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GreenSpirit Newsletter

~ We are a network of people who practise loving our living planet ~

May 2024

Snowdonia 5 Day Retreat

At Cae Mabon, Fachwen, Llanberis, Gwynedd. LL55 3HB

Friday 30th August to Wednesday 4th September 2024

Reconnect with your body and unwind in nature, walk with friends, breathe fresh air, listen to birdsong, wander in shady oak woods and wild swim in a glistening lake whenever you feel like it, to say nothing of sharing delicious vegan and vegetarian food, songs and stories round the fire and a hot tub beside the rushing stream.

This event is open for bookings. For full details and how to book, go to:

The facebook event is at:

Summer Solstice - online

Monday 17th June at 19:00

For the Summer Solstice we will celebrate the great bounty of this time of year and the fire that energises and feeds us; please bring something seasonal to share (poems, stories, songs, recipes, gardening tips) and feel free to wear something bright and sunny.

The facebook event is at:

Join us on Zoom to celebrate the Summer Solstice. The zoom details are:

Meeting ID: 840 7941 4983

Passcode: 413541

Anam Cara – Online - Daytime

Fortnightly (1st and 3rd Wednesday of each month at 10am except sometimes in school holidays). Next meetings:

Wednesday 15th May 10:00am

Wednesday 5th June 10:00am

Wednesday 19th June 10:00am

A gathering of souls who sense they are on a journey; for companionship and support.

Discover and behold one another at the level of the heart. Creating/developing friendships we will extend compassion and aspire toward an authentic, organic spiritual transformational connection of mutual empowerment and blessing — “giving by receiving” and “receiving by giving”. We will begin each session with a check-in and the creation of sacred space, (with meditation, a reading or silence). Then, maybe with the help of some questions we will share from our hearts and witness the sharing of others.

The zoom link details are:

Meeting ID: 829 3206 2741

Passcode:   834410

Conversation Cafe - online

Thursday 16th May 10:00am - 11:00am

Jenny Joyce & Hilary Norton invite you to join our "Conversation Café" - a simple, hospitable, empathetic space where feelings & uncertainties about our future and the complexities of our world can be safely expressed. World events impact us all in many ways, and it can be hard to share our thoughts and feelings. We don't have the answers, but sharing helps us to build some resilience to deal with inevitable changes. This is an advice-free zone where all feelings are welcome!

Feel free to bring a cuppa, biscuits, etc.

For the zoom link, contact Hilary Norton at:

Book Reviews

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Twelve Steps to a Compassionate Life

by Karen Armstrong

Reviewed by Ian Mowll.

I’ve always liked Karen Armstrong’s books. She writes with breadth and depth and gets through to the core issues of spirituality in the modern world. And this is true of this book too.

Compassion is an essential part of any living spirituality. As the author writes: The principle of compassion lies at the heart of all religious, ethical, and spiritual traditions, calling us always to treat all others as we wish to be treated ourselves…The fact that this ideal has surfaced in all these faiths independently suggests that it reflects something that is essential to the structure of our humanity.

Click here for the full review.

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Set Free: A Life-Changing Journey from Banking to Buddhism in Bhutan 

by Emma Slade

Reviewed by Peter Quince.

This is a brave and inspirational book. Emma Slade lays her life bare, both the pleasures and the pains. She is a successful businesswoman, but following a horrifying confrontation with a gunman, she radically reassesses her life and suffers years of PTSD.

Banking leaves something missing: ‘I hadn’t managed to be happy being me yet.’ So she searches for a more fulfilling, spiritual life. She restlessly switches from Cambridge University to Goldsmiths College.

Click here for the full review.

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Books that Helped

GreenSpirit now has a webpage about book titles that members have found beneficial in understanding what green wisdom means for them and how the books have helped them. Click the following link to see members recommendations:

Chris Holmes has added his 3 books below. Click here to see why he chose these books.

Living Earth – News and Reflections from GreenSpirits

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Music – Mass for the Endangered by Sarah Kirkland Snider – Review

Reviewed by Santoshan aka Stephen Wollaston.

Available for streaming, as an MP3 download, and CD, Snider’s Mass for the Endangered is described in the sleave notes as “a hymn for the voiceless, a requiem for the not-yet-gone.” It was first performed in 2018 at St Paul’s Chapel in New York.

Using text written by the American poet Nathaniel Bellows and traditional Latin, Mass for the Endangered is a hauntingly reflective and beautiful piece. It was originally commissioned by Trinity Church Wall Street. The recording that is available is conducted by British born baritone, choral conductor and record producer Gabriel Crouch, sung by the English vocal ensemble Gallicantus, who Gramophone Magazine described as “one of Europe’s foremost early music ensembles”, and played by twelve wonderfully talented instrumentalists consisting of flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, percussion, harp, piano, two violins, viola, violoncello and contrabass.

Click here for the full review.

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Music – Luminosity: Exploring the Wonder of the Universe and Our Place in it – Review

Reviewed by Ian Mowll.

There was a standing ovation for Gary Albert’s performance of Luminosity, his musical composition. Gary is inspired by the writings of Brian Swimme – someone who has also inspired many in GreenSpirit.

Gary used his flute, voice, keyboards and laptop to bring together an array of sounds. The piece began with an adaptation of the tune Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and his spoken words conveyed the idea that as supernovas gave birth to the atoms that make up our bodies, we are stardust, we are atoms fused together in sacred prayer and in this way we all akin to stars.

Click here for the full review.

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Video: The Spirit of May – Fertility and Expansive Energy

Enter into the experience and meaning of May through this short, meditative video. This is part of a series exploring the months and Celtic celebrations throughout the year.

Click here to watch the video:

Please like and subscribe if you'd like to see more!

See a page with all of the celebrations through the year here:

And a playlist of all of the celebrations here: 

Produced in 2022 by Piers Warren (

GreenSpirit Book

The Rising Water Project

Real Stories of Flooding, Real Stories of Downshifting

Compiled and with a Foreword by Ian Mowll

Contributors: Claire Appleby, Hazel Beck, Mary Dhonau, Jane Faith, Lynne Jones, Sally Lever, Marian Van Eyk McCain and Graham Styring.

This book is about people’s personal stories of flooding, produced by extreme weather conditions. By listening to people’s experiences, we become aware that the problem of climate change is immediate, affecting us today. Also, by listening to people’s positive experiences of downshifting, we can learn that combating climate change can be beneficial for the environment, leading to a more fulfilled life because downshifting can result in reduced carbon emissions and a simpler way of living.

Click here for more details of this book and how to buy it.

Browse all of the titles in the GreenSpirit book series here:

Make a Difference One Small Step at a Time

There are so many little things we can all do to reduce our impact on Planet Earth, live more ethically and lower our carbon footprint to help reduce climate change. It may seem overwhelming but by tackling things one small step at a time we can all make a difference. In each newsletter we’ll focus on just one action you can think about tackling today.


Thanks to documentaries such as BBC’s Blue Planet 2, we all know what a huge problem plastic pollution is causing worldwide. As well as problems with ecosystems (especially oceans) and wildlife, they can affect us directly as our bodies ingest plastics (including some associated toxins) via the food that we eat (especially seafood) and through breathing in microfibres in the air. As plastics are made from fossil fuels, their production in the first place increases global warming. There are so many ways you can reduce the amount of plastic you use and throw away, beyond the obvious reusing of shopping bags etc. The website My Plastic Free Life offers 100 steps to a plastic-free life.

You can explore a whole range of other possibilities in our Green Action Toolkit at:

Selected Articles from Summer 2023 Magazine

Here are a couple of articles from the Summer 2023 GreenSpirit magazine:

Love for Nature: Hope through Rewilding by Jan Stannard

Click here for the article.

The Thousand Year Project by Merlin Hanbury-Tenison

Click here for the article.

Join GreenSpirit

Including the magazine, GreenSpirit calendar: living with the seasons, GreenSpirit members email newsletter and many other advantages.

£24 per annum or £12 for internet (paperless) subscribers or concessionary rate in the UK.

Click here
to find out more and to join


Free book when you join GreenSpirit!

Join GreenSpirit and you will receive a free copy of What is Green Spirituality? along with the GreenSpirit magazine, calendar and all of the other advantages of membership. See all of the advantages of membership here:

What is Green Spirituality? describes and illustrates, through the well-blended voices of thirteen writers, the basic concepts and expressions of this growing kind of spiritual attitude in today’s world – what it is, where it comes from and who practises it. More details at:

To join GreenSpirit, click on the link below:

Gift Subscriptions

Why not give a gift subscription to someone you know? You can give a gift a membership subscription to anyone in the UK who is 18 or over – they will receive the GreenSpirit magazine, GreenSpirit calendar: living with the seasons and all of the other advantages of membership. To find and more and start a gift subscription, go to:

GreenSpirit 2024 Calendar: Living with the Seasons

May Image and Quotation

Photo © Tom Court

Every existence is a mode of divine presence.
~ Thomas Berry

GreenSpirit Annual Gathering 2024

Date for your diary:

18th - 20th October 2024

Shallowford House, Shallowford, Stone, Staffs. ST15 0NZ

More details in due course.

GreenSpirit Local Groups

A full list of local groups is here:

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East London

Exploring Healing 

Thursday 23rd May at 10:45am

It seems that human beings are capable of far more than most of us previously realised. We are exploring self healing and healing others using energy, touch, intention. We're influenced by Joe Dispenza, Jean Houston, Sue Morter, Lynne McTaggart, Richard Gordon, Dawson Church and others.... come and join us learning together locally, E15 3QP, to create intentions together, share about the healing we've experienced and need. More details at:

Summer Solstice

Friday 21st June at 18:30. 33 Park Road, Stratford, E15 3QP
For the Summer Solstice we will celebrate the great bounty of this time of year and the fire that energises and feeds us; and around a garden bonfire (if weather ok). Bring some poems, stories, songs, etc and maybe food to share; and we will make our own ritual. We will celebrate the turning of the Wheel of the Year. Full details at:

More details of the East London group and its events are here:

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Help with Local Groups

If you would like some mentoring around starting or running a local group, Chris Newsam (newcircles12(at) or tel: 01653 693913) is happy to help.

Hilary Norton
(hnorton(at) or tel: 07957 318501) is happy to help update your website presence on the GreenSpirit local groups website:

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Starting up a GreenSpirit Local Group

Have you thought of starting up your own GreenSpirit Local Group? People are often looking for meaningful contact with others who share green spiritual values. You can style your group in the way that you want, be that following the Celtic Wheel of the Year, meditations, reading group, walks in Nature, discussion group, circle dances – or whatever it is that inspires you. Here are some ideas for meetings:

And here is a page with ideas for online/zoom meetings:

And this is what you need to do to start a local group:

If you want to know more or have any questions about starting a GreenSpirit group, please contact:

Hilary Norton:
hilarynorton(at) tel: 07957 318501
Chris Newsam:
newcircles12(at) tel: 01653 693913
Ian Mowll:
info(at) tel: 0208 552 2096

Talks about GreenSpirit and Green Spirituality

Want to find out more about GreenSpirit and green spirituality? 3 people offer talks which can be done in-person or often online.

To find out more, click on this link:

Other News

We are creators at our very core. Only creating can make us happy, for in creating we tap into the deepest power of self and universe and the Divine Self. We become co-creators, that is, we create with the other forces of society, universe, and the God-self when we commit to creativity.
~ Matthew Fox

Quotation from Appendix 2 – ‘Quotations through the Ages’ – in ‘Pathways of Green Wisdom: Discovering Earth Centred Teachings in Spiritual and Religious Traditions’. Edited by Santoshan (Stephen Wollaston).

Fifth title in the GreenSpirit book series​, which is a low-cost series that offers ebook editions ‘free’ for members of GreenSpirit.

For more details of this book visit the GreenSpirit Book Series web page here.

Or find out about the whole book series on the facebook page here.

A Sufi Garden: online group 

Wednesday 15th May, 7.30pm

Led by Alan Heeks and Karim Hadden

Buds bursting to blossom

May is typically a peak season of growth in Nature, when the blossoms show us the promise of future fruits to come. This evening, we invite you to contact and express the creative power in you, imagining your own natural growth as part of the ongoing process of divine creation. We will explore this theme with devotional movement, chant and other Sufi practices. And we invite you to bring some drawing and writing materials. Free online event, no experience necessary. For bookings or enquiries contact Alan Heeks:

Artists and Disability Oppression

My name is Lesley Illingworth, I am a fine art textile artist, disability activist and blogger. My installation work called Artists and Disability Oppression Up Close and Intensive was accepted for an exhibition in the Upper Waiting Room of the House of Commons. I am a independent artist who has self-funded this project after receiving an emergence bursary from DAiSY Surrey disability arts in 2020. I am looking for funding towards self standing exhibition equipment, publicity material and a private view.

Please help me to achieve this venture - you can make your donation here.

Soil to Soul - Reconnect to Nature & Rewild Your Soul

15th June 2024 – £90 per person

Join farmers and eco-therapists Tom Mettyear and Mark Sparrow on their organic, regenerative & nature-based Dorset farm, enhancing your connection with nature, farming, food, health and the vitality of your soul.

On this immersive day on an inspiring farm, you will have the chance to move into a still and peaceful space where you can begin to understand more intimately your relationship with nature and your own true nature. Through sensory experience, nature walks, guided observation and supported meditation, you will have the opportunity to absorb the health & vitality of the land and the chance to sink into a new relationship with the more-than-human world around you. Along the way you will enjoy fabulous food grown, foraged & prepared on the farm.

For a truly immersive experience, the farm campsite will be open on the nights before and after this event exclusively for participants. You can either pitch your tent for free or for £15 per person hire one a beautiful bell tents (you will need to bring your own bedding).

To book please visit or email

Changing our Minds: Learning to be Ecozoic

A season of free on-line conversations from St James' Piccadilly, London.

We are living in a polycrisis that threatens to overwhelm us. We need profound change in our understanding and behaviour if future generations are to have a liveable future. The ancient Greeks’ had a word for this kind of change: Metanoia, a transformative change of heart or spiritual conversion.

These 4 sessions are now available in video format:

* Rev Shawn Sanford Beck: Being amongst beings: the animate Earth
* Dr Lyla June Johnston, Diné Nation: Indigenous sciences of sustainability: ancient native food systems and their lessons for the future
* Jim Perkinson and Lily Mendoza: Indigenous sacralities underneath state ideologies: reading the Bible, reading modernity
* Sandy Bigtree, Mohawk Nation, and Prof Philip P. Arnold: Changing our minds

To view them, go to:

The Element Festivals: Celebrating Nature's Fundamental Forces

Next Festival - Festival of Fire - Sunday 26th May

The Element Festivals are a series of annual events, each dedicated to one of the four Western Elements – Air, Fire, Water, and Earth. These Festivals provide individuals and groups with an opportunity to express their gratitude, connection, and reverence for Elements that play a role in spiritual and daily life.

Each of the four Element Festivals is dedicated to honouring and celebrating the power of the respective Element. Participants are encouraged to engage in various activities, such as rituals, artwork creation, parties, environmental and conservation activities or simply appreciating and connecting with the specific Element.

The Festivals are spaced throughout the year, not too close to existing festivals and seasonally relevant to the UK.

Key Dates:

Festival of Air: Spring, the Sunday closest to February 23rd.
Festival of Fire: Summer, the Sunday closest to May 25th.
Festival of Water: Autumn, the Sunday closest to August 20th.
Festival of Earth: Winter, the Sunday closest to November 25th.

For additional information, please get in touch with Adrian:

Creation Spirituality Communities

Reimagining our Story, Hope for the New Humanity

~ The Gathering 2024 ~

Friday, 31st May 4:00pm – Sunday, 2nd June 1:00pm

Cape Cod, Massachusetts, USA

With an in-depth exploration of the new humanity in the evolving Cosmos.
With Keynote speakers Matthew Fox and Brian Swimme.

Click on the link below for registration including live stream option:

 If we are to continue living with Mother Earth, we need to not only care about the diversity of life she has sought to celebrate but also learn how to read her signs, understand her ways and adapt creatively to living in harmony with her.
~ Santoshan (Stephen Wollaston).

Quotation from Rivers of Green Wisdom: Exploring Christian and Yogic Earth Centred Spirituality by Santoshan (Stephen Wollaston).

4th title in the GreenSpirit Book Series, which is a low-cost series that offers ebook editions ‘free’ for members of GreenSpirit.

For more details of this book visit the GreenSpirit Book Series web page here.

Or find out about the whole book series on the facebook page here

In Brief

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Restore Nature Now March

Saturday, 22nd June 2024


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Deep Time Walks

An online community to help you to run and experience Deep Time Walks - from the beginning of planet Earth through to today.

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Blessing the River Frome in Stroud

Video by Rev Helen James

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Kew (London) Nutrition & Wellness Fair

Saturday 8th June 2024

Tickets from £11

Free presentations, classes, live music, food, drinks and talks from Health and Nutrition Experts are available throughout the day. With over 50 stands we have something for everyone!

Click here for full details.

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Exhibition: The Goddess, the Deity & the Cyborg

Murray Edwards College, Huntingdon Road, Cambridge. CB3 0DF

8th March - 8th September

Including art work by GreenSpirit member Juliet Wimhurst

Click here for details.

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Resurgence Summer Camp

Friday 12th - Sunday 14th July 2024

Green & Away, The Fold, Bransford, Worcester, WR6 5JB

Click here for full details.

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Nature-based Solutions

Conference 2024: 18-20 June

Growing Positive Change

Oxford University Museum of Natural History and online

Registration closes 1st June 2024

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