A village is a small settlement usually found in a rural setting. In 2016, I left San Francisco and ended up in a seaside village at the end of the earth with a population of less than a thousand people. The big “town” thirty minutes away had 14,000 people. I arrived with a dream that never materialized. And instead, I made lifelong friends who I would have never connected with had I stayed in the big city.
After publishing the book trilogy in 2021, I chose a location independent lifestyle. Since then, I’ve hopped across three countries, two continents and moved 12 times; despite the noise of the world. As I write this, I am in a regenerative town of 9,763 people.
And did you know that when we used to live in a village, we would spend more time outdoors than in our homes? And if we didn’t go outside, there was concern that something may be up.
Life in a village meant that we would be connected to Nature and did not need to have a plan “to go out to nature.” And that connection would include each other. We didn’t need to network or learn how to make “small” talk. We simply lived and believed in interdependence with the land and each other.
When we disagreed, we would find a common ground to work through our issues. And yes, sometimes things fell apart when conflict arose. But our elders helped bridge the divides and we respected them for their wisdom.
Village life is about having a shared perspective of life. It’s not just about being geographically co-located. It takes effort to have dialogue, connect with people and convene. And elders are our wisdom keepers who are asked to serve as guides and connectors. It has nothing to do with hierarchy or authority.
While many are creating smart cities right now, there is no need to create ‘smart’ villages. Because when we have living systems, we regenerate. Otherwise, what we are creating are machines, which are designed to be rigid and provide the same predictability. Instead of smart refrigerators or bicycles, there is a desire for intelligent natural living where we flow with ease and grace. Experimenting is a way of life that doesn’t box us in to become a machine.
What if life is weird and unexpected and we no longer want to be efficiently productive? For me, my dream did not materialize because the people I chose to create with were not on the same page. But until we convened, it all seemed rosy.
And I am grateful that I learned that early on before we were knee deep in things. Since then, I’ve been taking my own medicine of discerning about who is healthy for my wellbeing. Learning to make space and let go. And yes, everyone had the best intentions but not everyone is healthy for us. We get to practice until we can truly make music together in harmony.
It Takes A Village
Isn’t interesting that more and more people today are seeking community; a place to belong? Some are regenerating lands, or raising children together and homeschooling. Many are dreaming of growing food together. And some are simply co-existing and finding ways to live off the grid in our own way.
When it comes to our wellbeing, some are choosing food as medicine. And getting in touch with the source of everything we consume bridging science with spirituality. Allowing ourselves to be adventurers of the heart.
And we are actually wanting is to take a breath and experience life. Not work ourselves to death.
It takes curiosity and a willingness to experiment like never before. And maybe that’s what actually frees us to farm together or create in harmony?
This is a time to find the strength to walk toward what sparks us to the core. And to connect with the people of all walks of life, all ages, to sit around the fire and co-create all night or whenever we choose. And author healthy stories without needing to be a character in an existing drama or horror show.
Life is abundant and provides opportunities to practice and live in possibilities. Shattered dreams often lead us to the most beautiful unexpected places.