Theoretical background

 Theoretical background Learning for changeThe general background of the programme is based on the work of the American psychologist and therapist Bill Plotkin. Through the last 40 years, Bill and his colleagues in Animas Valley Institute developed two models that depict the very depths of human psyche – Eco-Soulcentric developmental Wheel and Nature Based map of Human psyche. These two models represent the very essence of what we humans are born to deliver in this world, both physically and spiritually. The models describe the ideal template for human development, if it goes in harmony with Nature (inner and outer) and offers a map of all inherited resources everyone is born with.

In our modern westernized world, unfortunately we are living in industrial consumer-conformist society where the free will, expression, wildness, talents and values are controlled and directed by social norms and economical tools. The human nature is trapped in a materialistic prison.

All these lead to gradually in last few centuries of very deep loss of our connection with nature. Thus developing a long list of psychological deficits and health problems. Modern youth are separated from the wild world they are born to grow in and are surrounded by electronical devices and screens. Modern humans are bombarded by negative information and forced to live as consumers and gears in the big industrial machine. At the same time, nature is treated simply as a source of goods and materials. Humanity have lost their very respect to the Nature we are coming from and we cannot survive without.

An alternative to the current industrial consumer model of Western civilization we find in the model of Bill Plotkin – Eco-Soulcentric developmental Wheel. The model serves as a guide to deep cultural transformation of society bringing back to life the values of mutual respect, community, responsibility, acceptance, purposeful life and diversity. This map charts the development through life of a human being’s consciousness and ego if this person develops “soul-centrically’, as opposed to “ego-centrically”, and nature-connected. This way the development of a person becomes focused on facilitating the emergence of their innate gifts and soul-purpose and developing the resources to be in reciprocal conversation with Nature and Culture.


The second model – Nature-based Map of Human Psyche – provides us with an understanding of what is hidden within every human as a resources and capacities which are waiting to be cultivated and used to enrich our individual lives. The map also offers us a way into identifying and transforming our conditioned patterns of behaviour that originated in our childhood wounding, in order to free our adult life from these unconscious, life unserving strategies.



Both models provide a number of practices, which offer transformative individual and group processes leading to growth and discovery of human’s full potential.