Take the adventure, heed the call now ere the irrecoverable moment passes. 'Tis but a banging of the door behind you, a blithesome step forward, and you are out of the old life and into the new.
Kenneth Grahame: Wind in the Willows
Enchanted Forest Journey Process
You can begin the Enchanted Forest course at the beginning of any season.
It works best if you allow yourself a whole season to do each lesson. A season, for us in the old ways, is 6 or 7 weeks. Don’t try to rush it and if you feel you need to take longer on some lessons that’s absolutely fine too.
You decide to move on when you feel you know it in your bones.
At the end of each lesson are 3 questions for you to sit-with and answer.
Send your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org for feedback.
The feedback will offer you suggestions and maybe another question for you to keep in your cauldron that will help you through the coming lesson.
£630 or £45/month for Gold Members
£900 or £70/month for non-members
Enter the Wildwood to lose yourself
and find your Self
This the first of our new Advanced Courses is now open for you to join! As of 21st Sep 2020 please apply for this course – if you’re a Gold member of Deer Trods Tribe you’ll see you get 30% discount on the cost.
The Enchanted Forest course is a journey to find your true self. We all think we know ourselves but when we really get down to it we discover an awful lot of what we’ve believed is “us” is actually other folks’ scripts that we’ve lived with because we’ve not got around to looking at things fully and clearly. Lots of those old scripts no longer fit us and are well past their sell-by dates … but how do we clear them out?
This isn’t a modern problem! We’ve been doing this for hundreds and probably thousands of years, we can document some of the ways people have done this by going back through our old stories like my favourite Gawain and the Green Knight by an unknown British poet, and those of the French poet Chretien de Troyes such as Erec and Enid, Lancelot, Perceval and Yvain. They all go back to the 1100s so that’s 900-odd years, they’re stories he collected and rewrote and so older than that, so we’ve been at this search for the true-self for at least 1000 years, and there are many other poets and taleweavers who tell the Enchanted Forest journey in their own way.
A modern tale-collector who has done a very good job of working out the themes in these stories is the philosopher Joseph Campbell with his hero's journey. He’s also been an advisor to modern taleweavers who have retold them again in story-films like Krull, Star Wars, Dark Crystal, even Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon tells the journey in his style. It’s a concept known in every human culture all over the world.
The journey is one of going out as the Seeker, not really understanding what your true self may be nor how to find it. You enter the Forest (the Wildwood) and the Forest itself with all its otherworldly beings helps you find yourself, this is as much by challenging you as it is by offering you advice. We learn best, get the knowing into our bones, when we discover and realise things for ourselves … it’s much better than learning something by reading it or because someone you respect tells you. The Wildwood, the Forest, does this for you, it leads you to situations where you can come to know yourself better. And at the end of the journey you find yourself at home again but not in the same way.
Ursula le Guin puts it very well in The Dispossessed, "to realise you can always go home as long as you also realise home is a place you've never yet been".
Enchanted Forest Journey
The Enchanted Forest course runs over 7 lessons & Seasons.
The Journey takes you through the 4 Elements – Earth, Water, Air and Fire. I think of it as working my way through the parts of a plant.
1. The first part of the journey is where you meet your Mentor, and your Guide. Your mentor has lots of helpful advice for you. Your Guide will journey alongside you through the forest, and the adventures, offering you help and support. You make friends with them, get to know them, and listen to their advice. They then help you to cross the Threshold and enter into the Enchanted forest.
2. On the second part of the journey, after you’ve crossed the Threshold in the Enchanted Forest you meet with the Stone Folk, getting your roots together, stabilising yourself for the adventures to come. And having adventures with the Stone folk themselves. You’ll meet allies there, you’ll also be challenged by testers, and you’ll learn a lot about roots and how they give and take energy.
3. On the third part of the journey you meet with the Water Folk, learning to work with the flow, learning exchange, learning when to bend with the winds and when to hold firm, and how to do that. You have adventures with the Water Folk, meet allies and testers, and learn a lot about breathing as a process of giving and taking.
4. The fourth part of the journey takes you to meet the Air Folk. They will show you about flying, and floating, gliding silently, how to use your wings, how to see far, how to become a storm of power, and a whirlwind of energy. They will test you and befriend you once you’ve learned to know them. This too is another way of giving and taking.
5. The fifth part of your journey brings you to meet the Fire Folk. Dragons and volcanoes, stars, suns and super-novae, the fire at the heart of the Sun and the fire at the heart of the Earth. Again you’ll meet allies, testers, and challenges. You’ll learn about the fire in your own heart, how to work with that, and how to draw on the greater fires all around us in the galaxy and the cosmos. And you’ll learn how fire transmutes everything, how it brings things back to their component atoms and how it helps them form new beings.
6. The sixth part of the journey brings you to the hub of the Enchanted Forest. Here you meet the Ancestor and they will ask you to show them what you have learned. You will find a way to do this and doing it will help you understand it more fully for yourself.
7. In the seventh and final part of the journey you find yourself at the labyrinth that is the entrance to the World Tree. World Tree invites you to enter. You walk the labyrinth. Within the Tree now you ask for advice on how to live your life and World Tree gives you good counsel. You thank World Tree, walk the labyrinth in reverse, return to your everyday life a new person.
Now you can begin to live in a way that makes your heart sing 😊