An Invitation from the Land

Our life-project is located where the Andean mountain geography dissolves into the ecology of the tropical planes in Colombia. Historically a land of rainforests, this land is positioned between the towns of San Carlos and San Rafael and has an abundance of natural springs and sunshine. Pumas and other species have been identified here (including many birds, lizards, monkeys, snakes, butterflies, turtles and many plant species). A geographical watershed which is today our home, comprises approximately 100 hectares of re-wilding ecology.

 

This territory was once the exclusive home of ancient tropical rainforest. In the mid-20th century it went through a period of clearing and extraction for intensive cattle farming. Big ancient trees were burnt down, and entire areas were converted into grazing fields. Afterwards, the region was affected by a time of war which generated an exodus from the 1980s until the early 2000s. It was only around 2010 that people started to return to these remote areas. What they saw was astonishing: through the absence of cattle farming, the rainforest had returned. Not everyone, though, is in awe of nature. After 30-40 years of the re-wilding process, cattle farmers are once more starting to open grazing fields, destroying nature for profit.

 

In our view, this territory is experiencing a new phase in its life cycle, beginning as natural wildness, moving through damage and exploitation, pausing in a state of stillness and now looking towards a healing. We can follow this life cycle in humanity’s patterns of dwelling, from a phase of tribal life and indigenous peoples, to an era of increasingly separated city-dwellers, pausing in a yearning for connection and meaning, and now moving towards a blossoming where contemporary humans can live in symbiosis with nature. The investigation gives us space to join in with nature’s process of rewilding; we are invited to transform the act of dwelling into a journey of interweaving with the processes of the land.

 

Our view is that the re-wilding of nature is one of the greatest gifts. We feel that this place is now ready to transition towards a symbiosis that is fully of our time and fully re-connected. Our investigation seeks insight into what is fundamental to human living and how everyday rhythms can be celebrated, including celestial and atmospheric cycles as well as the phases of life vitality and matter. A symbiotic thrival of the place and the human is ready to be the next chapter for this land, allowing the wholeness of nature to reach its full potential.

Dwelling in Symbiosis