Humans of Ängsbacka is a photo project of portraits and interviews collected at Ängsbacka course & festival center.
It started in November 2018 with the photographer Ken Buslay from the idea of Marc Domingos to share stories about the community living here.
“After quitting my job, I started traveling and got interested in the Ecovillage movement. I invested a lot of energy into the idea of starting one myself but I came to realize that I needed to live in one to see what I would find in that community experience. Then I came to Ängsbacka for three weeks while Volunteering through the EVS program for the GEN-Europe conference that was held here in 2017 and decided to stay on. Coming from a hotel management background I found that I could implement my knowledge and be supportive in this community. How to balance community life and business was what I was really curious about.
What made me stay was the sense of family or tribe that I felt. I opened parts of myself that I have never shown to this world because I have been too afraid. And I also get to see the others in their power, joy, anger or sadness as we are all being mirrors to each other. Experiencing that all these emotions are being held and supported by the community and being able to give back the support in their processes is wonderful.
The structure of the morning meetings, three meals together and offered activities gives me a sense of freedom because I can rely on something. It relaxes me and allows me to explore my capacities more freely because I feel safe, knowing there is a structure that I can rely on. Everyone here can trust in this because we are all creating it together, for everyone to have their space to explore other things. This is a big difference to the world outside in which YOU constantly need to make sure that you are safe.
Ängsbacka gives me the space to go into processes, inner journeys that let me free myself from things that were hurting me or making me feel uncomfortable and I witness the others in the community doing that as well. I believe that this melts into the collective consciousness and it helps each one to recognize themselves in the other’s processes. It makes me see everyday how related we are.
It also is a challenge to live with so many people and constantly see myself reflected. At the same time it gives me the delight to understand that how I react to them is how I react to myself. The others are triggering me and when I dare to go beyond the first reaction I get the chance to see my behavior in their actions and grow from it. Through that, I learn how to love and accept myself and develop unconditional love for others.
Also, I learned about the power of prayer through making music. It helped me find my way back to God in a sense that has nothing to do with the idea of God that I was brought up with. And again, I get so see God in the others in the community. It all comes down to the same thing, one love.
The major personal step that I made here and that I am able to bring to the world outside, would be the integration of the knowledge into my nervous system that I am enough just the way I am. To be authentic and true to myself in any situation, no matter what. The true me is what I have to give and want to spread out into the world.”
Keep tuned next week for a new story from Ängsbacka!