About Me


TobyMacklin2015I do all sorts of things connected with The Haven on Gabriola Island, including leading a number of programs in Canada (details in the right hand column) and also in China. I first came to The Haven in 2001 and took Come Alive and a number of other programs as a participant. Since then, I have trained intensively there and in 2009 finished my Diploma in Haven Counselling Skills. I became a member of Haven core faculty in 2013. I do most of The Haven’s publicity material too … the catalogue, fliers, that kind of thing, as well as the Shen blog.

I also work as an editor and designer of books. Sometimes, that work combines with my interest in philosophy, psychotherapy and personal growth. I’ve worked with The Haven’s founders, Jock McKeen and Ben Wong, on new editions of their two most popular books, The Relationship Garden and The New Manual for Life, and the brand new Illuminated Heart. Other projects are in different fields, including architecture and construction, law, music, and novels and poetry. You can see some examples here.

I’m also an oboist, though that gets relatively little of my time these days. A couple of years ago, I made this two minute recording of a piece by J.S. Bach.

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Born in 1965, I grew up in England. I studied Classics and Arabic at Trinity College, Cambridge, then did an MA in Social Anthropology at the School of Oriental and African Studies, part of London University. I then lived in Egypt, the Czech Republic, and Cyprus for 15 years or so, teaching and working in journalism and publishing, before moving to Gabriola Island, British Columbia, Canada in 2006. I have recently relocated, with Rachel Davey and our two children, to Victoria, BC.