It seems ages since I've written to you and 2016 is whizzing by at an alarming rate…soon it will be the longest day for some of us and the shortest for others. I wish you could see the swathes of bright yellow broom and gorse right now at Findhorn and along the coast…it is spectacular; not to mention many dolphin sightings and a pod of orca from Iceland. We even had summer last Wednesday and I met Dorothy, (one of our founders, now 96 years old) at the bay. I hope that wherever you are on this beautiful planet you are being kind to yourself, something I sometimes forget myself.
The last months have been busy in a thriving, expansive way. I was barely back from Australia mid-April when we welcomed 45 ‘Investors on Climate Change’, who spent four days at The Park strategising how to shift investment to support the resolutions of The Paris Climate Treaty. I love to see this sort of meeting happening here and am very glad it will be an annual event.
At the same time our Resource People (RPs) from all over the world gathered at Cluny for The RP Gathering, a week to bring together some of the RP Network (currently 180 people in 33 countries) to reconnect them in their ambassadorial work. (One of our greatest ambassadors is Lisette Schuitemaker, the current chair of Trustees. You can watch Lisette in her Sharing Your Passion interview here.
Four days later the Foundation’s first feature length film, An Enquiry into A New Story for Humanity: Change the Story, Change the World was shown to a packed Universal Hall and was live streamed to many more in 68 countries. I loved being both in the Hall and on the chatroom, engaging with many of you. Over the coming months, the film is set to be translated into Chinese, French, German, Italian, Korean, Portuguese, Spanish and Turkish, with many others to follow. The film is now available for on demand viewing of either the full Premiere or just the film itself. (It’s not too late to convene a group to watch, discuss and begin to implement ideas.)
Then I had the pleasure of representing the Foundation at the Integral Europe Conference in Hungary (‘Reinventing Europe’) with four other co-workers. What a great way to explore new partnerships on the world stage, meeting new people and organisations, all with the intention to live a new story. One of the tools used in Integral Theory is Spiral Dynamics, helpful for mapping the evolution of human consciousness and seeing where we need to go, from where we are. If you’re interested in learning more and have done Experience Week we offer Stepping on the Spiral Pathway, 27 August for one week. You’ll have the opportunity to connect with the transformational impulse of our community and to explore how we can make the monumental leap to second tier both as individuals and as a collective – by integrating the gifts and shadows of the previous waves of human consciousness.
Two days after returning from Hungary I joined the community’s Gather-In, now an annual event where people present new projects for possible funding from the community. I so enjoyed tapping into what’s happening already (connecting local growers with local customers, bbq’s on the green, a watering system for the new edible woodland garden using naturally purified laundry water) and what’s in the planning stages (recycling all the things the local council doesn’t, researching our current carbon footprint with the intention for the Park to go carbon neutral, and also us as a zero waste community.)
It was also great to hear that of the new houses being built in West Whins (part of the 6% of the original Dunelands 400 acres kept for housing) there will be six one-bedroom affordable housing units. With an ageing population here, affordable housing is crucial to support young people to stay on in the community.
With all the initiatives happening we continue to be a useful practical demonstration centre for others. So far this year Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, has run field study visits to The Park, while a group of Renewable Energy MSc engineers (European, African and Asian) from Heriot-Watt’s Orkney campus came to explore community studies and environmental wellbeing.
Speaking of wellbeing… if you want a taste of truly wild beauty this summer, visit Erraid, our island community on the west coast, close to the islands of Mull and Iona. Just the gorgeously scenic journey to get there is worth it, not to mention the remote splendour of its beaches, the friendly Erraid community, the delicious food, Morven the retired cow, a dog, two cats and various chickens and sheep. The whole island has been re-roofed and re-painted and is waiting for you…
I’m always proud of what our community members are involved with. We have had people helping refugees in Calais, Lesvos and Thessaloniki and one lady, with Trees for Hope and Global Ecovillage Network, is organising the Earth Healing Gathering in Tatvan, Eastern Turkey – to begin the creation of a bio-regional earth-healing network and task force, as well as seeding eco-communities in the Fertile Crescent, from Palestine to Afghanistan, Israel to Syria. What an exciting initiative! I love their tagline: Clean air, pure water, healthy soil, sustainable fire, living communities, thriving life. For more information visit the Earth Healing Gathering website or contact
If you’re interested in taking this impulse to a global level and shaping and energising the emerging future, see you on 2 July for The Planetary Game. It’s going to be amazing!
I leave you for now with a wonderful thought I came across in a Lorian newsletter:
You know that the antidote to exhaustion is not necessarily rest?… The antidote to exhaustion is wholeheartedness.
– Brother David Stendl-Rost.
With love and laughter.
For the Communications Team
All images Yvonne Cuneo, taken around Findhorn Bay and beach.