Welcome. My name is Van Thi Diep. I am an environmental scholar, philosopher, and educator. I am here to learn to be more human. 

 

Learning to be more human, to me, means to feel more deeply, think more profoundly, and to live more open-heartedly. When we can be our most authentic human self, we become our most divine-self. And in this divine interconnectedness, we hold space for our most desired future.

In support of a flourishing world, my mission is to help unveil the pain of our collective social-ecological traumas, share the poignant beauty of the world that exists eternally, and heal through reflection, self-love, and conscious decision-making.

headshot

 

about me

empath and visionary thinker

 

For most of my life, I’ve yearned to belong. Feeling out of place wherever I went, I believed that there was something wrong with me. But it turned out, what I thought was a “curse” is actually the blessing of being human—to feel the world deeply. With the ability to intuitively feel people’s emotional pain and make sense of the wounding through deep contemplation, I can hold space for a better world with the knowing that potentials can become reality.

With a PhD in environmental studies, a previous career in landscape architecture, and a commitment to personal and collective healing, I thrive between intellectualism, creativity, and spirituality.

Read more about my story

a paradigm shift

turning knowledge into wisdom

 

Not all bodies of knowledge are equal in our society. Some knowledge are institutionalized and deemed valid. Some knowledge survive through resistance and stay on the sidelines. Some knowledge have been persecuted out of existence. Lurking beneath our modern world’s concept of objective-scientific knowledge is a fear of not-knowing. This fear creates a desire to consume more knowledge and build defensiveness to preserve an existing illusion of certainty.

This paradigm of knowledge perpetuates insecurity and separateness. Alternatively, knowledge without insecurity is the willingness to break through existing perceptions of the world. We break the paradigm through the awareness of our lived experience. As we are changed in the process of learning and understanding, we then make a difference by turning knowledge into greater wisdom.

 

Offerings:

stone bridge reflected in water surrounded by trees

belonging in the world

tending to our inner and outer landscapes

 

As the ancient hermetic saying goes, “As above, so below, as within, so without, as the universe, so the soul…” Although ancient wisdom reveals that our inner and outer worlds mirror each, conventional problem-solving approaches to social issues ignore our inherent enmeshment with the world. By treating world conflicts as “problems”, we unknowingly treat ourselves as problems too. We then constantly miss the mark, like a dog chasing its own tail.

Environmental design aims to change our outer landscapes. But our entanglement in social paradigms of separateness, problem-making, and insecurity limit our potential to make positive everlasting change.

As a steward of nature and culture, I envision the “landscape architect” as a sacred archetype of our spiritual, pragmatic, and compassionate service to the world. Regardless of your professional title, I invite you to channel your inner “landscape architect” to tend to your inner and outer landscapes for a flourishing world.

Offerings:

  • Landscape research
  • (coming soon) Landscape archetype intuition cards & Houseplant wisdom self-reflection cards

returning home

transmuting pain into beauty

 

Tending our inner landscapes means taking care of unkempt emotions and beliefs. However, human civilization has had a long history of aversion towards emotions. We generally avoid painful emotions and displace them with a pursuit for idealized happiness. In spite of this, repressed emotions don’t disappear. Instead, they foster nihilism and aggression. A social world that endorses narratives of scarcity, not-belonging, and unworthiness is deeply wounded. The pain of this wound lives in our collective unconscious.

We heal by witnessing pain with empathy. In-between suffering and healing are poignant moments of awareness, reminding us that there is beauty in learning to be human. To heal our society’s greatest wounds, this beauty inevitably must be greater than society itself. Found in nature—especially in our own nature—is a kind of faith that we must choose in, to flourish.

Consequently, to heal the world and to change it, we need to first love ourselves.

Offerings:

  • (Coming soon) Forest therapy guide sessions

My Credentials

I believe that our greatest source of knowing is intuitive and experiential. Formal knowledge, on the other hand, can either be the stable foundation towards expanding personal wisdom or the challenge of knowledge we must learn to unlearn throughout our lives. Below are the double-edge swords of knowledge that I’ve been grateful to encounter and accomplish in my life:   

  • PhD in Environmental Studies (York University, 2021)
  • Certified Coach Practitioner (Certified Coaches Federation, 2020)
  • Human Design Specialist Certification – Level 2 (Quantum Alignment System, 2020)
  • Year-Long Training in Ecopsychology (with Andy Fisher, PhD, 2020)
  • Master of Arts in Humanities (York University, 2015)
  • Master of Landscape Architecture (University of Toronto, 2007)
  • Bachelor of Architectural Science (Ryerson University, 2004)

Contact Me