The Emergent Quest: A Soulcentric Purpose Journey

A three-month, small group journey offered in North Carolina

September 15, 2019 – December 8, 2019

What shape waits in the seed of you to grow and spread its branches against a future sky?
—David Whyte

This program is an opportunity to fully embrace the unfolding initiatory journey at the heart of one’s life. With a special emphasis on further discovering and living your most authentic direction and offerings in the world, this quest-based journey amplifies what’s waiting to emerge on the continuing path into one’s deeper nature and greater purpose. Up to eight participants will gather in person over the course of three months as we move toward a solo, full-day wilderness quest based on the pattern of the pan-cultural vision quest. Over the course of these three months, we will encounter layers of ourselves and our conditioning that are ready to transform, heal, and shift; we will open to the core of who we are; we will listen to the authentic direction, soul, and creative expression that wants to come to life in us. Together, we will step into new and unknown territories as we approach the threshold of the larger conversation with life that is wanting to emerge.

This program is suitable both for those who already feel they are following some of the threads of their deeper purpose, as well as for those who feel drawn to discovering these threads or are in a period of transition in their lives. Our journey will incorporate several bodies of work into an integrated, experiential arc, including contemplative and meditative traditions, somatic listening, models of adult human development, and in particular depth psychology and traditions of nature-based practices. The Emergent Quest also includes the 12-module Purpose Discovery Program created by Purpose Guides Institute, a process aimed at uncovering and refining one’s most authentic purpose in the world through the eight facets of Vision, Values, Core Powers, Essence, Giveaway, Task, Message, Mission, and Delivery Systems. We will work with these eight facets both as bridges into a deeper knowing of authentic purpose and as bridges from the core of ourselves to the world through our offerings and roles, while also moving toward glimpses of what Bill Plotkin calls one’s “mytho-poetic” identity—that is, one’s most essential, soulcentric niche to inhabit in the world.

The Purpose Guides Institute’s Purpose Octagon

The Purpose Guides Institute’s Purpose Octagon

Between meetings, participants will engage in soulcentric purpose discovery practices and curriculum with the guidance of the facilitator. During our in-person meetings, we will draw on a variety of sources to deepen our work experientially through guided journeys, contemplative processes, triad and dyad exchanges, nature-based experiences, and council work. We will also discuss relevant materials, exploring themes such as soulcentric models of human development and the role of the imaginal realm, symbol, and mythic and poetic sensibilities. This arc will culminate in our November quest weekend, during which each participant will spend a full day in solo fasting (water only) and ceremony while immersed in the natural beauty of one of our nearby state parks. We will then begin integrating the shifts, insights, and openings of our journey as we prepare for our final meeting as a group. 

Together, we will venture into the potent unknown, preparing to release parts of who we are and allowing ourselves to be awakened and transformed by life. Ultimately, we live our most authentic path by recognizing the journey that is already beckoning and saying yes. In doing so, we discover that listening to our deepest call and living in alignment with our inherent wholeness is the doorway to fully discovering and living our gifts in the world.

I began this journey feeling stuck and a bit lost. I’ve been going through some big changes and knew I needed some guidance. I now feel more clear than ever about who I am, having gained perspective of my personal challenges and strengths. And I feel emboldened to step across this new threshold having had all of the gems and highlights of my journey mirrored back to me. It’s been powerful to experience someone willing to hold space for me, to question and explore the deepest parts of my soul. I would recommend this purpose work to my best friends; to anyone who isn’t satisfied living life on the surface. Anyone ready to open to their Larger Self. It’s a beautiful, intense journey that will challenge you beyond your comfort level. It’s no easy task, but it is oh so worth it!
— 2019 Emergent Quest/Purpose Program Participant
Your presence is so gentle, yet so strong and balanced. You are a mentor, a friend, and a brother. You just create the perfect space for things to manifest themselves. It’s like magic! Thank you for inspiring me.
— 2015 Emergent Quest Participant

Program Details:

Our outdoor meeting space

Our outdoor meeting space

  • Three-month program (September 15–December 8)

  • Maximum of eight participants

  • In-person format (15 minutes from Chapel Hill and Carrboro, NC) organized around five in-person group sessions and a weekend quest, complemented by check-in calls, an online forum for our small group only, and practices to engage with between and during group sessions

  • Quest format (culminates in solo, full-day wilderness quest and ceremony in November)

  • Incorporates the Purpose Discovery Program curriculum created by Purpose Guides Institute

  • Price: $650 total (standard) or $495 total (earlybird registration by August 31) (The online, large-group PGI purpose program alone is priced at $1200-$1400; this entire in-person Emergent Quest journey is being offered at a special introductory price.)

  • For those who prefer an individual program rather than a group experience, I also offer a similar journey in an individual setting. Please see the final section of the About page for an overview.

Program Schedule:
(all dates listed are Sundays, except for the Saturday of the quest weekend)

Our indoor meeting space

Our indoor meeting space

  • September 15, 1pm-4:30pm: Meeting 1

  • September 29, 4pm-5:30pm: Call 1 (online)

  • October 13, 1pm-4:30pm: Meeting 2

  • October 27, 4pm-5:30pm: Call 2 (online)

  • November 10, 1pm-4:30pm: Meeting 3

  • November 16-17 all day: Solo quest and preliminary integration

  • November 17, 1pm-4:30pm: Meeting 4

  • (FYI: Thanksgiving 2019 falls on November 28)

  • December 8, 1pm-4:30pm: Meeting 5

To Register:

Complete and submit this short Google Form to register for the Emergent Quest.
We will be in touch with you within two business days.
Please direct all queries to:

Further Information:

To learn more about the program, join me for a group Zoom video call on August 18, 4pm-5pm (EDT).
Register here, and I’ll send you the link for the call as we approach August 18.

It's not possible to save the world by trying to save it. You need to find what is genuinely yours to offer the world before you can make it a better place. Discovering your unique gift to bring to your community is your greatest opportunity and challenge. The offering of that gift—your true self—is the most you can do to love and serve the world. And it is all the world needs.
—Bill Plotkin

About your facilitator:

3 Simon IMG_2019-v1.jpg

Simon Spire brings to his facilitation years of exploration of self-inquiry, non-dual wisdom traditions, and meditative practices; the perspectives of post-conventional human development and soul-centric depth psychology; and his long experience with artistry and the creative process. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Auckland and a master’s degree in clinical psychology from Columbia University; is a Certified Trainer of Focusing, a mindfulness-based, somatic approach to psychological healing and development; has completed a yearlong Soulcraft and vision quest immersion with Bill Plotkin and Animas Valley Institute while also certifying as a Purpose Guide through Purpose Guides Institute and studying in Thomas Hübl’s Academy of Inner Science; and is currently pursuing doctoral studies in psychology and philosophy. He has been a director with organizations active in international sustainable development and social entrepreneurship, leadership development, and mental health, and was led from his New Zealand homeland to the US by his career as a recording artist and songwriter.

It’s a gift you have—helping us to open our hearts, dive deep into our feelings, our innermost core, and discovering our light, our spirit, our soul. I can’t wait now to go out and shine my light and explore the depths of my soul even further while connecting at this level with those I already love and those I have yet to meet.
— 2016 Emergent Quest Participant
Thank you for putting me in the right place to grow. You exposed things for me and handed me the tools to get to work. Epiphanies and manifestations and proclamations. I have a notebook full and a future vast and open. I am excited to live! On a high and filled, pressurized with a mass of buzzing energy. Love, I am swelling with love. Thank you for being you and helping me be me.
— 2016 Emergent Quest Participant
Simon is an incredibly gifted facilitator whose unique skills, intuitive insights, and integrated depth of wisdom combine to form a powerful process of authentic, somatic discovery of one’s inner dimensions. Simon has a gentle presence and creates a space for one to contemplate, heal, and reveal new aspects of self. He guides one into layers of acceptance and illuminates the aspects of self that need healing. His reflective questions, deep listening and techniques allow one to touch the core of one’s inner self where the truth resides.
— 2015 Emergent Quest Participant