We met Henri and his two children for the first time at the European gathering in Romania in July 2014 where he heard about RCL for the first time, read the RCL Handbook and attended RCL circles. He also came to the world gathering in Hungary to declare his land in Poland an RCL and to lead several circles about bringing energy to and setting up an RCL community on the land. The following is a brief account of what was discussed in conversations and circles, all from memory, so some details may be incorrect.
Henri was born in Germany but 15 years ago he bought an almost 30-hectare piece of land near the village of Zatwarnica in the Carpathian Mountains in the south-east corner of Poland, close to the borders with Ukraine and Slovakia. Wild and beautiful, this area is where “bears and wolves kiss each other good night”, according to Henri. The land is in the San River Valley (the Hulski mountain stream skirts the land on its way to the San River) so along with others he set up a community and called it the San Tribe. But except for his partner and two daughters, no one decided to stay for a longer period. Two years ago, after the only house on the land burnt down, his partner decided to live in a nearby village and Henri found himself alone.
But his dream of community lived on and with the RCL vision resonating in his heart he wants to bring the San Tribe back to life. In fact, his own vision for the land and for the world, written down long before RCL came into existence, is very similar to the RCL vision in many respects. Henri believes that human beings have to find back to their true place in nature and re-learn to listen to Mother Earth. The land will be the site of a “Natural Village” which will support humans without excessively interfering with the natural processes of nature.
The land consists of mostly meadow and pasturelands, some deciduous forest and a river, and there is excellent drinking water. Apples, pears and plums can already be harvested, along with wild berries. A herd of horses are grazing the land, at least for now, for which Henri receives some funding from the EU. This income-generating scheme could be continued or ended by the community in the future. Although the winters are of course quite harsh, the soil is good and there is ample opportunity to create large gardens and orchards.
The land is under some kind of protection status, which means that the erection of permanent buildings is technically illegal, so the inhabitants would have to live in teepee or yurt-type housing (which for sure can be warm and comfortable if you do it right!). But there is another possibility which would need to be explored – the land is the site of an old village that was obliterated during the 2nd world war, so erecting new buildings on top of the remaining foundations of the old ones might be legally possible.
Henri sees himself as a guardian of the land and an equal community member, not as an owner. In fact, the land is already owned by a Foundation which was set up by Henri. The Foundation is run by a board, of which Henri is currently the only member, but he wants the whole community to become board members and to run the Foundation together through consensus. Although we have not yet thoroughly examined the legalities behind the Foundation (this will be the work of the community!), it seems like Henri’s Foundation is very close to what we believe an RCL Organization should be like! This will save the community a lot of energy on legal issues. Henri is open to make changes to the legal structure of the Foundation.
Henri has already contributed a lot of energy to the RCL Network by helping with the development of our Common Website, which now lives on Henri’s servers.
Henri has extended an open invitation and is ready to receive you on the land right now! However, as the winter is not the easiest time to gather the energy, we are calling for a “Crystallization Gathering” in the spring, starting April 27th, which will bring us together to seed the community. People wishing to live there permanently or temporarily should gather to experience the land, spend time in talking circles to formulate a vision and to start building and putting seeds in the ground.
Henri envisions around 12 families living permanently on the land in private-usage homes, and although he agrees that the community should be open to receive a limited number of visitors, nomads and temporary residents, his vision is focused on permanent, sustainable living. Henri has mentioned the possibility of a “Founding Consensus” to limit the use of drugs and other substances, and somehow restricting the use of electronics in order to keep the wild energy pure.
When a vision has been formulated, this should be sent to another RCL for formal approval and inclusion in the RCL Network. The Foundation should also be reviewed and possibly changed by the community, before it is sent for approval as an RCL Organization in another RCL, in a separate process.
Nothing has been decided, everything is open, your chance to shape a community from day one starts on April 27th. Welcome to Poland!
For more information go to http://santribe.rainbowcrystalland.org/index_en.html (also available in German and Polish) or contact Henri at firstname.lastname@example.org.