Soil, Soul, Society

A Spring College course with Satish Kumar and Irene van Lippe-Biesterfeld

We, humans and all other beings live together, share one planet. Today, human activity affects the wellbeing of all living systems. A healthy future for all therefore depends on our capacity to learn, choose and create a path of sustainability.

Soil, Soul, Society is a three-day course about the interdependent functioning of earth’ living systems. The programme is an invitation for professionals, entrepreneurs, civil servants, teachers and other change-makers who care deeply about Life and sustainability and who wish to step up to their purpose and responsibilities.

The central questions addressed in the course are:

  • How do we care for the planet and her underlying ecological functions, the foundation from which Life springs (Soil)?
  • How do we reclaim and nourish our individual human (well)being (Soul)?
  • How do we co-create today and the future as one human community (Society), caring for the quality of life of past and coming generations?

Under the auspices of the extraordinary teachers Satish Kumar and Irene van Lippe-Biesterfeld, we take a holistic perspective to Life and explore our deep connection with Soil and Soul. With the knowledge and experience of our interconnectedness, we look into our unique roles in re-imagining and co-creating a Society grounded in healthy relationship.

Soil, Soul, Society will give you:

  • Inspiring knowledge, stories and wisdom concerning the local and global ecosystem.
  • An enhanced feeling of integrity, by aligning your self, your surrounding ecosystem, and your daily choices, as well as relating to a diverse group of participants, including teachers Satish and Irene.
  • A weekend with joy, good food and plenty of time outdoors in movement and stillness, action and reflection.

Teachers: Satish Kumar (editor Resurgence magazine and co-founder Schumacher College), Irene van Lippe-Biesterfeld (founder NatuurCollege), and the founders of Spring College Li An Phoa (Beautiful Earth Action & Research) and Sarah Denie (Beautiful Economy). More information on all teachers can be found on the Teachers-pages.

Flyer Soil Soul Society_FINALDates & Time: De Paltz opens its doors for you at 10AM on Friday morning March 15th. The programme starts at 11 AM. On Sunday afternoon March 17th we finish around 4PM. A rough overview of the programme can be found below.

Location: De Paltz estate – Herman van Veen Arts Centre: De Paltz 1, Soest. If you come by car, please park at Hilton Royal Parc Soestduinen, Van Weerden Poelmanweg 4, Soestduinen.

Course fees: The early bird offer (€550,-) is extended until February 15th, as some of you received the initial invitation for Soil, Soul, Society late. To make use of the early bird offer, your payment has to be received by the given date. After that, the regular fee of €600 applies.

Booking: If you wish to participate in Soil, Soul, Society or receive more information on the course, contact us at The course fee can be transferred to:Spring College, NL38 TRIO 0254 8451 26 at Triodos Bank, Zeist. Once Spring College has received the full fee, your booking is final. We like to keep the course personal, therefore the group will be up to 20 participants.

Accommodation: Soil, Soul, Society is an intensive course that starts early in the morning and runs until well after dinner. We recommend participants to stay overnight in neighbouring Hilton Soestduinen. Specially for participants of Soil, Soul, Society, HIlton offers us double rooms for €65/night and single rooms for €60/night. From February 11th onward, you can book your room via this link. Until Hilton Soesterduinen guarantees 25 rooms available until March 1st. After this date booking is subject to normal hotel availability. The special rate will remain.

Food: Food is central to all our courses. We will have all our breakfasts, lunches and dinners in the Arts Center at The Paltz estate. We have found several caterers who cook delicious, beautiful, organic and vegetarian meals. We will make sure body and soul are fed throughout the course. Please indicate if you have any other dietary needs.

A rough overview of the programme:

We will spend three days and seven meals together on the 80 hectare estate, where we are amidst the forests, fields, birds, deer and the elements.

On day one (Friday 15 March) we will have a deep encounter with Soil, the source of our food, fabrics, buildings and all human activity. We immerse ourselves physically in this living space of forests among the mosses and trees, and learn about the intricate relationships of all matter, at a local and at a global level. Irene van Lippe-Biesterfeld will guide us through most of this day, while Li An and Sarah will also teach and facilitate. Satish arrives in the evening when we will share a firesite chat.

On the second day (Saturday 16 March) we will go out with Earth Pilgrim Satish Kumar. After morning meditation and breakfast, we will walk and be guided by Satish and his insightful stories of when he traveled the planet by foot striving for peace. Together with Irene, Li An and Sarah, we follow our spiritual compass and ever-unfolding destinations, and relate the paths of our Soul to the living systems of Soil. Our senses will play an important part during this day, in movement and music.

On the third day (Sunday 17 March) we will explore Society, actively aligning our habits, decisions, life-work, economy, with the rhythms of Soil and Soul. What artwork of living will we co-create, and how will we shape our social sculpture? This day will be facilitated by eco-philosopher and whole system’s business entrepreneur Li An (Beautiful Earth Action & Research) and ecological and values-based economist Sarah (Beautiful Economy). We will round off Soil, Soul, Society in a closing circle at 4PM.

We look forward to meeting you on March 15th for Soil, Soul, Society.

Meet the ‘Soil Soul Society’ group