At The Grange we look to systems that have demonstrated resilience over thousands or millions of years for inspiration, and to teach us some of the lessons we need to create more resilience in our own society. Two of the most resilient systems we can study are nature, and some traditional societies which have found ways to survive and thrive in dynamic equilibrium with their ecosystems and bioregions.
It was some of these traditional societies that inspired us to create a group of Elders for The Grange to provide the wisdom and guidance that needed to sustain and develop the work we do. In our modern society, older people are too often ignored and their wisdom is lost through a lack of respect – or simply a lack of time given just to listen and learn. In many traditional societies on the other hand, the elders were accorded positions of great respect and played a vital role passing on the teachings of the ancestors to the younger generations.
The Grange Elders is a group of nine people, not all of whom are old in years, who have offered their time and service to provide wisdom and support to our young community as it grows and changes. They meet at The Grange for two weekends a year, one in May and one in November, and many are very involved in other ways throughout the year.
At our most recent Elders gathering which took place last weekend (28/29 November) we also welcomed some other 'Elders' who have been involved with The Grange in the last 12 months to share their ideas, as well as their skills, and our discussions took place around the fire whilst we also learned to weave and then spent the evening playing music together. It was a wonderful weekend and extremely nourishing for Sophie and I, but I think the most important thing is that we have this network of extraordinary people who help to keep us grounded and to ensure that we are keeping the heart fire of The Grange burning.
We would like to thank all The Elders once again for their time and energy, and also to thank everyone else who contributes to The Grange in so many ways.