Aggelos from Greece tells us:
Where do i begin from ? How is it possible to describe something taking part inside me, in a place of utopia ? I will try my best but be sure that this is just the surface of things, what we can perceive/understand through language is limited. It is the feelings, moments, energies, laughter, touch, beauty the blinking of eyes and the gaze, the rain, the clouds, the fog and moisture of the morning disappearing after the sun, followed by the shining moon and the stars above the fire that burns, burns inside all of us.
This youth exchange took place on the beautiful mountains surrounded by water in Tempo di Vivere near Bettola in Italy. It was part of a collaboration between the eco-community that lives there and the RIVE organization with the aim of getting young people familiar with sustainable living and community practices. So we gathered from Germany, Italy, Spain, The Netherlands and Greece to take part in this amazing project, to learn and transfer the acquired knowledge to the rest of the world.
The main feature of the exchange was the Circle Way, a kind of method that is employed and applied to help build a small community based on people needs, mutual help, common goals, fair share, respect and care for everyone else. That is achieved with a lot of work in the circle formed from the people of the community, a place where everything can be discussed and decisions are made on a consensus,on everybody’s agreement.
Every day we learned to share our feelings and emotions, to share ideas and thoughts about anything without the usual fear of judgement. We played games to wake us up in the morning and that also brought us closer. We spent almost all of the day together playing, eating, leaning, sleeping. All of these activities led us to become an ephymeral community, co – created by all of the participants with the help of the already existed community and the youth leaders.
It was very inspiring experiencing another way of living far away from the crowded cities, the pollution and the noise. Where everyone cared for one another and we all communicated deeper. Self development and self esteem strengthening was also a result of the the way we lived together, cooperating in everything not expecting something in return other than a smile, the happy eyes of the person a touch or a hug.
Feeling safe, loved, cared for and being part of something collectively brings out a hidden purpose in my life, something that I very often forget because of the fast pace of the city life. It reminds me that we are not alone, that everyone’s work is valued and we are all respected and we respect everyone else.
Being able to stay under the stars without light pollution, creating theater, music around a bonfire and all sorts of funny, peculiar and weird stories and games is why i want to keep searching for the people who are also interested in that kind of life. Families are created this way, bonds are made stronger than those of actual families and slowly we become part of everything around us, part of everything that we care for.
Thank you everyone for making this possible.