Catalyzing personal empowerment, societal transformation, and environmental sustainability
"We are all fellow-passengers on the same planet and we are all
equally responsible for the happiness and well-being of the world in which we happen to live."
Mission & Vision
Attraction Retreat's Vision and Mission
We must learn how to nurture Nature, so that Nature can nurture us. We must learn to live in ways that allow all others to live as well.
"The major problems in the world are the result of the difference between how nature works and the way people think." Gregory Bateson
Attraction Retreat has been established to help people reconnect with Nature's organizing intelligence that keeps the rest of the universe in a sustainable balance. We enable people to experience, at the very deepest of levels, that they are an intimate part of the natural environment, and to remember how to think the way Nature works.
The mission of Attraction Retreat is to help create a just, sustainable, and peaceful world through healing and educating individuals for personal empowerment, by building strong community bonds, by improving and sustaining the health of the environment, and by providing a framework for the networking of individuals and organizations to facilitate our common goals.
We see these goals as revolving around and embodying core values that people of good will hold in common. These values are reflected in the four principles of the Earth Charter: 1) respect and care for the community of life, 2) ecological integrity, 3) social and economic justice, and 4) democracy, nonviolence, and peace.
Our goals, which address the environmental crisis, human health and social issues, and the enhancement of the quality of all life, are directed toward three distinct but interconnected sets of relationships: within individuals, within the community, and within the environment.
The first step in achieving our goals is the facilitation of a shift in consciousness that leading-edge thinkers in the life, social and physical sciences today say is needed in order to ensure that the Earth stays habitable for life as we've come to know it. This shift readily occurs when people experience a process which reconnects their multiplicity of innate senses with Nature. A process founded on this philosophy, known as the Natural Systems Thinking Process (NSTP), was developed and has been refined by Dr. Michael Cohen during his more than 40 years as an outdoor educator and counselor. His experience includes founding and directing the National Audubon Society Expedition Institute, the Trailside Country School, Project NatureConnect, and others.
Using the NSTP, people acquire more than a merely rational understanding of life. They begin to actually sense and feel their connections to the Earth and the Web of Life that sustains them. Because this shift includes the social senses that satisfy so many of the emotional, psychological, and spiritual needs that make being human both enjoyable and fulfilling, the NSTP also results in building responsible relationships with other humans--including an impulse toward social justice and inclusiveness.
Another direct effect of this shift in consciousness is that, as people's frame of reference toward the natural world changes, their motivation to modify personal behavior to preserve the natural world greatly increases. For example, after experiencing their intimate connection with the web of life, people 'naturally' start recycling or do it more consistently--not only because they think they should, but because they actually want to. In a psychologically subtle way, not doing so becomes unconscionable.
Our specific goals include supporting concerned and caring individuals and groups who are working towards ecological integrity, social justice, personal healing, growth and empowerment, rebuilding community, and promoting peace. These groups--each working on a unique path toward a common goal of a just and sustainable world that we can pass on to our grandchildren without guilt or recrimination--can all benefit from the natural process embodied in the NSTP. What the NSTP has to offer can strengthen these group's internal organizational relationships and decision making, provide a powerful psychological tool they can personally benefit from and also use to motivate others to support their work, and generate public awareness of and interest in their organizations by helping their cause and goals make sense to the public.
In addition to our work with local organizations, we have developed an educational program we call the Holistic Living Institute that provides opportunities for children, teens, college students, and adults to learn and benefit from the reconnecting with Nature process.
We also act as consultants to the business community. We can help organizations in the areas of business process re-engineering to build healthy workplaces and a healthy workforce, intelligently enfold technology, streamline and strengthen internal communications, provide management training on ways for teams to reach natural consensus, and in becoming positively contributing community members by instituting clean production, zero waste and other environmentally friendly and socially responsible initiatives. These initiative have the added benefit of improving the bottom line.
Nature thrives as a result of mutual support and reciprocity. Our organizational and personal goals therefore also include giving back to the local community that supports us. We intend to do this in part by offering free monthly (or more frequently, as the interest warrants it) experiential nature-connecting meditations to the general public. There are two primary purposes for this: to ensure that the low-income population can benefit from our services, and to allow those who don't need or can't find the time for our regular services to experience the healing powers of Nature and the benefits of enhancing and strengthening community ties.
If you would like to schedule an introductory consultation session or arrange a presentation or workshop for your group, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or give Dave or Allison, co-founders of Attraction Retreat, a call at (520) 887-2502.
"The natural world is the larger sacred community to which we belong. To be alienated from this community is to become destitute in all that makes us human. To damage this community is to diminish our own existence."