Konohana - 1-Sign

Much like a huge family, the 85 members of this Japanese ecovillage live together and share their resources. (see pp. 94-5 in the book)

Konohana - 2-Konohana_fileds

The fields of Konohana Ecovillage all lie under the watchful eye of Mt. Fuji.

Konohana - 3-Carrot harvest

Konohana is committed to cultivating the mind while cultivating the fields.

Konohana - 4-Goats

A key ingredient in the Konohana diet—for humans as well as animals—is Konohana Kin, a fermented herbal brew rich in probiotic bacteria. (pp. 29-30)

Konohana - 5-Shitake Mushroom logs

Members of the farm team take a break from the fields in order to prepare logs for shitake mushroom cultivation.

Konohana - 6-Food_prep

Besides being nearly 100% food self-sufficient, Konohana prepares wholesome organic vegetarian meals for hundreds of people in the region.

Konohana - 7-Food is art

Beauty is a vital aspect of life at Konohana. Even food is prepared and displayed as artwork.

Konohana - 8-Konohana dinner

The community shares its meals at one very long table. After dinner each night, members discuss the day’s events in light of their spiritual values. (p. 121)

Konohana - 9-Isadon

For Konohana’s founder, Furuta Isami (or Isadon), farming is at once a social, ecological, and spiritual practice. (pp. 172-3)

Konohana - 10-Festival

Konohana integrates its passion for farming and community process with seasonal celebrations.

Konohana - 11-Children

Growing up at Konohana, where nearly one third of the members are children, one is never at a loss for playmates.

Konohana - 12-Music

Music is a key ingredient in Konohana’s unique integration of spirituality, community, and artistic expression.

KH_baby_earth

This painting at Konohana depicts humanity as a baby holding Earth’s fate in its hands while also being held by the Divine. (pp. 172-3)

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Konohana

Konohana Family, an ecovillage that sits under the towering presence of Japan’s Mt. Fuji, takes its name from the goddess once thought to inhabit this venerable mountain.

As of 2012, 58 adults and 25 children belong to the Konohana Family. Because members share close quarters, all meals and all finances, their ecological footprint is about 1/3 the Japanese average—or 1/6 the US average. In other words, a Konohana lifestyle would be sustainable if everyone on Earth lived it.

The community’s bountiful fields grow 250 varieties of rice, soy, and vegetables. Farming is at once the basis of the community’s collective economy, its efforts to come into harmony with nature, and its spiritual life. Konohana’s motto is, “Before cultivating the field, first cultivate the mind.”

The community glue is the intense after-dinner conversation that ensues every evening and lasts sometimes until the early morning hours. Konohana’s members use this time to reflect on how well they were able to implement God’s will that day.

On my first night, I received the warmest welcome I’ve ever received as a stranger: a personal performance by Konohana’s singers. With passionate honesty, they sang songs they had themselves written about such personal matters as giving up selfishness and coming to love one another and the Earth. As other guests arrived during my visit, I realized that they do this for everyone who comes.

Official website (in English): http://www.konohana-family.org/for-non-japanese-speakers/

United Nations University Video: “Mt. Fuji Eco-village Connects to a Greener World” http://ourworld.unu.edu/en/konohana

 

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