Cultivating Ecological Wisdom

October 30, 2016 - November 1, 2016
Offered by Five Oaks Centre
Paris ON


Cultivating Ecological Wisdom

We live in a time of crisis in which climate change, the rapid loss of biodiversity, and the growing gap between rich and poor threaten the survival of humanity and countless other members of the Earth community. Creating a sustainable and just human society requires not only innovative new technologies and policies, but also ecological wisdom.
Ecological wisdom is rooted in a lived experience of the interconnection and intrinsic value of all life. It consists of the diverse modalities of perception and consciousness – together with the knowledge, skills, and emotional intelligence – that enable humans to listen to and learn from Earth’s wisdom as well as to discern and embody actions that:
•    respect and protect the diversity of life;
•    enable us to “live well” in harmony with each other and other species;
•    move toward ever greater justice and equity;
•    protect the well-being of future generations; and
•    recover a sense of the sacredness of life and meaning beyond the quest for acquisition and consumption.
Cultivating ecological wisdom, then, entails finding ways to creatively engage in the key challenges of our time and discovering concrete ways to live well with each other and the greater Earth community
Over the course of this retreat, participants will reflect on the meaning of ecological wisdom and on key experiences in their own lives that have fostered a deeper sense of connection with the more-than-human world. Drawing on insights from contemporary science as well as from a variety of spiritual traditions (including Buddhism, Taoism, and the Aramaic versions of Jesus’ teachings), we will seek to deepen our understanding of ecological wisdom while engaging in practices that may deepen our bond with the greater Earth community.



Mark Hathaway is completing a doctoral degree at the University of Toronto where his research explores the processes of transformative learning involved in developing an ecological worldview and cultivating ecological wisdom by examining the significant life experiences of more that twenty-five ecological educators and activists. Mark is also the principle author, with Leonardo Boff, of The Tao of Liberation: Exploring the Ecology of Transformation (Orbis Books, 2009) which explores the political, economic, and psychological dimensions of the current ecological crisis as well as cosmological insights related to processes of transformation. This book received two book awards in 2010 and has since been published into Portuguese, Spanish, and Italian with German and Korean translations currently underway.
Mark worked for ten years at the national offices of The United Church of Canada. He also has extensive experience working in Latin America. He teaches a course on Ecological Worldviews at the University of Toronto as well as a course on Transformative Learning and Sustainability at the Earth Charter Initiative in San José, Costa Rica. He currently lives in Toronto with his spouse, Maritza, and his daughter, Jamila.


Date:  Oct. 30 – Nov. 1, 2016

Cost:  $375  (includes meals & accommodations)


For a printable flyer for this retreat, click here.

Program Details & Online Registration:

Cultivating Ecological Wisdom

Start: October 30, 2016 at 4:00 PM
End: November 1, 2016 at 5:30 PM
Cost: $375.00

Includes meals and accommodations.  Ends with dinner on Tuesday Nov. 1 at 5:30pm.

Categories: Courses  |  Ecology/Theology  |  Spiritual Direction