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Roots to Renewal

Author: Hawthorne Valley

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Situated on a 900-acre Biodynamic farm in upstate New York, Hawthorne Valley has spent the last half a century working to foster social and cultural renewal through the integration of agriculture, education, and the arts. As we mark our 50th anniversary we want to share not just our story, but also the stories of our friends and contemporaries from across the globe who dedicate their lives in purposeful pursuit of meeting the ecological, social, and spiritual needs or our time. In an oft-quoted passage from one of our founders, Karl Ege, he suggests that the work that we are undertaking together at Hawthorne Valley “will create a place in which it is possible, in a true sense, to become a full human being.” At its core this work is about the future. Every day as our farmers tend to the soil and care for animals, our educators teach students to engage more deeply with themselves and the world around them, and we work together to try to create a structure for social equity, we aim to foster the conditions that will allow the future to emerge in its most life affirming manifestation. We invite you to join us!
16 Episodes
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Thank you for joining us for Episode 4 of Season 2, highlighting the work of Hawthorne Valley’s Farmscape Ecology Program. Their mission is to foster informed, active compassion for the ecological and cultural landscape of Columbia County, New York through participatory research and outreach. In this episode Hawthorne Valley’s Executive Director, Martin Ping, sits down with two of the founders of the Farmscape Ecology Program – wildlife ecologist, Conrad Vispo and field botanist, Claudia Knab-Vispo. The two also happen to be partners in life. Claudia holds a PhD in Land Resources, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After working on plant-animal interactions in Borneo and on ethnobotany in Venezuela, she has spent more than two decades documenting and teaching about plants in and around Columbia County. Conrad, who grew up in Columbia County, holds a PhD in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Wisconsin. Before returning to Columbia County, Conrad conducted ecological research on a variety of organisms, including mammals, birds and fish in a variety of places, including the woods of northern Wisconsin and tropical Venezuela. Conrad’s recent focus is on agroecology. His passion is understanding historical and modern patterns of animal (including human) ecology on the land.The conversation is timely as the Farmscape Ecology Program team, together with Gretchen Stevens of Hudsonia, are about to release their new book (likely mid-year) entitled, “From the Hudson to the Taconics: An Ecological and Cultural Field Guide to the Habitats of Columbia County, New York.” The book is an invitation for people to explore the patterns in the landscape and make themselves more familiar with the other-than-human life that shares the land with us.Learn more at Farmscape's website: https://hvfarmscape.org Wonder WandersProgress of the Seasons Phenology ProjectMake a donationThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerIn this episode Martin Ping, Hawthorne Valley’s Executive Director, welcomes Cornelius Pietzner, who served as the Director of Camphill Communities of North America, and whose father Carlo brought the Camphill movement to the US, including founding Camphill Copake. Hawthorne Valley’s origin story is closely tied to Camphill Copake as our Waldorf school was, in part, founded to accommodate the children of the Camphill Copake community. Children from nearby Camphill communities have been students at Hawthorne Valley Waldorf School ever since. Cornelius currently serves as Senior Advisor to a number of organizations, and was Managing Director and on the Board of Mind & Life Europe as Vice Chairman and Treasurer until 2021. Cornelius is also CEO of Alterra Impact Finance, an impact investment, management and advisory firm in Switzerland with private equity investments in a number of European companies. Additionally, he served as Chief Financial Officer on the Executive Board at the Goetheanum, General Anthroposophical Society in Switzerland from 2002 to 2011. Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerThis is the second episode of our second season, and what an honor and pleasure it is to welcome Mary Berry, Director of The Berry Center in Kentucky, a nonprofit organization “dedicated to bringing focus, knowledge and cohesion to the work of changing our industrial agricultural system into a system and culture that uses nature as the standard, accepts no permanent damage to the ecosphere, and takes into consideration human health in local communities.” Mary and her brother, Den, were raised by their parents, Wendell and Tanya Berry, at Lanes Landing Farm in Henry County, Kentucky from the time she was six years old. She attended Henry County public schools and graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1981. She farmed for a living in Henry County starting out in dairy farming, growing Burley tobacco, and later diversifying to organic vegetables, pastured poultry and grass-fed beef. Mary speaks all over the country as a proponent of agriculture of the middle, in defense of small farmers, and in the hope of restoring a culture and an economy that has been lost in rural America. In this episode Mary shares her thoughts on the importance of place in our work and lives, the culture of agriculture and its vital role in supporting healthy local communities, the essential work of educating young farmers, and her father’s legacy and influence on her life and work.If you’d like to learn more about Mary’s work and The Berry Center, visit https://berrycenter.org. Donate to Hawthorne Valley.More About Mary BerryMary is married to Trimble County, Kentucky farmer, Steve Smith, who started the first Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farming endeavor in the state of Kentucky. If daughters Katie Johnson, Virginia Aguilar and Tanya Smith choose to stay in Henry County, they will be the ninth generation of their family to live and farm there.Mary currently serves on the Boards of Directors of United Citizens Bank in New Castle, Kentucky, the Schumacher Center for a New Economics in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, and Sterling College in Vermont. She speaks all over the country as a proponent of agriculture of the middle, in defense of small farmers, and in the hope of restoring a culture and an economy that has been lost in rural America. Her writings have appeared in various publications and collections, including “Letters to a Young Farmer: On Food, Farming, and Our Future” (Princeton Agricultural Press, 2016) and the introduction for a new edition of essays, “Our Sustainable Table”, Robert Clark, ed. (Counterpoint, 2017).Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerWith this episode, we're excited to officially launch season two of our Roots to Renewal podcast, and we are thrilled to have Greg Watson as our guest to kick things off. Greg is the director of policy and systems design at the Schumacher Center for a New Economics and a self-described lifelong student. He has spent nearly 50 years studying systems thinking as inspired by Buckminster Fuller and has worked to apply that understanding to achieve a more just and sustainable world. In this episode, you'll hear more about Greg's amazing biography and his involvement in many future bearing and life bearing initiatives as he and Hawthorne Valley's executive director and podcast host Martin Ping, take a deep dive on the topics of systems thinking and new economics, creating new forms of cooperation, the wisdom of nature, and so much more. If you'd like to learn more about Greg's work and the Schumacher Center for a New Economics visit https://centerforneweconomics.org. For more information on the World Game Workshop, visit https://worldgameworkshop.org.Donate to Hawthorne Valley here.More about Greg Watson:Greg is Director of Policy and Systems Design at the Schumacher Center for a New Economics. His work currently focuses on community food systems and an initiative to improve global systems literacy informed by a reimagining of Bucky Fuller’s World Game Workshop. Greg has spent nearly 50 years studying systems thinking as inspired by Buckminster Fuller and has worked to apply that understanding to achieve a more just and sustainable world. He has served on the board of the Buckminster Fuller Institute and as a juror for the Buckminster Fuller Challenge.In 1978 he organized a network of urban farmers’ markets in the Greater Boston Metropolitan Area. He served as Commissioner of Agriculture in Massachusetts from 1990 to 1993 and again from 2012 to 2014 when he launched a statewide urban agriculture grants program.Greg gained hands-on experience in organic farming, aquaculture, wind-energy technology, and passive solar design at the New Alchemy Institute on Cape Cod, first as Education Director and later as Executive Director. There he led the effort to create the Cape & Islands Self Reliance energy cooperative.  He served four years as Executive Director of the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative, a multicultural grassroots organizing and planning organization where he initiated one of the nation’s first urban agriculture projects (anchored by a 10,000 square foot commercial greenhouse).Watson was the first Executive Director of the MassacThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerThis is our twelfth episode of the podcast and this time Martin interviewed one of Hawthorne Valley’s longest standing coworkers, Gary Lamb. Gary is currently the director of the Hawthorne Valley Center for Social Research and its Ethical Technology Initiative. Over his 36 years of employment at Hawthorne Valley, Gary also served the Farm Store manager, school development and admissions director, and high school economics teacher. His professional background includes a degree in civil technology and mathematics, and employment in the fields of building construction, medical technology, and manufacturing. His most recent publication, A Road to Sacred Creation: Rudolf Steiner’s Perspectives on Technology, Volume 1, was released in August 2021 by SteinerBooks. From an explanation of Steiner’s idea of social three-folding, to the impact of technology on education and the future of humanity itself, to a discussion about the ultimate uniting social force needed to allow humanity to benefit from technological advances, this episode is sure to leave you with much to consider.Learn more about The Center for Social Research at Hawthorne Valley and its Ethical Technology initiative hereMake a donationPurchase A Road to Sacred Creation: Rudolf Steiner's Perspectives on Technology, Volume 1 More About Gary LambPrior to editing A Road to Sacred Creation: Rudolf Steiner’s Perspectives on Technology, Volume 1, which was released in August 2021 by SteinerBooks, Gary edited Steinerian Economics with Sarah Hearn (Mecca), a compendium of Rudolf Steiner’s views on economics published by Adonis Press. He also authored books on Waldorf education and associative economics—Social Mission of Waldorf Education, Wellsprings of the Spirit, and Associative Economics—published by AWSNA Publications (now Waldorf Publications). Gary was also the managing editor of The Threefold Review, a journal based on Rudolf Steiner’s ideas about a threefold social organism. Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerRecently our Executive Director, and podcast host, Martin Ping sat down with Melissa Auf der Maur, an artist, musician, photographer and writer – probably best known in musical circles for her turn as the bass player for the band Hole from 1994-1999. Melissa is revered locally as social entrepreneur, she’s the co-founder and director of Basilica Hudson, a nonprofit multidisciplinary art center in Hudson, NY.  We consider Basilica to be a sister organization to Hawthorne Valley. Not only are we neighbors geographically, our missions are very much aligned when it comes to supporting the arts and addressing the important environmental and social issues of our times, and we are grateful that Melissa said yes to sitting down with us. Hers is an intriguing biography and it was a fun, and wide-ranging conversation as she and Martin touched on everything from Melissa’s musical career, to the origin story of Basilica Hudson, to the impact of gentrification on the city of Hudson and its surrounding communities, to the role the city of Montreal played in her formative years. Coincidentally, Melissa also happens to be celebrating her 50th trip around the sun this year. Visit Basilica Hudson's website. Make a donation.Learn about their Basilica Green program.Donate to Hawthorne Valley.Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerWe are happy to be back after a short hiatus for a conversation with John Fullerton, founder of the Connecticut-based Capital Institute, a think-and-do tank with a mission to reimagine our economic and financial systems to promote transformation to a more just and regenerative world. An unconventional economist, impact investor, writer, and philosopher, John is the architect of Regenerative Economics, first conceived in his 2015 booklet, “Regenerative Capitalism: How Universal Patterns and Principles will Shape the New Economy.” He and our podcast host Martin Ping – Hawthorne Valley’s executive director – sat down in the midst of John’s newly launched 8-week course, “Introduction to Regenerative Economics: New Ways of Thinking, Seeing, Being and Managing for the 21st Century,” of which Martin is part of the first cohort. The aim of the course is to provide a living systems approach to redesigning our economy so that long-term prosperity, human dignity, social equity, and planetary wellness can be viably sustained throughout the world. Let’s listen in as John and Martin explore the concept of regenerative economics as an alternative way forward, and the urgent need to rethink an economy based on exponential growth as the source of our prosperity – the consequences of which are being felt in unprecedented ways. Visit the Capital Institute's website.Donate to Hawthorne Valley.Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm; Music by Aaron DessnerIn this episode, we stayed in our own back yard – right here on Hawthorne Valley’s 900-acre Biodynamic farm. Hawthorne Valley’s Executive Director Martin Ping sat down with Spencer Fenniman, Director of Farm Operations, and Jess Brobst, our Dairy Herd Manager. Together they discuss the essence of biodynamic farming, the pedagogical function of the Farm, and the role of art on the Farm. We are very excited to share this behind the scenes glimpse and for you to hear firsthand the intentionality and profound thought that goes into biodynamic farming. We are grateful to Spencer and Jess for taking time out of their long and incredibly busy days to share their perspectives, and are filled with gratitude for their many contributions to Hawthorne Valley.Spencer Fenniman (he/him) is the Farming Director at Hawthorne Valley Farm. He has managed fields and fertility at Hawthorne Valley since arriving in 2012. As a younger person, his studies in Anthropology, food geography, and something-useful-to-do-outside-ski-season led him to a series of organic and biodynamic farming apprenticeships. The more he practices nature-based farming, the more he appreciates the land and the deep knowledge, listening, creativity and dedication of his agricultural teachers. For Spencer, biodynamic farming is a way of life based in connection, and managing the soil, the livestock and the ecology in a holistic manner provides the fertile grounds for personal, productive and pedagogical connection. He lives in sight of the farm with his wife and 2 children.Jess Brobst  Hawthorne Valley Farm as a whole farm apprentice in 2016 before moving up the ranks to herd manager in 2018. Jess grew up on a farm in West Virginia and comes with a lot of experience working with animals. She has an extraordinary work ethic and has an amazing way with cows. When she isn’t working on the farm with the dairy herd, Jess is at home making beautiful artwork, studying Waldorf pedagogy through Hawthorne Valley’s Alkion program or walking with her dogs, Nina and Josie.Visit the farm's website.Donate to Hawthorne Valley.Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm. Music by Aaron Dessner.In this episode, Hawthorne Valley’s Executive Director Martin Ping had a chance to chat with artist and educator Martina Müller. Together they explore the many ways that art enlivens our lives – from the practice of observation intrinsic in the experience of making art and its impact on our interpersonal relationships, and even society as a whole – to the way that creativity allows us to access our more divine selves. Martina believes that we’re all artists because we can all learn to make art.Martina studied art and English at Ruhr University in Bochum Germany and Emerson College in England, and holds a four-year full-time Waldorf Teaching Diploma from the Institute of Waldorf Pedagogy in Witten-Annen, Germany with a specialization in teaching high school art and art history. A faculty member of The Alkion Center at Hawthorne Valley since 2003, and Senior Artistic Director and Curator for the new gallery Lightforms Art Center in Hudson, Martina taught middle and high school art for two decades at Hawthorne Valley Waldorf School. An accomplished artist and internationally published children’s book illustrator, Martina is a founding member of Gallery 345 in Hudson. She has exhibited her artwork in numerous venues throughout New York and Massachusetts including Sculpture Now at the Mount in Lenox, MA, Flying Horse Sculpture Show, Hamilton, MA, Diana Felber Gallery, La Mama La Galleria in New York City, Center Point Gallery, in New York City and many others. She creates her paintings, sculptures and installation pieces by bringing meditative content inspired by the work of Rudolf Steiner and great spiritual documents from many spiritual traditions together with the living forces of nature. She lives in Ghent, NY where she maintains her studio.Visit Lightforms Art Center's websiteVisit Martina's websiteDonate to Hawthorne ValleyThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm. Music by Aaron Dessner.In this episode we’re excited to share a follow up conversation with our very first podcast guest, Frances Moore Lappé. We are delighted to acknowledge and celebrate the release of the 50th anniversary edition of her seminal book, Diet for a Small Planet. Once again Frankie and our Executive Director, Martin Ping engage in uplifting conversation on topics of the day that are also woven into Diet for a Small Planet: living democracy; the importance of listening, curiosity, and imagination in building frameworks of understanding; and fostering interconnectedness for the ultimate purpose of nurturing life on Earth. Purchase Diet for A Small Planethttps://democracymovement.usDonate to Hawthorne ValleyThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm | Music by Aaron DessnerIn this episode Hawthorne Valley's Executive Director Martin Ping enjoys a wide ranging conversation with John  Bloom, General Secretary of The Anthroposophical Society in America and former Vice President of Organizational Culture at RSF Social Finance, about the role of money and philanthropy in the creative process, and how money can serve human destiny and foster creativity. In the course of their conversation. You'll hear John mention Free Columbia and now independent 501c3 art and social change initiative that was incubated at Hawthorne Valley, and whose pedagogy is inspired by contemplative inquiry, aesthetic education and action research.Thanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm | Music by Aaron DessnerMartin welcomes activist, author, entrepreneur, and long-time friend Judy Wicks into conversation about her life's work to build economies based on cooperation and local self-reliance.  In 2001, she founded the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia, and co-founded the international Business Alliance for Local Living Economies. BALLE now includes some 30,000 local independent businesses in the U.S. and Canada. Judy envisions an economy that provides for the needs of all people while working in harmony with natural systems.2:50 All Together Now began in 2019, Judy talks about the impulse for founding this initiative.4:00 Judy talks about the importance of building an economy with local self-reliance at its core.5:00 We need a revolution of values. Many of our problems stem from a society that values money more than life itself. 5:30 Judy's first experience with indigenous people was when she lived in an Eskimo Village in 1969 as a VISTA volunteer. She recounts what this experience taught her about collaboration and sharing and how these lessons impacted her life.7:45 Judy’s second experience with Indigenous wisdom was during the Zapatista Uprising in Chiapas, Mexico. This experience taught her the concept of local self-reliance. NAFTA was threatening the survival of the Zapatista people with GMO corn by making communities dependent on long-distance supply chains controlled by increasingly powerful multinational corporations that were putting local farmers and food-producers out of business.10:25 What led to the founding of BALLE – network of locally self-reliant businesses.11:30 Judy goes to Standing Rock to support Indigenous People in their efforts to honor Mother Earth, and protect children and the future by stopping the Dakota Access pipeline.14:00 Lakota Prophesy of the Black Snake: fossil fuel industry and pipelines.14:30 Judy realized the Black Snake in PA is fracking – and she takes up cause to stop fracking and begins to understand that the only way to go about this is by electing the right politicians.16:00 Now more than ever we need to look to Indigenous wisdom to find the path forward. 17:00 Story of White Dog Café and Judy’s epiphany about ethical business practices.18:45 Transformational moment for Judy in what makes a sustainable business work: cooperation and a sustainable business system.20:00 Judy sells White Dog and dedicates rest of her life to building local economies; and starting nonprofits as the vehicle to do so.22:15 Judy’s work in increasing supply and connecting farmers and entrepreneurs; and increasing demand through educating the public about importance of local self-reliance and weaThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm. Music by Aaron Dessner. Hawthorne Valley Executive Director Martin Ping chats with Herbert Dreiseitl (see bio below) about the nature of creativity, the role of beauty in our lives, and the gifts of Waldorf Education. Herbert joined Martin in conversation this past February over Zoom from his home on the shores of Lake Constance in Germany when the country was still in the throes of the pandemic and in a state of strict lockdown. 3:00 Herbert talks about the changes he’s seen in the city where he lives during the pandemic – both from nature-based and social perspectives: incredible how nature is taking back lost spaces; less hectic life; have stopped looking elsewhere for beauty – we’ve had to find it on our own doorsteps.6:45 Role of beauty – beauty is a kind of spiritual awareness we have as humans; healthy social connections often connected to a certain balance, and aesthetic/beauty of the surrounding environment.7:40 Herbert’s work with water in built environments; what we feel inside is reflected outside, and what’s outside is always reflected back to us and the bridge for this is beauty = flow. 9:00 The pandemic has highlighted hopeful signs that maybe we’re overcoming the story of human beings’ separation from the natural world, and finding our way back to an understanding of our integral place as nature in nature.9:45 Insights we might glean by appreciating water – how might this transform our thinking.11:35 Herbert’s views on/experiences with the gifts of Waldorf education; key to Herbert’s biography and what he does now.https://www.dreiseitlconsulting.com | https://hawthornevalley.org/donateHerbert Dreiseitl is a renowned landscape architect, urban designer, water artist, interdisciplinary planner, and a professor in praxis.He is an internationally highly respected expert in creating liveable cities around the world with a special hallmark on the inspiring and innovative use of water to solve urban environmental challenges, connecting technology with aesthetics and encouraging people to take care and establish a sense of ownership for places.Herbert is a Harvard GSD Loeb Fellow, and Fellow of the Center of Liveable Cities in Singapore. He lectures worldwide and has authored many publications including three editions of “Recent Waterscapes, Planning, Building, and Designing with Water.”He has received many awards for his work in the United States and around the world. He founded Atelier Dreiseitl in 1980 (today Ramboll Studio Dreiseitl), a globally integrated design firm with a long-standing history of excellence in urban design, landscape architectThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm. Music by Grammy Award winning artist Aaron Dessner.In this episode, Martin Ping and Rising Tide Capital cofounder Alfa Demmellash discuss the notion of economy and what we need to do to reimagine it so that it can serve us, our communities, and our children, and their children’s children.  Alfa  was born and raised in Ethiopia. She came to the United States at the age of 12 with a keen interest in poverty alleviation and conflict resolution. Alfa graduated cum laude from Harvard University in 2003, where she majored in Government. Named as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2015, Alfa co-founded Rising Tide Capital in 2004 to empower underserved urban entrepreneurs in northern New Jersey to start and grow successful businesses.  2:15 Rising Tide Capital (RTC) works with entrepreneurs who are starting and growing businesses and local communities. They're predominantly entrepreneurs of color and women. 90% are people of color; 70% are women.4:00 RTC works with about 1,000 entrepreneurs in New Jersey alone a year…many of them are mom and pop businesses.4:50 How are we thinking about the economy and setting things up for our children and our children’s children and so on?5:15 We are navigating uncharted territory with the pandemic and it has brought up eye-opening questions around what is an economy that can actually serve us as humans, and serve our community and our places.7:10 The perspective of taking the long view has enabled us to ask the more profound questions about what does it mean to have an economy? What is the purpose of an economy and what does it facilitate besides the production of goods and services? 11:30 Alfa talks about her early childhood and education in Ethiopia and connects the dots to how she came to the US and became who she is today.14:30 Importance of centering children as a strategy for long-term change-making.15:45 New Jersey pandemic relief efforts and Alfa’s involvement with First Lady of New Jersey Tammy Murphy in crisis relief and long-term solutioning.17:00 Alfa on the murder of George Floyd and the call for any morally oriented human to look at that and recognize the call to action…the callousness with which human life is treated, spells not such great tidings for all of us and the kind of world we're building.   19:30 We have to get out of the path we've been on and turn around to look at the fields upon fields of opportunity. We have to look at the role of localized more resilient micro-grids of human creativity...21:00 Martin and Alfa’s shared experience with the 50th anniversary of Earthrise image from space that changed our perspective of what it means to be one species on one planet.24:20 Last EarthrThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
Sponsored by Tierra Farm | Music by Simon FrishkoffIn this episode, our Executive Director Martin Ping had the chance to sit down with environmental activist Bill McKibben to talk about the daunting crisis of climate change and the important work of citizenship in facing this challenge. Bill's 1989 book The End of Nature is regarded as the first book for a general audience about climate change, and he’s gone on to write a dozen more books. A founder of 350.org, Bill McKibben spearheaded the resistance to the Keystone Pipeline, and launched the fast-growing fossil fuel divestment movement. 2:20  What inspired you to write End of Nature?4:20  I knew the minute I started learning about it [climate change] in the 1980s, that this was, trouble with capital T… and so beginning a long time ago, some kind of mix of journalism and activism, became my life.4:53 Now we've built these large movements and they're at the point of really being able to challenge finally, the political and economic power of the fossil fuel industry. 5:50 So there are days when my answer to this question has nothing to with whether we’re going to win or not. It’s simply how much trouble can I cause the bad guys today, that has to be enough reason for getting out of bed and doing the work… 6:30  Dr. King used to say at the end of his talks, ‘the arc of the moral universe is long and it bends toward justice.’ Which I think translates to, this may take a while, but we’re going to win. The arc of the physical universe is short and it appears to bend toward heat, and unless we get it solved really soon, we will not get it solved. 7:04 Nobody has a plan for refreezing the Arctic now that it's mostly melted. So that makes it daunting, but it makes it all the more beautiful that people are willing to join in this fight.7:41  We think agriculture is about 18% of emissions around the world…, the good news, although it's, you know, the science is still tentative in a lot of ways, and we don't really understand all of it are the indications that regenerative agriculture could pull a lot of carbon out of the air and that treating soils correctly, would be very, very helpful. 9:30 We're past the point where we can make the math work one vegan dinner at a time, one Prius at a time. And so I keep saying to people, and I think the most important thing an individual can do is be a little less of an individual and join together with others in movements that are actually big enough to make political and economic change, because that's what has to happen if we make we're going to make the math work.11:20 The work of citizenship largely gets done after hours and on weekends. And it’s crucial to making the world work.11:40 The people that move me most watching this are young people…Everybody knows Greta Thunberg and everybody should...but the really good news is there are 10,000 Greta ThunThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
March 1, 2021 | Roots to RenewalSponsored by Tierra Farm | Music by Simon FrishkoffIn this, our first episode, Hawthorne Valley’s executive director Martin Ping engages in an uplifting conversation about the power of hope with special guest, activist thinker, Frances Moore Lappé. She is the founder of Food First and the Small Planet Institute, and is author or co-author of 19 books about world hunger, living democracy, and the environment, including her seminal book, Diet for a Small Planet published in 1971. A 50th anniversary edition with a new opening chapter will be released this fall, and her latest book, It’s Not Too Late: Crisis, Opportunity and the Power of Hope can be previewed on her website smallplanet.org. 3:35  Frances’ new book about climate: It’s Not Too Late: Crisis, Opportunity and the Power of Hope4:50 Hope has power to organize our brains toward solutions. 5:55 Our thoughts have enormous power - thoughts relate to our fundamental beliefs and are shaped by dominant culture - as we believe, so we see. And if we believe in possibility, so we see it. 7:45 Diet for a Small Planet and zeitgeist of the time – what was going on in the early ‘70s that contributed towards writing of this book? 8:35  How food helped Frances find her path – “If I could understand why people go hungry, that would unlock economics, and politics for me – that was my best intuition I ever had...there’s more than enough food for all of us and we’re actively creating scarcity – the experience of scarcity out of plenty no matter how much we’re growing. And so to me, that was the best news ever…we’re creating hunger, so we can end hunger.” 10:55 Connecting to our purpose in life – following our intuition. “The highest compliment I’ve ever been paid was, ‘Frankie, you ask the question behind the question!’ The ultimate question is, ‘Why are we together creating a world none of us would choose?’” 11:45 “Idea that what is special about humanity is that we see the world through filters that are culturally created, and we can’t see what’s outside of that… we’re trapped in a series of blinders – the scarcity mind...that’s what we have to break. Food in many ways can help us to break that.” 12:45 “Asking the question behind the question throughout our lives is the most satisfying way to live.” 12:52 Final word on what gives Frances hope now. “Hope is not what we seek in evidence…but what we become in action together.” 14:08 “We were born at this unique moment in human history on our planet where so much is at stake. What an honor. What an honor to be alive right now.” Episode resouces, suggested reading & social media handles:·        https://www.smallplanet.org/·        https://www.smaThanks for listening to Hawthorne Valley’s Roots to Renewal podcast. We are an association comprised of a variety of interconnected initiatives that work collectively to meet our mission. You can learn more about our work by visiting our website at hawthornevalley.org. Hawthorne Valley is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization, and we rely on the generosity of people like you to make our work a reality. Please consider making a donation to support us today. If you’d like to help us in other ways, please help us spread the word about this podcast by sharing it with your friends, and leaving us a rating and review.If you'd like to follow the goings-on at the farm and our initiatives, follow us on Instagram!
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