Established in 1995, The Cedar Tree Institute is a nonprofit organization providing services and initiating projects in the areas of mental health, religion, and the environment. It offers mental health services on an individual basis, works with faith communities and environmental groups, and is currently involved in ongoing partnerships with the US Environmental Protection Agency, the United States Forest Service, and four American Indian tribes in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Your Brain on Nature Presentation by Eva Selhub, MD

Eva Selhub Presentation

The Cedar Tree Institute presents a free public presentation


A Workshop with Eva Selhub, MD

Eva Selhub WorkshopSeptember 15, 2012, 9am-12

A 3-hour practice-oriented workshop on Stress Reduction & Wellness using research-based strategies & techniques from mind/body medicine.

Dr. Eva Selhub is Board Certified in Internal Medicine, a Clinical Associate of the Benson Henry Institute for Mind/Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital & instructor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Selhub has lectured and trained professionals in North America & Europe, offering lectures, programs and/or coaching for such clients as Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Putnam Investments, Standard Chartered Bank, & Tufts Medical School.

Location: Presque Isle Park Pavilion, Marquette, MI

Fee: $65 before Sept. 10th, $75 after

For more information, call 906-228-5494 or register by e-mail.

2012 Janus Project Summer Seminar: Double Helix

Double Helix

The Cedar Tree Institute in cooperation with Bell Hospital presents:

Janus Project Summer Seminar

August 24-27, 2012

A Colloquium for Medical Professionals Working with End-Of-Life Care


Patient-Centered Care in Chronic Illness

  • A three-day kayak trip along 20 miles of picturesque Lake Superior shoreline. All equipment and instruction in kayak use provided. No previous experience necessary.
  • Two nights at Bay Cliff Health Camp and one evening at a remote Lake Superior cabin.
  • Hearty meals, including smoked fish and homemade bread.
  • Approved for 9 CMEs with the American Medical Association. Limited to 12 participants.


10,000 Trees: The Manitou Project

10000 Trees - The Manitou Project

During 1997-2000 the Cedar Tree Institute planted 1,000 Northern white cedar trees across three counties in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

Now, thanks to a collaboration of faith-based communities, environmental organizations and American Indian tribes, we invite you to support and/or join us during three weeks of June and July as we prepare to plant & bless 10,000 cedar tree seedlings. The Cedar Tree Institute has arranged for 250-300 volunteers from all walks of life to help us including a team of at-risk youth from Marquette County’s Juvenile Court, volunteers from the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum, and individuals from the Roman Catholic, Lutheran and Jewish traditions.


The Iron Butterfly 2012

On Saturday June 9, the Cedar Tree Institute will present a workshop called The Iron Butterfly. Based on research by The Mind/Body Institute of Harvard Medical School, the religious contemplative tradition and martial arts disciplines, this workshop will cover mind/body training for stress reduction & peek performance.

  • Review physiologic components of the stress response and the concept of allostasis
  • Identify 4 cognitive distortions that block balanced perception and appropriate focus
  • Experience 7 scientifically validated approaches to lower the stress response, increase resilience and allow the body to heal itself

The Iron Butterfly will take place at the Presque Isle Park Pavilion in Marquette, MI from 9 a.m. – noon. It will be facilitated by Kelley Mahar, MD & Jon Magnuson, MDiv.,MSW. The fee for this workshop is $65 or $75 if registered after June 4th.

For more information, call 906-228-5494 or register by e-mail.

The Iron Butterfly 2012

Spring 2012 Equinox Newsletter

Seasonal Notes from the Cedar Tree Institute

Recently a group of us visited the Hannahville Indian Reservation. We were planning an upcoming native plants restoration project when our host made a passing casual remark about the community’s upcoming Bear Feast. In a spirit of curiosity one of my colleagues asked, “Can you say something more about that?”

“It’s a tradition among the Potawatomi,” the elder replied. “This time of year, under snow banks, dug into hillsides, tucked in hollows of cedar stumps and hidden in dark shadows of ice caves, the black bear are giving birth. Mothers are still in hibernation. Their cubs are born, left in the darkness of dens to figure out how to find their mother’s milk. They struggle and compete with one another for warmth and nourishment. The Bear Feast is one way our community honors those vulnerable newborn, asking spirits to provide safety for them and a good life ahead.”

Jon MagnusonDuring these days of the Equinox, indigenous peoples around the world mark the beginning of spring with special feasts, songs, rituals, and prayers. Distracted by virtual realities and modern electronic sensibilities, most of us forget that our planet mystically spins during this month of March, for a single day, in perfect balance with the sun. As the earth’s Northern hemisphere begins to tilt toward the sun, life begins anew. Forest life begins to stir, winged ones arrive, daffodils burst through melting snow. Trees bud, seeds sprout. The hours of daylight slowly begin to lengthen.

We are on the edge of a new (more…)

The Lighthouse

By Shahar Madjar MD MBA

A small group of nurses, doctors, and other health professional meet yearly at the beautiful lighthouse in Big Bay. They call these meetings the ‘Janus Project’. They sit around a long oval dining table and the story about the beautiful lighthouse is told again: once upon a time there were two keepers-of-light that lived in this lighthouse, which was split down the middle, by a large wall, separating it into two almost identical living quarters. The two keepers of light shared a common mission – keeping the lens at the lantern room intact, and the oil flowing, and the stream of light at the top of the tower shining.

Then, Dr Michael Grossman, a family doctor at Bell hospital and the founder of the group, and Jon Magnuson, its spiritual leader, reminded the participants as to the mission of this year’s meeting: We will discuss only one body system, emphasizing the interplay between mind and body, and looking at the fundamental role our mind plays in health and disease states. We will do so as a group, participating in intense discussion; providing honest feedback to each other; engaging in strenuous physical activities including hiking, snowshoeing or cross-country skiing; and practicing Tai Chi.

Janus Project 2012

Janus Project 2012


Register now for 2012 Spirit of Place Kayak Retreat


As of April 18, our 10 person limit for this retreat has been reached and registration is now closed. Check back soon for information about next year’s Spirit of Place Kayak retreat and for early registering.


Each year, the Cedar Tree Institute hosts one or more Kayak Retreats. This year’s event is titled “Lake Superior: Water, Symbol, Soul” and will take place in August along 40 miles of remote Lake Superior shoreline. This retreat is limited to 10 persons, and the registration deadline is June 1st, so don’t procrastinate.

We’re making it easier than ever to join the adventure. You can now register online.

Learn More

Spirit of Place Kayak Retreats

Winter 2012 Ecotone Newsletter is here!

The Winter 2012 Ecotone Newsletter is here!

Youth and volunteers with Zaagkii Project

Witness: A personal account of local efforts to stop the Kennecott Eagle Project mine, by Jon Magnuson

from Marquette Monthly December, 2011

Jogging down the stairs at Heathrow Airport to the underground train running to London, I carry in my overnight luggage a small container of wild rice, formal letters from the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, and a document signed by a hundred faith leaders. My twenty-eight-year-old traveling companion, a local organic farmer, writer and activist, carries in his duffle bag—along with a newly purchased bargain-basement suit—a bottle of homemade maple syrup and seven packets of background information on a controversial proposed sulfide mining project near our homes in Northern Michigan.