Vision Quest

Carrowkeel, Passage Tomb, Co. Sligo
Date:  Fri. 20th. July 11am – Sun. 22nd. July 2 pm 2018

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not ta 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 the time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
(Wendell Barry)

A vision quest is an ancient rite of dying, passing through, and being reborn.

Wilderness fasts have been a part of human culture for many thousands of years. Writer and wilderness guide Bill Plotkin, who has revived this ancient tradition as part of his work in Animus, describes Vison Quest as: ‘Honouring a fallow time in our spiritual lives, an emptiness into which something utterly new and generative might enter. It is to create an open vessel capable of being filled to overflowing by the sacred Other”.

The basic, universal elements of a vision quest are: a remote wilderness setting, fasting from food solitude (no other human companions), direct exposure to the forms and forces of nature, attention focusing and consciousness –shifting ceremonies, prayers, and practices, a significant period of time.

Fasting helps us see the role that food plays in our life and helps us appreciate that there are other forms of food. Being in one place for a considerable period invites us to stay with our pain and thus find a way through it.

Reasons for engaging in such a challenging and demanding exercise includes the following:

  • seeking advice on a major life decision,
  • to celebrate or confirm a path already chosen,
  • seeking direction,
  • seeking courage to forgive oneself or forgive another
  • facilitating the entry into a new phase in your life

Structure of Vision Quest:

  • Friday from 11-6pm will involve group preparation, dream work, deep imagery, and other practices to help participants leave behind their ‘outer’ life to begin entering their own inner wilderness.
  • From 6pm on, Questers will then go off to locate a place to camp, set up and remain there until Sunday morning 9 am. The group then meets for breakfast at base camp.
  • After breakfast, participants will have time and given help to integrate their experience and insights. This can be a powerful time of celebrating the achievement of doing a Vision Quest, being really listened to and receiving guidance on ways of incorporating the vision into everyday life.

A vision quest can be physically and psychologically challenging. It is essential that participants are in good physical, mental and emotional shape.  Irish weather can be very unpredictable, regardless of season!!

Committing to this project will involve a period of preparation. This will include personal contact with me by phone or person to person before the event, completion of a form indicating your reasons for taking part. Suggested reading material will be given and a list of resources you will need for your vision quest.

Fee: 190 Euro           Deposit: 60 Euro – required by 22nd. June to secure a place

Final Payment due: 9th. July 2018      (after this date there will be no refund)

Registration: After receiving completed registration form and deposit, Peter will contact you to begin the process of preparation. Early registration is encouraged. If a minimum number has not registered by the 22. June, the event might be cancelled. If we cancel program due to low enrollment, registered participants will receive full refund. Please do not make prior travel arrangements until given notice.

Guides: Peter Devlin + Patsy Brady (assistant). Patsy works as a psychotherapist and professional trainer. Carrowkeel and the surrounding area is practically in his back garden. He knows the land intimately and will be on site to indicate where you could pitch your tent and give also some history to this special site.

To secure a place please send your deposit to:

 Peter Devlin, Cloonaghbawn, Ballinfull, Co.Sligo
 Phone: 086-3663276   Email: [email protected]



A Participant in the Vision Quest 2015 had this to say:


We have forgotten who we are.

It is in giving oneself to the stillness, letting it speak, of letting our control go,

all our Ego head stuff. To be present to what is, pain, fantasies, depression, joy.

To be aware, emptying of Self, letting go of desiring, regrets.

Then become aware of one’s heart, the loving heart, the broken heart, the heart with its scars. Enlightenment is in small things. We do not have to go far to experience soul longings. It may very well be on the side of a mountain

in the stillness of the night.’

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