Rewilding and Ensouling Mental Health and Wellness:
A Presentation by and Conversation with Brian Stafford, MD, MPH
- There’s something within us that resists being categorized and pathologized.
- There’s a wildness within us that wants to go into nature, to go into the depths, and not just our own depths, but the depths of the world.
What if we – for just over an hour – imagined that a symptom and pathology-based approach to mental health and wellness was in our past. What if we really believed the former Director of the National Institute of Mental Health Tom Insel’s proclamation that the DSM lacks both validity and reliability? Where would we as clinicians and advocates and patients and clients find ourselves? We might feel like we are in the wilderness…..and without a map.
Now, what if we – for just over an hour – imagined that an ecological and wholistic approach to the human condition might be a way forward. What if we found that there is a map to the wilderness of the psyche that is both ecological and wholistic. How might that change how and what we perceive? How might that change how we practice? How might that shift our consciousness and our vision of what it means to be healthy, whole, and wild?
In this talk and conversation, Dr. Brian Stafford will discuss an eco-depth psychological approach to wholeness, self-healing, and eco-awakening based on the Nature-based Map of the Human Psyche developed by Bill Plotkin and the Animas Valley Institute that he founded in Durango, Co. Rather than being an approach that is symptom- or pathology-focused, this approach supports the cultivation of our inner resources, our primary connection to the natural world, our ability to self-heal, and also includes supporting the journey to our unique eco-psychological niche.