LAND, HEALING & LIBERATION PROJECT
Land access is one of the deepest forms of liberation for people who have been historically marginalized. It gives us the freedom to live differently, heal, create, and nurture ourselves and each other. It gives us agency in a way that being landless does not. In being together on the land, we move towards experiencing collectivity and reciprocity with nature, plants, animals, and each other, and away from individualism. In a way, it's a return to old ways of thinking where we lived with nature and each other, and not on top of it, taking and extracting. This is at the core of our values at The Ahimsa Collective.
The center provides short and longer term healing stays for communities of color, formerly incarcerated people, survivors, justice workers, and queer folks in our community. It is a place where people can have time away to heal; a place for justice workers to rest, reflect, and build together; and a space for people who need to get away from abusive or violent conditions.
People who have experienced harm, people of color, and poor people have little access to time and space to experience healing. For many communities, healing is scoffed at and labeled a luxury; meanwhile, complex unaddressed trauma never gets tending to, and so people live in terror, anger, depression, and a body that is constantly under duress. It is imperative that we change this narrative: healing is not a luxury. Healing is essential to stopping harm, to safety, and to liberation. We have to internalize Audre Lorde’s brilliant words that “self care can be one of the most radical acts.”
For justice workers, too often we see movements implode as internal conflict destroys trust amongst members. More and more movement builders are waking up to the fact that movements will not succeed without deep internal self-work, healing trauma and building community. Movement workers also need time to think, strategically plan, and grow their work, which is best done when people have time and space together.
This project intends to exist as the deepest expression of belonging, community, healing, interdependence, spirituality and love. We are attempting to create the conditions where people can experience healing from violence and trauma in nature, both alone and in community with others. We hope to help break the isolation and silos many feel within this culture of individualism and modernity. We are attempting to provide the movement a space to work out its conflicts and tensions, and to innovate for the future.
We are certain that the land belonged to and still belongs to the trees, the water, the plants and animals that have been its inhabitants for centuries. We honor that the first people who lived in harmony with this land were the Awaswas-speaking Uypi Tribe of The Amah Mutsun Tribal Band.