Vermont Wilderness Rites
Vermont Wilderness Rites
Vermont Wilderness Rites Be Still. Listen. What in your life is calling you?
Vermont Wilderness Rites Be Still.       Listen.       What in your life is calling you?


The Mirror of Nature:

Leadership & Organizations



A workshop exploring

leadership and organizations using the

       Four Shields of Human Nature       




An expanded program giving more time to organizational dynamics and leadership skills is being developed.  Please watch for details.  




 In the course of history, there comes a time when humanity is called to shift to a new level of consciousness, to reach a higher moral ground.  A time when we have to shed our fear and give hope to each other.  That time is now.   Wangari Maatha


Leadership is what we are called to when the fullness of who we are - our unique way of being and our authentic presence - meets the world’s needs.  Leadership in this sense is not a static position that we hold in a job, community service, or our personal lives.  Leadership is skillful, intentional action offered to an organization, community, or group to address immediate and day-to-day needs as well as in service to long-range vision, mission, and goals. 


I believe that the capacity that any organization needs is for leadership to appear where it is needed, when it is needed.   Margaret J Wheatley


The Four Shields of Human Nature offers a unique framework for understanding ourselves in leadership as well as the organizations in which we work and serve.  An eco-psychological model developed by Steven Foster and Meredith Little (School of Lost Borders) invites a conversation with the natural world that informs our personal leadership and dynamics within our organizations.   


This retreat is designed for people in leadership positions or aspiring to leadership roles; teams within organizations; board of directors; and anyone who wants to contribute to a discussion of leadership and organizations informed by our own experience and by the natural world.  



Participants will have the opportunity to:


•Explore the relevance of the natural world to leadership and organizations. 

•Relate the Four Shields of Human Nature to leadership and organizational dynamics

•Identify a personal leadership profile using the Four Shields of Human Nature

•Apply the Four Shields of Human Nature to current questions about personal leadership and organizational dynamics

•Practice collaborative coaching techniques

•Practice listening skills in small groups, between individuals,and in nature.

•Practice “mirroring” of individual and group experiences in nature

•Explore dispositions for action in leadership and organizational situations

•Practice emotional agility, the ability to bring the right amount of the right emotion to a given situation

•Identify elements of an effective request and response

•Examine how to handle critical conversations and apply to personal leadership or organizational situations

•Discuss the components of trust, how to build trust and rebuild trust.

•Create an action plan for next steps in personal leadership and organizational dynamics. 

•Identify resources for continued learning and development in leadership, organizations, and the Four Shields of Human Nature



This program can be tailored to an organization's or group's needs.

Contact for details.







Contact Us

For information and to register for any Vermont Wilderness Rites Programs contact:


Fran Weinbaum

128 Bliss Road

Montpelier, Vermont 05602



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Art Credits


The art work and photographs that appear on this site are copyrighted. Please respect the work and the generosity of the artists and do not copy or reproduce any images on this website.  Contact the artist for more information about purchase or use of their work.  


Photograph in Rooted Action by Zach Reiner found at


Selections from Portraits of Nature by Corinna Stoeffl


Soaring and Leaping Ecstasy are by Jeannie Lindheim


Lady of the Land and Women in Leadership logo drawn for Vermont Wilderness Rites by Sara Grace. 


The Mirror of Nature watermark photograph by Tomasen Weinbaum.


Photographs shown in the Gallery from the October 2012 quest on Green River Reservoir by Arthur Hynes