From organic farming to water management, learn sustainability at the four-day workshop in Auroville
Sustainablity seems to be the need of the hour. While various experiments in sustainable living have been conducted in Auroville in the past, here is a workshop that aims at integrating the quest for personal change with techniques of living that are less environmentally destructive, more socially responsible, and economically transformative. Last held in March this year, this is the second edition of the four-day workshop. “We live in a time when our environment, our economic systems, our social lives and our personal growth are dysfunctional,” says Alan Herbert, founder of Auroville Today and long-time facilitator of workshops on sustainable future. These intensive residential engagements—from water and waste management to organic farming techniques and green building design—have touched lives in other cities, too, via alumni who are from across the country. Some have spearheaded waste collection initiatives, while others have established alternative living communities.
Team of three
This year, Herbert has begun working with two other facilitators, Aurovillians Sheba Maini and Leena De Chakravarty—each with years of experience running leadership training programmes across different sectors like corporate, health and education. Explaining how the workshop is targeted at professionals, Maini says, “Many cannot afford to take a whole week off. So we decided to offer a shorter, stand-alone workshop that introduces the important themes.” Mornings will be devoted to exploring ideas conceptually, and afternoons to field visits, like a trip to Solitude Farm to learn about community-supported agriculture and food security, or to Auroville Electrical Services to understand solar energy solutions and, elsewhere, to AuroRe, which promotes the use of renewable energy under the guidance of Toine van Megen, one of its founders.
Trace the link
“It is not possible to separate the work of personal transformation and learning to live consciously, from the work of living sustainably,” says Martin Scherfler of Auroville Green Practices, which is organising the workshop, and Herbert concurs. Both speak of the ways in which personal sustainability and self-transformation are interwoven with economic, environmental and social sustainability.
At Center Guesthouse, October 28-31. Rs 25,000. To register, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Deepa S Reddy
(The writer is a Pondicherry-based blogger and can be reached at email@example.com)