More and more citizens dream of waking up to the sound of birds singing, walking barefoot in the dew and living far away from the city, earning a living doing what brings pleasure. To realize such a desire alone is not easy. Therefore, people with this philosophy create their own settlements. Ecovillages – that’s what they call them in Europe. In Russian: ecovillages.
One of the oldest examples of this philosophy of living together is the Grishino ecovillage in the east of the Leningrad region, almost on the border with Karelia. The first eco-settlers arrived here in 1993. A small village with a large Ivan-tea field did not arouse any suspicion among the indigenous people: on the contrary, it gave them confidence that the area would live and develop.
As local residents say, over the years of the life of the ecovillage, a lot has changed in it: the composition, the number of people and the form of relationships. Today it is a community of economically independent families. People came here from different cities to learn how to live on earth in harmony with nature and its laws; to learn to build joyful relationships with each other.
“We are studying and reviving the traditions of our ancestors, mastering folk crafts and wooden architecture, creating a family school for our children, striving to maintain a balance with the environment. In our gardens, we grow vegetables for the whole year, we collect mushrooms, berries and herbs in the forest,” say the residents of the ecovillage.
The village of Grishino is an architectural monument and is under state protection. One of the projects of eco-residents is the creation of a natural and architectural reserve in the vicinity of the villages of Grishino and Soginitsa – a specially protected area with unique buildings and a natural landscape. The reserve is conceived as a base for ecological tourism. The project is supported by the administration of the Podporozhye district and is seen as promising for the revival of the countryside.
Residents of another eco-village with the cute name “Romashka”, a village not far from the capital of Ukraine, Kyiv, talk in detail about their philosophy. A few years ago, this village had a dull and far from respectable appearance. The endangered Daisies, 120 kilometers from Kyiv, have revived with the appearance of unusual barefoot inhabitants here. Pioneers Peter and Olga Raevsky, having bought abandoned huts for several hundred dollars, declared the village an eco-village. This word was also liked by the indigenous people.
Former citizens do not eat meat, do not keep pets, do not fertilize the land, talk to plants and walk barefoot until the very cold. But these oddities no longer surprise any of the locals. On the contrary, they are proud of the new arrivals. After all, over the past three years, the number of ecological hermits has grown to 20 people, and a lot of guests come to Romashki. Moreover, not only friends and relatives from the city come here, but also strangers who have learned about the settlement via the Internet.
About the family of Olga and Peter Raevsky – the founders of this village – the newspapers wrote more than once, more than once and filmed them: they have already become a kind of “stars”, to which, for no reason at all, someone comes to live, because “everything is enough “- a 20-year-old boy from Sumy or a traveler from the Netherlands.
The Raevskys are always happy to communicate, especially with “like-minded people”. Like-minded people for them are those who strive to live in harmony with themselves and nature (preferably in nature), strive for spiritual growth, physical labor.
Petr, a surgeon by profession, left the practice in a private Kyiv clinic because he realized the pointlessness of the work:
“The goal of a real doctor is to help a person take the path of self-healing. Otherwise, a person will not be cured, because illnesses are given so that a person understands that he is doing something wrong in his life. If he does not change himself, grow spiritually, he will come to the doctor again and again. It’s even wrong to take money for this,” says Peter.
Raising healthy children was the goal of the Raevskys when they moved from Kyiv to Romashki 5 years ago, which then became a “catastrophe” for their parents. Today, little Ulyanka does not like to go to Kyiv, because it is crowded there.
“Life in the city is not for children, there is no space, not to mention clean air or food: the apartment is too crowded, and on the street there are cars everywhere … And here there is a manor, a lake, a garden. Everything is ours,” says Olya, a lawyer by training, combing the child with her fingers and braiding her pigtails.
“Besides, Ulyanka is always with us,” Peter picks up. How about in the city? All day long the child, if not in kindergarten, then at school, and on weekends – a cultural trip to McDonald’s, and then – with balloons – home …
Raevsky does not like the education system either, because, in their opinion, children should develop their soul up to 9 years old: teach them love for nature, people, and everything that needs to be studied should arouse interest and bring satisfaction.
– I did not specifically try to teach Ulyanka to count, but she plays with pebbles and starts counting them herself, I help; I recently started to take an interest in letters – so we learn a little, – Olya said.
If you look back at history, it was the hippie generation that spread the ideas of creating micro-societies in the West in the 70s. Tired of their parents’ lifestyle of working to live better and buy more, the young rebels moved away from the cities in hopes of building a brighter future in nature. A good half of these communes did not last even a few years. Drugs and inability to live, as a rule, buried romantic attempts. But some settlers, striving for spiritual growth, still managed to realize their ideas. The oldest and most powerful settlement is Fenhorn in Scotland.
Based on materials from http://gnozis.info/ and segodnya.ua