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Thinking Like a Mountain: Towards a Council of All Beings
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Thinking Like a Mountain: Towards a Council of All Beings

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  126 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Thinking Like a Mountain provides a context for ritual identification with the natural environment, inviting us to begin a process of "community therapy" in defense of Mother Earth. It helps us experience our place in the web of life, rather than on the apex of some human-centred pyramid. An important deep ecology educational tool for both groups and personal reflection. ...more
Paperback, 128 pages
Published March 13th 2007 by New Catalyst Books (first published 1988)
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Dec 25, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is a collection of essays and poems aimed at a sort of newly created ritual called a "Council of all beings", as part of Joanna Macy's process that goes by the name "the work that reconnects". It's a noble goal, I think - to help us humans become more vibrantly aware of our connection to the Land, to all beings, both animate and inanimate. And some of the writings in the book are quite beautiful.

My issue with this book - and with the other things I've read about the work that reconnect
Feb 20, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A poetic evocation of all creatures of the earth. Through prose and poetry, the 10 or so writers invite us to connect deeply with the earth and with all life, in order to restore the imbalance that we humans have created in the world.
The Council of All Beings (of the subtitle) is something I first heard of when reading Starhawk (The Fifth Sacred Thing, I think), and it sounds like a very powerful ritual.
After reading this you can never think of yourself as separate from nature. It shows how anth
Jan 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing
WoW - I love this book!
Jun 17, 2020 added it
Shelves: 2010-11
Thinking like a Mountain towards a Council of all Beings by John Seed, ,Joanna Macy, Pat Fleming and Arne Naess This is a collection of essays, meditations, poetry and guidelines for group workshops called “A Council of all Beings”. The name “Thinking like a Mountain” is taken from a chapter in “A Sand County Almanac” written by Aldo Leopold (Forester and Ecologist) back in 1948. He wrote that unless we as humans can identify with the eco-system and “think like a mountain” disaster is inevitable ...more
Gus Johnson
Nov 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
John Seed helped save our NSW Australia Northern Rivers rainforests from Cedar cutting and clearing; rare and exceptional ecosystems now with World Heritage protection. John explored how and why our culture is so destructive, how did we lose our way that we can authorise, vote for and participate in such irresponsible and emotionless destruction of unique precious ecosystems and diverse life. John's research led him to meet, learn from and collaborate with fellow thinkers and conservationists in ...more
Při čtení jsem si připomněla, proč jsem si knihu před 10 lety pořídila - hledala jsem spojení s přírodou. Měla jsem zrovna deprese. Tahle kniha mi pomohla. Přestala jsem vnímat smrt jako něco konečné a něco, čemu musím běžet naproti, nebo se toho bát. Začala jsem vnímat svět okolo jako různé projevy Země a lidi jako jinou formu projevu vesmíru (materialisticky), a tak i já jsem jen kus vydělený z přírody, prozatím, než zemřu. Tahle myšlenka mě uklidňovala, a doteď mi pomáhá, a tahle kniha ji umo ...more
Dan Power
May 17, 2020 rated it liked it
This is a real mixed bag - part meditation, part eco theory, part poetry and part biography, all from a bunch of different writers.... there are some parts which are v inspiring and beautiful, and other parts which are a bit dull or even a bit egotistical (which really jars with a lot of the book's transcendental pre-post/humanist vibee), and the book not knowing exactly what it's trying to be is sometimes exciting and sometimes a bit tiring. Some very good and some not very good, but overall an ...more
Jun 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In this age of pipelines and hopelessness, this is a book worth rereading, especially if you need to experience, and then get past, your grief.

Expect an emotional meltdown, and expect a broadened perspective that takes in past and future generations and our evolution as biological creatures.

My hope is that people everywhere will hold Council of All Beings sessions to reignite their commitment to creating the just and green future we want.
Michelle Keiser
Apr 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Deeply moving, touching a subject that is incredibly important to humankind. There is a deep need to rekindle our connection with the earth on a level that goes beyond intellect. I recommend this book to every human being.
Joseph Carrabis
Aug 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I first read this book as part of my anthropology studies and promised myself I'd read it again (kept it on an easy to reach bookshelf). Although it's a typical western cultural paradigm questing for more, it's still an entertaining read from the time when neo-shamanism and neo-paganism thrived. ...more
Dani Scott
Beautiful. Poignant. Relevant, fortunately and not, still.
Sep 05, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2011
Not what I expected, but a useful, insightful book nonetheless. Should one plan to conduct such a retreat, however, this would be a five-star book. I had just hoped for more ecological essays, especially less familiar ones.
Jun 20, 2009 added it
Shelves: hippie, summer09
"Threat of extinction is the potter's hand that molds all forms of life."--p.38

I thought I would enjoy this book more, but it sort of fell flat. I really can't see myself responding to the type of ritual development that this book proposes.
Jul 16, 2014 rated it it was ok
Some of the pieces in this collection were thought-provoking. Some of them, especially the ritualistic, may not be everyone's cup of tea. ...more
Sep 04, 2008 rated it did not like it
Naess' essay is very good. ...more
Aug 14, 2014 rated it liked it
Meant as a guide to leading a Council of All Beings, this book was useful to me as a way to imagine one, to understand a bit more about the idea.
Feb 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Jun 16, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
I thought this book sounded really interesting and my type of book. But I really couldn't get into it and didn't really enjoy it. ...more
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