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Beginning a rainforest village

The joy of nurturing one hectare of land can be found in a sense of simplicity and realness in everyday life: eating from your own cultivations; living in a home you have created with local, natural materials; contributing to the natural fertility of soils; hearing new bird song as biodiversity increases; bathing in a babbling stream; watching little seeds become tall trees; feeling the changing rhythms of day and night as the year progresses. In the Fruit Bowl, where we have begun our exploration of rainforest living, we have come to know many of these experiences. In our lives we have felt a peacefulness, a purposefulness, a deep pleasure in these small, ordinary moments which are transforming our quality of life and the ideas we wish to carry forwards.

It has become tangible to us that human presence can contribute to nature when action aligns with that which lights up the heart. Initially we began with the intention to live on and reforest farmed land, allowing ventures into the ancient rainforest to inspire an enchanted quality of creation. An evolution of this idea has taken place having lived on one area of land and reforested a much wider area. The land we live on feels more loved, more fertile, more colourful and pretty than the reforested land, and this personal process can be a real delight when the scale is manageable for acts of tender care to be part of the everyday.

Here the question arises – how is it possible to bring the everydayness of human action into alignment with regenerating the beauty of the Earth? This isn’t a question about creating jobs for restoring soil fertility, fund raising to protect large areas of land or educating urban populations about positive daily choices. It isn’t about going back to the past or becoming a full-time farmer. It is a question of lifestyle. It is a lifestyle which is intrinsically woven into the web of life, while having moments for creative pursuits, social endeavours, realisation of passionate projects. It is having space to be a designer, a chef, a healer, a comedian, where the focus for your calling springs forward from a connection with nature. It is blurring the line between work and play. It is opening a way, through immersion, for humans to be in love with a piece of motherland, which can become a love for all land, all trees, all living beings - a love for life.

For our life-project in the Colombian rainforest this is becoming an invitation for others to join this journey and become stewards of the land. It is about empowering others to connect with the flow of nature, both within and all around. We have come to realise that the most incredible way to nourish these hundred hectares are to allow them to be loved and cherished by human activity, and for human activity to be supported and invigorated by the land. If the previously damaged farmland is entrusted to individuals, couples, families who wish to live in a way which regenerates the ecosystem, imagine how magnificent the watershed will become, and how fulfilling these human lives can feel. This is the path we are setting out on, the beginning of a Rainforest Village.

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