A Future for Natural Fiber
What would you do if you had a clear vision of a new way of life, not just for yourself, but for hundreds or even thousands of people?
What if you can see in your mind’s eye a stunning future for humanity and you have a burning desire to turn that vision into a reality?
What if your vision required at least two million dollars in order to take root?
Would you throw it in the basket with millions of other pipe dreams or would you look for a way to make it happen?
Guess what? We’ve had such a vision for nearly twenty years. We’ve spent a whole pile of money searching for a way to make it work and right now there seems to be a new energy surrounding the idea; it’s beginning to coalesce.
The Natural Fiber Community Project
The whole project revolves around natural fibre, both from plant and animal origins. Since the vast majority of clothing is made from oil-based synthetic fibres and there is a growing movement to wean ourselves off oil and to find our roots as multi-dimensional spiritual beings once more, reconnecting to the source of what keeps us warm and dry or protects us from extremes of weather is an essential step in our process of conscious evolution. Add to this the renewed interest in knitting, crochet, weaving and fibre crafts in general, fueled in part by the reach of the Internet and there seems to be a very strong case to create a focal point for natural fibre proponents.
Our vision is to bring together people from any and all walks of life who share in a passion for all things natural and have the desire to make a real difference in the world, by encouraging the return to the use of natural fibres. Through research and experimentation, we expect to produce the fibres and fibre products best suited to the climate of Canada. People thrived for thousands of year
s before us without the need to drill deep into the Earth for oil and creating unforgivable pollution and unconscionable devastation to the planet in order to process that oil. It is possible; we can do it; we just need the will. To bring those passionate about fibre together and to make a meaningful contribution to the Province, the Country and the World, requires commitment and dedication and our proposal is to create a living community that revolves around the development and production of the fibre and a more natural way of life.
Having spent several years researching and studying different community styles, co-housing stands out as a shining example of community and cooperation. If you find yourself making a mental association between co-housing and a commune, get it out of your head now! Co-housing is better defined as an intentionally designed and built village. It is not communal living nor is it the random sprawl that defines almost every town, village and city in existence across the planet. The Fiber Village is designed in such a way as to encourage interaction, whilst preserving privacy and independence and it revolves around enterprise rather than dreams. Residents will have housing costs, but they are typically less than conventional housing. One of the main concepts of co-housing is to remove unnecessary duplicity in homes and to pool resources. It’s a choice: a community laundry just a few steps from your door or twenty houses, each with its own washer and dryer or twenty ride-on mowers!
The second important concept of the village is ‘employment for everyone.’ With so many different areas to be explored in the world of natural fibre, there will be ample work opportunities for all residents. This does not mean that all residents have to work or that they have to work in the village, but opportunities will exist and we are even exploring innovative ways to ensure income, even during the quieter winter months.
It is intended that the village be a model for other enterprises and based upon the experiences of other intentional communities, it will probably receive a great many visitors throughout the year. Festivals celebrating the animals and the earth that produce the fibre will bring the attention of the surrounding community, providing items of interest for the casual tourist as well as those interested in natural living alternatives.
As 2012 hurtles to a close, with all the intimidating meanings that have been associated with this auspicious date, one thing is for certain, that we MUST change the way we live and behave. The climate is changing and the polar ice is melting at a pace that even the most pessimistic scientists didn’t anticipate and that, whether we like it or not, we have but a few years to shift our attention from low-lying industrial coastal regions to higher elevations and from oil-based food, clothing, transport and heating to sustainable systems. They exist! They’ve existed for decades or longer and there is much more yet to be discovered, but the discoveries require energy, dedication and resources in order for them to manifest. It is my belief that the world will not come to end this week, but that this period of time is a crux; this is a turning point that has been reached on many occasions in the past. The latest quantum science has demonstrated that atomic structure can be influenced by the mind of an observer. Nothing is created that has not first been held in a process of thought. We are all Creators, but we are also The Great Destroyers. What we think can come into being.
So where do the llamas from our sanctuary feature in all of this? Llamas, alpacas and sheep are the mainstay of our animal-based natural fibres. Our recent culture has actually taught us to disrespect these animals and treat them as irreverently as any other possession. In ancient times they were revered and honoured. We would like to see this system of honour restored. The Earth also yields her potential in the form of flax, nettles and other fibrous plants. Earth fibres don’t sound very sexy, neither does wool come to that and yet they can be incredibly soft and silky, even being used to make parachute silk. There is a growing demand for natural fibres and the countries with the largest populations, which have perhaps been forced to take action ahead of North America, Australasia or Europe, are already implementing large-scale production of natural fibres. China’s huge growth in alpaca farms is a case in point. We can do this too, but we also have the opportunity to implement it in a new lifestyle framework; one that meets the needs of the individual, the community, the country, the whole planet, even.
This change will not happen by itself, it requires like-minded people to sit down and pool their ideas, their knowledge and resources. You don’t need to be a scientist; we all have life experience and views to share, as well as the ability to make things happen. If we cannot roll up our sleeves, we can roll up the veils in our minds that keep us in a state of delusion that it will all work out right in the end, because someone will do something about it. It requires determination and dedication though. It will require a lot of planning and lot of effort. In times of crisis mankind usually manages to dig deep and find these resources within themselves, but we believe it would be slightly more beneficial if we didn’t wait for the crisis, but acknowledged that the crisis is waiting just over the horizon and that the time to act is now.
Contact us if you see yourself in this vision.