Conscious living implies habitually bringing more consciousness to bear than perhaps we are used to, in every aspect of our lives. This week we take a look at an example of this mindset in the story of Tao Wimbush. Here is a man who redesigned his life right from scratch, and ended up creating an eco-village community of successful and happy smallholders in West Wales.
To be more conscious we need to increase our awareness so that we are conscious of more things. As human beings, we specifically need to be more conceptually aware. Since this is our uniquely human faculty that enables the acquisition of unlimited knowledge.
It is specifically the process of thinking that brings things into our conscious awareness and enables conceptual understanding. Ideas and inspiration may emerge in a state of mental stillness and calm, but to act on those ideas, to work them into a useable form requires active self-initiated process of rational thought.
The Lammas community in west Wales is an example of conscious living because it has all been thought about long and hard. A three-year planning application and detailed plans of land-based production were necessary to persuade the local government to allow this project to go ahead. Success does not happen by chance, and many aspects of living that ordinary people take for granted had to be carefully considered in the design and planned for. Growing food, catching rainwater, generating electricity and recycling human waste with compost toilets are just some of these factors that needed to be considered.
To be more aware we must think more, ask more questions, gain more knowledge, be aware of a greater context, to sensibly prioritise the placement of our attention and discern what is important. By bringing more consciousness to bear we can be more effective. We can be more successful in achieving our specifically chosen goals. All of this went into the process of creating Lammas.
The roots of successful living
Ayn Rand said that “happiness is the emotional concomitant of successful living”. If we are miserable, suffering, lonely, in pain, anxious, bored, fearful, etc, it is a sign that some aspect(s) of the way we live needs closely examining and revising. Sometimes the deepest premises upon which we base our worldview need to be checked and revised where necessary.
Re-evaluating our most basic premises is key to designing a lifestyle that really works, that supports health, wealth and happiness. It is not always easy to do this without seeing an inspirational example. Looking at other ways of living can sow seeds of possibility in our minds and helps us ask fundamental questions about the way we choose to live. And Lammas is a great example of this process of stepping out of the ordinary and into a new way of life.
This is what humanity needs more of right now. We do not all have to live in eco-villages, but in order to embrace conscious living, we do have to question the fundamental assumptions about how we live, where we live, the buildings we live in, how we work, what we eat, etc. In short, we have to re-examine what we value.
Lammas is the creation of Tao Wimbush. It began as a collection of 9 independent small holdings of approximately 7 Acres in size (or 2.8 Hectares). The goal was to self-build low impact dwellings and to use the land for well-considered sustainable production. Meeting the needs of the people and the environment in a sustainable way that doesn’t compromise anyone’s future.
In Episode 43 of Living outside the Matrix, Tao Wimbush tells his story of motivation, vision and hard work. I was inspired by his determination and commitment to creating a whole new way of life – one that wasn’t previously available to him. It is a wonderful example of conscious living because so many aspects of his lifestyle were considered in the design.
12 years have passed since the begining of the design process and now there is a thriving community pioneering a viable alternative to the mainstream model here in the UK. Tao lives there with his wife and children and is very pleased with the continuous development and expansion of the project. Visitors are welcome at Lammas, and they also offers various courses for those interested in their way of life. For contact details and to check out their website follow this link.
Bringing more consciousness to bear means becoming aware of more issues or gaining more knowledge, and this can profoundly affect our lifestyle choices. Our lifestyle choices affect our health, wealth and happiness outcomes. There is a clear cause and effect relationship between our level of consciousness and the choices we make that subsequently determine our effectiveness, our health and our happiness. Living consciously inevitably improves every measurable outcome.
There is an increasing amount of ill-health and depression in western culture along with the general disconnect between the land and the environment. The achievements at Lammas go some way towards addressing these issues with the quality of the food grown organically, the outdoor living in touch with the environment and with plenty of physical exercise.
We have seen in previous episodes the importance of gut health as the foundation of well-being, and this kind of lifestyle ticks many of the boxes. It is important to grasp that a more outdoor land-based lifestyle does not mean a return to primitive living. It does not mean any rejection of technology.
Many people associate land-based living with austerity or hardship, with going without or being poor. It doesn’t have to like this at all. The accumulation of wealth and the enjoyment of material values is in no way incompatible with conscious living and a reconnection with the environment. We have seen from our exploration of the Climate change issue that the calls to reduce energy consumption and CO2 output are not based in truth. But this does not contradict the good sense of securing reliable renewable energy sources and of managing energy use sensibly. Conscious living is about joining all the dots in our minds, by integrating all of our knowledge into one non-contradictory sum.
Feel free to join the conversation and leave a comment below.
Be well and thrive
Treehouse Farm, May 2018