Friday, January 26, 2007

Seed Pods


About 15 years ago, I started building a model of a sustainable city. It was called Argonon. In its completed stage, it took over my garage. It also provided a unique place for many of us to think and plan for the future.

Now, the Global EcoVillage company has begun preliminary designs on its Lovelock EcoVillage project. GEV's intention for this community is to be the first truly sustainable modern village with respect to both Ecology and Economy.

The location for the Lovelock EcoVillage site is 580 acres of sculptured land on the western outskirts of Amarillo, Texas.

Most interestingly, Phil Hawes, architect of record of the $250 million Biosphere2 has relocated to Amarillo to design and build the Ecovillage.

As an associate of R.Buckmister Fuller, Phil designed architectural solutions for Martian colonization which lead to the conception of the idea for Biosphere2 in Arizona. As a student of Frank Lloyd Wright, Phil also trained in the humanistic tradition of architecture.

I was born in Amarillo, and it somehow touches me that a seed pod for 5000 people is developing there.

But why even speak of Seed Pods?

Here is part of an important piece by William Kotke that might help in laying the predicate.

The Earth Speaks

We who can read these words are civilized people who have been mentally conditioned by the culture of civilization and the industrial society from birth. We have precepts loaded into our subconscious minds which cause us to see reality in a certain way.

To a native Maya person in the State of Chiapas, Mexico, the earth speaks through them.

They live integrated with the earth in their everyday energy systems and in their mental attitudes. To them the fact that the earthlife has manifest these living things around us, and us, means that we are children of the Mother Earth and we speak as one of the voices of the earth.

To the Maya this is obvious on a deep level.

To us, it is an interesting intellectual proposition only, because we have been conditioned by a cultural upbringing that filters out this deep understanding, and we do not mentally link our life with the life of the living earth.


The culture of the Maya of Chiapas is not like that of civilization. They are survival remnants of a culture impacted by imperial colonization. In order to protect themselves, their culture and their living world, they have risen up in resistance.

In many parts of the Southern Hemisphere the indigenous at the base are arising, but the EZLN, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation, were in the lead. The Zapatistas are anti-capitalist, but no propagandist could get away with calling a Native American an industrial communist.

They are more properly termed anti-civilization, against civilization in its present form.


They are creating a new kind of culture out from under the burden of colonialism. They have a culture of sharing, cooperation and care of the earth. This is being made the cultural basis of governance.

They scorn the political class along with the electoral politics which is its control mechanism. The Zapatistas control from the base through community meetings. Theirs is a culture of human community rather than social isolates in mass industrial society who vote periodically for a list of names.

They have power over their way of life of their community rather than voting on someone in a far-off parliament.


To the Zapatistas, transferring to the young the tremendously valuable fund of information that the species has amassed is certainly possible without also placing it in the context of the values of industrial civilization.

They even have plans for a Zapatista university.

But the manner of teaching is different. In their view the teacher comes to class to learn just like the students. It is a combined inquiry, and the contribution of each participant is valuable. An important ingredient in their culture is respect; respect for the elders, respect for the earth and respect for each other.

Life is valuable.


The worm has turned. In former decades, revolutionaries vied to grab the industrial power of the elites in order to redistribute wealth. Now, we have seen what the wealth of the industrialist/banker has done to the earth and our future. Now, we in the culturally poor but wealthy societies are looking to the richness of a new kind of human culture that cannot be directed but can only grow out of the base.

The base is in motion.

The earth is speaking.

Those involved with infinite demands upon finite resources

will not survive,

but the earth will survive

along with those children embedded within her."

William H. Kötke, is author of Garden Planet . He is also the author of the out-of-print, underground classic, The Final Empire: The Collapse of Civilization and the Seed of the Future, which may be downloaded for free here.


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

More links to the EZLN / Zapatista vision and world view:

10:45 AM  

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