Aligned by Nature

The need for an affordable and secure home and shelter is a basic need common to all of humanity across our planet.  This need is not being met for many people.  People of all nationalities go without decent shelter. At the same time our homes and lifestyles dramatically affect the health of our one true collective home, the earths’ living biosphere.  The challenge is to meet need for shelter in ways that align with the gifts and the power or nature.  And is so doing, align with our own true nature as part of the biosphere, not separated.

Exciting times we live in.  To rise to the challenge we must open up to possibility.  That means looking at the technologies, building forms, land policies, and ways of organising that offer the best chance to identify, explore and deploy designs and structures for naturally aligned living.  It means respecting and bringing together indigenous and traditional know-how with hi technology.  The best of both worlds, mixing mud and technology for living and building better.

Groundhouse started out as a bold attempt to do exactly that.  A team of people came together to design and build a state of the art earthship in Brittany.  Hundreds of people participated and gave their experience and energy to make it happen.  I took on the role of financing and orchestrating.  Kevin McCloud took on the role of getting the story out across the world through Channel 4s’ Grand Designs. We built, filmed, and lived in the Brittany Groundhouse.

The challenge will not be met by finding one perfect building form, even one as holistic and integrated as the earthship.  As a result, the team that worked together on this first Groundhouse is now collaborating  to explore the diversity of visions for aligned living – the technologies, building forms, land policies, and ways of organising that we urgently need for shelter that works for people and the biosphere. will become a new hub to explore shelter…for people.

We are doing this through more designing and building and through short films.  We are going right back to basics to design and build low costs modular eco-cabins that can be easily built, taken down and moved.  For more look at HomeHuts.  These go anywhere home huts will help with planning constraints and site access.  Also underway is the first short film, a 101Vision for Strawbale Building with Bee Rowan.

Daren Howarth

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