CA Month-Long Training (full with a wait list)

Jun 15th, 2021 - Jul 17th, 2021

Note: Please contact point guide before submitting deposit.

For more than thirty-five years the School of Lost Borders has offered a unique training for students, therapists, activists, teachers, caregivers, and guides interested in deepening their understanding and in-depth experience in the principles of the modern day vision fast.  Although this training supports those who choose to creatively transform and adapt this work to a variety of settings, our teachings remain rooted in the core tradition of wilderness rites of passage; namely four days and nights of fasting alone in a wilderness place, and returning with a “vision” in service to one’s community.  

The month-long intensive is designed for those who seek to explore and develop their vocation as wilderness guides within the tradition of the School of Lost Borders.  Here, participants are given the opportunity and mentorship to fully immerse themselves in the ceremonial and practical aspects of modern day wilderness rites of passage that have evolved throughout years of experimentation and practice and have been passed down through the teaching of our elders. It is a beneficial training for those who plan to integrate the vision fast ceremony with adults, youth, and with diverse populations.  


Over the years we have expanded the comprehensiveness of this training while maintaining its grounded, experiential base. Covering a wide range of relevant themes throughout the month, the essence of the teaching will emerge from our relationship with the land, where the eternal wisdom of pan-cultural rites continues to inform us, reflecting the underlying movement and dynamism of all life. 


The group will camp together in the heights of the Inyo Mountains, cohabitating as individuals while respectfully entering the community of the wild beings of this place. Known as Most days will include time together in council, as well as ceremonial solo time on the land, exploring the themes of the day. The apprentice-trainee must play two roles: that of initiate and that of field therapist, naïve participant and knowing professional. The experiences of initiatory activity on the land will inform and illumine the subject matter of the teaching.


Trainees will have the opportunity to learn from a rotating team of highly experienced guides and teachers from Lost Borders throughout the month, culminating in a four-day personal vision fast.

Topics will include but not be limited to: 

  • the theory and foundations of rites of passage and their pan-cultural universality
  • responding to cultural and gender diversity in wilderness rites of passage
  • the risks of cultural misappropriation, cultural shadows, and best practices in respect to the people who have come before and the lands to which they belong
  • the history and lineage of the School of Lost Borders and its current evolution
  • the barebones of our practice including:
    • the four shields of human nature
    • self-generated ceremony and the role of threshold-crossing
    • shaping and honing of intent as a foundation for threshold experiences
    • the practice of story-telling and mirroring 
    • the centrality of nature as teacher and mirror
    • council practice
  • rites of passage as dying practice
  • the role of the guide 
  • specific practices such as the death lodge, purpose circle, and other pan-cultural symbols and practices
  • the significance of the symbolic, mythic, and archetypal themes that show up in story, dream, and nature. 
  • the screening and preparation of candidates
  • supporting a candidate’s physical/psychological/mental/spiritual safety
  • variations on traditional models of wilderness vision fasts 
  • working with youth, elders, and diverse populations, and
  • the all-important topic of incorporation and appropriateness of this work to the challenges of our world today. 


Prerequisite: Participation in at least one guided 3 or 4 day Vision Fast. Need not have been with School of Lost Borders. 


“’The School of Lost Borders’ is an equal opportunity provider and operates under permit on the Inyo National Forest.” 

The School of Lost Borders has created a sliding scale for all its programs and trainings in an effort to keep our courses affordable to a wide range of people. We set forth no criteria and trust that each individual will pay what they feel is appropriate.

Scholarships are available.

Tuition: $2500 - $4000

Deposit: $450
(Non-refundable & non-transferrable unless seminar is cancelled)

Extra Fees: Camping Fees $150 per individual, for the entire month


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