Tuesday, September 22, 2015

A literal explanation of how I got here today

I had an epiphany this week, a sudden realization about how I got myself into the Edgewood College Sustainability Leadership Masters program.

We have a lot of reading, as you can imagine. A feeling of familiarity with this week’s concepts started as I read through “Getting to Maybe:” (Westley, et al) with it’s opening message of “Assume hope, all who enter here.” It grew as I read through the very practical ideas and solutions in the “Sustainable World Sourcebook” (Sustainable World Coalition). But it was while reading through “Sustainability Design” (Van der Ryn, et al) that the epiphany erupted from subconscious and I realized why I’m in the program today.

Many of you know I grew up on a farm, but did you know that my parents and their parents were fully entrenched urban dwellers? Back in 1976, it was pretty much on a whim that my folks bought a farm “to raise you boys in the country” as my mother later explained their idea. They would never describe themselves as hippies, but they were “back to the landers” and my early childhood reading consisted of a steady diet of Mother Earth News, architecture books about Frank Lloyd Wright, design books by William Morris and Charles Rennie MacIntosh, and most importantly, the Whole Earth Catalog. http://www.wholeearth.com/index.php
 
I read the Whole Earth Catalog cover to cover (and if you’ve ever seen it, that was no small feat for a 12-year old). It was that AMAZING publication where I learned about the Peace Corps (and applied at age 14 not knowing the college graduate requirement), Paolo Soleri’s Arcosanti https://arcosanti.org/ (where I first learned about natural building systems) and the concept of local economies (and immediately created a club with my cousins and brothers to create our own curency). This is also when I began collecting poems about rain, and today have a collection of more than 500 poems.

I now realize that it’s no surprise, and in fact, simply one more plot on a long-drawn trajectory, that I’m in the program - and glad to be here indeed.