The 8thLife Panama Collaborative Work-Life Initiative is forming an intentional community that provides a social support structure and a low impact lifestyle for its members, residents, and volunteers. Our vision for this project is therefore: An intentional rural community where the values and ideals of community, respect, peace, and living an “on-purpose” life will be rediscovered by those who choose to join the community.
We offer a unique opportunity to design your future in a healthy and supportive environment. Astoria Guest House provides comfortable living space while we co-create the permaculture based intentional community on our 21Ha Finca.
The Eco-Community will provide a socio-cultural support structure as well as a healthy atmosphere for living and working. For community members, fair work, cooperation, and an abundance mentality replace the materialism, competition and scarcity mentality prevalent in today’s world. To achieve this we are integrating aspects of ecological design, permaculture, ecological construction, green production, alternative energies, community building practices, among others.
Creating more re-localized economies – returning to a model that worked for hundreds of hundreds of years – is an essential part of stopping the destruction & creating the new societies that we want & need, able to live in harmony with Nature.
We are committed to using the best wisdom we have to date to co-create a sustainable & healthy Eco Community. We will be using the Integral Permaculture Designers Manual as a theoretical base. We know this is a huge & difficult adventure of learning how to live productively & in harmony with each other, with the land, with the local cultures & with all other species. We aim to form one of the thousands of important post-industrial settlements that are needed in order to Transition to a truly sustainable, just & humane economy, culture & future.
We are supported by people who have “been there and done that” – and we’ve been observing and researching ecovillage, community-building, permaculture, human development, and many related topics for over 15 years. Joining with other entrepreneurial visionaries (Is this you?), creativity will blossom, momentum will grow, and we’ll be unstoppable.
The Land was bought by Rebecca, to demonstrate her commitment to this project. Later we’ll create a Foundation, Association, or Cooperative which will be the legal owner of the land. Community members will be issued transferable shares which give them the right to live on site as part of the 8thLife Panama community, & corresponding stewardship responsibilities.
Creating the Design – land base
The Integrated Community Design will be the basis for ongoing development of all of the interrelated parts of this initiative. This design will be based on the digitalized land plan, a walking survey, and site-specific observations. Different zones and usage areas, internal roads/paths, common areas, member lots, and areas for productive projects will be defined.
This will let us know where to best start working to improve and create soil to sustain future productive projects, where to begin reforestation so that the trees serve multiple functions, and where to best capture water to sustain all life in the Eco Community. These are tasks that require tons of attention in their design and involve many components and subsystems. We’re definitely looking for people who can help with this.
Financial Base: Creating Eco-employment & Eco-Business opportunities
YEP! Our initiative doesn’t exist in a bubble. It has to work within the current system and its less-than-ideal reality. Given that, we can create better lifestyles for ourselves while working to transform those realities through the creative use of resources.
The initiative has land. The initiative has an ops center with reliable internet. Putting on our thinking caps, there are tons of opportunities for eco-employment – using our resources to their best advantage while generating useful products and income.
There’s a huge amount of recyclable and reusable materials in Panama that normally end up in the landfills (or alongside the roads). We propose that houses and other structures built at the EcoVillage be designed and built with the highest ‘garbage’ content possible. Plastic bottles, tires, glass bottles, metal roofing materials – all can be used in construction. Old shipping containers, which are abundant in Panama, can be converted into houses, workshops, storage areas, and even swimming pools. These materials can be complemented with natural products from the surroundings.meter, and plants and mangroves are already growing on it.
An Action-Research Project
In order to also help set up many more EcoVillages elsewhere, we plan to work as a live action-learning study & to document each phase of the creation of the EcoVillage, testing the theory against practice, sharing our findings in order to add to the wealth of action-learning knowledge in how to create communities & sustainability-enhancing projects.
This project essentially PUTS INTO PRACTICE & EXPERIMENTS with the models, tools, guidelines & methods of the Integral Permaculture curriculum, which aims to cover all the basics anyone needs to design a sustainable culture (see the e-Book here: PermaCultureScience.org ), step by step.
So we are looking for people who are very excited at the thought of doing all this, which is painstaking work, requiring us to always keep the big picture in mind, while working on many little details.