Philosophy of Nature: A 25-Hour Retreat for Men and Women

PhilosophyNature BorderJuly 23rd, 11:00 a.m. to July 24th, 12:00 p.m.


What is the relationship between human beings and nature? A long tradition in Western Philosophy has depicted nature as something separate from, and inferior to humanity.  Connected to this idea is the long-standing notion that nature is ultimately only of instrumental value to human beings, rather than having a value of its own that is worthy of respect and care.  In this workshop we will critically examine this tradition and the ways that it permeates our world, and we will work to move beyond it.


We will immerse ourselves in nature, read and discuss short selections from contemporary environmental ethicists and literary writers, and creatively experiment with ways to cultivate a greater connection with nature.  We will spend time working on “being present” in nature, journaling, and setting intentions for the future.  In the beautiful, peaceful setting of TreeSong, this will be an opportunity to slow down, quiet our minds, unplug, and learn some new techniques for connecting with nature that you can bring home with you.


The Program:

Saturday, July 23, 2016

11:00 am – Arrive, Walk and Mindfulness Practices
12:00 pm – Lunch (bring your lunch)
1:00-2:30 pm – Lecture and discussion on the depiction of nature in the history of philosophy
2:30-5:00 pm – Time for journaling outside, and reading an article on Deep Ecology
5:00 pm – Dinner
6:00 pm – Discussion of Deep Ecology article
7:30 pm – Campfire time, music.
**Bring a nature-centric quote, poem, or song to share
9:00 pm – or before bed time, read short essay by Annie Dillard called “Living Like Weasels”


Sunday, July 24, 2016

8:00 am  – Coffee and nibbles out, journal time
9:30 am  – Brunch
10:30 am – Discussion of Living Like Weasels, Setting intentions
11:30 am – Final walk down to the river, Mindfulness Practice
12:00 pm – Pack up and depart for home


The retreat includes:
One (1) overnight stay at TreeSong’s Little Red Cabin.
Two (2) meals – Dinner on the 23rd and brunch on the 24th.


$200/sleeping in cabin, bunk room or hide-a-bed in living room (3 spaces available)

$180/sleeping on covered porch on comfy cots, bedding provided (2 spaces available)
$160/camping with own gear (3 spaces available)

Online registration

About your Retreat leader:

IMG_0301 - Version 2Monica Vilhauer, Ph.D is a philosophy professor who, after a decade of teaching in Virginia, has returned home to Oregon to expand philosophy beyond the classroom and explore its practical side. Monica considers philosophy to be more than an intellectual exercise. It is a way of life! She started the business Curious Soul Philosophy in 2015, and now organizes and leads innovative workshops and retreats that aim to connect philosophy to lived-experience, and make philosophy accessible to a broad audience.
For more information, check out her website  Curious Soul Philosophy



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