Additional Optional Sessions

Over the 4 days, in addition to Iain McGilchrist’s 14 talks, there are 6 optional sessions in the schedule where there are a variety of things to choose from. These sessions are designed to give guests the chance to assimilate the content of Iain’s talks and/or explore possible implications. Everyone has different ways in which they like to do this. Some like to talk, others like to have some introverted time and others just like to do something a bit different for a while. The choice is yours and you can just see how you feel on the day. These sessions include optional practical workshops, illustrated talks, lively discussion groups and quiet reflection time. In all cases, you choose whatever you prefer to do in the way that suits you best. For more information about the options see below.

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Activities and options between Iain McGilchrist’s fourteen lectures, over the 4 days, include:

  • For those of you who seek stimulating conversation, and want to talk with like-minded people, you can join in with the organised discussion groups.  As with the chats over meals, it is amazing to hear all the different ways in which individuals have come to (and are looking to apply) the learning from Iain’s work.


  • Or if you prefer to simply have some time to yourself there is the option of relaxing in the comfortable coffee lounges, on the terraces, in the hotel grounds or of course, for those who are full-board, the peace and quiet of your own room. The hotel also has a lovely spa and you will have free use of the gym, outdoor jacuzzi, sauna, steam room, and a heated swimming pool, squash and tennis courts. You may also pop into nearby Historic Tewkesbury, visit the magnificent Abbey and enjoy the beautiful riverside walks.


  • A wide range of optional Illustrated Talks include: Dealing with Trauma though our understanding of Left and Right hemisphere way of seeing the world, The Seven Day Soul: Finding Meaning Beneath the Noise, Left and Right Hemisphere understanding of Renaissance Art, The Left Hemisphere and the Holocaust, Left/Right Brain Approaches to the Appreciation of Art, Hypersensitivity and Right/Left Hemisphere Balance, What is Dyslexia? What Changes in Education Might We Need to Prevent Left Brain Dominance, and several more fascinating optional, additional, talks still to be confirmed…


  • Last but not least are the optional practical workshops exploring Visual, Auditory and Kinaesthetic sensory experiences and practising forms of mindfulness and meditation through seeing, hearing and moving. These include: Intuitive Drawing and Painting, Meditation through drawing and Mindful Listening.


Examples of additional workshops, Lectures and Discussion Groups to choose from:


Musical Circulating

“When we pass a note, we are passing everything that we are.”

In this workshop, composer and guitarist Tywi Roberts will introduce a beautifully simple yet incredibly deep musical device which was discovered, and later highly developed, in the context of Robert Fripp’s Guitar Craft courses.

No prior experience with the guitar is required. This open and accessible approach places more emphasis on presence, and awareness of one’s surroundings, than on technique or knowledge of theory.

If we can be available in the circle, music is often not far away.

Tywi is currently researching for his Composition PhD at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, and has frequently worked in the Guitar Craft context since 2005, performing with the League of Crafty Guitarists and related ensembles on a number of occasions.

Please bring your own musical instrument for this workshop;

  • A steel-strung acoustic guitar in New Standard Tuning (C-G-D-A-E-g) is the idealbut standard tuning (E-A-D-G-B-e) is also fine.
  • A nylon strung guitar or ukulele would also function well.


Renaissance Art a harmony of the hemispheres

In this experiential talk Mary Attwood will reveal how the interconnectedness of knowledge and understanding, of intuition with skill are innately embodied in Renaissance art. Yet these wonder- filled images which blossomed out of 15th century Florence, are frequently rationalised and over intellectualised. Such a distanced approach is expressive of the deeper split in thought McGilchrist has highlighted throughout his work. Treating art in this way keeps both us and image bound by literalism, creating density rather than depth and deadens the image and us, an amputation between feeling and image. 

Mary teaches and writes about the power of art – not only its history but our responses and approaches to it.  Her emphasis focuses on awakening ourselves to its potency and potential through transformative seeing and learning, engaging the senses, the intellect and the soul.

Loyal to both the academic and alternative, her work and research spans Western art history, Western and Eastern philosophies and practices around consciousness and meditation. She holds a BA honours degree in the History of Art and is currently undertaking a Masters.

For more titles and headings, and to see the format, please Return to Iain McGilchrist Schedule

For more general information about this event, Iain McGilchrist, the hotel and testimonials Return to Iain McGilchrist event page

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