1. Next SRJC class starts March 8, 2020
Animal Tracking and Bird Language is an 8 session deep immersion into the art and science and spiritual practice of animal tracking and bird language with internationally certified local tracker Jim Sullivan, presented by the SRJC community Education program. This is the deep portal to Nature.
Eight times over three months we will meet at some of the most beautiful and best tracking sites in the North Bay. You will learn the basics by tracking our local animals and practicing make meaning out of bird calls the way trackers do.
In addition to studying the lore and techniques of the ancient trackers, we will also be informed by modern biology and by the contemporary cognitive sciences as we use tracking to develop a deeper understanding of our selves and of the world we live and track in.
Best link to enroll:https://srjcce.augusoft.net
My animal tracking website: animaltrackingandbirdlanguage.com
To see Summer 2017 Sonoma Discovery article about Jim: http://sonomadiscoveries.com/born-to-track/
As we learn about animal tracks and bird language, we'll also explore how the ancient trackers moved through sacred time, and we'll tap into the contemporary cognitive sciences to further illuminate what it means to engage wild animals in deep-time, in their own territories.
Tracking goes way back to before we were even human beings, to a time when we routinely confronted nature in a fully attentive and meaning-seeking way. We are still hardwired for that high level of presence, and we apply many of those skills every day. But as a culture, we have seem to have lost contact with the root of our connection to the earth and to a range of skills necessary to make deep meaning out of what we are seeing. Tracking is one good way to reconnect.
This course consists of 8 half day-long classes in which we learn to track local Sonoma county wild animals, and, at the same time, how to tap into the meaning of bird communication.
First day, we meet in the classroom for a wide ranging three hour long presentation and discussion about tracking and bird language, and an introduction to the basic techniques we will work with out in the field. We'll begin looking at some specimens and images, too, and exploring some of the ways in which tracking and art intersect and reinforce each other.
The next 7 classes are field trips. We meet on several different landscapes, ranging from the Bodega Dunes to Pt. Reyes National Seashore and also local inland sites. The class circles up and I give a short presentation about tracking themes that I want us to think about while we are out there on the dirt. Then we go on a tracking wander, accepting what Nature decides to give to us. I'll take advantage of whatever we find to give mini lectures on how trackers experience these particular tracks, signs and sightings. Initially we focus on systematic tracking, but I encourage everyone to access their more advanced, unconscious "gestalt" tracking capacity. It doesn't take long.
The course is designed to give you take home skills that can support a lifetime of deepening tracking practice. Tracking is about getting inside the minds of animals, or as Mark Elbroch says: real relationships with real animals in real time. You learn to look at dimples in the sand and begin to understand certain things about that animal's state of mind. In the course of this study you also learn to look into your own mind using the ancient techniques of meaning making. The baseline emotion in tracking is gratitude and we explore what that means and how to achieve it.
For more information, call Jim Sullivan 707 874 9927
The course was outstanding. I would recommend it to everyone. Cynthia Syiek.
I absolutely loved this class. Great course and amazing instructor (from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
...It is so much more than being able to say that is a coyote track. It brings the essence of nature to the soul & heart...for me it compliments and completes the great circle: Astronomy, i.e., where we came from, to where we are right down in the dirt in the hear and now.... Dickson Yaeger
What a great class on Saturday! Thanks, Jim! ...Mary Luddy
Hi Jim, Your Tracking Study group is the best deal I have heard of in a long time. .I can’t imagine why the whole world doesn’t pound your door in...Durs Koenig
...We enjoyed having you here at Bel Aire. You definitely had an impact on many of the children. For the rest of the week no one in our course walked past some scat or tracks without taking a moment to observe and/or make a comment. I even noticed more tracks and bird language this weekend when I was out in the field duck and quail hunting. Thank you for sharing your knowledge....Nathan Jacobson, Teacher at Bell Air Charter School in Tiburon.
I had a really good time tracking with your group yesterday. You are such a wealth of technical knowledge. Thank you for inviting me to join!...biologist and certified tracker Natasha Dvorak
...really enjoyed working with you. I feel we work together well and compliment each other nicely....Senior tracker, Matt Nelson (co-teaching a workshop)
I want to thank you for having Vincent (his son) and me in your Tracking class. It truly was a life changing class, we will never take a hike the same way for the ret of our lives. I can already see Vince (and myself) connecting th dots in many ways related to nature, animals and the outdoors. I appreciate your kindness and t he words of wisdom. ...Joel Kriner
'I absolutely loved this class. Great course and amazing instructor (from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
Amazing class. Instructor is a real gem! I absolutely loved this class. Great course and amazing instructor (from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
Jim is able to articulate the Ancientness of tracking of our ancestry and join that with the real time of right now...(.from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
Simply said, Jim Sullivan is master teacher--one of the best, and perhaps the best class I've ever taken. (from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
Jim Sullivan is a master teacher. I really cannot imagine a finer experience than being able to study with him...he does a fine job of creating community in his classes. I also really value his discussions of the spiritual, cultural, philosophical, and cognitive aspects of tracking. (from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
This was a life changing class. Jim is a community treasure, I have and will recommend this class to all. This is important stuff. (from anonymous SRJC evaluation form)
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