This past Spring I attended an incredible week-long course at the Ashevillage Institute (www.ashevillage.org) in Asheville, North Carolina; it was called “Resilient Living.” The premise is this: what happens when sustainability becomes … unsustainable? That is where resiliency comes in. To be resilient means you are adaptable; how do you work with what is available to you?
Reminds me very much of what Goswami Kriyananda predicted based on astrology about this time frame in history. As the systems break down, we have to figure out what works; and do THAT.
It was like summer camp for grown-ups. And I think going back to some of the old ways, to claim a certain level of food independence and to become even more adaptable are going to be critical in the coming cycle.
So I spent a week with a diverse group of people from all over the country who had come to Asheville to learn a variety of skills that I am sure our great-grandparents took for granted. We learned garden design, permaculture and seed saving techniques. We learned about catching water and creating water systems; how to build soil and how to compost. Listened to lectures and took workshops on beekeeping, homesteading and mushroom inoculation. We studied with a master herbalist; learned about tinctures and natural medicines; and also learned all about food preservation. Canning, drying, fermenting, freezing — the works.
There were lots of written handouts and hands on experiences. A couple field trips, too. We spent a memorable day at Wild Abundance (www.wildabundance.net) with the incredible Natalie Bogwalker, work with natural building materials and see her gardens and homestead. Her fire, enthusiasm and independence were so inspiring.
We spent an afternoon with Luke “Learningdeer” Cannon (www.astoundingearth.com) learning about wild plant foraging. So much to learn from this incredible man. I can typically walk through the forest and identify a few trees and many plants and flowers. But he had befriended them all and knew their uses, habitats and how to spot them in all seasons. From him I brought home the idea of trying to eat at least one wild-growing food every day – even if it’s just the leaf from a violet. That plants that seed and grow wild have a very different vibration than plants that are farmed in neat little rows at the farmer’s discretion. One of the many fascinating concepts we were introduced to during the week.
Other inspiring teachers included Marc Williams (www.botanyeveryday.com), Asia Suler (www.onewillowapothecaries.com), and Becky Beyer (www.bloodandspicebush.com), not to mention the incredible staff at Ashevillage.
We also had a lunch lecture with Charles Eisenstein (www.charlesiesenstein.net) to discuss his book Sacred Economics. I really enjoyed listening to his viewpoints on society and the future as it relates to economics.
Interestingly enough both Charles and Asia, people I met that week in Asheville, have posted very pertinent and informative pieces on the recent election. They both offer a unique and, I think, incredibly wise ways of looking at what has happened to our society and where we can move forward from here.
Sometimes when you come across writing on the internet you are uncertain whether to trust what you are reading; you want to know the source. I feel very connected to both of these people having spent time in their presence; I really hope you will sit down and take the time to read both of these articles. They will help us through the coming days, months and years.