A New Path for John Philip Newell

In the midst of the struggles of the pandemic, these months have also been a time of new awareness for many, realising that we don’t simply want to go back to how things were before the virus. It has certainly been a time of new awareness in my life personally, especially in relation to my ongoing work after the pandemic. I have realised that I am essentially a wandering teacher and that in this season of my life I need to return to this essential role in a new way and to travel as lightly as possible. Part of what this means is letting go of Heartbeat, the 501c3 organisation that was established ten years ago to come alongside my work. Ali and I feel enormous gratitude for all of you who have put time and energy into serving and supporting Heartbeat, and especially its board members and staff. But it is time to let it go and focus on my teaching and writing.
 
Heartbeat will be dissolved by the end of 2020. This now gives us over five months to work through the transition and the proper distribution of any remaining funds (such as those designated to special initiatives like Scholarship, Hebridean Treasure, and the Refugee Fund). Importantly it also gives our Executive Director, Ben Lindwall, time to prepare the next major step in his life. He has made great contributions to Heartbeat over the years and has developed many gifts that he will carry with him into his next venture. We wish him the very best in this journey.
 
The Iona pilgrimage weeks will continue, as will my teaching events in the USA and Canada. These will now be called ‘Earth and Soul’ rather than the ‘School of Celtic Consciousness’. We don’t require anything as organisationally formal as a ‘School’. These gatherings will simply be described as a Celtic initiative of study, spiritual practice, and compassionate action. The three-year pattern of study will continue, as will the leadership teams on the ground in different locations across the country. We don’t yet know when physical gatherings will resume, but we are tentatively planning on resuming in 2021. Please stay tuned! I look forward to welcoming you to one of our pilgrimages on Iona or one of our Earth and Soul teaching events in the future or one of our live webinars (two of which we’ve already had now during the pandemic).
 
The Heartbeat website will, after the summer, transition into an Earth and Soul website. We’ll get more detail to you on that in the coming months.
 
With my gratitude to you all and blessings,
 
John Philip Newell