WoN Sacred Passage Retreat
Packing List & Preparation Guidelines
The concept behind Sacred Passage is to become closely linked to Nature. The following recommendations and equipment list are focused toward giving you that opportunity. Keep in mind, the less you pack, the more awaits you. You may be walking into your solo camp up to 1 mile from the starting point, however, you can make several trips to carry in gear. Please pack all items either in soft-sided duffel bags or backpacks, as hard-sided suitcases are not suitable for carrying gear to the solo sites.
The packing list below will vary from program to program based on location, time of year, and climate. This list is what we recommend for Sacred Passage retreats taking place in the Rocky Mountains in early Fall. You will receive a comprehensive list and event details for each specific program upon completion of online registration. The following list is just a guideline.
Pack loose, comfortable clothing suitable to a high altitude desert climate in September/October. This means that it can be warm in the Sun during the day (Average 68 degrees F.), but temperatures will drop in the evening (Average 30 degrees F.), with a possibility of more extreme fluctuations. Afternoon thunderstorms are also typical this time of year. For cold weather, several layers of clothing can keep you warmer than one large item, such as a jacket.
- 1 pair shorts
- 2 pair comfortable pants
- 3 comfortable shirts- 1 short-sleeved, 2 long-sleeved
- 1 set long underwear, top and bottom
- 1 swim suit if you wish to wade in the stream or end your trip with a soak in the local hot springs
- 1-2 medium weight tops, such as wool or a fleece
- 1 light rain jacket or poncho
- 1 pair rain pants
- 1 hat for warmth
- wool socks
- 1 broad-brimmed sun hat
- 1 pair cotton soled black Chinese slippers or leather soled moccasins -these help you connect with Earth’s energy
- 1 pair good tennis or hiking shoes (preferably with natural rubber, such as Mephisto)
- 1 small tent with rain-fly and tarp (or 'footprint') to place beneath
- 1 set warm bedding/sleeping bag
- 1 cotton or silk sheet (to use as light bedding if you are hot, or to insulate sleeping bag if you are cold)
- 1 comfortable sleeping pad such as Therm-a-rest
- 1 water purification system: either a camp filter capable of removing Giardia, or purifying iodine tablets, such as the “Potable Aqua” brand, or both
- 1 set of basic utensils—including cup, bowl, Swiss Army knife, fork, spoon and cleaning rag
- flashlight and extra batteries
- 1 compass
- 1 large size plastic bear-proof canister, or bear bag for hanging food from a tree. (We have some of these available at SLS. Please check with us prior to the program to see if we have enough available to accommodate your needs)
- For those concerned about bear protection: “Counter Assault” (Olerisin Capsaicin pepper spray) is heavy duty and very effective. Also available at most camping stores is Pepper Gard Spray, although it is not as intense as Counter Assault.
- 1 loud whistle
- Insect repellent or, preferably, natural essential oil blend
- 1 solar shower (optional)
- 1 towel
- 1 small spade or garden tool to bury feces (otherwise, use appropriate stick or stone)
- Collapsible plastic water jugs or appropriate container for your specific water filtration system
- Plastic or compostable garbage bags for trash
- Broad Spectrum UVA/UVB mineral sunblock
Bear-proof canister, bear bag, poison/venom kit, and pepper spray can be found at the following stores: REI, www.rei.com 800-426-4840, or Campmoor, www.campmoor.com 800-226-7667.
- 1 notepad, to leave message at checkpoint
- 1 journal and pencil or ball point pen
- 1 set “Sky Above, Earth Below” audio tapes or mp3 files and listening device
- One copy of printed book, "Sky Above, Earth Below"
- Natural musical instruments (optional), such as flute or rattle. These are only to be used if distance between Passagers is enough so that the sound does not carry to their site. Drums may also be brought, although they are not for use while out on solo, as this could disturb other Passagers. They are, however, highly recommended for use during the Awareness Training and re-entry periods.
- Some good offering suggestions are: Native tobacco, cornmeal, sweet grass, sage, copal, palo santo, cedar, rice and incense
This is a solo time in Nature, and we discourage any unrelated reading material, radios, art supplies, cameras, or long journal entries, and especially any weapons. The sun will keep time for you, so leave those watches behind. To take time to really commune with Nature and feel the aloneness - All Oneness - it is best to leave all means of distraction behind. Upon re-entry, you will have plenty of opportunities to document your process with clarity and inner peace. Journal writing is encouraged before and after the solo period.
Food & Water
Please have all your solo-time food items (except perishables) with you when you arrive. There will be time the day before you go out on solo to shop for fresh fruits and vegetables.
During the group training portion of this program, we will often dine in town. A group decision will be made as to where we will go for meals. If you prefer to prepare your own meals at base camp, you are welcome to do so using the simple cooking facility available to you there. The cost of meals are not included in the price of the program.
The dietary intake recommended for Sacred Passage is of a sattvic nature. Sattvic foods are those that purify the body and calm the mind. They are fresh, organic, vegetarian foods. Recommended foods which are more balanced and appropriate for daily consumption include whole grains, beans, vegetables, seeds, nuts and fruits. This will enable your body to cope with spiritual process during your training and AllOne time.
*North Crestone Creek will provide fresh drinking water when used with your water filtration system
RECOMMENDED FOOD ITEMS FOR SOLO
All food items should be organic and non-GMO. There are no fires while on a Sacred Passage wilderness solo, so all food should be selected with this in mind.
- Fresh fruits- apples, oranges, avocados, grapefruit, pears, grapes, etc.
- Fresh vegetables- carrots, sprouts, dark leafy greens, peppers, etc.
- Dried Milk (whole, soy or rice) or Juice (various fruit and vegetable)
- Herbal Teas (for sun tea)
- Protein Drink (powder mix)
- Green Superfood powder mix
- Miso Soup (instant)
- Dried Fruits
- Trail Mix
- Protein Bars
- Whole Grain Bread
- Rice Cakes
- Hummus (Dried Mix)
- Peanut, Almond, Cashew or Sunflower Butter (Unprocessed)
- For the Master Cleanse:
- Cayenne Pepper
- Maple Syrup
- If you do not choose to eat vegetarian food only:
- Sardines (canned)
- Salmon or Tuna (canned)
- Buffalo Jerky
RECOMMENDED VITAMINS & HERBS
- A good multi-vitamin that contains the following:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
- Natural Vitamin E (d-alpha, not dl-)
- Calcium & Magnesium
- Vitamin D3 & K2
- Emergen-C & Electrolyte packets
- Multi-mineral tablets
- Supportive herbs and tinctures
- Immune-boosting supplements
- Bach Flower Essences
Many Passagers mix granola and dried milk together, creating a ready mixed meal that can be easily prepared simply by adding water. Another favorite is pre-cooked brown rice rolled in kelp, or a pre-cooked quinoa salad. Stuffing dates with raw almonds is an easily packable treat, as well. For those who like herbal teas, bring a glass jar and teas of your choice to make sun tea.
During most Sacred Passages, we suggest, but do not insist, that you fast during the middle three days of the solo period. We have had great success with the 'Master Cleanse' as our method of choice. Master Cleanse instructions will be included at the end of this email, if you are interested. If you opt to fast, your diet on the days prior to and after the solo should be light and easy to assimilate. If you do not fast, we suggest that you keep on a light and simple diet, with only two meals a day, and that you progressively reduce the amount of food eaten (particularly heavier foods) the longer you are out on solo. Be sure to drink at least a half a gallon of water each day, even if fasting.
Retreat Preparation Guidelines:
We suggest you begin the following preparations two to three months (or more, if possible) in advance to help your body, energy, emotions, mind and spirit clear for what they are about to experience...
Stimulants tend to act as a barrier to the interconnecting of inner and outer nature, so try to abstain from non-prescription drugs, coffee, black teas and cigarettes. This is a good way to help clear your system and develop sensitivity. While slowly entering into this cleansing, this is also an excellent time to partake in sweats, saunas and natural hot spring paths to further the process. Highly processed and “fast foods” should be eliminated from the diet. Drugs of any nature (including alcohol and tobacco) should be avoided, unless specifically prescribed by a doctor. If this is the case, check with your doctor to be sure doing an Awareness Training Intensive and Sacred Passage wilderness solo is wise at this time.
Start introducing yourself to Nature by spending time each day walking, sitting or exploring within natural environments. This is an excellent time to practice spiritual disciplines outdoors, such as outdoor ceremony, sacred drumming, heartfelt prayer, Tai Chi and Qi Gong, the various yogas, Zazen, TM, or any personal meditation. If you use affirmations, use them in natural settings, and start your attunement with Nature prior to your AllOne time. If possible, spend one day a week alone in Nature, establishing deeper inner and outer connectedness.
These guidelines, if followed, will bring a richer experience to your process in Nature… all of it is a gift to be treasured and bestowed upon yourself, so enjoy!
The Master Cleanse Instructions
Use Organic ingredients, if possible:
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice - about 1/2 lemon
2 Tbsp real maple syrup
1/10 Tsp red cayenne pepper - or more if you prefer
Medium hot to cool water - spring or purified
Combine fresh juice, syrup and pepper in a 10 oz. glass and fill with water. Take 5-7 times a day.
Grade B maple syrup is recommended for it's increased mineral content, however, grade A also works if that's what you prefer. If you cannot obtain maple syrup, use molasses or raw sugar cane juice. Avoid processed honey and refined sugar. Sorghum may be used, though it is less desirable.
During AllOne time, this fast is often done for three to five days during the middle of the solo. It may also be taken for the entire solo and parts of the Awareness Training for those interested in a deeper fast.
For persons of normal health, no other food or supplements should be taken for the duration of the fast. The only recommended additional components of this fast are:
-Taking a laxative herb tea, available in health food stores, to help the body eliminate wastes released by the fast. Take upon arising in the morning, and before evening rest (it is also helpful to take the laxative tea the evening before you begin to fast)
-Taking mint or green tea occasionally to help purify the body and reduce body odors released during detoxification.
To break the fast: for the first day or two (two days if you've done a longer fast) take several glasses of fresh orange or watermelon juice during the day, drinking them slowly. On the following day, eat miso soup with rye crackers, sparingly. The next day, continue with juice in the morning, miso soup and rye crackers for lunch, and a light vegetarian meal for dinner. After that, normal eating practices may be resumed, but continue to eat lightly for at least one week. Begin the morning with fresh lemonade or unpasteurized fruit juice, and avoid dairy, meat, and eggs for a while. Should stomach cramps or gas occur, go back to fruit juice until your system has adjusted, then continue as outlined above.
Ten-day fasts are common with this fasting system, and fasts for up to forty days are occasionally undertaken. For preparation to do Sacred Passage & The Way of Nature Fellowship programs, or for general maintenance of health, fasting for three to ten days, three or four times a year—once each season, ideally—is recommended.
For many, the first exposure to this fasting system will be during the twelve day Sacred Passage Awareness Training and wilderness solo. In order for the fast to unfold smoothly, it is helpful to eliminate cigarettes, coffee and all "recreational" and non-required medical drug-use at least two weeks before beginning the Passage. It is also helpful to "lighten up" one's diet, and lower food intake during this time, while emphasizing a balance of organic proteins, carbohydrates and healthy oils.
We ask that you please consult with your physician prior to embarking on any fast, particularly if you are dealing with any major health issues. If fasting on a Passage is not something you feel called to do at this time, we recommend instead eating simply, lightly and organically.
Fasting with the Master Cleanser Fast is said to aid in the cleansing of the digestive tract, kidneys and other organs, as well as the removal of toxins and waste from the muscles, joints, and circulatory system, and purifying the glandular system. Relieved of excess toxins and wastes, the body's cells, tissues and organs are revitalized, enhancing meditation, Qi Gong, GaiaFlow, yoga, and other spiritual cultivation practices.