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Beholding the Heart of Nature

A Course of inner development based on a year of encounters with Nature


Our Inspiration “The Natural gifts, naturally inherited knowledge, traditional medicines and so on that have been passed down from ancient times are all losing their value . We need to acquire new knowledge in order to be able to enter into all the inter-relationships of these things. Humanity has only two choices : either to start once again, in every field of endeavour, to learn from the whole of nature, from the relationships within the whole cosmos, or to allow both nature and human life to degenerate and die off. There is no other choice. Today no less than in ancient times, we are in need of knowledge that can really enter into the inner workings of nature”. “Spiritual Foundations for the Renewal of Agriculture, lecture 2” Rudolf Steiner

Cover Picture :-

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Prof. Brian Goodwin “Beholding the Heart of a Rose” in Pishwanton Wood Brian Goodwin (1931—2009) was an ardent advocate of exploring new knowledge from nature.


What is the course? The course 'Beholding the Heart of Nature’ is a schooling path based on Goethe’s work, developed by Rudolf Steiner, and carried forward in Dornach, Switzerland (in the Natural Science Section). While conventional scientific methods of objective observations and clear-thinking are an important part of the Goethean scientific methodology, the Goethean schooling in this course aims to develop in addition an enhanced attitude and orientation of soul which deepens conventional knowledge and can lead to a deeper understanding of nature and our relationship to it. This understanding has positive effects on both personal and professional development. The course follows the year at Pishwanton through the cycle of the zodiac, through plant observation, landscape study, animal observation, art, movement, music and physical activity appropriate to the time of year. In this way we learn to listen to what the year of the earth as a great living being has to tell us, leading to a deeper understanding of nature and, through this, of self. A one year intensive experience. Why one year? • To experience the full zodiac, beginning with Aries • To complete a personal research project interwoven with monthly exercises • As a commitment to change yourself - to learn and use Goethean Science as a participative experience There will be a weekly colloquium for students to share their experiences and research projects.

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The story behind this course In the 1990s Axel Ewald and Margaret Colquhoun ran a sequence of courses called the Life Science Seminar. These courses were inspired by Goethe's scientific search for the archetypal source of his artistic inspiration which was further developed by Rudolf Steiner.. Of special relevance to us in the British Isles is the relationship between art and science in the Hibernian Mysteries. The participants in the Life Science Seminars visited the places where these Mysteries had been practiced. In 1997 a group including several Seminar participants met to devise a longer training. The outcome was "The New Hibernian Way": a sequence of courses making their way through the seasons, the Celtic and the Christian festivals and mystery sites of the British Isles. Meanwhile, in 1992, the Life Science Trust had been founded in order to purchase Pishwanton Wood in S.E. Scotland and to establish a centre for the teaching and practice of Goethean Science. Many courses were held here outside in the landscape “classroom”. In 2001 work began on a Goethean Science building at Pishwanton which is now almost complete. So the “New Hibernian Way” has found at Pishwanton a 'New Hibernian Place'. The next step is to create a "College for Goetheanism" offering an artistic, scientific and practical education based on the Goethean Scientific method. This will be concentrated in the Whicher-Wilson building for Goethean Science.

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Who is the course for? This course would benefit many people at different levels of participation! The full years course provides a good foundation year for students in any anthroposophical training. It offers a practical introduction to anthroposophy and thus is an excellent complement for students of anthroposophical medicine, Waldorf teaching, biodynamic agriculture, herbalism and social studies (linked or unlinked to anthroposophy). It would be excellent for already qualified scientists and teachers as career enhancement or continuing professional (or personal) development and would be an accessible route towards an understanding of anthroposophy for any interested person. This course could have a very important role to play in the upper school of Rudolf Steiner Schools - for example for specialist teachers who have no Waldorf training. The course would also be good for teachers from conventional schools and conventional scientists and social workers. In summary—"Beholding the Heart of Nature" • is a foundation year for people at a turning point in their lives or who want to bring something new into their life's work or deepen their profession. •

is a foundation for young adults who are seeking their life's task

is a sabbatical for people in mid career

is a reorientation for those seeking a new task / way of being in later life

is a component of a biodynamic apprenticeship training

is for anyone wanting to reconnect to nature in a deeply spiritual way

is for people who want to enhance another training

is a gap year for adults

For those who cannot manage a whole year of intensive learning, the components lend themselves to be taken as separate modules—as a three month block on a particular topic —or as individual weekend workshops

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What will this course do for you? The breathing in and out of Nature and the interplay between science, art and practical, meditative work on the land give rise to a harmonisation of head, hands and heart if we can open ourselves to the activities. This, in turn, results in an understanding and trust of one's own intuition and the confidence to act responsibly in the world. Beholding the Heart of Nature is a path of self-development intimately embedded in practical life in the natural environment. It allows the growth of a sense of who one is as a human being in relationship to Nature and rejuvenates love and a sense of responsibility for the natural world. Thinking becomes enhanced after the experience of this programme and the capacity to make well thought through decisions. In addition, this work strengthens one's inner will and harmonises the feeling life.

Community building Participants learn how to meet the other kingdoms of nature and in a group, this practice can free one's own habit life and allow the acceptance of the opinion of others, thereby moving towards the foundation of new community. In a diverse group of people, each with their own project, the discussion widens every one's horizons and intercommunication becomes an essential part of understanding one’s own work from other points of view. Likewise practising the same scientific method throughout the 12 months of the year on different aspects of nature, generates an appreciation of the wholeness of the life of the earth as well as a reflected balancing of every human being. By working together as a group as well as on individual projects participants can express their own individuality while contributing to the group/community building effort. 5


What is the Structure of the year? The course is divided into self-contained modules each of which can be taken as one weekend workshop or three week-end blocks within a learning epoch. However, full immersion for each zodiac sign at monthly intervals over one year is highly beneficial and recommended for more serious students of Goetheanism.

There are four epochs of learning

- Aries to Gemini - Cancer to Virgo - Libra to Sagittarius - Capricorn to Pisces

- Plant studies - Landscape - Animals - Human Being

Each epoch is broken down into three sessions on a given topic. The course can be taken as a full-time residential course for students with their own projects or students may attend the monthly week-ends only, or a block of three on a particular topic.

Each long weekend will involve a meditative observation in Nature, followed by a group artistic exercise. There will be an introduction to Goethe’s work and to the topic being studied, individual research, artistic activities and some practical work on the land. All courses begin on Friday afternoon and finish at the end of Sunday afternoon

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Spring - April - July - "The Plant as Teacher" An introduction to Goethean Science - through learning about the plant kingdom. This practical hands on experiential learning is accompanied by text study to show the development of Goethean Science into the Spiritual Science of Rudolf Steiner. The intense study and appreciation of nature in its unfolding in the spring of the year, growth and culmination into flowering and the understanding and processing of medicinal plants take place together with practical work appropriate to the season and artistic activities, which complement , enhance and spring from the above. Summer - July - September - Components of the Landscape What plants grow where? How does the underlying geology shape the environment? How can we see the landscape as a mirror of human activity and thought? Three months of exploration of nearer and wider landscapes deepen Goethe's method and enhance our experience of ourselves in relation to nature. Design of new landscapes out of an appreciation of the old will be a major component of this epoch. Development of new spaces obviates any need to "hanker after" the past. Drama in the landscape will complement the science and lead to a promenade performance of a mystery drama in Pishwanton. 7


Autumn - September - December - Animals in the Landscape and Evolution The animal kingdom is approached first by observing live animals as they move through and inhabit Pishwanton's landscape. Then by trying to understand them as an outer picture of certain aspects of the inner human being. Studying the animals in situ we learn to "slip into their skin". This is followed by the study of animal skeletons, which leads io an appreciation of the different groups of animals and our inner relation to them. Clay modelling and eurhythmy complement this epoch.

Winter - December - March - The Human Being, Embryology and Colour Theory Having started with ourselves and gone out into the kingdoms of Nature, we now turn back towards the human being and try to get to know the outer and inner nature of ourselves more deeply . We will study the human skeleton and its metamorphoses, work with music and speech and finish with Goethe's colour theory.

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Summary of Courses for 2012 - 2013 offered by the Life Science Trust at Pishwanton Wood Beholding the Heart of Nature week-end courses Week-end Dates Aries

20 - 22 April 2012

Taurus

25 - 27 May

Gemini

29 June - 1 July

Cancer

27 - 29 July

Leo

24 - 26 August

Virgo

21 - 23 September

Libra

26 - 28 October

Scorpio

23 - 25 November

Sagittarius

21 - 23 December

Capricorn

TBC 2013

Aquarius

TBC 2013

Pisces

TBC 2013

In between are the following courses :Compost Making Medicinal Plants and their Meaning Medicinal and Culinary Herbs Growing Harvesting and Processing Plants for Home Use ( Kitchen Pharmacy) Plants in the Landscape Bees and Bee keeping Evolution Plant families and Healing Processes Study of Stars and Zodiac Sacred Architecture And alongside these we are running practical training activities throughout the year on :Healing Plants for Human Organs 28th April - 1st May 2012 Talks by Charles Lawrie 6th June 1. Rosicrucian Impulses at the time of the Venus Sun transits. 2. Rosicrucian Impulses in recent Scottish History Plant Dyeing Green Building (See www.pishwanton.org) Exploring & Painting the Scottish Landscape Weaving with Natural Colours Spinning and Felting

Please apply to the office of the Life Science Trust (address on back page) for details, prices and course leaders or check Michael Festival www.pishwanton.org

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9th June throughout summer 19th - 25th August 22nd September t.b.c. 29th September


What does the course cost? Course Costs

As w/e course taken individually £210 per w/e (Tuition, all materials, lunch and snack) Fully residential in our accommodation £315 (Concessions £290) For three w/e in a three month block (if paid one month in advance

£945 £895 )

For the year—courses only (if paid in advance

£3,780 £3,500)

Work, supervision and accommodation between the courses will be worked out individually for each student.

Where will you stay? Life Science Trust Accommodation (Mostly shared rooms)

Greenbank Cottage Quince Cottage Craigie Lodge

£35 per night (D B & B) £35 “ “ “ “ £35 “ “ “ “

Goblin Ha' Hotel, Main St. Gifford Tel+44 (0)1620 810244 Fax+44 (0)1620 810708 Email:stay@goblinha.com

Seven en-suite rooms which all have TVs, tea/coffee making facilities and hair dryers. Sun – Thur £30 single, £50 double/twin Fri – Sat £35 single, £60 double/twin

Eaglescairnie Mains B. & B. Gifford Tel/Fax: 01620 810491 Email: info@eaglescairnie.com

Double & twin rooms are available with ensuite /private bathrooms Discounts are available for stays of 4 nights or longer

Tweeddale Arms Hotel High St. Gifford B.& B. £30 per person per night Tel +44 (0)1620 810240 www.thetweeddalearms.co.uk

Mrs Gill Tait Redshill Farm Gifford EH41 4JN.

£25-£35 per person per night £35-£45 single occupancy.

Prices £45 - £50 B. and B. Discounts for more than two and four nights

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A6137 to the Sea

A1 to Tranent and Edinburgh

A1 to Berwick on Tweed and Dunbar

By Rail: The nearest Railway Station is in either Dunbar or Edinburgh. Bus services X6/X8 run east from Edinburgh to Haddington and west from Dunbar to Haddington. Bus service no. 123 runs from Haddington to Gifford. By Car: From the Southeast: - take the A1 towards Edinburgh and exit at Haddington.

By Air: To Edinburgh airport. Take an airport bus to central Edinburgh and then bus no.s X6/X8 to Haddington and 123 as above).

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B6355

To Duns & Longformacus

en t

Gifford

To Haddington and the sea

Baxtersyke

To B6368

All other Routes: • From Edinburgh, take the A720 City Bypass toward Berwickon-Tweed (A1), and turn off at Haddington. From Haddington: - Follow the High Street through the town centre, turn right at the sign to Gifford. At the edge of town, turn left onto the B6369 to Gifford and follow signs to the Gifford town centre.

Haddington and A1

How to Get to Pishwanton and Gifford? (www.travelinescotland.com)

B6 35 Pe to E 5 n c as ai t S tla a nd lto an un d Tr an

B6369 to

Haddington

Longyester To Humbie and

A68

Pishwanton


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CONTACT ADDRESS:

The Pishwanton Project Life Science Trust Quince Cottage, 4 Baxtersyke Gifford, East Lothian EH41 4PL Scotland Tel. +44 (0)1620 810259 Email: admin@pishwanton.com Website: www.pishwanton.org Registered Office : 4 Baxtersyke, Gifford, East Lothian, EH41 4PL.


Beholding the Heart of Nature 2012