Wouldn't it be cool to live love life together?

dream and discuss the___(allogamy)______idea here

Intracommunication and diligence May 16, 2011

Filed under: Random Stuff — indorfpf @ 10:29 am

Should we need to do some video conferencing in the future, I think there are several options. I’ve read online that Skype is conferencing-capable but I have never done it before. Oovoo (http://www.oovoo.com/home.aspx) is web software that is free and specializes in conferencing. We can shift to that should Skype fail. Webex (http://www.webex.com/overview/index.html) has been recommended as a goto program for businesses, but they work on a free TRIAL basis.

If anyone wants to try and test this stuff out, just give me a ring.

Any juicy conversation tidbit I missed on Friday?

 

Unintentional Community and Daily Life March 3, 2011

It all comes down to daily life. Yes, there can be splendid moments of other worldly transcendence, but choosing to live life as a human means, at a minimum, eat, sleep, breathe, poop. There are cultural add-ons like taxes, sidewalks, and math class, but ultimately, there is just no escaping those basic human needs and the activities  and factors that have grown out of securing them. It is certainly meaningful, fun, and necessary to create and attend events and activities that are outside of those that occur everyday, but ultimately it is the venue of the home base that feels the most real, space and people included. Why is that? Why do humans have such a division between home life and outside life? Is it architecture, the mere dichotomy between indoor and outdoor space and having to travel between the two? Is it the fact that the the sun rises and sets, giving us days season years that make the repeated acts seem somehow more real? It is easy for me to get focused on projects and really feel in the flow of them, but then they are over, and I look at each new project and think that someday it will be over too. I want something all encompassing, something that integrates daily life with those bigger projects and a sense of reverence pervading throughout. It seems like intentional community is the only way to make that happen, where each action is an expression of the choice to sustain life and practice the glory of being alive. But does it have to be on a farm to make it happen? Why is it that growing your own vegetables or building your own house or pumping your own water makes life feel more integrated and real?

Maybe it is because of the extraordinary mass of stuff in our lives. Even a trip to the bathroom involves toilets made of ceramic, metal, plastic and any number of pieces produced and shipped by any number of other factories, toilet paper made obviously from trees then put in more factories, toilet paper holders, cleaning products with chemicals and more factories and more trucks and more shipping and industrial designers coming with bottle designs and graphic designers designing labels and marketers figuring out the demographics of how many people are buying the products, and all of this before even considering the amazing complexity of the systems of pipes and structures getting water to your toilet and then flushing it away to another building to clean it and maybe even back into the ocean…basically endless systems requiring endless resources and endless people so that any given day you may have been relying on the work of thousands (millions?) of other people just to go about doing “normal” activities.

And that’s what feels real about living off the land. Cutting out that noise. Living in consumer culture we are surrounded by larger and more complex communities than ever before in human history, and we have no idea who these people are and where these resources are coming from. When you are sustaining yourself on your “own” land, you have a direct relationship with all of the elements in your realm of experience, human and otherwise. These relationships are deeper and stronger because you depend on them for survival, but also because of the simple fact that you are aware of them. Each element of your life can be something that you choose to be directly present in. Do you need to be on a farm to live intentionally? No. But in cities and suburbs, the task of even identifying all of the elements of your surroundings (let alone their origin, history, or function) is nearly impossible. While it may not be necessary to know these things, the more you are unaware of, the less connected you are to the systems in place, and the more you are a cog in someone else’s machine. If it’s a good machine, well, then great. But how do you even know if it’s good if you don’t know what the machine is?

This is why I feel strongly about having a community that isn’t cut-off from the rest of the world. It may seem counter-intuitive to say that after railing about how alienating it is to be part of a system you have no connection to and how important it is to live simply, but that is precisely why intentionality is so important. Maybe my naive fantasy is to live completely cut-off from the consumerist world for a few years and then like Zarathustra come down from the mountain and start to spread the word. But these massively tangled global systems are where all of the people and resources are, and that is where our work as world-waker-uppers is. Because guess what? All of those people tangled in the systems are world-waker-uppers, too. All of them.

We’re seven billion strong.

 

“Not-a-title” or “Non-title”, either or, it’s still a title. July 22, 2010

Filed under: Random Stuff — indorfpf @ 9:44 am

Here’s a tip: check out your state and county websites for very cool volunteer and certificate opportunities.

In particular for you green thumbs out there is the Master Naturalist program (at least they offer it here in VA). At a glance it seems to be a reputable and interesting certificate program. Also it might be taxpayer funded so no need to pay! Worth checking out if you have the time – I’d do it myself but 6-12 months of dedication is a bit steep for me right now.

There are many other programs that may catch one’s eye: including volunteer firefighter and rescue squad opportunities, volunteering at state parks, the state citizen corps program, state medical reserve corps, and CERT (referred to as NERT for you San Franciscans). I am sure there are varied ones in your area that cater to local needs and individual tastes.

For example, I am looking into the joining the state militia, here known as the Virginia Defense Force. Twenty two states have a state backed militia, including California. There’s monthly drill, are activated only when the National Guard is commandeered leaving state facilities undermanned, answer only to the governor, and you get to wear spiffy uniforms. As a historical note, there has been a Virginia militia since before there was a United States of America but the VDF was only institutionalized in the ’80s when the federal government through Congressional mandate gained the power to draft the National Guard into the active duty military. For legal purposes I should state that by “historical note” I mean “Phil’s special cocktail of hearsay, personal opinion, and late night Wikipedia surfing.”

Anyhow, I hope my fellow RainbowAcresfolk (that made me think of hobbits, which in turn made me chuckle) are doing well. I’ll end with a poem I came across just recently by Rudyard Kipling:

Our hearts where they rocked our cradle,
Our love where we spent our toil,
And our faith, and our hope, and our honor,
We pledge to our native soil.
God gave all men all earth to love
But since our hearts are small
Ordained for each one spot should prove
Beloved over all.

… Man that fires me up. ~Phil

 

“FARMS: Food, Art, Relationships, & Food — Sustainably!” May 17, 2010

I stumbled upon this website today called Farmer Jane that spotlights women making changes in the food system. The one they are featuring this week is Molly Rockamann, who at 28 is in charge of EarthDance farms in Missouri: “The mission of EarthDance is to grow and inspire locals FARMS–Food, Art, Relationships, & Food–Sustainably!”

Here’s a snippet of the article/interview that speaks to one my particular agendas:

“…I have dreams of our farm (and other farms) being not only a center of food production but also of art and music production. We’ve started to show our artistic side in small ways, like doing a community mural painting to install on the farm, and hosting a small outdoor concert there. Eventually I’d like to create an artist-in-residence and musician-in-residence program, where in exchange for living on the farm (and eating our veggies) they’d host free workshops for the youth in the neighborhood and contribute a lasting piece of art to the farmscape. I’d also love to re-construct an old barn on the property and use the space to host concerts, workshops, and barn dances! Once we’ve really built a solid foundation for the organization in Ferguson, where we’re currently farming and running an apprenticeship program, I want to help start organic farming training centers/cultural celebration centers in other parts of the world.”

Yeah!

 

Extension office May 8, 2010

Contacting your local extension office can lead to lots of information specific to the ecosystems in your county. Also- for those who wish to learn about gardening they have links and info concerning the master gardener program. Following is a link for the San Francisco County Extension Office:

http://cesanmateo.ucdavis.edu/

On a completely different note, I have been touring different properties in the Shenandoah mountain area (a subset of the Appalachians). Criteria have included walking access to water (such as lakes or rivers), being an hour or less driving distance from my current location, and roughly one acreage of property. For future reference, a 3 bedroom two story house can be purchased for 70 grand and plain lots on the smaller side for as little as 5 thousand!

Wells seem like an interesting concept that I haven’t though to much about however, they typically require permission from the local health department.

 

Road Trip 2k10 April 5, 2010

Filed under: Question: Needs Input,Random Stuff — indorfpf @ 2:27 pm

Going on a road trip within the next three weeks to visit farms/ecovillages in NoCal. If anyone wants to come, let me know when you’re available (my unemployment leaves me quite flexible for scheduling). Don’t really plan on going to much farther north than Sebastopol. If there are any suggestions for places to check please also let me know. I haven’t really decided how long it’ll be as I want to cater somewhat to anyone who might want to come but in general I envisage a weekend jaunt. My truck can fit two others. Bring camping gear. Following are the list of places contacted and a copy of the email sent.

Green Gulch

Living Mandala

Emerald Earth

Golden Nectar

Occidental Arts and Ecology Center

Green Valley Village
___________________________________________________________

Hello! My name is Philip. I’m currently living in San Francisco and am in a part of my life where I am researching the intentional community lifestyle to see what my forebears have created to see if I can adopt some of these activities into my own life. In furthering this particular quest of mine, I came across your website and was hoping that I could come visit! I would be driving there in my truck and sleeping either in that or nestled on some nice patch of grass. In exchange for you letting me park there I would not mind at all helping out with whatever project is going on that day. My purpose is to stay there a day or two and imbibe as much information and feeling as possible. If this is something that you would not mind happening please send me a reply! Any suggestions on best times to come are appreciated! Thanks for your time and I hope you enjoy the great weather today! Philip Indorf

 

Key words April 4, 2010

This is our current writing on our community vision stripped of conjunctions and such. These are the words that appear most. The bigger the word, the more it appears in our writing.