I feel like re-writing some kind of overview , from what I see and experienced in the last years – I have set some phrases into bold character in case you feel like scanning through it.
It could be called , overview of :
Where , with whom , what to start with ? …
or towards ” using the internet to trans-connect to existing localized intentional networks anywhere. ”
Hmm , perhaps the first step many of us go through , is to affirm our ” NEGATIVE LIBERTY ” ,
rejecting what feels meaningless or destructive and what is not intrinsically motivating , what does not make our life worth living for.
And then after going such a process , we might go through a process of finding out what has meaning for us , and what our intentions may be.
And when finding out , there still seems to be a long road towards empowering POSITIVE LIBERTY
Here is a little overview , from this point on …
Yes , it feels that out there there is a potentially huge ” intentional network ” ,
and some of us manage to connect and interact through the net.
Some of us are also gathering into ” intentional communities ” – such as Arcosanti , Auroville , and many other , smaller EcoVillages , where sometimes the ” intentional network ” comes and visit the ” intentional living community “.
Sometimes ” intentional networks ” gather , through big meet ups – events , whether it are researchers , hackers , sports enthusiasts , music enthusiasts , hitch hikers , etc
yet I am still facing the question :
How to mutually empower intentional networks ,
into creating viable alternative systems , not only in certain areas / eco-villages / communities ,
but anywhere ?
And I guess that in some way or another it is a question many of us may be asking.
Hospitality Networks ( such as http://couchsurfing.com . http://hospitalityclub.org , http://bewelcome.org ) have now members from almost every region in the world ,
and in some way it has facilitated , for me , an alternative lifestyle , and sharing all accross europe or the world if I wanted to.
Yet it is not an alternative society by itself , even if it includes many open and trusting individuals.
The ” cluster ” model is becoming more and more popular in the way that businesses think of their development , or at least , their research and development.
I sometimes feel that we are creating some new kind of decentralized business ,
and that it is important for us to see the various resources , in various different fields of solution development , with the various intentional social networks ,
and find ways to more effectively empower each other , develop solutions , experiment , share best practices and multiply them.
I would be interested in facilitating the identification all the different ” hubs ” , and all the different ” intentional social networks ” that we could , as a first step , think of collaborating between each other.
The facilitate the emergence of tools so that they can understand or position each others questions , issues , visions , initiatives
and how they can learn together and collaborate
, and offer the same tools for and between individuals.
( some emerging solutions and softwares are being developped in this field – for example :
http://kluster.com/ – and conference platforms such as http://www.ted.com/ are trying to spread some inspiring ideas and gather people arond them )
Ecovillages , Schools , Universities , Cooperatives , … and all kinds of social networks related to some of the intentions being promoted by certain organizations.
And I stress ” the social networks related to … ” , as I have experienced the huge difference between the social networks related to an organization , and the organization itself , as the power structures of an organization , by my experience , very often promotes its own internal structures of power , sometimes even to the extent of contradicting its own intentions / see for example some of my comments in relation to an organization I have been volunteering with for some time :
Offering open and transparent mutually empowered local production and solutions ,
as an alternative to the mainstream , everywhere.
Biological farming has and is becoming more and more popular in western europe , yet is now being developed also by big corporations who apply to the conditions for the label ,
but have very different social structures as small biological farms.
I imagine a series of new labels to emerge , and I feel that both producer cooperatives and consumer cooperatives can work hand in hand ,
if and when we can set up the communication channels to facilitate it.
As new intentional networks emerge or interconnect , the trust and potential for transactions between them may lead to alternative currencies , empowered by softwares such as http://ripple.sourceforge.net/
I am very interested to understand the impact , on their surroundings , of intentional communities.
Do they close themselves on themselves , of do they have a greater reach ?
And what may be the parallels with , for example , monasteries in europe ( or elsewhere in the world ) in the middle ages ?
So , yes , its a broad map … 🙂
And to be honest , I do not necessarily know where to start with 🙂
Some day I feel I should start by touring and connecting schools , the other day I feel like working with cooperatives , another day I feel like creating inter-disciplinary communities of practice around questions between various students from various faculties , another day I feel like I should settle down and try to focus on learning programming – as to program yet one midst other starting points : some kind of mapping system in itself , …
At the same time I feel that my strenght is to bridge networks , people , ideas ,
and push towards some broad trans-visions. Which I feel is what connects many of us.
So sometimes I feel I should connect further with documentary making , …
But … to start with , I realize I need to find myself a place to come back to , with people awaiting me , … yet at the same time a place where people tend to converge , a hub.
So often I feel that one of the starting points and connections with the rest is … a space for gathering people with common synthesis intentions.
A intentional network ” base / hub ” of very mobile people that connect communities and spread practices , while facilitating processes of awareness raising , mutual learning , experimentation , and solution development. … … which again leads me to the same questions – where am I best capable of finding such environment ? While at the same time making some kind of living with it ?
This is my current dilemma :-p
And to find a solution to it , I guess that I m trying to talk about it to people around me , to see who is interested , and what we can do together.
When one does not have money / capital , using a nomadic strategy , hopping from one community to another ( one school to another , one cooperative to another , etc ) , feels like an effective way of extending and connecting each others circle of influence … which can then use its experience and dynamics , to report and further extend its reach through information technologies.
But to start with , it feels best to ” engaged ” with more then our own selves 🙂
And somehow , I have found it rather difficult to find partners willing to live without , or with very little money.
So there is some kind of turning into circles that needs to be broken –
… some funds need to come from somewhere , following smaller visions that need to be defined , by a small group of very enthusiastic friends.
A few years ago , I was thinking about crowdfunding solutions ( old brainstorming : http://oikoumene.coforum.net/OpenWorld ).
I have met and got in touch with a lot of people in the last years ,
while trying to put together these different pieces of the puzzle , and while trying to find some next ” starting point “.
I did not yet find an environment , that suited some of these needs , or more precisely , not an open environment , except here , on the internet.
No organization with power structures was open up enough –
I understand that the solution needs to come from our own interconnections , and if possible , without creating further power structures.
From my own experience , Even projects that did not have an organization or official power structures , often ended up creating power structures related to its communication channels and ownership of communication channels.
So one of the challenges I see is to be able to create alternative communication channels ,
around specific issues or questions ,
which can be effective , open communities of practice ,
and can facilitate the emergence of a miriad of communities of practice ,
between volunteers , but also between businesses , and paid employees ,
while creating a intrinsically motivating , and meaningful feeling.
And for this , the starting point becomes a question , an issue ,
for which we might want to find solutions for together.
Then , perhaps the question becomes ” What issue to focus on first “ ?
And when one realizes they are all inter-connected , perhaps the question , and issue one might have is :
How can we become aware of the inter connections , and benefit more easily from inter-disciplinarity ?
Visualizing the relations between the ideas , questions , issues , various resources , and the various different actors in such issues ( including the social networks that are interested in finding solutions to such questions ) ,
as to determine priorities , strategies , and actions between ourselves.
Some of the intentional networks I found on the internet , including the one through which I may have connected / got introduced to some of your activities and interests ,
are great , yet they stay in the virtual world , and bridging the individuals related to these communication networks often would mean for me to go and meet them individually , in various different places , or to go to various punctual meet ups accross europe by hitch hiking , which I did.
It has its strenght , but it does not help me that much to really focus and work on a project.
For this I need ( socializing , entrepreneurial and creative ? ) people around me , to which I develop a strong friendship and bound with.
And as I am not a student , I do not have access to the kind of opportunities that certain kind of learning environments offer.
I actually fled the mainstream learning environments ( school , university )
as I felt it was tempering my … potential to learn , interact , discover , collaborate.
Most often , such mainstream learning environments still function according to a industrial paradigm ,
and very often there is no space , or very little space , for intrinsic motivation to learning to be developped ,
and one needs to be really lucky to have had the opportunity to discover before starting studies , what one is passionnate about.
In a world that is constantly facing new issues , our passion might well be a field that does not exist yet – one we might create.
How can we shift towards more open , trans-disciplinary , multi-environment learning networks and resources , based on CREATION and new initiatives ( mutually questioning , connecting and re-mixing existing knowledge according to needs ) instead of REPRODUCTION of knowledge and practices according to patterns imposed by a curriculum or head teacher.
… although , for university students not to get lost , such approach needs to be implemented from a very early age , building on the natural curiosity and intrinsic motivation for learning of children , instead of oppressing this natural tendency and associating the idea of learning to boding and oppressing reproduction of knowledge and practices.
I collect some links about learning on
What I do have access to is learning and interacting through the internet – I have been rather successfull in using it.
For example , I am now in Helsinki.
My intention was to try to connect to some groups of people and resources related to
and its Art School.
I know that one of their approaches includes trans-disciplinarity in innovation , urban development ,
and eventually also lifestyles.
Yet I realize it is not easy to connect with other individuals involved in such projects. – or to find our own position in relation to them to further interact and collaborate.
And it is even more difficult to find the people with whom we really get a long with and feel like working with.
In other words , finding opportunities to become friends.
There are some conferences , but they are mostly lectures.
There are some events , but they are punctual in time.
and when adressing myself to the bureaucracy related to such institutions , the answers tend to be that ” it does not match with their procedures ” – and to match procedures most often does not correspond to my profile , nor even to my objectives.
But I have been using another medium : hospitality networks.
Through hospitality networks , I managed to connect with open and friendly people , some of which with whom I share common interests , and that suggested me to come to certain meetings.
Yet , these individuals themselves are most often students , and do not have many resources , or are very busy with their studies and/or work ( to pay their living ) , and can not take further some ideas they feel enthusiastic about.
Although at some point , if they continue their studies , they might have access to a doctoral grant , extend their social networks and access to resources through academia , and collaboration programs between academia and the business world – governmental organizations – non-governmental organizations , …
Which is great , but still too limited !
Alright , this overview can go on and on …
Now I m faced to finding partners – at a time where I am getting tired of hitch hiking constantly , am not sure how I will finance my food within the next week , and am not sure if I should stay in Helsinki or use my last financial resources to move back to some other city where I may have more chances of finding a job … :-p
… and I end up being on the net , spending time deepening overviews and relations ,
while knowing that it may not lead much further.
And probably I am not the only one.
By connecting with each other we are trying to create opportunities with each other ,
trying to definine certain issues to work on ,
trying to define projects to apply for resources , …
and eventually create new solutions and economic resources to re-invest …
I interacted , over the last years , with many organizations ,
and yet dramatically mutually empowering each other and building outside of status quo is constantly discouraged as long as one faces power structures.
I ve attended courses , many seminars , youth organizations , …
but what I look forward to does not exist yet.
We are setting the visions , and now its about finding people willing to share visions ,
without falling back into power structures , and while deifning a open framework ,
not only through the internet , but with the internet to connect to existing localized intentional networks anywhere.
… beyond ” meet up ” 🙂
… beyond ” a cup of tea ” …