Celebrating the Breath of God

The blades of Moya, the Findhorn Foundation community's first wind turbine, have turned for the last time, ending a quarter century of faithful service.

Moya wind turbine

Moya being installed in The Park

And in a moving ceremony on the green adjoining The Park's Field of Dreams, community members gathered to pay tribute to the pioneering role of this beloved icon of the Ecovillage and spiritual community.

Moya was the first wind turbine erected in the Moray area of northeastern Scotland that is today at the forefront of many large wind farms and renewable energy initiatives.

Moya means spirit, wind and breath of God in the Sesotho language spoken in the tiny landlocked African mountain kingdom of Lesotho, and long-time resident Mari Hollander recalls that Moya became the major symbol of the fledgling Findhorn planetary village and its ecological aspirations.

John Talbott, the driving force behind the creation of the Ecovillage, says the origins of the project can be traced back to 1985 when he hosted Bjorn Ortenheim, a Swedish inventor who was promoting clean energy.

"He provided inspiration for me to start thinking of what we could do at the Findhorn Foundation and while he was here I had a vision of a beautiful white towered turbine at the end of Bichan's field, exactly where Moya ended up being built.

NSS celebrating

"Others got excited and we put together a little pinboard of photos and the general vision and members began making small pledges. It took three years of waiting but at the end of 1988 we got the chance to get Moya at a ‘sale price’ that brought the cost within our reach."

He stresses: "The purchase was a total act of faith – we only had three weeks to raise the money and buy her and we had not even thought about applying for planning permission … but Park Planning Group meditated and got the message clearly that we needed to ‘go ahead in faith’ – 10 months later Moya was erected."

Ironically in those early pioneering days the concept of wind energy had little support from the authorities and was regarded by many as an eccentricity of little commercial value.

In an email message from Australia where John Talbott is helping shape a new community, he writes: "Rest well Moya – and thank you for your service to our community. You will be remembered by many with love, gratitude and fondness."

Three new wind turbines

The three new wind turbines erected in 2006

In 2006 a trio of bigger wind turbines were added that boosted combined output from 75kW to 750kW, more than catering for the electricity needs at The Park and enabling it to become a net energy exporter with surplus sold to the grid.

Duncan Easter, a spokesperson for Findhorn Wind Park, reports that Moya generated an impressive 2,346,288 kWh of electricity over a period of nearly 26 years, supplying around 8% of the community's requirements.

Now there is discussion about how Moya might be laid to rest, with one suggestion that one or more of the blades be displayed near the entrance to The Park as a reminder of the commitment to live harmoniously in ways that are kinder to the Earth and each other.

Geoff Dalglish

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