The golden bough          Masters degree applied imagination


Question: how do we get out of our own way in order to self realise?


Using bonobo behaviour, plant medicine and action research, participants will be guided through various workshops and rituals that could help them see past their idea of themselves and bring new perspectives and paradigms shifts.


I designed the golden bough to encapsulate the intangible skills and attributes I have or need. I wanted my golden bough to be a torch that can guide my project and me. She has eyes that penetrate my being, asking for authenticity. She has a crystal that can prise open new realities accessing the underworld. Her feathers allow me to daydream whilst the magical spoon secures and grounds the medicine of the mushroom. Her oak provides calm in a turbulent world.


The skills, knowledge and management strategies needed for my project:

 Understanding medicine. I shall be a participant to retreats in the spring to help me gain an understanding of this area.


Being able to test The Bonobo Experience retreat and record what is learnt. To contextualise this work and place it within a culture. To be resilient when it gets tough or too big to manage. Remaining focused on my question and knowing when to return to it. Use my knowledge of being in a community where people cooperate, and transferring to the team and our stakeholders. Knowing when to ask for help and to delegate pieces of work.


I have the skills to manage a team and delegate work. I am skilled in iteration and can see the practical steps to take after the action research. I have the knowledge of previously running a successful campaign and will draw on this experience. I have the skills and confidence to approach stakeholders and partners.


I need to develop my business skills and my attention to detail and data. This will require a different mind-set from the current ‘go getting’ attitude. I need better administration and organisational skills; I am currently developing these with an artist coach. I need to improve my negotiation skills with partners, around money.


These skills, knowledge and management strategies will direct my question and provide a grounded framework. Acquiring the knowledge of medicine will enable me to directly address and revisit my question. Being able to work and cooperate with the team that is equal will require me to acknowledge and step back from my ego.


The project imposes the following limitations on me: The size of this project is intimidating because of all the elements involved. I accept this and realise I will prune back aspects of the work that don’t focus on the question. I accept my dyslexia as a limitation regarding researching text and using the library. I do not accept it as a limitation and seeing new opportunities and seeing the bigger picture. I will research experientially using grounded research.


The project has enabled me to give shape to the challenges of increasing people’s awareness by using plant medicine. This Masters has given me the ability to further enquire. In this project has got me to tease open my strengths and weaknesses and given me permission to enter the realm of magic and mysticism.