I have started reading Bill Plotkin’s latest book, Wild Mind (Get it HERE). So far, I love it! As some of you know, I have done a lot of work with Plotkin’s books, especially Nature and the Human Soul, from leading a 5 month community discussion, to a weekend workshop, to attending a conference, to (most significantly) using the material and tools with almost all my directees. I have found Plotkin’s work to be so usable as he brings in some very core elements of being in nature and coming into relationship with our souls.
Wild Mind moves beyond Plotkin’s core template of Eco- and Soulcentric Wheel of Human Development (which covers childhood, adolescence, adulthood, and elderhood), and moves towards a robust and nature-based view of the Self. In the book, he describes four separate facets of the Self, centered in each of the four directions. The Nurturing Generative Adult (North), the Innocent/Sage/Sacred Fool/Trickster (East), the Wild Indigenous One (South), and the Muse, Inner Beloved, Anima/Animus, Guide to the Soul (West). Each has their corresponding subpersonalities which come from our woundedness. Our Loyal Soldiers (North), Escapists and Addicts (East), Wounded Children (South), and our Shadows (West). HERE is a helpful diagram.
Plotkin feels that in order to heal our woundedness, it is essential for us to get to know and grow each aspect of the Self. In our wholeness, we embody each of the four facets at different times and we can learn to access them purposefully. In our woundedness, we tend to gravitate towards one of the subpersonalities and are often unaware that there is more to draw from or fall into.
I am only four chapters in at this point, but there is so much that is coming up for me… as is most often the case with Plotkin’s books. I look forward to writing more on the book from a more personal perspective.
I highly recommend checking out the webpage for the book, as there is a lot of helpful info like diagrams, workshops and tools for helping others.
Here is a trailer for the book, with Bill himself.