Ecofluency Experience: Rediscover your ability to communicate with Nature
Rekindle your ability to commune and communicate with all of Nature, in this residential experience and workshop held in the exquisite, tranquil setting of the Ladywell Convent.
The Franciscan Centre is delighted to invite Dr Saskia von Diest to offer an Ecofluency experience within the tranquil setting of the Ladywell Convent, a space that is ideal for deep contemplation and welcoming of all faiths, belief systems and spiritual traditions, with the only provisor being an open mind and open heart. This experience is for anybody interested in communing and communicating with Nature, including those who practice it already, though no previous experience is required.
Throughout the experience, we will gently immerse ourselves in the fundamentals of how to practice ecofluency – the science, art, and magic of two-way communication with the rest of Nature.
This way of communicating with the other-than-human world exists beyond all languages and has been known and practiced by indigenous peoples worldwide for millennia. It can be reawakened by expanding our range of our sensory awareness, and the principles are the same, whether you choose to converse with small plants or towering trees, tiny insects or large mammals, clods of compost or constellations of stars.
All humans are all born with the ability to dialogue with any aspect of Nature, because humans are Nature. Although many have forgotten how to use this ancient ability, ecofluency offers an opportunity to reclaim the power of this birth-right, to benefit all life. It allows access to the deeper knowledge, wisdom and divinity of Nature that is not often available to our everyday human minds.
Ecofluency is a critical skill for empowering physical, mental and emotional vitality, to grow beyond resilience into a dynamic state of thriving. It offers a key to unlocking greater joy and harmony in our relationships with ourselves, other humans, and the rest of Nature.
On a practical level, communicating with Nature helps us make more holistic and efficient decisions in all aspects of our lives: growing food, choosing a place to live, understanding the behaviour of wild or domestic animals, creating rituals and ceremonies for inspiration and abundance, expanding your professional work in ecological alignment, or healing traumas to become whole and spiritually evolve.
Human existence with other species depends on dialogue with them, as they call on us to co-evolve and create our future in alignment with all of Nature.
The world is waiting – join the conversation!
~ Accommodation in ensuite bedrooms, with one room being fully accessible
~ All meals, created on-site in the five-star rated kitchen of the convent, catering to different dietary requirements, plus teas & coffees
~ Teaching & notes on the 9-step Ecofluency guide to Nature communication, including practicality, clarity, nervous system regulation, and energetic safety
~ A ritual on the Saturday evening that will be co-created with the participants, the trees, the land, and the rest of the more-than-human Nature around us (joining this is optional)
~ Multiple opportunities to exercise your rekindled Ecofluency ability throughout the weekend, within the Ladywell Convent grounds, which has the spacious, private landscaped Carceri garden with a water feature, summer house and pergola, and the Shrine Field, which has been a place of prayer and contemplation since the 7th Century and is open to all faiths
~ A follow-up group call one month after the event to help integrate your Ecofluency experience into daily life
~ Access to the private Ecofluency hub, to get or stay in touch with previous Ecofluency ‘alumni’, and apply a range of exercises from the database to continue developing your practice.
Saskia is the founder of Ecofluency, as well as consultant, educator, facilitator, researcher and activist in the field of Nature communication. Attending an animal communication workshop 10 years ago, during her PhD in Plant Pathology, sparked her interest in investigating intuitive farming, i.e. how farmers use intuitive communication with nature to inform their practical management decisions. From 2014-2020, she held two postdoctoral fellowships, at Stellenbosch University, and at Coventry University in the UK, to pursue this research, and has presented her findings on numerous international platforms.
Throughout her postdoctoral years, she attended many workshops and courses in different countries, to train and develop her own understanding and practice in communication with trees, animals, land, nature spirits and ancestors. She’s also trained as a facilitator in Family Constellations, and in the Way of the Warrior Healer with the co-founders of Plant Consciousness.
In 2021, she founded Ecofluency, an organisation that offers consulting, facilitation, teaching and coaching in Nature communication, and promotes other human voices in this field. With 14 years of experience in teaching and facilitating through various forms and in many countries, her passion is creating opportunities for others to have their own experience of communicating with non-human Nature, and develop that for individual and collective evolution.
Suggested donation: £395
The Franciscan Centre is an NPO, and therefore cannot technically charge for events offered, even though there are costs associated with organising and running events.
Ecofluency is a small, young business, and is neither registered nor operating as a charity. However, much of Saskia’s work is pro bono, or offered on a pay-what-you-can basis, moving towards a gift economy. Even though Saskia is still running Ecofluency as a sole trader, she chooses to work this way because it feels important to set an example of one kind of economic model that is more aligned with the deeper principles of Nature, based on trust, balance and reciprocity.
Therefore, the minimum suggested donation for this retreat is £ 395 pp, for costs to be covered for the Franciscan Centre and for Ecofluency (including preparation, administration, facilitation, food, accommodation, follow-up etc.).
Any donations over this amount are greatly appreciated. Sponsoring a place for someone who cannot afford this retreat (e.g. a farmer, beekeeper, student) is also deeply appreciated, and can be allocated with or without your name mentioned as sponsor.
We look forward to sharing this work with you!
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Additional Information for guests, on what to bring
All meals and accommodation are provided, but please bring all the following:
~ warm & wet weather clothing, including sturdy outdoor shoes, and something comfortable to sit on outdoors (e.g. a sheepskin or outdoor cushion – please avoid plastic bags as they are very noisy)
~ your own snacks if you wish, but please leave behind alcohol and other intoxicants of any kind
~ writing and/or drawing materials – workshop notes will be provided
~ a ritual or ceremonial item to place on the altar (this is optional, and you can take it home with you afterwards)
~ an open mind and open heart!
“I can attest to Saskia’s luminosity, integrity and humility in being present in space and time while leading a diverse group of us into one of our most pressing issues of our time: being present on an equal basis with all of the beings of this world, be they rock, trees, animals or human.
Her sensitivity made it possible to breathe freely and do some experiential work in a safe, protected and loving environment, in probably one of the most magical settings. Her academic background gives her such a solid grounding, that even sceptics can feel at ease.
I would love you to experience this – no guru stuff here, just respect and reverence.”
— Charlotte, retired teacher & walking group leader
“The Ecofluency Weekend Retreat was a beautiful experience. Saskia built the structure of the weekend around the needs of the group, which meant we could explore concepts and ideas which were personal to us.
We were also invited to co-create a ceremony as a group with nature, which was a really magical experience. I felt supported in deepening my nature connection and communication skills and space was provided for us all to share with the group to enhance collective learning.
I really appreciated the time around our campfire with great conversation and genuine human connection. Saskia is an extremely knowledgeable guide and shows genuine care for the journey of others and their relationship to nature.”
— Tom, volunteering project officer for sustainable transport charity
“This was one of the best workshops I’ve attended for a long while. Saskia holds a very beautiful and gentle space in which she skilfully guides you into a very deep and powerful experience.
This workshop will have a lasting impact on my life and my work.
I’m incredibly grateful for the process, which will enable me to connect to nature in a respectful and safe way.
More now than ever, we need to be listening to what the other-than-human world has to say to us and this workshop equips you to do just that.”
— Selena, researcher and consultant
More testimonials on the Ecofluency website: https://www.ecofluency.org