Lightforce Sanctuary is a new venture launching this week at the beautiful, biodynamically managed ZFarm in Ghent, NY.
Lightforce Sanctuary will offer a range of Mindful Outdoor Experiences (MOE), which are a way to connect with the natural world through experiences that quiet the mind, relax the body, and expand sensory awareness. Time to disconnect from the connected technology world, leaving behind to-do lists, your work demands, etc., and come outside and enter the space of the natural world.
MOEs begin with a gentle warm-up with breathing and centering practices, followed by a guided walk in the woods. I recently had the pleasure of meeting Cathy Zises, Founder of Lightforce Sanctuary, to find out more about these walks in the woods. We walked the route, which is about a quarter of a mile, along a marked path through the woods that surround the farm’s fields. Along the path, visitors will periodically stop to enjoy the surrounding nature, and take part in nature meditation.
Spending time in nature can be a powerful antidote to the stresses of modern living. In recent years a growing body of evidence has proven what many naturalists, outdoor enthusiasts, poets, and indigenous cultures have long known: the great outdoors is profoundly good for us on all levels—mental, physical, spiritual.
As a Kripalu Mindful Outdoor Guide, Cathy Zises and her colleagues welcome the opportunity to share practices to help you connect with nature and the living earth. Tune into your more intuitive self while learning to read subtle signals from the natural world.
The trail eventually brings you to a giant hemlock tree, where guests will take part in the tea ceremony using herbs, flowers, or leaves foraged from the walk. To start the tea, the guide will birth a fire using the ancient technique of flint and steel. The Mindful Outdoor Experience ends with a Council Circle where you can share your experience with others (or remain silent), and transition slowly back to the everyday world.
The MOE will last about 90 minutes, and participants are welcome to linger a bit afterwards. Wear comfortable clothing for movement and sturdy shoes for a nature walk. Having your own water bottle is highly recommended to keep hydrated during the experience. MOEs are for ages 16 and over. You might want to bring a small journal or drawing pad to use during the seated meditation. Cushions/campstools are available.
Mindful Outdoor Experiences will take place on Thursday mornings for local community members, and Saturdays will be open to all. There will be two MOE sessions on Saturdays; One in the morning, and then a Late Afternoon MOE, which will include a sunset gathering with local wine or kombucha, cheeses and breads at the Yurt on Zfarm.
all photos by Seth Davis
DATES/TIMES (May 2019):
Thursday, May 23, 2019 / 9:30am
Saturday, May 25, 2019 / 9am – Morning.
5pm – Late Afternoon MOE
(Raindate: Sunday, May 26 @ 9:30am)
Thursday, May 30, 2019 / 9:30am
225 Carpenter Road
Ghent, NY 12075
Drive down the farm’s driveway. Stay to the right and park by the Yurt.
Thursday Morning Community MOE – $10, open to members of the local community.
Saturday Morning MOE – $35
Saturday Late Afternoon MOE w/ Sunset gathering – $50.
ADVANCE REGISTRATION REQUIRED. To register, visit eventbrite.com
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Jeff McKinney is a Realtor in Columbia County, NY. Connect with him on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, or Pinterest