The vision fast is a deep dive into the depths of self. Here we explore the intimate inner workings of our psyche, uncovering those unique gifts of Soul that we are asked to live into the world. It is also about re-membering our connections with nature and establishing routines and practices that help to enhance our relationship with the wild world that surrounds us, a much needed process considering the state of our world.
This is a yearlong program that includes an 8 day immersion in the forests that surrounds Twisted Roots Farm where for 4 of the 8 days you will be fasting alone asking for a vision from the land and from the deeper parts of self.
The program is designed to follow you through the course of a year with mentoring both prior and post vision fast to help prepare and incorporate those precious gifts uncovered during your time on the land alone.
This year-long intensive is composed of three stages; The Threshold, The Crossing and The Return.
The Threshold is preparatory work completed three months prior to the vision fast through mentorship and in person on site sessions.
In this stage, we are standing at the edge of a threshold and preparing ourselves for the vision fast. It is here that we are setting our intentions, and preparing our body, mind and soul for our time alone. Through mentoring sessions, either in person or via distance we will be working to set your purpose for stepping into the vision fasting process. It is also a time for setting up new practices to help facilitate our time on the land. Core practices include having a daily meditation routine, daily Journaling, dream journaling and finding an accessible place to connect with nature on a daily basis.
You will also be required to complete some necessary readings during this preparatory time, along with other readings that may be suggested from one on one mentoring sessions.
The two core readings are:
Soulcraft: Crossing into the Mysteries of Nature and Psyche, by Bill Plotkin
Wild Mind: A Field Guide to the Human Psyche, by Bill Plotkin
Soulcraft will help you prepare and understand more of the inner workings of the vision fast.
Wild Mind will help with building relationships with different aspects of our psyche and provides a common language to explore during mentoring sessions.
I would also recommend those considering this program may want to dive into these readings prior to committing to this year long.
A month out from the vision fast, you will start to prepare more intensively. Ideally you will start to shift your diet to more whole foods, eliminating processed foods and refined sugars altogether. You are preparing your body to fast for 4 days and are essentially starting a process of detoxifying your system. Fasting for four days can be an intense experience and the foods you consume can play a large role in how you hold yourself during the fast.
I suggest reading Stephen Buhners book, The Transformational Power of Fasting: The Way to Spiritual, Physical, and Emotional Rejuvenation
A month out you should also be looking at consumption of alcohol, cannabis, caffeine and any other drugs and or substances you may be consuming. It is important that the intake of these substances be stopped one month before the fast. If there are underlying addictions, then this process will need to be started earlier and may require the help of outside resources.
In addition to substances we consume, we also have to limit our intake of media a month before the fast. This includes social media, TV, movies and news. Ideally, you will step out of these activities for the month to allow for more mindfulness and preparation for the vision fasting process.
The Crossing is when you enact the vision fast during the 8 day immersion here at Twisted Roots Farm in a guided process.
In this phase you are crossing the threshold into the vision fast, leaving your community and seeking a vision to bring back to the world.
The vision fast will take place at Twisted Roots Farm over 8 days. During this time you will be camped in the woods on one of our tent platforms nested in the forest by the brook that flows through this land.
The immersion includes preparatory time before the fast where we are setting intentions and getting ready to move fully into the fasting time. You will be working in a group environment with others who are also Crossing into this place between worlds and our stories will help to support each other as we venture onto the land.
For 4 days you will be alone at your solo site. Solo sites are small covered platforms situated by the brook. They are private and will provide a space for you to sit in the forest for the 4 days. You will not be wandering from this site during the 4 days as the idea is to be in this circle of intention during your fasting time. It is here that you will become intimate with this area, observing the daily happenings of life where there is a whole universe of drama unfolding. You will also be watching the inner workings of the mind asking for guidance and direction in the hopes of being shown things you have never considered before.
When you return from your solo, we welcome you back to this world and in a council format listening to the story of your time alone on the land where reflections are offered in a narrative that helps weave together an intricate array of threads. These are the gifts that you will take back to your people as precious offerings for this time you have so graciously said yes to.
The Return is when you settle back into your everyday life and start the process of incorporating the vision as it has been revealed to you during the vision fast.
This is a longer period of time for the remainder of the year which includes one on one mentoring sessions and a re-gathering for a weekend returning to your vision fast site to embrace all the gifts that have been shown to you throughout the year.
As we return to our lives, we are carrying precious gifts and seeing the world with new eyes. The vision fast is often a death process, a former life coming to an end or our way of being in the world that is changing. Vision fasts have often been associated with a rite of passage or an initiation process, all of which can signal big changes in our lives.
As we incorporate the vision, we start to find ways to create new delivery systems that our souls can live into the world. It is during this time that we try new things, maybe change careers or even change our lives completely.
Mentorship during this time helps to navigate these changes and more fully incorporate the vision. I recommend a minimum of four sessions during this time.
The vision fast is an intensive nature based practice that can facilitate and provide perspective in our lives. It is a process of change and transition as we look at our lives and thank those aspects that have served us in the past, and welcome new ways of being in the world. Our western culture lacks these rites of passage or initiation in our lives, and the vision fast can help to facilitate such a process that may be required in our lives when we are facing big decisions or at a crossroads.
For more information on Vision Fasts here are some resources for more information.
You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions or discussion regarding the vision fast.
The Journey of Soul Initiation: A Field Guide for Visionaries, Evolutionaries, and Revolutionaries, by Bill Plotkin
Long Life, Honey in the Heart, by Martin Prechtel
Journey to the Sacred Mountains: Awakening Your Soul in Nature, Flynn Johnson
Book Of Vision Quest, by Steven Foster
The Roaring of the Sacred River: The Wilderness Quest for Vision and Self-Healing, by Meredith Little and Steven Foster