Courting Eros:

Love, Lust, and Loneliness

 Beautiful romantic couple in tango pose against sunset background. 

A Men's Retreat with Tom McGee and Richard Palmer

Register Now!

What drives us into relationships?  What keeps us in them?  Infatuation is a word that encompasses feelings of love, lust, and loneliness that combine to attract us to an other.  This early state in the course of a relationship comes from our desires to be connected to a lover, to express ourselves sexually, and to exchange loving feelings.  Infatuation is a consuming state of emotional intensity that brings us into relationship but usually dwindles after a short time.  The relationship may or may not last beyond this stage.  If the relationship is to last, it must address feelings of loneliness, sexual longing, and the need for love.  When the obsession with being in love withers, the relationship calls for a deeper more fulfilling love, fostered by the practice of loving.

Eros is a mythological figure, a Greek god of love, lust, sex, eroticism, and sexual desires.  We think of Eros as a large energy, encompassing not only sexual energy but also the energy of romance, love, and the beauty of nature.  Eros has a dark side, involving jealousy, rage, and violence.  It can be stormy.  It can objectify. 

 To us, courting Eros means directing our attention to the erotic in a larger sense.  It means finding beauty, creativity, and loving energy in our midst.  Eros celebrates life and it also shakes us and shears us down to our core.

“Loving is a journey with water and with stars,

with smothered air and abrupt storms of flour; 

loving is a clash of lightning-bolts 

and two bodies defeated by a single drop of honey.”


                                                            ~ Pablo Neruda


February 21-23, 2020

Friday, February 21, 6 pm


Sunday, February 23, 12 noon

Add to Calendar 


Camp Whittier 
2400 Highway 154
Santa Barbara, CA 93105

Driving Directions 
Note: the driving directions above are incorrect.  For correct driving directions, click on the "RETREAT FAQS" link to the right.




Dinner on Friday

Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner on Saturday

Breakfast on Sunday


Bring sleeping bag and pillow.

If you would like to provide support to this work and to men who need financial aid to attend,




Tom McGee


Richard Palmer



Visit Our Website:

Men's Healing Work


Visit our Facebook Group:

Voyage Into Masculine Soul Community







This retreat will dwell in the sacred energy of Eros, an energy that is filled with beauty, imagination, and emotion.  We intend to explore what brings us into relationships, what keeps us in them, and what happens when relationships fall apart and end.  We are excited to embark on this exploration and hope that the men who join us will share their experience of the mystery of longing for and being involved with a loved one.





The group will be limited to 25 men to allow for maximum participation and interaction.  We encourage early registration to ensure a spot at the retreat and to access the lower early registration fee.

RETREAT FEES:                                       

STANDARD RETREAT FEE: $575--Full payment by February 7, 2020

DEPOSIT: $175; holds your spot; full payment due by February 7, 2020

This retreat continues the work in the Voyage into Masculine Soul. Together we will:
  • Deepen our sense of who we are in relationships.
  • Approach this work through poetry, storytelling, guided exercises, discussion, and ceremony.  
  • Endeavor to bring out the best in each man and have it honored by the other men.  

This retreat will be held at Camp Whittier in the mountains behind Santa Barbara, CA.  We will be on 55 acres of land populated by oaks and deer, not far from Lake Cachuma.  Camp Whittier provides bunk style accomodations and meals prepared by their on-site chef.  We will have access to a wood-paneled lodge and outdoor fire pits.  This promises to be an ideal setting for open, honest communication in an environment of physical and emotional safety.

 RETREAT FAQS: for more details on the site and the retreat

Tom McGee and Richard Palmer are dedicated to helping men develop the wisdom and maturity that is their potential.  We have been working with men in groups and individually for over twenty years, assisting them in growing into healthy relationships and fulfilling lives. This retreat is a continuation of the "Healing the Boy, Strengthening the Man" and "Voyage into Masculine Soul" retreats that is the culmination of all of our work.