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McKenna Academy of Natural Philosophy,
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Academy Event

Oct 17 - 18 2020

Ripples of Change: Symbiosis Symposium



Featuring: Dennis McKenna
Organizer(s): McKenna Academy

A response to the need for a social and environmental revolution led by globally recognized thought leaders including ethnopharmacologist Dr. Dennis McKenna, community changemakers, and curious optimists like you.

Join our enthusiastic community for a two-day interactive encounter on a critically timely topic: Symbiosis. The McKenna Academy of Natural Philosophy presents the first annual “Ripples of Change: Symbiosis Symposium.” We bring together a collection of powerful and passionate global voices actively engaged in cultivating the equilibrium needed for the future we seek to inherit.

Watch now. Suggested contribution $10. 

Pay what you wish and what you are able to pay. For contributions less than $10, contact us at


A global community approach to regenerative solutions: 

  • Equity and social repair within food sovereignty and sustainable systems 
  • Social and ecological permaculture practices
  • Whole systems thinking —from the personal to global scale
  • Inspiration from the Amazon

Engage through visual storytelling from grassroots changemakers around the world, dynamic dialogues and panels. Come home with empowering takeaways: Resources & networks for continued inspiration & action.


DAY 01: SAT Oct 17, 2020 (PDT/UTC-7)



DAY 02: SUN Oct 18, 2020 (PDT/UTC-7)


Register at Crowdcast:


Coordinated in collaboration with Permaculturalist Annaliese Hordern of Symbiotic Nature, and friends of our collective global community.


  • Abhaijot

    Abhaijot is a NYC yogini, humanitarian, healer and wisdom keeper of the Aquarian age consciousness, whose intentions are to keep sacred traditions of Earth Mother alive. Powered by inclusiveness she teaches worldwide the teachings of Kundalini in schools, prisons, retreats, teacher trainings, and corporate wellness.

    Sources of Inspiration:
    The power of community in higher elevation. Stillness of Mother Nature in constant change. The joy and spirit of my mentor, and spiritual mother Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa who I wouldn't have come this far along my path without her wisdom, guidance, and remembrance to play. 

    Recommended Resources:
    "Back to Eden" by Jethro Kloss
    Unified Light: 11 Day Lightwalker Activation
  • Alexandre Tannous

    Alexandre Tannous is as an ethnomusicologist, sound therapist and sound researcher. For the past 20 years he has been investigating the therapeutic and esoteric properties of sound from three different perspectives — Western scientific, Eastern philosophical, and shamanic societal beliefs — to gain a deeper understanding of how, and to what extent, sound has been used to affect human consciousness. His multidisciplinary research has led him to the intersection of art, science, philosophy and spirituality.

    Recommended Resources:
  • Annaliese Hordern

    Permaculture educator standing tall with the plants for a regenerative future.

    Sources of Inspiration:
    David Attenborough's eldership candid interviews and documentaries, "Life In Syntropy" (Syntropic Agroforestry), Vandana Shiva: Navdanya / Seed Sovereignty, "Fantastic Fungi" - Paul Stamets Film, The Bali green school, Deep Ecology & the Work that Reconnects, Drinking Guayusa tea when I need to focus and get stuff done, The music of Deya Dova, Deep personal tune-in Time with Nature

    Recommended Resources:
  • Anthony Rodriguez

    Anthony Basil Rodriguez is a New York born independent photographer and filmmaker. A storyteller whos work continues to bring Anthony around the world in pursuit of research and documentation of rare plants, disparate peoples and the flux of global society. 

    Sources of Inspiration:
    The Natural World, Culture, People and Diversity. Photographer Sebastiao Salgado. Dictionary of African Filmmakers by Roy Armes.

    Recommended Resources:
    Donate and help bring these stories to life: "Growing Back to Nature The Series"
  • Antonio Natem Duku

    Antonio “Tony” refers to himself as an artist, though at the age of nine he had developed special abilities such as telepathy and telekinesis. At age 16, a tree fell on him crushing a large portion of his skull. Hospitals would not accept to operate on him and he was pronounced clinically dead. Meanwhile his spirit was traveling to a different realm where he met with "spirit teachers" who continue to accompany him now with his healings and ceremonies. Though growing up in rural Iquitos, he sought to learn various international modalities of healing. He also dedicates his time to his visionary art and poetry, and tours internationally sharing the teachings of Amazonian medicine.

    Trocha Amazonica:

    Antonio's art and poetry:
  • Dennis J. Mckenna

    Dennis McKenna has conducted research in ethnopharmacology for over 40 years.  He is a founding board member of the Heffter Research Institute, and was a key investigator on the Hoasca Project, the first biomedical investigation of ayahuasca.  He is the younger brother of Terence McKenna.  From 2000 to 2017, he taught courses on Ethnopharmacology and Plants in Human affairs as an adjunct Assistant Professor in the Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of Minnesota. In the spring of 2019, in collaboration with colleagues in Canada and the US, he incorporated a new non-profit, the McKenna Academy of Natural Philosophy.  He emigrated to Canada in the spring of 2019 together with his wife Sheila, and now resides in Abbotsford B.C.

    Sources of Inspiration:

    • My late and beloved brother Terence McKenna. If it were not for him, I wouldn’t be the man I am and would not be doing the work I am doing. 
    • Best NGO I know of working to preserve and protect indigenous sacred medicines in all ways. I am proud to be an advisor. 
    • Wade Davis, a close friend and inspiring mentor. His 1996 book "One River: Explorations and Discoveries in the Amazon Rain Forest" (Simon & Schuster). Perhaps the best non-fiction writings ever produced on the Amazon. And Wade is the real deal; he doesn’t just write about adventures, he has actually done them. Closest thing to a real life Indiana Jones, yet he is kind, compassionate and humble. 
    • Movies: "A Space Odyssey" 50 years on still possibly the greatest sci-fi movie ever made. An inspiring vision for humanity. (2001)
    • R. E. Schultes, the Harvard Ethnobotanist, for years Director of the Harvard Botanical Museum, 14 years in the Amazon. He was Wade’s thesis supervisor and role model for many aspiring ethhnobotanists including me. He put the Amazon and the importance of indigenous medicine on the map for many.
  • Erin Young

    Erin Young uses nature principles to activate women & groups with balance, creativity and collaboration as coach & consultant.

    Recommended Resources:
    Erin Young Blog: Learn, grow and develop your potent edge skills for thriving with self, kin and community.
  • Jay Jackson

    Business Owner and Permaculture Project Manager delivering edible landscapes across Queensland.

    Sources of Inspiration:

    • Captain Planet!
    • Costa Georgiadis
    • My daughter and the next generation 
    • The amazing men and women in my life that are ever present and always loving and accepting!
    • Annaliese Hordern!!

    Recommended Resource:
    Organic Motion's Social Enterprise
  • Jaye Irving

    Jaye Irving has been flying the green banner of sustainability for nearly 20 years exploring the relationship between the natural and built environment.  As an Architect, Artist, Builder, keen Permaculturist his interest in natural materials has led him on a on a global search for grassroots green design, fortifying his skills in natural building practices including bamboo, earth and straw.  At the core of these skills taught by simple craftsmen from around the world is the relationship with their environment.  For building homes is building community.  The experience of working in developing countries as a catalyst for change has left Jaye an extremely motivated and experienced practitioner, eco-consultant and hands-on worker for a greener future.

    Sources of Inspiration:
    Nature is my number one inspiration, Bamboo is one of my allies, I've become a proficient facilitator of that plant. Retreat center in Peru, travel, living close to the ground. Terence McKenna & Dennis McKenna, Bill Mollisons design manual David Homgren

    Recommended Resources:

    • "Retro Suburbia" David Holmgren, "The Barefoot Architect" Johan van Lengen, "Architecture for the Poor" Hassin Fathy, "Planet Schooling" Lucy Legan, "Bamboo: The Gift of the Gods" Oscar Hidalgo López
  • Larry Santoyo

    Director of Education at The Permaculture Academy reconnects our ability to directly access intuitive problem solving skills of nature.

    Sources of Inspiration:

    • "Hope In The Dark" by Rebecca Solnit
    • "Joyful" by Ingrid Fetell Lee
    • Jacinda Ardern, Prime Minister of New Zealand
  • Marc Ian Barasch

    Marc is the founder/director of,as well as a noted author and filmmaker. His presentation is a journey to the heart of regeneration. After writing a series of books on dreams and healing, culminating in the bestseller  "The Compassionate Life,"  Marc Barasch sought new ways to apply principles of healing and holism to real-world problems. A 15-year experiment in "green compassion" led to founding the Green World Campaign (GWC) a pioneering global advocate/practitioner of agro-ecology.

    Sources of Inspiration:

    • Eco-Poet Wendell Berry’s concept of “solving for pattern.” 
    • Conceptual artist and Green Party co-founder Joseph Beuys' notion of “social sculpture”
    • The Gospel of Thomas: “ The Kingdom is inside of you and outside of you.The spread out upon the earth, and men see it not.”
  • Mark Lakeman

    Founder of City Repair, and communitecture: architecture, permaculture, & planning.

    Recommended Resources:

    • Please donate to City Repair at
  • Matiu Te Huki

    Matiu has over 20 years experience as a Maori language and performance teacher, he is an engaging facilitator, dynamic international musician, playwrite, storyteller and a leader amongst his own communities.

    Recommended Resource:
    Matiu Te Huki Culture Course from his website:
  • Pandora Thomas

    Pandora Thomas Pandora Thomas is a passionate global citizen who works as a caregiver for her two mothers, her earth and birth mothers, and globally as a teacher, writer, designer, and speaker with over 25 years of experience. Pandora's work is rooted in ancetral reverence and a reonnection between the human and nonhuman world. Pandora's work emphasizes the benefits of applying ecological principles to social design.

    Source of Inspiration:
    Octavia Butler, Sankofa

    Recommended Resource:
  • Paul Stamets

    Paul Stamets is a speaker, author, mycologist, medical researcher and entrepreneur, considered an intellectual and industry leader in fungi: habitat, medicinal use, and production. He lectures extensively to deepen the understanding and respect for the organisms that literally exist under every footstep taken on this path of life. Paul's philosophy is that "MycoDiversity is BioSecurity." He sees the ancient Old Growth forests of the Pacific Northwest as a resource of incalculable value, especially in terms of its fungal genome. His research is considered breakthrough by thought leaders for creating a paradigm shift for helping ecosystems worldwide. Author of six books including Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms Can Help Save the World, Growing Gourmet & Medicinal Mushrooms, and Psilocybin Mushrooms of the World, he has discovered and named four new species of psilocybin mushrooms, and is the founder and owner of Fungi Perfecti, LLC, makers of the Host Defense Mushrooms nutraceutical supplement line.

    Recommended Resource:,

    Sources of Inspiration:

    Books that influenced me:

    • "The Glass Bead Game" (Magister Ludi) by Herman Hesse
    • "The Natural Mind" by Andrew Weil, MD
    • "Food of the Gods" by Terrence McKenna

    Movie "The Seven Samurai" 


    • Magic Mushroosm: Psilocybe cubensis, P. cyanescens, P. azurescens, P. baeocystis, P. semilanceata
    • Agarikon - Fomitopsis officinalis
    • Garden Giant - Stropharia rugoso-annulata
  • Robin Clayfield

    Robin Clayfield is an international educator, creative facilitator, best-selling author and Permaculture pioneer.

    Recommended Resources
    GEN (Global Ecovillage Network) -
    Crystal Waters Permaculture EcoVillage -
  • Robina McCurdy

    Permaculture educator-designer, community development facilitator and nature connection guide of 40 years experience.
  • Rosemary Morrow

    I have worked for nearly 40 years in precarious places in the world and many in war in civil war or, more recently in refugee camps. 

    Recommended Resource
    Green Releaf in the Philippines is a people based, responsive local NGO assisting IDPs during and after disasters such as cyclones, volcanoes, war, earthquakes
  • Rupert Faust

    Founder of Grounded Permaculture Action Party Inc. and Beanstalk Records.
  • Starhawk

    Starhawk is an author, activist, permaculture designer and teacher and director of Earth Activist Training.

    Sources of Inspiration 
    Inspiring women in permaculture: Penny Livingston Stark —Starhawk's teacher. Rosemary Morrow, Robin Francis, Robin Clayfield, Looby Macnamara, 

    Recommended Resources, Spiral Dance October 21
    Isabel Wilkerson's. book "Caste", Eric Tonesmeyer's book "The Carbon Farming Solution
  • Taj Scicluna

    The Perma Pixie intends on creating a fertile and abundant world, where the Earth's resources are distributed fairly and with care and responsibility.

    Sources of Inspiration
    Judith Berger, book called herbal rituals, Lucy Jones, self sufficient herbalism, Shoshana Sadia The way she carries herself, I always look to when I find myself in a dark way. Rebecca Atlan
  • Thiago Barbosa

    Thiago is a Syntropic farming pioneer in Australia, Pacific Islands, Central America and Caribbean Islands who is helping to spread the knowledge of this unique farming system  and teaching farmers and backyard gardeners to apply the principles in different regions and climates around Australia and around the world.
  • William Padilla-Brown

    William is a Self Taught Multidisciplinary Citizen Scientist.

    Sources of Inspiration
    Scott Kellog and Stacy Pettigrew from the Radix Center in Albany, Paul Stamets, Tradd Cotter, My Grandfather Frank Brown, The Academy For Future Science, Ryan Paul Gates of Terrestrial Fungi, Jorge Cervantes, and my son Leonidas.


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