G.A.L.A. is inviting community members in participate in an upcoming study circle titled “Discovering a Sense of Place” scheduled to begin this November. Discovering a Sense of Place is one of eight courses designed by Granite Earth Institute (GEI). The course goals of Discovering a Sense of Place are to understand the meaning of a “bioregional perspective”, to consider the benefits of consciously developing an intimate relationship with your place, and to explore what it might mean to protect the place where you live. Complete course descriptions can be found at http://www.graniteearth.org/geicourses.htm
This seven-session course is organized chronologically by the following topics/chapters:
• A Sense of Place: Wendell Berry, America’s best-known bioregionalist, says if you don’t know where you are, you don’t know who you are. With a sense of place, your identity is defined—to a significant extent—by the natural features of the place where you live;
• Responsibility to Place: there is a difference between living on the land and dwelling in it—understanding its rhythms, its potential, and its limits. Those who develop intimacy with a place over time tend to accept responsibility for it
• Knowing Your Bioregion: Your bioregion is a unique place with its own watershed, soils, climate, plants, animals, and history. How much do you know about it?;
• Living in Place: Living in place means consciously trying to satisfy your needs and find your pleasures in your local bioregion and working to assure the long-term health of the bioregion;
• Mapping Your Place: Mapping can be learned by local groups and individuals to give a new sense of place. Whereas a typical map shows political subdivisions and transportation routes, a bioregionalist’s map delineates regions based on watersheds, climate, and plant types, thereby helping people relate to their natural surroundings;
• Building Local Community: A bioregionalist assumes responsibility for the health and continuity of a place, not only its natural features, but also the social bonds of its people;
• Empowerment: Knowing a place can inspire and empower one to take action to preserve it or take part in its restoration. How important is individual and group action in modern society?
All study circles are open to the public. Granite Earth Institute suggests a donation of $20 per workbook, though workbooks can be sold back to GEI at the end of the course if participants so desire. If you are interested in participating in this upcoming course, contact G.A.L.A. volunteer Pat Jones by calling 569-0031 or email email@example.com no later than Friday, October 31st. Upon receiving enough inquires, G.A.L.A. will determine an appropriate venue and meeting time, at which point a schedule and list of participants will be finalized.