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Awake in the Wild Nature Meditation
Awake in the Wild Nature Meditation is a unique way to be in nature. It is the art of being outdoors with a contemplative presence. Through the power of mindfulness people can cultivate a receptive, open quality of awareness that allows a rich sensitivity and connection to the natural world.
Unlike being indoors, meditating in the wild allows you to utilize all of your senses and the sensory environment as a support for being present. From that intimate connection, you can develop insight, clarity and a visceral understanding of knowing one’s place in the web of life. By doing so, the wisdom of nature is easily revealed.
Utilizing various mindfulness practices outdoors allows you to touch a sense of joy, wonder, love and connection. It is a way to wake up to the preciousness of this moment and the beauty of the earth we all share. Out of that connection can arise a deep care for the planet and a desire to live in greater harmony and sustainability.
Awake in the Wild Teacher Training
The Awake in the Wild Teacher Training is an apprenticeship training in guiding contemplative nature practice, inspired by wisdom teachings from the Buddhist tradition, by Mark Coleman’s book Awake in the Wild (AITW) and by the wilderness retreats led by Mark for more than a decade across the Americas. Nature meditation brings mindful awareness practices into the outdoors as a support for presence, connection, and insight. Mark is excited to share this cherished work with a group of dedicated nature meditation practitioners that will give them tools to begin to share similar practices with others.
The Awake in the Wild Teacher Training is for people who care deeply about the earth, who have a a strong Dharma / meditation practice and who take that contemplative presence into the outdoors. Equally important, it is for those who feel called to take people deep into nature with a spirit of reverence and contemplation.
This program will have four residential retreats with Mark in California or the western states. There will also be monthly online tutorials, personal nature-based work and a teaching practicum.
Awake in the Wild Teacher Training Course Details
(click on the + below to open each section)
This in-depth apprenticeship training in nature-based mindful contemplative practice trains you to:
- Teach mindfulness in nature
- Teach specific AITW practices
- Facilitate meditation in nature immersive experiences
- Teach AITW classes, daylong and weekend programs
The Awake in the Wild Teacher Training will be organized under an apprenticeship model. This means that Mark will be sharing his heart and soul’s knowledge of nature-based meditation as a way to inspire your own creativity and nature-based work. Upon successful completion of the course, you may teach nature-based meditation practices and we encourage you to be creatively inspired by Mark’s practices and content. If, after gaining experience teaching nature-based meditation workshops and courses, you would like to become a certified AITW facilitator, you are encouraged to apply for authorization that may require apprenticing with Mark.
As you can see, this is a different model than a typical teacher training and we feel it will best support the work to thrive – based on creative empowerment and learning by apprenticing.
This training will take place over one year including 4 Awake in the Wild immersion retreats. It will include:
- Multiple immersions in the Awake in the Wild experience
- Orientation to teaching foundational and in-depth nature-based meditation practices
- Applications of contemplative practice in the wild to daily life
- Nuts and bolts of organizing and holding a nature meditation course
- Exploring the key elements of a AITW course which includes cultivating the areas of silence, meditation, community, wilderness awareness, inquiry, mindfulness and love
- Learning how to teach nature-based practices in multiple formats
- Understanding issues of diversity and cultural sensitivity to different populations
- Integrate issues relating to the climate / ecological crisis in the context from a mindfulness and compassionate perspective
- This is not a Wilderness Guide Training (all AITW retreats are accompanied by a certified wilderness guide)
- This is not a mindfulness teacher training. (Applicants are expected to have a pre-existing thorough understanding of mindfulness meditation and preferably have had some experience in teaching/facilitation)
- To teach AITW intensive silent retreats longer than a weekend, this requires individual approval from Mark. Apprenticeship for this is available on an individual basis with Mark post-graduation
Minimum five years regular meditation practice (mindfulness based)
Two silent mindfulness / meditation retreats of 5-7 days or longer
Extensive experience being in nature
Meditation teaching/facilitation experience (preferable)
May 6-12, 2018 – Pilot Hill, CA
September 10-16, 2018 – Ward, CO
February (TBA: Likely the week of February 4th) – Baja, Mexico
May 9-19, 2018 – Taos, NM
Dates are subject to change.
Tuition is $5,950, which does not include the costs associated with each retreat. The retreats will cost roughly $500-600 each.
A deposit of $1,000 is due after your acceptance in the program to retain your spot. Another $2,500 deposit is due on January 15, 2018. And the final $2,450 is due March 1, 2018.
Alternative payment plans are available. If you think you might be in need of a different payment plan, please indicate that in the last question on the application form and please give us a sense of what would be within your means.
In addition to the application form found at the link below, you will need to submit a 2-3 min video of you speaking directly to camera, saying how meditation has impacted your life and why you want to take the course. To submit the video, you’ll need to upload it to your own personal YouTube or Vimeo account and paste the link into your application form.
Nature Meditation Retreats: Vallecitos Mountain Ranch in Taos, NM
Summer Solstice Meditation in Nature Retreat
June 15 – 21, 2018
Vallecitos, Taos, NM
Following ancient traditions of celebrating the Summer Solstice, this retreat will be spent meditating outdoors in the natural beauty and mystery here at Vallecitos Mountain Ranch. Whether it is during sunset meditations, listening to the soothing sounds of the river, or sitting graced in the stillness of the aspen trees, we will open to the profound serenity and wisdom of nature.
“Embracing Change” Meditation in Nature Retreat
October 14 – 19, 2018
Vallecitos, Taos, NM
On this silent retreat we will meditate outdoors in the natural beauty and mystery at Vallecitos Mountain Ranch. Whether it is during sunset meditations, listening to the soothing sounds of the river, or sitting graced in the stillness of the aspen trees, we will open to the profound serenity and wisdom of nature.
Nature Meditation Retreats: Kayaking in Baja
8 DAYS ON KAYAKS
Mark offers a nature meditation sea kayaking retreat in the pristine wilderness of the Sea of Cortez. The trip organizer is Sea Trek and all registration for it is done through their website.
The retreat will be in silence to support the meditative process, and there will be several periods of meditation daily as well as time for discussion, talks on the themes of meditation in nature and opportunities for one-to-one work with the Mark Coleman. There will also be free time to paddle, swim, snorkel and enjoy this spectacular setting.
Awake in the Wild: The Book
by Mark Coleman
Introduction by Jack Kornfield
Many of us have forgotten how to listen, feel, and sense the natural world and why it’s vital to our own humanity. We can turn the tide by engaging in regular contact with nature while cultivating the simple yet profound quality of mindful attention. Awake in the Wild is a guide to using Buddhist meditative techniques in the natural world as a way to access nature’s gifts, blessings, and guidance.
~Mark Coleman, from Awake in the Wild: Mindfulness in Nature as a Path of Self-Discovery