John Seed, well known eco activist and author on deep ecology with his wife Megan Wallace chose Narara Ecovillage as a good place to raise their son. Having helped form communities in the Northern Rivers area some decades earlier, John then became well known for his work in Deep Ecology and as founder of the Rainforest Information Centre in the 1980s.
John said he is grateful that it has taken so long to physically build the Ecovillage, as this has given time for the community aspect to develop, and personally, to make friends with people he wouldn’t otherwise have met. One of his activities at Narara was forming the so called “Heavy Metal” group. This was 16 people in the village who each put in five thousand dollars and bought a tractor, a bob cat and a sawmill. They agreed to have no meetings, take no notes and just trust each other. The village is now benefitting from the equipment they bought.
John loves to share his experiences with the community and inspire an understanding of our deep connection to nature.
“I am a Master of Ceremonies and the ‘keeper’ of some important songs … to have the opportunity to have children learn those songs is a joy and important – they tune people up, to tune the world up a bit and that’s free – that is what I love.”
Another of John’s schemes is to grow shitake mushrooms in sufficient quantities so he can trade them with others making almond milk, sauerkraut, kombucha etc. and help to stimulate a local bartering economy, to show that this is possible.
He and Megan plan to build a passive house that will need no heating or cooling.
Megan grew up on the Central Coast and is so pleased to have found a community close to her parents for the raising of their son, River. They have worked with others building a children’s nature playground and organising children’s activities and now we have a thriving intergenerational community. Megan loves the support available for families in the village with kitchen food swaps, parenting support groups and endless unscheduled playdates for the children.
A former accountant, Megan left her banking job and worked for some years for the community sector and volunteered with the Reconciliation Council of NSW. She has a passion for personal development work including Non Violent Communication (NVC) and practices 5Rhythms Dance as a meditation process.
Megan says “This kind of personal expression work really helps in community because people think we are all “like minded” here, and that is true to some extent but actually we are signing up to live with all different types of people and it is wonderful to be able to appreciate the diversity.”
“I know for me that being in community is actually the ‘edge’ that I needed. It has made me more courageous, made me dig deeper and brought out the best in me.”
Like most members, she is inspired by the demonstration aspect of the village. Supportive parenting is one of the important areas being explored.
“We all know it is too easy to unintentionally trample on the vibrancy, creativity and dreams of children. I hope that in our village we can have a way of being as adults that models how we can be with one another so that the children can grow up to become the shining lights of who they truly are in the world.