Creative Inquiry 14: Ecological Consciousness, Animism, and Story - Eric Peterson


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Eric Peterson joins us for a wide-ranging conversation based in his work as an outdoor adventure leader and scholar of all things ecological. We explore topics such as ecological consciousness; the interconnectedness of the socio-political, ecological, and psychological; ecolinguistics; ecopsychology; the importance of story; why an animist viewpoint is essential; the war on dreaming; and the problem with trying to "save" the planet. About Eric Peterson: Over twenty-five years ago, Eric started working as an outdoor adventure leader in the southwestern Oregon and northern California area. He has guided trips in rafting, kayaking (rivers, lakes, and ocean), canoeing, fishing, biking, skiing, and hiking. He began his career as an outdoor adventure leader as a ski instructor and ski patroller at Mount Ashland, as well as a whitewater river guide on rivers like the Rogue, Klamath, North Umpqua, Scott, and California Salmon. At the age of twenty-six, he started a year-round adventure company in Ashland, Oregon, which he ran successfully for a few years before deciding to focus on teaching Swiftwater Rescue. At the age of forty, he returned to Southern Oregon University (SOU) where he earned Bachelor of Science degrees in anthropology, psychology, and a minor in Native American Studies. Eric graduated from California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) with an MA in Transformative Leadership and is continuing his inquiry at CIIS in the Doctoral Transformative Studies program (Ph.D., 2020). Eric’s passion is in the therapeutic and transformative powers of nature, and how humans relate to the more-than-human world. His current studies lie within the intersections of transformative leadership, social and environmental justice, and pedagogies and curriculums that nurture ecological consciousness. He utilizes a systems thinking approach to understanding how all our contemporary human problems are interrelated and interconnected and believes that outdoor adventure leaders hold potential great influence for positive socio-cultural transformation. Eric is looking at focusing his dissertation upon: A meta-synthesis of how the term "eco" is showing up in areas like: ecophilosophy, ecopsychology, ecotherapy, ecofeminism, ecoliteracy, and ecoleadership. Eric's website: Show notes: Frances Weller, grief and soul work: Allan (Leslie) Combs: Apocalyptic Witchcraft by Peter Grey:

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