“Nature holds the key to our aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive and even spiritual satisfaction.” E.O. Wilson
Amanda Todd is a broadly trained human-environmental geographer specializing in the intersections of cultures, the natural environment, and spiritual practices. Her teaching and research areas focus on sacred spaces, spiritual landscapes, and rituals. Her doctoral research explored non-secular activities within the Southern Appalachian Mountains of Georgia, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Kentucky. Amanda documented and participated in ceremonies and rituals (i.e., weddings, baptisms, meditations, a despacho ceremony, multi-faith spiritual activities, and indigenous group activities) at prominent mountains and waterfalls in the region. Today Dr. Todd continues to explore rituals, ceremonies, and experiences people have within natural landscapes as well as within intentionally constructed sacred spaces such as the labyrinth.
In supporting her research and studies, Amanda has learned from a myriad of indigenous wisdom-keepers, elders, teachers, healers, and shamans from around the world including Cherokee, Hawaiian, Q’ero, Aymara, Buryat, and European neo-shamans. She has also explored ideas within Creation Spirituality and Spiritual Ecology in understanding the relationships between cultures, nature, and religion.
Amanda travels often to Hawai'i to expand her skills and knowledge with Hawaiian Hula Dance. Through this sacred art, she explores the intersection of movement (Hawaiian Hula) with geography, history, spirituality, and the natural environment. She has been studying with a Kumu Hula in O'ahu since 2016.
Ph.D., Geography, University of North Carolina at Greensboro
M.A., Geography, Appalachian State University
B.S. Natural Resources: Soil and Water Systems, North Carolina State University
- ANTH/GEOG 120: Cultures and Environments
- GEOG 121: World Regional Geography
- GEOG 201: Introduction to Physical Geography
- GEOG 201L: Introduction to Physical Geography Laboratory
- GEOG 300: Human Landscapes
- ANTH 310: Myth, Ritual and Magic
- ANTH/GEOG 351: Spiritual Landscapes
- GEOG 352: Sacred Spaces, Sacred Paths
- GEOG 427: Geography of Russia
- GEOG 428: Geography of Oceania
- GEOG 502: Human Geography
Hula (Dance), Labyrinths, Multi-Faith Spirituality, Rituals and Ceremonies, Sacred Sites, Shamanism (Cross-Cultural, Neo, and Modern), Spiritual Ecology, Spiritual Landscapes, Traditional Healing Practices, Topophilia
Amanda worked on stream and wetland restoration projects for seven years between her M.A. and Ph.D. She incorporates her experience in the consulting world performing fieldwork and writing technical reports, into the GEOG 300: Human Landscapes course. After her doctorate, she worked as an adjunct teaching geography and taught Reiki, Kahi Loa, and meditation for 10 years before returning full time to academia. She also dances Hula at Pacific Arts Festivals in the Southeast during the summer. In 2021, she became a Veriditas-trained Labyrinth facilitator. In her free time, she is learning to play the ukulele and Celtic harp and studying 'Ōlelo Hawai'i and Gàidhlig.