...a unique experiment
interfacing with the Damanhur community
in Northern Italy.
This home, in the foothills
of the Italian Alps, was purchased by a group of non-Damanhurian, non-Italian
citizens in partnership with a Damanhurian Nucleo family group. The home
and extensive gardens and orchard will be developed together. The nucleo
is doing the renovations and the title to the property is held by the
Damanhurian real estate cooperative. Nucleos are typically made up of
a group of initiates of the Damanhurian Meditation School. This one may
provide a home for us for up to half of the year.
In the past, one could be part of Damanhur only by accepting some form
of Damanhurian citizenship....and speaking Italian. The VC project was
unusual as it provided a way for like-minded individuals who wish to support the Damanhurian lifestyle to live with those citizens. More
recently, another form of sharing with Damanhur is being developed. It
is called the ValdiChy
Project. "The ValdiChy Project was born to attract creative people
to settle in the Valchiusella.
People with open minds; positive thinkers with a pioneering spirit; practical
dreamers with the desire to experiment with a new way of living..."
A goal is that this extended community grow up around the Damanhur community,
much as how towns developed around monestaries in ancient days. Some of
the homes will be adjacent to Damanhur nucleos and will share some activities.
Others will be throughout the valley, in the town of Vidracco
as well as surrounding rural areas. This valley, though always isolated
throughout history, was more economically developed in the past. In recent
years, most people left the area to find work and there are many vacant
homes....some barely piles of rubble. Damanhur has had an impact
on the Valchiusella and has begun to bring prosperity back to the
valley, and the infusion of an international community of environmentally
sensitive creative people will add to the mix.
Brian and I visited our new home in Italy and our "family" in
April of 2003 when I took these pictures. On Sunday, the family came up
to work in the garden and to have a bountiful lunch. More photos can be
found on our Yahoo!
photo page. (You may need a Yahoo ID to view them.) At that time, there was insufficent living quarters for the members of the nucleo to live on site. I was able to
visit again in April 2004 when I attended the ValdiChy conference. By this time the family was living on site with the purchase of a small 4 bedroom cabin and the addition of "caravans." Consultation had begun with architects for renovation and extention. Brian
and I were there again briefly in July 2004. In 2005, I missed an annual visit to Damanhur for the first time in seven years. I was able to visit in April 2006. There have been many delays and revisions in plans to get permission for construction. They expect approval shortly and to be building in the summer of 2006. We expect to be
able to live there part-time after retirement in summer 2007.