfast so that we can prepare the food together and enjoy it as a group. Perhaps five loaves and some fish!!!!!!

Please let me know if you plan to attend and if you would be willing to help out. I really want others to be involved and to know if there are enough people willing to join me at such an early hour. There will be no charge for either event. However if you would like to donate something it will go to Temple St Hospital Your generosity will assist parents who sit daily at the bed side of their sick child.

In the event of atrocious weather there will be a plan B. Call my number on the morning (0863663276) and my voice message will relay the new indoor venue!!

Wear several layers of clothing and be prepared for rain…just in case!

Peter

Wisdom, Innocence, Humour, Freedom

This workshop is now fully booked. However, if you are interested in attending a future workshop, drop me a line. Thanks, Peter.

Cultivating our wholeness—The East Facet of Self.

“Conventional knowledge is death
To our souls and is not really ours.
We must become ignorant
Of what we’ve been taught,
And be, instead, bewildered…..
Forget safety.
Live where you fear to live.
Destroy your reputation.
Be notorious.
I have tried prudent planning
Long enough. From now
On, I’ll be mad.” (Rumi)

In his book “Wild Minds” Bill Plotkin notes that wisdom traditions from around the world have looked to nature’s seven directions for a model of wholeness: north, south, east, west, up, down, and centre. He contends that the four cardinal directions are the four facets of our innate human potential, and that they also reflect the qualities of the natural world which we observe in the four seasons and the four times of the day – dawn, noon, evening and night.

Innocence, clear-mindedness, lightheartedness and extroversion are all qualities of the East Facet of Self. Life without these qualities can leave us humourless, stress filled, heavy and dull. The day aims to facilitate us in cultivating these qualities in ourselves.

We are invited to come out onto the slopes of Ben Bulben to reinvigorate ourselves after a long wet windy and tough winter. It will mean moving out of our comfort zone and embracing the gifts which are in abundance in nature’s untamed powers, and in the more-than-human world.

Requirements for the day: approach it with a willingness to be surprised by what you see, hear, touch, smell, taste and feel. The sight of Sliabh League, the smell of heather, the sound of a crow, the touch of a stone, the taste of your lunch can all be so extraordinary when sensed with a beginner’s mind, young heart and fresh eyes.

The day will include walking with attention and curiosity in an Eastern direction, spending time alone with whatever draws us, sharing with the group whatever you feel is important. You will receive guidance and direction in terms of how to proceed and assistance in integrating what unfolds. Ritual, input, fun and silence will all enhance your experience.

Date: Sunday 30 March
Time: 10am-4.30 pm
Cost: 50euro or whatever you can afford
Booking: Peter Devlin on 086 3663276 or [email protected]
Venue: Slopes of Ben Bulben, Co. Sligo weather permitting; otherwise there will be an indoor venue.
Meeting Point: Yeats Tavern and Restaurant, Bundoran Rd. (car park!!) 9.45am
Deposit: To secure a place please send a deposit of 20 euro to Peter Devlin, Cloonaghbawn, Ballinfull, Co. Sligo before 21 March. (Max 8 places)

Please dress in several layers and bring waterproof jacket and trousers if possible. Good boots or Wellingtons will facilitate you in the exploration. A spare pair of socks and a small towel would be useful, as would notebook and pen. Bring lunch, including something to share.

www.peterdevlin.ie

Soul Days and Training Events 2014

Soul Days and Training Events 2014

“Embracing nature and soul as our wisest and most trustworthy guides” (Bill Plotkin)

THE FOUR FACETS OF SELF

Cultivating and Exploring the East Facet of Self.
Sunday 30 March 10am-4.30 pm This day will facilitate the search within us for the innocent, wise, clear-minded, light hearted, wily and extroverted parts of us. What might be beginning in our lives?
Cultivating and Exploring the South Facet of Self.
Sunday June 8th 10am-5 pm Being at home in the human body, and in the more-than-human world. A day to experience our human wildness and our kinship with all species and habitats. We are as natural as any plant or flower or river.
Cultivating and Exploring the West Facet of Self
Sunday 21 September 10am – 5pm Inviting us to be more in touch with our Soul. A day facilitating the participant in dying to our old ways while giving birth to the never-before-seen.
Cultivating and Exploring The North Facet of Self.
Sunday 30 November 10am-4pm This Dimension of Self is known as the Nurturing Generative Adult. It informs our ability to care for ourselves and others. It is embodied in many familiar activities including: parenting, teaching, healing, feeding and listening.

Good Friday 18th April 10am-2pm
A six mile slow walk around the Gleniff Horseshoe allowing nature to transform our pain.
Easter Sunday 20th April 7am-9am Greeting the dawn on Streedagh Beach, celebrating new life and welcoming what is coming to life in us at this time of our lives.

Working as therapists in the outdoors.
Friday 16th 1pm – Sunday 18th May 4pm.
This training and exploration will examine some of the practical implications inherent in taking therapy outdoors, and focus on particular ways of utilising natural spaces to enhance healing, new life and growth for our clients. Allowing nature to be the primary therapist or guide is an interesting experience.

Vision Quest
Saturday 5th July 10am-Sunday 7th 3pm A two day challenging and deeply rewarding event which facilitates a deep inner search in the service of our soul’s task in this life and how we might facilitate it. It includes 8 hours alone on the mountainside, and a 24 hour fast.

Our Dreams
Saturday October 11th 10am-4pm Our dreams are sources of well being, health, and a way of connecting to our soul. In this experiential event participants will be learning a very powerful way of working with their dreams using their body sense.

Notes on The Four Facets of Self

Bill Plotkin in his book ‘Wild Mind’ identifies our hidden resources, which he names ‘The Four Facets of the Self’. He describes how to cultivate these four facets, and discover the gifts of our sub-personalities.
He wonders if common difficulties that humankind experiences, such as anxiety, depression, phobias and personality disorders are not necessarily problems in themselves. “Perhaps we exhibit psychological symptoms not so much because we’re disordered but because we’re deficient in our embodiment of wellness, health or wholeness.”
I hope to facilitate four days on these Four Facets of Self, which coincide with the four cardinal directions, four seasons of the year and the four main parts of the day. I have spaced these days to coincide with the particular season with which they are aligned.

Costing:
Cost per day is 50 euro, but a sliding scale will be in use. No-one will be turned away because of cost.
The Vision Quest and Therapist Training for Outdoor work have a different fee structure.

Booking:
In order to facilitate planning, the one day events need to be booked at least one week in advance, and the Vision Quest two weeks in advance. The closing date for booking the Therapist Outdoor Training is April 17th 2014

Please do not hesitate to contact me for further information on 086-3663276 or at [email protected] More details for each event will be sent out closer to the date. All the above events will take place outdoors; in the event of adverse weather conditions, we will use a large shed or polytunnel for shelter. Please wear layers of clothing and waterproof gear.

www.peterdevlin.ie

Presence For Christmas

Peter-Devlin-ContactThe late Singer Rita Mc Neill in her song Rolling Thunder asks us a simple question ” have you ever stood outside and watched the sky in wonder?”. as we get into this time of Christmas and look forward to all our little traditions and rituals I have a little suggestions to make. In the midst of all the rushing take a little time to go outside and just watch the sky in wonder.This will help to slow you down and perhaps then reflect on the wonder of your life and the wonder if those who are close to you. Just stop in wonder, be present to yourself and then you will be more likely to give the gift of your presence to another in the days ahead. Real listening and presence is so precious and rare, and really needed.

working as a therapist in the outdoors– training event

Country Lane

“I come into the peace of wild things

Who do not tax their lives with forethought

Of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

And I feel above me the day-blind stars

Waiting with their light. For a time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free”

Wendell Berry(2008)

Working with people in the outdoors

 

Friday 16 May  1pm– Sunday 18th May 4pm. 2014

Cost: 190 euro

 

This three day course is designed for practitioners who either work outdoors with clients or who would like to do so. Thus psychotherapists, psychologists, art therapists, counsellors,  and care workers might be interested in such an event. It will be mainly experiential and will be conducted for the most part outside.| The outdoor environment is a very non-traditional setting for what can be a very powerful experience in working with issues including anxiety, depression, unhealthy anger and  inner child work.

 

While time will be given to emerging issues, it will include the following areas:

The therapeutic rationale for workdoors

The role of nature in the work

Potential approaches to the work

Issues in relation to boundaries and safety

Client assessment and safety

Attending to the contract

Developing a practice working in this way

Participants will also be given an opportunity to facilitate an outdoor therapeutic exercise. There will also be solo time allowing space for personal reflection and time alone in nature, time to connect to the land and to oneself.

 

The location will be in the coastal and mountain environs of North Sligo. Participants will meet in the Benwiskin Centre where a number of places have been reserved for those who would like accommodation . Meals will be supplied but accommodation costs are not included. The course will begin at 1pm on Friday 16th May and concludes on Sunday 18th May at 4pm. There will be evening work on Friday and Saturday.

 

This event would also serve as a retreat for people who wish to spend guided time in the outdoors, learning ways to enhance their own personal healing in a beautiful tranquil and mysterious setting. Please see my article in the I.A.H.I.P journal “Inside Out” Summer 2013.

 

I would appreciate if you would pass on this material to anyone you know who might be drawn to an experience like this. Numbers are limited to 10. To secure a place please send a deposit of 60 euro to Peter Devlin , Cloonaghbawn, Ballinfull, Co.Sligo before Monday 16th September. Please contact me if you require further information (Tel: 086 3663276). www.peterdevlin.ie. CPD  hours will be allocated.

 

Fear

I will not die an unlived life

I will not live in fear

Of falling or catching fire.

I choose to inhabit my days,

To allow my living to open me,

To make me less afraid,

More accessible;

To loosen my heart

Until it becomes a wing,

A torch, a promise.

I choose to risk my signifance,

To live so that which came to me as seed

Goes to the next as blossom,

And that which came to me as blossom,

Goes on as fruit

(Dawna Markova)

working therapeutically with people in the outdoors

“I come into the peace of wild things

Who do not tax their lives with forethought

Of grief. I come into the presence of still water.

And I feel above me the day-blind stars

Waiting with their light. For a time

I rest in the grace of the world, and am free”

Wendell Berry(2008)

Working with people in the outdoors

 

Friday 16 May  1pm– Sunday 18th May 4pm. 2014

Cost: 190 euro

 

This three day course is designed for practitioners who either work outdoors with clients or who would like to do so. Thus psychotherapists, psychologists, art therapists, counsellors,  and care workers might be interested in such an event. It will be mainly experiential and will be conducted for the most part outside.| The outdoor environment is a very non-traditional setting for what can be a very powerful experience in working with issues including anxiety, depression, unhealthy anger and  inner child work.

 

While time will be given to emerging issues, it will include the following areas:

The therapeutic rationale for workdoors

The role of nature in the work

Potential approaches to the work

Issues in relation to boundaries and safety

Client assessment and safety

Attending to the contract

Developing a practice working in this way

Participants will also be given an opportunity to facilitate an outdoor therapeutic exercise. There will also be solo time allowing space for personal reflection and time alone in nature, time to connect to the land and to oneself.

 

The location will be in the coastal and mountain environs of North Sligo. Participants will meet in the Benwiskin Centre where a number of places have been reserved for those who would like accommodation . Meals will be supplied but accommodation costs are not included. The course will begin at 1pm on Friday 16th May and concludes on Sunday 18th May at 4pm. There will be evening work on Friday and Saturday.

 

This event would also serve as a retreat for people who wish to spend guided time in the outdoors, learning ways to enhance their own personal healing in a beautiful tranquil and mysterious setting. Please see my article in the I.A.H.I.P journal “Inside Out” Summer 2013.

 

I would appreciate if you would pass on this material to anyone you know who might be drawn to an experience like this. Numbers are limited to 10. To secure a place please send a deposit of 60 euro to Peter Devlin , Cloonaghbawn, Ballinfull, Co.Sligo before Monday 16th September. Please contact me if you require further information (Tel: 086 3663276). www.peterdevlin.ie. CPD  hours will be allocated.

 

Working therapeutically in the outdoors

Friday Oct 4th- Sunday 6th Oct

This 3 day and 2 night course is designed for those counsellors/ psychotherapist/ psychologists and health professionals who already do some outdoor work or would like to begin working in nature with their clients. The workshop will explore reasons for doing so, examining the practical implications and and focus on particular ways to utilise natural spaces to enhance healing, new life and growth for our clients.

Most of the work will be outdoors in the North sligo area and accommodation will be in the Benwiskin Centre. Numbers will be limited to 8.

More details including cost and an application form will be available later.

Spirituality of the outdoors

Saturday September 7th 2013
Omeath Co Louth
Time 10am -4pm
This will be a day spent in the vicinity of the beautiful mountains and forestry around Omeath and Carlingford. There will be input, time alone and in silence, time to share with kindred spirits and to be in touch with the inner and the outer.”time to be still and know that I am God”

‘Every branch, leaf and fruit
Reveals an aspect of His perfection
The cypress hints of His majesty,
The rose gives tidings of his beauty.’ (Jami)