Ecopsychology Conference 2017:

Re-visioning Psychological Landscapes: Nurturing Resilience and Response-ability.

At Earthrise Retreat Center, the Institute of Noetic Sciences, Petaluma, CA

The 2017 Holos Institute Conference brings together a community of clinicians, healing arts professionals, and others who share concern for the environment to forge a way forward in these challenging times. Together we will create community, explore collaboration, refine ideas, and engender hope and resilience. We will be looking at the role of an evolving psychology to meet the challenges of a changing environmental and socio-political climate.  Come join us in this wonderful a chance to connect and build community!

We will be offering an array of inspiring speakers,  experiential workshops and presentations on applications of ecopsychology.
We have a line-up of wonderful speakers, including Joanna Macy, Linda Buzzell, Molly Young Brown, Rob Fisher and Sophia Reindeers, and many more!

We will be meeting on the gorgeous campus of the Earthrise Retreat Center which is part of the Institute of Noetic Sciences,  30 minutes north of San Francisco, just south of Petaluma. Situated on 195 acres of oak studded rolling hills, the campus includes an old oak grove, a labyrinth, lovely gardens and hiking trails – all of which we will access during the post-lunch breakout workshops.

Lunch is included in the registration and is a wonderful time to mingle with like-minded souls and enjoy the signature fine organic food for which Earthrise is well known.

We are also committed to assisting, as best as possible, in forming carpools and ride-shares.

We are also offering a number of post-conference workshops that are listed below with links to each individual event.  These are optional for conference participants but please know that if you register for a post-conference workshop at the time of your conference registration, you will receive an additional 10% discount from the full price.

Joanna Macy is our keynote speaker

The conference meets the qualifications for 7 hours of continuing education credit for MFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs and LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences.
We will also offer 7 CEUs for clinical psychologists and registered nurses through the Spiritual Competency Resource Center.

Please scroll down to bottom for full info on CEUs


8:40 am   Registration open.  Coffee, tea and breakfast snacks available.

9:00 am    Announcements, advisements for the day, and Opening Ceremony, with Holos staff/board

9:20  am General address by  Jan Edl Stein, MFT, director of Holos Institute.
Response-Ability in a Changing Environment.    Jan will open our day’s discussion with a number of questions to be explored: What places do you hold in your bones that speak to your soul?  How can you listen to this? How have decades of nature-based therapies informed our core beliefs?  How do we evolve a psychological response to meet a rapidly changing world?  What are the ethical considerations to be embraced by the “healing” professions?

9:50 am   General address by Linda Buzzell, MFT, author and professor of ecopsychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute

Ecopsychology, Ecotherapy and Ecoresilience

It’s pretty clear what isn’t working, but not so easy to envision the practicalities of a sustainable world that could really work. Craig Chalquist and I have been wrestling with this, and have developed 20 ecoresilience principles for personal and cultural adaptation to a changed planet. We’ve gathered wisdom from many sources, including the nature-based permaculture principles, ecopsychology, ecotherapy, ecospirituality, community building endeavors, indigenous wisdom, the arts and depth psychology. We hope to provide at least the beginnings of an integral and hopefully inspirational view of how we and “all our relatives” might survive and even thrive on our Earth homeplace as environmental, political, economic and cultural conditions become ever more challenging.

10:20 am  Keynote presentation by Joanna Macy, PhD, author, activist, philosopher and inspirer of hope.
So Very Scared, While Invited Home to our True Nature
11:00 am   BREAK
11:15 am  Joanna Macy, experiential exercise with community discussion
Feeling our Despair, Feeling Our Hope


These 45 minute workshops will be offered concurrently post lunch.  Please choose your first choice and indicate upon registration.
Also make note of your second choice.  You will be able to change later.
(Please note:  Outdoor workshops are subject to change depending on weather)

  • A Taste of the Work That Reconnects  with Molly Young Brown, MA MDiv     (Outdoor/experiential session)
    We will experience one of the practices of the Work That Reconnects to help us identify more closely with the natural world, in which we are inextricably interwoven. The Work That Reconnects, pioneered by Joanna Macy, helps us to experience our innate connections with each other and the healing powers of the web of life.  This experiential, interactive work draws from systems thinking, deep ecology, and many spiritual traditions.
  • Using Mindfulness and Compassion Practices in Nature with Rob Fisher, MFT  (Outdoor/experiential Session)
    Mindfulness, compassion practices and a natural setting, when combined together, bring a power and impact that goes to the heart of any exploration. In this 45 minute session we will present some approaches that can be used in solo journeys, group events and with individual clients that will allow you to go deeply and gently into our personal journeys into our hearts and our psyches. We will explain, demonstrate and you can experience three specific practices that you can easily use on your own: group compassion mandala and mindfulness induction in nature.
  • Resonant Affinities: Ancient Harmonics of Body and Earth with Sophia Reindeers, PhD, MFT, REAT     (Outdoor/experiential Session)
    Participants will be guided in creative experiential practices to deepen their healing awareness of the intimate reciprocity of the human with the living earth. This dynamic reciprocity is woven into the very fabric of our sensing and moving, perceiving, thinking, feeling and imaging body, itself arising out of the living matrix of the sentient earth. The practices in this workshop will foster a sensory-imaginative engagement with nature. They will invite the experience of wonder and gratitude, and a joyous sense of kinship with the earth. They will encourage attitudes and practices of attuned earth-stewardship, born of love.
  • Move with the Earth, for the Earth: Somatic Ecotherapy in Action with Ariana Candell, MFT     (Outdoor/experiential Session)
    Discover new ways to connect to Nature through movement-oriented, Earth-based explorations. Receive support from the land through a somatic dialogue with a nature ally. Explore what is blocking your energy to respond to the natural world’s crises, and learn to open these channels through visualization and movement. Find courage and direction through connecting with nature’s wisdom inside yourself, and sharing this in a responsive community. Feel the powerful integration of experiencing your mind, body and spirit in connection with the land and community.
  • Speaking to the Wild Self: Bringing Nature into the Therapy Room with Emily Swanson, MFT  (Indoor/presentation/discussion)
    Many clients do not explicitly seek out an eco-therapist or nature-based therapy yet it is precisely these individuals that can benefit deeply from reconnecting to their inner, wilder nature and to the outer world around them. This presentation will explore how to help clients begin to uncover their natural selves without leaving the therapy room and without clients knowing that you are using “ecotherapy.”
  •  Holy Ground: A Standing Rock Experience: with Mary Good, MFT and Marni Ashira Rothman, MFT intern
    We will explore experiential connection with earth through exercises and stories inspired by the Water Protectors at Standing Rock. We will examine and discuss how this contemporary event illustrates the strength and history of humanity’s involvement with land and place as a sacred relationship, and how this type of relationship can promote the well-being of people and the environment with which we live. Holos intern, Marni Rothman, and also a Jewish ritualist, recently participated in a call for clergy people to come pray with the Water Protectors at Standing Rock.  Mary Good, MFT, deep story teller, naturalist and speaker of truth, joins Marni to describe the experience of Standing Rock and to also explore symbolic meaning of the NODAPL movement in our psychological lives.

2:15 pm regather
2:20 pm Topic Talks in Applied Ecopsychology

2:25 pm   ECO-Equine—Equine Assisted Growth and Learning: Horses in Nature, Alane Freund, MFT, EAGALA Certified
Understanding equine assisted work by Heart and Mind Equine, the leading provider of ecotherapy with horses in beautiful, bucolic Marin County. Learn the ins and outs of how horses galvanize the therapeutic process through their perfect integration of sensitivity and mindfulness. Sensitive prey animals, horses are masters of nonverbal communication and help us become our most authentic and successful selves.

2:45 pm  The Psychology of Village Building: Nature-based Models for CulturalHealing, Anna Swisher,MA.

Nature-based systems such as Permaculture, Eco psychology, and the 8 Shields model taught by Jon Young, offer inspiring models for understanding the harmonious ways of nature, and applying that understanding to our own community psyche to restore patterns of health, cooperation, and interdependence. This presentation will explore ways that we might apply these insights to our own lives, personally and professionally, to effectively design human systems that support the healing of the individual,the community, and the Earth

3:00 pm    Teen’s Search for Meaning:  How Eco-psychology can foster Compassion and Resiliency in America’s Youth, Caroline Lewis, MA.
In a culture shaped by technology and materialism, connection to Earth is necessary for mental health in teenagers.  Currently in the U.S, suicide is the third leading cause of death for 15-24 year olds, and depression and anxiety rates are increasing. I have witnessed how experiences in nature can connect a teen to his or her true sense of self that is often not only masked but perhaps not even known. Eco-psychology is not only a therapeutic modality but also a teaching of ancient Earth wisdom that is crucial to for us as therapists to gift to our young people in order to foster compassion and resiliency.

3:20 pm BREAK

3:45  pm Community Discussion with panel of ecotherapists: Linda Buzzell, MFT, Laura Parker, MFT, Jan Edl Stein, MFT, and others
Please bring your questions/concerns and commentary as our panel of presenters meet your inquiry in a lively discussion that invites YOUR participation.

4:40 pm  Closing comments
4:55 pm Closing meditation.
5:00 pm  CLOSE  (Be sure to complete your paperwork for CEUs)

CONFERENCE FEES: (fee includes a delicious lunch at the center)

Early registration (before March 1, 2017)     $155
Late registration (On or after March 1)         $175
Registration at the door (as space permits)  $185
CEU certificate  $15  (for conference only – post conference workshops have separate CEU certificate)

Seniors (over 65), use promo code SENIOR for a 20% discount on the fee.
Interns and full-time Students, use promo code STU_INTERN for a 20% discount on the fee.

Refunds minus a $50 handling fee is possible for any cancellation received via email ( no later than March 10, 2017

We will also do our best to help coordinate ridesharing as much as possible!



Johanna Macy, PhD.
is a scholar of Buddhism, systems thinking and deep ecology and a respected voice in movements for peace, justice, and ecology, she interweaves her scholarship with learning from five decades of activism. She has created a ground-breaking theoretical framework for personal and social change, as well as a powerful workshop methodology for its application. Her work addresses psychological and spiritual issues of the nuclear age, the cultivation of ecological awareness, and the fruitful resonance between Buddhist thought and contemporary science. Her books include, Coming Back to Life: The Updated Guide to the Work That Reconnects (with Molly Brown, 2014); Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We’re in Without Going Crazy (with Chris Johnstone, 2011); Pass It On: Five Stories That Can Change the World (with Norbert Gahbler, 2010); World as Lover, World as Self (2007); Widening Circles: A Memoir (2000); Mutual Causality in Buddhism and General Systems Theory (1991); Thinking Like a Mountain: Toward a Council of All Beings (with John Seed, Pat Fleming, and Arne Naess, 1988). In addition Joanna has brought forth three volumes devoted to the poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke.
Many thousands of people around the world have participated in Joanna’s workshops and trainings known as the Work That Reconnects. Her work helps people transform despair and apathy, in the face of overwhelming social and ecological crises, into constructive, collaborative action. It brings a new way of seeing the world, as our larger living body, freeing us from the assumptions and attitudes that now threaten the continuity of life on Earth.

Linda Buzzell, MFT
has been a psychotherapist for more than 40 years and has specialized in ecopsychology and ecotherapy since 2000. She and Craig Chalquist edited the Sierra Club Books anthology Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind, a core text in clinical ecopsychology. She is a member of the Editorial Board of Ecopsychology, the peer-reviewed journal of the field, and she and Craig Chalquist edited the journal’s December 2015 special issue on “Ecopsychology and The Long Emergency.” Linda has been Adjunct Faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute in Santa Barbara and taught an ecotherapy certification course there in 2015. She was a keynote speaker for the 2014 Ecotherapy Symposium at the University of Brighton in the UK, organized by the late Martin Jordan. In 2002 she founded the International Association for Ecotherapy and is co-founder of the Ecopsychology Network of Southern California. She has written over 75 blog posts on ecopsychology and ecotherapy at The Huffington Post. She is a member of the Ecopsychology Network for Clinicians, where she led a workshop on “The HOW of Ecotherapy.” In 2006 she received her Permaculture Design Certificate and with her husband Larry Saltzman has created a food forest around her home that serves as her ecotherapy office. For further information, and

Jan Edl Stein, MFT
is the director of Holos Institute as well as a licensed MFT in private practice in San Francisco and Marin. Jan is also Adjunct Faculty in East-West Psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS). Jan leads workshops and retreats that interweave meditation, active imagining, shamanic journeying and earth based contemplations. She has taught/presented at Sonoma State University, Grof Transpersonal Training Program, The Bioneers Conference, Esalen Institute, IONs, and numerous private venues. All of her work draws upon a lifelong study of spiritual traditions and healing practices of earth-based cultures and a deep love of the natural world. More information may be found at

Molly Young Brown, MA, MDiv
lives in Mt Shasta, CA with her husband Jim.  In her work as a writer, workshop facilitator, and life coach, she draws on the Work That Reconnects, ecopsychology, and psychosynthesis. As a life coach, she specializes in working with activists and helping professionals. She co-authored with Joanna Macy both editions of Coming Back to Life (1998, 2014).  Her other publications include: Growing Whole: Self-realization for the Great Turning; Held in Love: Life Stories To Inspire Us Through Times of Change (co-editor Carolyn Treadway); and Lighting A Candle: Collected Reflections on a Spiritual Life.  Website:

Sophia Reindeers, PhD, MFT, REAT
is the founding director of the WisdomBody Institute for Creative Psychotherapy and Expressive Arts, and a faculty member at the California Institute of Integral Studies. She is a body-oriented Jungian psychotherapist, ecotherapist and registered expressive arts therapist (REAT).  Sophia also serves on the board of directors at Holos Institute.

Rob Fisher, MFT
is a psychotherapist, consultant and CAMFT certified supervisor in private practice in Mill Valley, CA. He is an adjunct professor at JFK University and the co-developer of the Certificate Program in Mindfulness and Compassion for Psychotherapists at CIIS in San Francisco. A Certified Hakomi Trainer, Rob teaches Hakomi Mindful Somatic Psychology internationally. He is also the author of Experiential Psychotherapy with Couples, A Guide for the Creative Pragmatist, published by Zeig/Tucker, in addition to numerous articles and book chapters published in the US and abroad. Rob has been a Master and Peer Presenter at annual CAMFT Conferences, the USABP Conference, the Couples Conference and Psychotherapy Networker Conference.

Ariana Candell, MFT
is a psychotherapist, dance/movement therapist, professor, and pioneer in Somatic Ecotherapy. She is the founder of “The Earthbody Institute”, offering Ecotherapy Certification trainings locally and internationally.

Mary Good, MFT

Marni Ashirah Rothman, M.A., is a current intern at Holos Institute. Since graduating from CIIS in 2010, she worked in private practice in Ireland. It was there that she reconnected with the earth, through engagement with Irish folklore and spirituality; and pilgrimage to the sacred wells, stones, and trees of the land. Marni is also an artist, and a Kohenet Hebrew Priestess of feminist, embodied, earth-based Jewish practice.

Alane Freund, LMFT, EAGALA Certified

of Heart and Mind Equine, a life-long horsewoman and licensed Marriage and Family Therapist for over two decades, added EAGALA-Model equine assisted psychotherapy to her toolbox 14 years ago, joining her passion (horses) with her profession.

Caroline Lewis, MA, MFT intern
integrates knowledge gained in psychodynamic and somatic psychotherapies, eco-psychology, and energy medicine. Prior to obtaining a Masters in Integral Psychology from CIIS, Caroline worked as a wilderness counselor for teenagers with a wide array of mental health disorders. Caroline has joined Holos as an intern.


Anna Swisher M.A., guides Somatic Ecotherapy and Wilderness Quest work with individuals and groups. She is a nature-based mentor and rite-of-passage guide for youth, and weaves Ecopsychology, Permaculture, indigenous wisdom, and cultural mentoring into regenerative community building.

Laura Parker, MFT
is an ecotherapist with a private practice in Oakland.  She provides individual and group supervision and teaches clinical seminars for Holos.  Her work integrates relational, psychodynamic perspectives with mindfulness, emotional intelligence, practical skill-building, somatic resourcing, deep imagination, and earth-based spirituality.

Continuing Education Credits

The conference meets the qualifications for 7 hours of continuing education credit for MFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs and LEPs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. Holos Institute is approved by the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists  (CEPA #90905) to sponsor continuing education for the licenses listed above.  Holos Institute maintains responsibility for its programs and content.

This conference also offers 7 CEUs for clinical psychologists and RNs.
American Psychological Association: Spiritual Competency Resource Center is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. Spiritual Competency Resource Center maintains responsibility for its programs and their content.

California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN Provider CEP10318) for licensed nurses in California through the cosponsorship of the Institute of Noetic Sciences

At the end of this conference, participants will be able to:

  • explain the fundamental position of ecopsychology
  • List a few of the 20 ecoresilience principles
  • Summarize a model of hope and give examples of how it may be engendered
  • Discuss the ways in which Permaculture principles may be applied to understanding the psyche
  • Explain a crucial application of ecopsychology in working with youth
  • And, according to the breakout session chosen, will be able to:
    ~Apply a technique that increases trust and immediacy of contact with natural world
    ~Lead 3 specific mindfulness practices in nature
    ~Lead a sensory-imaginative engagement with nature
    ~Develop a somatic dialogue with a nature ally for personal support
    ~Assess client’s nature literacy and comfort
    ~Describe the aspects of a social movement that is shifting our awareness


There will also be an array of (optional) post-conference day long workshops on March 19 to enhance the conference experience.

Please Note: these are OPTIONAL workshops for which you may register in addition to the conference for a discount (10%).
Each post-conference workshop experience is a self-contained experience, offered by each practitioner under sponsorship by Holos Institute for an additional fee. Each program may be taken for continuing education units for MFTs, LCSWs and LPCCs for an additional fee.

Current Post Conference Workshops:

~Reconnecting with the Living Earth through the Work That Reconnects
with Molly Young Brown and Constance Washburn, Sunday, March 19 9:00 am to 3:00 pm  (location TBA, in Petaluma)
We reaffirm our love for the Earth by sharing our passions, dreams, and anguish for the world today.  Together we can stand up to the forces of divisiveness and greed, for a Great Turning toward a Life Sustaining Society. The Work That Reconnects, pioneered by Joanna Macy, helps us to experience our innate connections with each other and the healing powers of the web of life.  This experiential, interactive work draws from systems thinking, deep ecology, and many spiritual traditions, and moves through a Spiral of Gratitude, Honoring Our Pain for the World, Seeing with New Eyes, and Going Forth.                   CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE INFORMATION

~Returning to Your Essential Self – A  Mindfulness Based Exploration in Nature
with Rob Fisher, MFT and Hu Ting Ting, MA,  Sunday, March 19 9:00 am to 5:00 pm  (location: Mt. Tamalpais State Park, exact details TBA)

In this outdoors workshop we will use mindfulness and compassion practices to open a gentle space in which we can use the deep resources of nature to come back to our hearts and to our essential selves.
You will have the opportunity to explore on your own in nature in mini quests, with partners and in group council. You’ll make natural mandalas and wild temples, use movement practices and talk with stones and trees to explore your deepest sense of yourself and what you are doing here.

                                                CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE INFORMATION

~Alane Freund, MFT,  Equine Assisted Therapy, in Woodacre, CA

You may register for each event for a (10%) discount upon registration for the conference OR individually for regular fees.
Please follow the links to each program for individual registration.  CEUs will ONLY be available for MFTs, LCSWs, LPCCs for these post-conference workshops.  There will be an additional fee of $15 per certificate for each workshop if requested in advance.