Rooted | Adventure under the ancient forest
"Nature...seems increasingly better understood in fungal terms:
...as an assemblage of entanglements of which we are messily part."
- from Underland by Robert Macfarlane
Join the Stardust Autumn Adventure to discover the low hum of long-lived relationships and connections deep underground.
During the last year we have begun to realise in our bones that the way we are living our lives isn't working. We are questioning the old measures of 'success' - busy-ness, speed, convenience - and, as our planet burns and floods and melts, our broken relationship with nature.
We are tired of the old ways. The loudness, stress and exhaustion. We crave quiet, depth and richness. It is time to reconnect with our earth. Our home. It is time for observation and learning, understanding and healing. It is time to feel rooted again.
Join me and fellow starry-eyed learners this autumn for a virtual adventure as we journey under the ancient forest – where trees and fungi talk. Together we will notice, wonder, discover, create and connect with this landscape and the messy, entangled world of mycorrhizal (fungi-root) networks. Together we will emerge with a renewed sense of belonging and knowing - for we are part of everything. We are made of stardust.
Investment: £285 or £145
Investment levels and payment plans available
Six-week adventure with one week break
20 spaces available
Friday 24 September – Friday 12 November 2021
Enrolment now closed.
"This adventure has been a God send during this pandemic. It helped me focus on something outside of myself, but also to reflect on myself as well and how I relate and are connected to everything and how nature mirrors back to me my own true nature…I will never forget the insights and caring I received from these amazing women who shared so much of their lives. Thank you." - Jamee, Nesting Adventurer 2021
"The Rooted adventure was brilliant. Not only did it get me spending more time outdoors but I also noticed myself spending that time in nature more mindfully. Noticing the subtle seasonal changes gave me an opportunity to switch off from thinking about my business or what was going on in my every day life.I found the gentle and supportive group that Agnes brought together really inspiring." - Josephine, Rooted adventurer, 2020
What are the Stardust Adventures?
The Stardust Adventurers are journeys in which a nourishing community of starry-eyed learners journey together to deepen our connection with and belonging to an aspect of nature – from fungal networks deep in the earth to fiery stars billions of miles away.
Each adventure will take us on a journey of:
- learning and discovery through science
- creativity and mindfulness through art
- connection to the earth and each other through community
Guided by me, Agnes Becker, in this community we are all equal in our learning. We support each other to make space for more moments of wonder in nature. We inspire each other with our discoveries about and creative expressions to the Earth and our place in it. We collectively deepen our sense of belonging.
At the end of each seasonal adventure, you’ll feel enriched and more deeply connected to the area of natural wonder we have explored, as well as having met a group of like-minded, lifelong learners.
"I have discovered that there are more like-minded people out there and knowing that helps me feel stronger and more united, less alone and like a strange nature nerd! I realised how fulfilled and happy I am when outdoors - I came to the adventure thinking that it was being creative that made me happy (it does but...) it's actually the process of being and letting go within that natural space that nourishes me." - Sarah-Louise, 2020 Rooted adventurer and 2021 Nesting adventurer.
About the Rooted Adventure
Under the earth of the ancient forests is a deep network of roots, connecting, interweaving, whispering, supporting, competing, nourishing.
Join the Autumn Rooted Adventure to explore the complex world of roots and fungi under the earth of our oldest woodlands - and our own complex needs for roots and nourishment. Guided by me, Agnes Becker, this six-week adventure will deepen your knowledge of the more-than-human world and awaken your playful creativity all with the support of a community of fellow starry-eyed learners.
When: Friday 24 September – Friday 12 November 2021 (one week break 15-22 October)
Doors close for registration: Wednesday 22 September 2021 (Autumn Equinox)
Limited spaces available: Places are limited to 20 to keep this a deep, immersive and intimate experience.
Enrolment now closed.
"I loved, loved, loved the whole theme, and how we linked our learning about nature with observation and introspection."
- Robin, Rooted adventurer, 2020
What will we explore?
Week 0: Preparing for our adventure
Our community space opens a week before the adventure starts. Gentle prompts see us begin to get to know each other, understand what we are looking for in this journey and prepare ourselves for the adventure ahead of us. We get to know each other in our first virtual campfire 'welcome' gathering.
Week 1: Welcome | To The Ancient Forest
We begin our adventure to the ancient forest. We find local wild places that resonate with us, where old trees thrive and the ground is rich with diverse living beings. Each adventurers 'ancient forest' will differ - some may be a small copse at the end of a road, a wooded part of a local park or a large woodland. Welcome packs begin to arrive in the post. We notice the resistance we may feel in giving ourselves time to be with nature and consider ways in which to overcome these feelings and gift ourselves time with the more-than-human world.
Week 2: Trees and roots
As we adventure into the forest we begin to take notice of and get to know the trees around us, recording them in our nature journal. The creative exercise in the guidebook sees us start to experiment and play. We begin to awaken our sense of curiosity and creativity.
Week 3: Mushrooms and fungi
We return to our forests and notice the mushrooms under our feet and how they may be connecting with the surrounding trees. Our nature journaling leads us to look with curiosity and wonder and the creative exercise sees us creating spore prints from mushrooms.
Week 4: Earth and mycorrhizal networks
We start to go deep into the earth, tracing networks that nourish, compete, trick, grow and shrink. We learn the earth is an ocean of life and the hidden networks under our feet are more intimately connected to ourselves and the trees, plants and animals we see around us than we may have realised. We begin to discover a new way of being on this earth - mycorrhizal (fungi-root) networks are living entanglements that defy human analogy and from which we can learn.
Week 5: Our roots and networks
On our weekly walk to the forest we stop and turn inwards towards our own lives and where we may need more nourishment or need to retreat from unhealthy relationships, activities or thoughts. We begin to see the connection between our well-being and with whom or what we spend our time and energy.
Week 6: Returning From The Ancient Forest | Homecoming
Slowly we return home from the forest. We meet in our final weekly campfire and reflect on all we have learned and experienced. We consider how we will continue to nurture our curiosity and creativity with ourselves and the more-than-human world as we leave the adventure and return home.
"The content was beautiful and well researched. Everything was really accessible, and it wasn’t scary to share what I created with the group. I loved the live nature journaling...[and] little gifts that came in the post."
- Jenni, Rooted adventurer, 2020
Joining the adventure will help you feel:
An increase sense of awe, wonder, peace and freedom from spending time outside and focussing attention on the more-than-human world
A deeper understanding of and therefore connection to the earth, dirt, soil, life beneath our feet
A reawakening of your curiosity and creativity
A new perspective on the importance of nourishing your roots to help you thrive and support yourself and those you love
A renewed faith in humanity by connecting with fellow humans who love learning, creating and connecting with the more-than-human world
What will joining the adventure gift you?
- A seasonal we are stardust welcome box with a notebook, greetings cards and other goodies to prepare you for your adventure
- A weekly 1-2 page downloadable guidebook chapter with gentle nature journaling prompts and short creative exercises that will help you discover more about mycorrhizal networks, create and play through words, pictures and/or drawing, connect more deeply with yourself and the more-than-human world we are exploring
Weekly virtual campfire gatherings, guided by Agnes Becker, to share our findings, discuss any resistance you are feeling to the adventure, ask for thoughts and advice from fellow adventurers
Every Friday 11.30am-12.30pm UK time
- Weekly inspirational posts about the science, folklore and philosophical concepts behind mycorrhizal networks
- A podcast created exclusively for Rooted Adventurers
- A supportive online community space on Facebook to connect and share your findings from each week’s prompts and creative exercises with like-minded starry-eyed learners. This space will be available for you to revisit after the adventure has finished for as long as the space exists
- Access to the customer only free Stardust Society Facebook group once the adventure comes to and end. This is a generous, supportive space to continue our journey in rewilding our souls through curiosity, creativity and connection. Access is given for as long as the group exists
You will also get the following talks and workshops
A live nature journaling session with Agnes Becker
Tuesday 5 October, 12.30-1.30pm BST
A talk and Q&A session with fungi scientist Professor Martin Bidartondo, Imperial College London and Kew Gardens
Tuesday 12 October, 12.30 - 1.30pm BST
A journalling session on the theme of 'rooted' with writer, doubter and doer Sasha from Frank+Feel
A talk and Q&A session on continuing your relationship with nature with outdoor psychotherapist and author Dr Ruth Allen
Tuesday 9 November, 12.30 - 1.30pm GMT
BONUS: 'We are nature', a pre-recorded chat with social worker and coach, Tamu Thomas
Available as a recording to watch in your own time
All talks will be recorded and posted in the community space and there will be a chance to ask questions in advance.
INTRODUCING YOUR GUIDE AND SPEAKERS
AGNES BECKER, ADVENTURE GUIDE
Agnes is an artist and science communications specialist who feels most at home with family and friends, immersed in nature. After a degree in Natural Sciences and a Masters in Science Media Production, Agnes spent 10 years working in universities with scientists. In 2016 Agnes created we are stardust as a way to deepen our experience of the messy, beautiful universe through art and science.
SASHA GLASGOW, FRANK+FEEL
Sasha classes herself as a writer, doubter and doer. Even though she's been writing in some form from the age of eight, she only started calling herself a writer last year - a rebellious act against her self-doubting nature. She's an avid journaler and lover of words, who wants to use them to challenge the negative narratives that women can have about themselves. She does this through what she calls #RemindHers. Little notes of thought dotted around the internet to remind women of what has always been there - our internal North Star - its light somewhat shrouded by responsibility, shoulds, engrained narratives and self-doubt. Sasha writes about her own journey as it unfolds unlearning self-doubt and tuning back into self-trust, in the hope that her doing so through her creative outlet, prove as small, powerful #RemindHers to those that come across her words.
DR RUTH ALLEN, OUTDOOR AND ONLINE COUNSELLING PSYCHOTHERAPIST
Ruth is an outdoor and online counselling psychotherapist, professional development coach, and experienced consultant, trainer and facilitator. Ruth specialises in outdoor practice, nature relationship and working with mind and body in harmony. She is interested in how we do relationships with others, nature and ourselves, how we make meaning of our lives, the stories we tell, how we live in our bodies, and find our way through the world as it heats up, melts, floods. Ruth is also a writer, adventurer and occasional art-maker – exploring the intersections between nature connection, adventure, human and planetary health and wellbeing, movement and story. Ruth is the author of Grounded: How connection with nature can improve our mental and physical wellbeing.
PROFESSOR MARTIN BIDARTONDO, FUNGI SCIENTIST, IMPERIAL COLLEGE LONDON AND KEW GARDENS
Martin investigates the evolution and ecology of the many and widespread partnerships between fungi and plants
"The content was very thoughtfully put together, inspirational and engaging. I also loved the welcome pack sent in the post."
You can tailor your adventure to meet your needs.
Minimum: 1 hour each week to go outside and do the weekly guidebook prompts.
Medium: 3 hours each week to go outside and do the weekly guidebook prompts, take part in the weekly campfire gatherings and weekly talk/workshop.
Maximum: As many hours as you like! Immerse yourself in the world mycorrhizal networks and share your discoveries with fellow starry-eyed learners.
Who is the Adventure for?
You are welcome with open arms if:
- You want to enrich your experience of being in nature with learning and creativity but don’t know where to start
- You want to connect with the Earth and all her living beings more deeply but never find the time or headspace to do this
- You love learning about nature from all disciplines and people but have never found a community where learning is free of judgement about how much you do/don’t know
- You want to learn more about the world through science but feel what you read when you look things up is too complicated and overwhelming or believe you aren’t clever enough
- You want to respond to your experience of being in nature with creative art projects but don’t know where to start or believe you are “rubbish at drawing”
- You love being part of a diverse community of people from all walks of life who love the connecting with the more-than-human world
The adventure not be the best experience for you if:
- You want to learn technical terminology and get very specific about scientific methodology
- You want a perfect, slick experience. I am a mother working on we are stardust part-time. I am messy and human. I will do my best to create a smooth, beautiful experience for you but I will make mistakes. If this is something that would bother you, this adventure may not be for you.
- You want to tick off identifying as many mushroom species as possible
- You want a detailed, step-by-step ‘how to’ guide to exploring the world through science and art
- You are looking for a very directed course with a leader to take you through learning about an area of nature (I will act as more of a guide, encouraging others to share their findings and creations)
- You feel some areas of learning about the world are superior to others
Each of us holds different levels of privilege - gender, racial, socioeconomic. I have created a special investment level for people at the forefront of systemic marginalisation so they can enjoy their equal right to 'be' in nature. When deciding which investment level is right for you, I invite you to reflect on your access to resources and privilege, and select the level that you can genuinely afford.
I trust you to make the best choice for you and you do not need to check with me before going ahead with your investment.
£285 - Fly Agaric investment level, 15 spaces
This is the cost of the adventure. If you have access to the financial means, are able to freely spend time with nature without feeling worried about your right to be there, you hold privilege in our community and this price is for you.
A payment plan of 6 x £45 monthly payments is available with this level.
A payment plan of 3 x £75 monthly payments is available with this level.
£145 - Porcini investment level, 5 spaces
This level is for you if you would struggle to meet basic needs paying the Wren investment level rate. This level is also for you if you feel access to nature has been made more difficult for you because of gender, racial or socioeconomic reasons.
A payment plan of 6 x £25 monthly payments is available with this level.
A payment plan of 3 x £50 monthly payments is available with this level.
Select your investment level and get ready for Rooted | Adventure under the Ancient Forest.
I can't wait to welcome you in.
Enrolment now closed
Before you go ahead with your investment, please read the terms below.
Because of the nature of this adventure and how it is delivered, I am unable to offer refunds so do consider your investment carefully before going ahead.
Payment plans cannot be cancelled once initiated so please buy with intention. When you first purchase the payment plan will count as your first month. The following three or six months will be automatically debited each month following the original purchase date.
Investing in this adventure will see you added to the we are stardust Mailchimp mailing list so you can be updated about the adventure. You will also receive regular newsletter emails from we are stardust.