As I already mentioned in my last post, I grew up in a slightly different village in Germany. But what is so special about it? Why “Ecovillage?” Is it just a unique project or is it the future way of living?      

Well that’s what I want to share with you in a little blog during the next few months! 

The village, which is called “Sieben Linden” has around 150 habitants (105 adults, 45 children) and 13 multiple-apartment buildings nowadays. What seems to you like a little dump is in reality the result of 24 years of hard work and high ambitions. In 1997 Sieben Linden was nothing more than an old rundown farm, when a group of pioneers bought the land and started something big. Their idea: to build up a village, that enables a resource-saving lifestyle as good as possible.

Sieben Linden is based on the “5 dimensions of sustainability,” which are: 

  1. Ecological ways of living and building. This is of course the village’s main goal. The ways in which this is implemented in Sieben Linden is the topic that we will be discussing in the next few weeks.  🙂
  2. Social cohesion and diversity. Sieben Linden is a community, many things are shared, such as: houses/apartments, shared cars, a joint food cooperation, a central building complex for everybody and many other matters. This way of living together requires a lot of tolerance, patience and an equal treatment for everybody.
  3. Economical equality and solidarity. The village offers an alternative model to capitalism. That means that the village is trying to balance the wages for every kind of work. Furthermore, children are financially supported and raised by the community, which makes the village family friendly.
  4. Shared visions in art, culture and communication. This is an important part of living in a community. Cultural events and especially good communication enable strong relationships and mutual trust, which is important for peaceful problem solving and constructive thinking forward. 
  5. Holistic worldview. Living in Sieben Linden feels like being in a bubble. Such a peaceful and protected environment always poses the danger of losing the sight of the real meaning of the project. To have an “holistic worldview” means for Sieben Linden to not forget that they are a pilot project, whose aim is to show the world that life can also be wonderful and comfortable, while protecting our planet from climate change. 

As you can see the village is all about community, sharing and helping. Otherwise this fast realization of dreams wouldn’t have been possible. This cohesion is one of the best things about Sieben Linden, even though it can be really exhausting at the same time. Every single matter has to be discussed and voted. For every issue there are multiple opinions. 

But this is how a real democracy works. It is never easy. Sometimes tenacious and exhausting. But in the end it is the only way how people can live together in peace and equality.