The best of humanity is yet to come
So today, in a world that is reinventing itself, we think of the oldest model of sustainable community living. In a contemporary version of this, we have to look at how we create resilient communities in a way that brings all the modern technologies together with healthy cohesive creative and empowered community planning.
This means the memories and the stories of resilient communities, pre 20th century don’t have to be the image we see. We can create vibrant exciting innovative exciting community hubs that allow ancient wisdom to marry with renewable technology. So why ancient wisdom? What does that have to do with it? The journey we have taken in looking at what sustainable community over the last 25 years, the learning curve went exponential when we began to work with our first Nations here in Australia, Canada and we’re just about to start working with New Zealand.
And in this experience of learning, what we saw was more than just community capacity building and clever ideas, to put it in a metaphorical way, we experienced the atmosphere being saturated with inspiration, motivation, ancient memories and guidance.
So this image tells us that we are surrounded by love care and experience. To talk any more about this is reliant on First Nations people speaking first hand. Suffice to say, that we have joined these dots and built strong relationships that enable us to see a clear path forward.
So now down to practicalities and our first hand experience, with communities across the world, building community solar projects shows us the first step. Because the first step is empowerment and a sense of freedom and a connection with our sun. which is the source of animation and inspiration and life of every living thing on the planet. So it’s more than poetic, it actually helps us to connect to that reality and build on that foundation.
From here, you have an activated community, an empowered community, a creative community that is standing up, willing and able, saying where too next?
The Valley Centre model breaks this up in to seven sections, and this mirrors the ancient indigenous models. These are the sections; Youth, Community, Education, Wellbeing, Connection, Nature, Technology. When placed in a spiral or a wheel, they show us their interconnection, and this can be explained or illustrated in Indigenous models and pre-20th century community living. As Indigenous Leaders would say; Creator, Community, Family, Kids, Mother Earth. These are the only five boxes we need to tick on our way moving forward. You get those right and then everything flows from there; business, economies, governance, it all flows from these five elements.
So how did work? With this universal love of every community member for the Creator and for Mother Earth, there is instant cohesion. By focusing on community and everything about the community to support and protect it, it was understood that the Creator and Mother Earth would supply everything the community needed. Families were nurtured in this understanding and intimate relationship with Creator and Mother Earth, and the broader community. Families were never separate from each other, never once felt separate. They always felt held and supported and fed by the greater powers of community, creator and Mother Earth. So the children grew up knowing and understanding too. From their conception and their very first breath, breathing in the oxygen of Father Sky, the light of the Sun and their first steps on Mother Earth, they felt loved and supported, in every conceivable way.
This is what is meant by resilience. They were connected to all that is. And its this disconnection that is the greatest pain and suffering of humanity in this present day.
So in this exciting time of rebuilding community, this process of reconnecting, is of paramount importance. But as patterns of life would have it, as we see people rebuilding and coming together and planning their future, this connecting with a source of love and care within each one of us and sharing and giving within each other behind the process of concern with all that is.
Now what we are seeing in towns and communities are the building blocks; energy, water, power, food coupled with wellbeing, connection and creative activities. So what we have done in this process is connect with professionals and innovators in each other of these fields. State of the art water catchment, energy production, and local food harvesting, creates the foundation for local DIY eco-housing, and the relationship with all of these builds the foundation of the oldest model of community management which intrinsically means employment and training and education. The word employment really only began its contemporary implication in the 20th century, prior to this time, all communities worked together to manage their wellbeing and ensure 7 generations into the future. So each person had a purpose in contrast to employment, they had a purpose, they knew what they were here to give to the community.
So this model is the way forward ensuring all communities come together, youth are inspired and can begin training in these technologies that ensure water, energy, food and housing.
To complete this process, each community across the continent is part of a network, where communities that have resources can supply and share with communities that don’t have certain resources. Such as tropical fruits and vegetables that cant grow in certain areas of the country, likewise frost needy fruits can be supplied to those that cant grow them. Likewise innovation can be shared, and competitiveness is outmoded. And most important of all is the oldest model, let’s not reinvent the wheel, let’s share and work with each other what we are all doing going forward, to this process is speeded up.
The best of humanity is yet to come.
Tracey Cooper – Valley Centre President