Mountains and Waters Alliance works to protect and restore the wholeness of life on earth. Its members include human people, rivers, rocks, trees, hills – sentient beings from all parts of the family of life.
One of our intentions is to work together, an interspecies alliance, addressing climate change and other catastrophes with our full power to protect, nurture, and restore the well-being of the whole earth.
The other intention is to change the dominant human culture from an ownership model (Humans own everything, all others are just resources) to a belonging model (family of life). In the history of humanity, most human cultures have been about belonging. Such cultures are capable of cooperating with others – as the current dominant culture is not.
The rest of this document speaks to humans. Learning to communicate with the rest of the family is a central part of our work.
- Our first and central action is to change ourselves, to develop this capacity, by learning to form working relationships with conscious beings of all kinds, including each other.
- We invite others (human and not) into the Alliance, and we stay in relation with them.
- We work to restore the wholeness of life in practical ways such as direct action, running for political office, protecting refugees, growing food, land restoration, ritual/ceremony/prayer/meditation.
- We face the destruction of the community of life that has nourished us for millennia. In light of this, the modern way of human life has to be expendable. If and when it collapses, we will be network for growing truly viable alternatives.
- The cultivation of spiritual life is essential. If we do not understand and fully accept our place in the universe, all the skills in the world will not help us. Spiritual life includes unlearning our indoctrination into the dominant culture, unlearning the illusion of separation, and opening to the joy of belonging to the family of life.
This way of life, rooted in spirituality and active in the world, describes many people’s lives. If this describes you and you want to be part of this community, please join us. Check us out, jump right in, or just support us from where you are.
Introductory Member: Sign up as a member below, AND, at least once a year do at least one of the following,
- Learn: Participate in MWA retreats, classes, website discussions, etc, and/or inner spiritual practice,
- Act: Volunteer at the farm or with MWA, other action (including spiritual activism) in harmony with MWA principles,
- Donate: Donation in any amount is encouraged.
Engaged Member: Sign up as a member below, AND do all of the following:
- Learn: Participate in MWA retreats, classes, website discussions, etc, and/or inner spiritual practice at least three hours a month or one weekend a year.
- Act: Volunteer at the farm with MWA, or do other action (including spiritual activism) in harmony with MWA principles, at least three hours a month or one weekend a year.
- Connect: Communicate on a regular basis with other MWA human members in person or by online conversations/blog comments.
- Donate: Regular donation in any amount is encouraged.
At this point, there is no “below” for signing up. Please email me if you want to become a member.
And here are lots more words, until more editing happens.
- Sign up at the website, read its offerings, and use them as you can.
Plus either or both of these.
- Show up for a potluck, workday, or retreat at the farm if you are in the area.
- Donate money or time if you feel led to do so.
Our offering to you:
- Learning: Monthly blog posts offer practices you can do to open your awareness to communication with the rest of Life. Also background readings on website, and links to learning resources.
- Online community for exchange of thoughts, writings, resources, action ideas, and for organizing linked ceremonies that are part of our action. (In-person community at the farm, and in other locations in the future.)
- Retreats and learning opportunities at the farm, at cost plus voluntary donations
- Individual mentoring conversations can be arranged.
- Networking – help finding other members near you, so you can form a learning group or an action group in your area.
Engaged level: Introductory level plus
- In addition to signing up for blog posts, send an email telling us you want to be a member.
- Inner spiritual practice: Commit to at least three hours a month or one weekend a year of one of these:
- Sitting and/or walking meditation, or other spiritual practice
- Learning from land, plants, animals, and nature; spending intentional sacred time in nature
- Reading and study that supports your transition from the ownership model to a belonging way of life
- Spiritual expression in the outer world: one of these, at least three hours a month or one weekend a year:Volunteering at the farm (farm work, land care, or other)
- Volunteering to support the Alliance (examples – social networking, office help, volunteer coordination, fundraising, organizing events, event support, translating)
- Volunteering elsewhere as your expression of this work (examples – direct work with children or refugees; land care; political action; environmental activism)
- Ritual, prayer, and ceremony in harmony with the Alliance intention.
- And stay in touch with the other human people, by website conversation or group participation (in person or online). For the moment, we’ll use the Facebook page.
- Stay in touch with the nature beings that work with you
- If you feel led to do so, make a monthly or annual donation, using the automated system.
Our offering to you:
- Support for your spiritual practice and re-learning, as above, plus
- group meetings (online or in person) at least quarterly,
- individual mentoring conversations can be arranged
- up to two weekend retreats at the farm each year at cost.
- Support for action
- Meetings at least quarterly (in person or online) include conversations about your volunteering or activism in the world.
- Farm residence time can be arranged, at cost, in support of your action commitment and/or your spiritual work.
- Help you do outreach for the Alliance – for example, a core team member offers a retreat or workshop for your group (at cost plus donation)
After some time at the Engaged level, you might move into becoming part of the core team, members for whom this work is a primary focus. Each such move will be done in communication with the existing core team. Here are some guidelines:
- Spiritual practice is essential to your life.
- This group will meet often and will evolve to take full responsibility for the Alliance.
- The work you do is based more on what is needed than on what is easy.
- You offer leadership and support for other members, for outreach, for liaisons with partner groups.
- You might become a resident at the farm, or might start a similar place elsewhere, staying in touch with the founding group.
People whose primary work is elsewhere may choose to partner with us in one of two ways:
- Organizational Allies are fully involved in a separate work or organization, but recognize a kinship. We find ways to partner.
- Guides are recognized as wise or expert in their own culture, and share that wisdom with us as teachers.
Please contact us if either of these seems like a fit for you.
If what you can offer is money rather than time, we welcome you to join us in this way. Here’s more information, and here is the actual donation link.
The Alliance is not about money. However, we have costs that are not likely to end:
- Internet access, phone use, travel for meetings/teaching/study, printing brochures.
We have some things we would like to do:
- Turning the farm into an gathering place
- Growing food sustainably
- Restoring the land
- Making the farm into a place for residential practice, preferably off-grid (this means some very specific projects)
- Repaying loans, beginning with the solar panel loan
We could do more if core team could work full time at the Alliance, beginning with Shodo.
What does “at cost” mean?
- For events at the farm, it means food, utilities, internet, taxes, and such.
- For events away from the farm it includes travel costs.
- It does not include paying for teaching, or new building projects, farm expenses, general administration, or repaying loans.
- The amounts at cost are low. Work exchange is sometimes an option.