Stories of Distinction & Genius

122 Welcome to The Clearing: Mac Macartney - Changemaker, Speaker, Founder of Embercombe & Author of "The Children's Fire"

September 26, 2022 Chris Grimes - Facilitator. Coach. Motivational Comedian
Stories of Distinction & Genius
122 Welcome to The Clearing: Mac Macartney - Changemaker, Speaker, Founder of Embercombe & Author of "The Children's Fire"
Show Notes

 Mac Macartney is an international speaker, writer & changemaker.  He has a foot in several worlds. He is the founder of the inspirational social enterprise, Embercombe. He is a visionary & a wise Elder. He touches hearts, fires imagination and invites courageous action.

Mentored by indigenous people over many years, he has acquired profound and original insights into questions preoccupying many contemporary leaders. Mac seeks to inspire the emergence of the leader in each of us, the leader who will take courageous action for a better, more sustainable world.

His profound, seminal book is called "The Children's Fire": At the heart of all the corporate Boardrooms of the world a Children's Fire should reside with all decisions made to protect their future.

Embercombe is a place to connect to your wild authentic self, resourcing you to live a passionate, intimate & purposeful life through their two signature programmes "The Journey" and "The Descent".

Timothy ('Mac') Macartney started his colourful life-journey with two brothers, one older, one younger. While his brothers both did really well at school, Tim did not. But at least he was good at games! His poor performance in class was a mystery to everyone because he always seemed quite bright. But Tim grew up thinking he was stupid. Over half a century later, he was diagnosed not just with dyslexia but with dyscalculia - an invisible  condition that makes numerical comprehension and even basic logical thinking extraordinarily challenging. The good news is that by then Tim had become his own man: Mac Macartney, an articulate action man, a practical visionary!

Mac Macartney grew up in the 1950s in a loving, liberal Midlands environment where freedom for adventure and exploration were encouraged way beyond what would be considered ‘appropriate’ today.

When his parents worried that their middle son would not pass the 11+ and would therefore go to some Secondary Modern school as what was then perceived as ‘factory fodder’ they invested in a private boarding school alternative. Young Mac still struggled there but at least his sporting prowess saw him through. He describes it as like William Golding’s iconic novel ‘Lord of the Flies.’ He did not fit in. He stood among them but not of them, with thoughts that were not their thoughts. He went on to Loughborough College to complete his formal education in Physical Education & English. But switched from English when invited to join Drama where they had a shortage of men. Was this the beginning of his hedonistic phase you may ask yourself?  In his heart Mac always knew he wanted to be much closer to Mother Earth than conventional wisdom suggested was necessary.

Mac learned his most important life lessons from indigenous native Americans in California. They helped him find himself & recognise his true purpose in life. Early on, Mac had a vision of a valley which was so vivid, a friend visualised it for him. Years later, after a couple of false starts, that valley has manifested itself in Devon.

It’s called & now for over 25 years, the primary mission there has been to help others find themselves and realise their inner dreams. 

Mac himself now has a young son, just 5 years old, who climbs the tree at Embercombe that Mac planted for his elderly mother before her passing & which his son calls calls appropriately: ‘Grandma’s tree’:

“What are you doing up there, son?”
“I’m talking to Grandma!”

A wonderful, warm & profound interview indeed.