...if we are stronger healers than they are warriors...

Monday, September 8, 2008

Gaviotas - oh hope!

Holy moley - folks, i've just finished an amazing book about an amazing place.
Gaviotas, a visionary community in rural Colombia survived 27 years of drug wars and western culture to continue to be an incredible inspiring hopeful potential future.

Begun in 1971 by Paolo Lugari, the village is in the middle of a inhospitable grassland savannah call the llanos. Technicians and visionaries began working in the middle of nowhere to create and build innovative 'third-world' technologies, as an alternative to importing Northern development aid. Lugari's vision was to develop methods, tools and ways of surviving in the llanos, thought to be one of the least hospitable environments to human habitation on the planet. By bringing in interested people and university students working on graduate studies, Gaviotas became an oasis of innovation and imagination. Concentrating on developing renewable technologies for resource-poor areas, technologies that would be appropriate, human-scale and ecological in 'third-world' environments, Gaviotans created incredible things - solar kettles, pumps that harnessed the energy of kids see-sawing and swinging in their school playgrounds, and incredible hydroponic gardening techniques.

In the middle of nowhere, answers to riddles we are struggling with worldwide were being developed. I read this book with my heart in my throat, fully expecting to get to the end and read about how Colombia's tumult and violence destroyed the dream of these incredible people. INCREDIBLY, that's just not the case. Gaviotas is alive and well today, and doing incredible things still.

I want the whole world to read this book. I am just so moved and heartened to see how our dreams can actually come true. I just hope we don't have to move into the middle of nowhere in Colombia to make it happen.

love the rain...

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