“a social, upright ape 

in the middle of the first intelligent superorganism that has ever existed in the history of the universe as far as we know...… as if planet earth is coming to awareness.... plugging this emerging global brain into a nervous system that lets us understand this metabolism.. “


Tim Flannery: Chief Commissioner of the Australian Climate Commission, 2010

We are physical, feeling and thinking beings embedded and participant in the wider living system that is our world.


The Western way of managing and meeting our perceived needs is unbalancing this system.


Climate emergency, species extinction and more are the feedback to this imbalance.

We are experiencing the powerful consequences of what we have been doing – and this is felt as a challenge to our sense of identity.  


We are being triggered into familiar defence patterns of anxiety, anger, denial and distress.  However,  If we continue treating the feedback only as personal process, we ignore the essential systemic intelligence that signals information regarding action and alternatives.

Inaction, fear, and resistance to change result from challenges for which there seem to be no alternatives. The present system has promoted the idea that there are none. This has become part of our common story.

It is not true.

Shifting habits of identity carried in our personal lives is a familiar developmental task for human beings.  We are quite good at it, mostly.  

Shifting the identity carried in our social, political and economic stories, and telling a new story for ourselves is the psychological and spiritual work of our time, more significant than the earlier transformation now known as "the Enlightenment."


To experience ourselves as
"distinct within" yet not "separate from"
the more-than human world, is to recognise ourselves as a unique, embodied expression of the ecosystem.

In that moment, the ecosystem becomes self-reflective.  This is an evolutionary step.

It is also a significant shift in our personal identity.

The GaP team

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The GaP initiative derives from many conversations with concerned and thoughtful people.  The current thrust has been driven primarily by Mark Skelding and Deryn Cooper, and their long-term collegial conversation with John Kingston and Claire Virtue. 

Comments, suggestions and recommendations generously offered by colleagues, clinicians, academicians and researchers from many modalities and perspectives are gratefully acknowledged.  These include: 

Stuart B. Hill, PhD, Emeritus Professor, Foundation Chair of Social Ecology, School of Education),University of Western Sydney. [Australia]
Keith Tudor, PhD. Professor of Psychotherapy and Head of School of Public Health & Psychosocial Studies, Auckland University of Technology. [Aotearoa/NZ]
David Key, BA (Hons), MSc (Dist), FCHE, MTUK, NZOIA, BCU. [Aotearoa/NZ]
Geoff Bridgman, PhD (Psychology). Social Practice, Unitec, Auckland. [Aotearoa/NZ]
Judith Anderson, MD, Psychiatrist, Jungian Analytic Psychotherapist, Climate Psychology Alliance executive member [UK]
Peter Crowe, MPhil (Hons), MA Psychosynthesis Psychotherapy. UKCP [UK]

Keith Hackwood, MA, PG Dip, BACP Spirituality [UK]

Alison Goldwyn, Founder, Synchronistory GmbH [Germany]

Andrew Bryant, MPH, LICSW [USA]

Leslie Davenport, MS, LMFT. Associate Professor Integrative Health Studies CIIS [USA]

Molly Young Brown, M.A. (Humanistic & Transpersonal Psychology), M.Div.  [USA]

Stephanie Mines, Ph.D. Neuropsychologist, Founder & Convener: Climate Change & Consciousness Conferences (next Norway 2021). [USA]

Zhiwa Woodbury, M.A. (Ecopsychology), J.D. (Natural Law). [USA]

“As long as we continue to think of self as a singular noun, the planet is cooked”

Dr Dan Siegel, Garrison Institute, 2011

"What is the pattern which connects all living creatures?... The pattern which connects is a meta-pattern.  It is a pattern of patterns.... it is patterns which connect..... as I was writing, mind became, for me, a reflection of large parts and many parts of the natural world outside the thinker.           

Gregory Bateson, Mind and Nature, 1979