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Kinship Immersion 

October 2 - 15,  2022

Week Two:

  • Thinking like a forest: small scale forestry

  • Using the gifts: bowl carving and mushroom log inoculation

  • Humanure Composting 101

  • Root harvest and root cellaring

  • Readings on bioregionalism, place, decolonization and reinhabitation

  • Continued practices of silence and listening to place with guest mentor Ray Reitze

How are we to live in this place? How are we to belong to this place?

Human beings are moving back toward belonging.  All our ancestors once walked the road of belonging, experiencing and living within shared stories of kinship.  All of us live to one degree or another in the rip-tide between stories of separation and dominion and the inner wisdom that tells us of another way.  Most of us live among the fragments of cultural and ancestral knowledge.  Perhaps you, like us, are dreaming of piecing these fragments back together into a life that holds water, local water.  These new vessels will not exactly replicate those of the past, but if we honor each fragment for its unique gifts, and listen with full heart to the places where we now live, call them home, plan to stay, then the vessels we create will hold joy and purpose. 

The Kinship Immersion explores a patchwork of skills and knowledge that celebrate the creative genius of our ancestors as well as the possibilities of today.  We will delve into real skills that allow us to sustain life:  tool sharpening, wild gathering, thermophilic composting of human waste, small scale forestry, root-cellaring, carving, fermenting, goat husbandry, basket weaving.  Each participant will carve and hang a handle on an axe then sharpen it into a vibrant tool.  We will also listen to elder Ray Reitze who reminds us to "learn to set down the tool," be it axe or computer, to give time to stillness, observation, silence and the understanding of our role in a natural community.  Reitze, whose boyhood was marked as an apprentice to a Mi'kmaq elder, will guide inquiry into interspecies communication, silence, and listening.  We will live from the abundance of gifts that this young homestead has to offer: acorn flour from the woods, cornmeal from the gardens, apples snug in the root cellar.  We will also focus on culture building: how do we want to interact, how can we make space to be ourselves and share our gifts, what kind of community do we want to create?

Are you are seeking an experience of digging into place, reskilling, reinhabiting, restoring?  Are you intrigued with eroding colonialist and capitalist worldviews through daily actions that engender a world view of gratitude, reciprocity, and kinship?  If so, this is a program for you. 

Week One:

  • Homestead systems: ice house, root cellar, green house, solar dehydrator, rocket stove

  • Acorn processing

  • Tool use and sharpening

  • Making an axe handle

  • Making a rocket stove

  • Readings on belonging, cultural stories, shared histories

  • Frameworks and practices for interspecies communication with guest mentor Ray Reitze

Selected and Excerpted Texts:

Bromfield, L. Pleasant Valley.
Gruenwald, D. The Best of Both Worlds: A Critical Pedagogy of Place.
Leopold, A.  The River of the Mother of God.
Kimmerer, R. Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants.

Oliver, M.  Selected Poems.
Van Horn, G and Kimmerer, R. Kinship: Belonging in a World of Relations.

Facilitators and Guides:

Ray Reitze   |   Jacquelynn Ward   |   Christopher Knapp

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In Listening we acknowledge our place in a world of relations.  We lose our autonomy but gain our kin.

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Sliding scale from $700 to $1400, pay what you can. All meals and accommodation included.
October 2 - 15, 2022
Adults 18 and older
Contact or 207.778.0318 with questions

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