Mission & Vision
Our Three Branches:
Natural Systems Solutions
Holistic Living Institute
Articles, Essays, and Rants
- Rational Spirituality: Self-evidence of the Web of Life (or: How to quit dancing on the deck of the Titanic but still thoroughly enjoy life) - Our underlying assumptions and premises within the philosophy of science, systems science, and ecopsychology which, of necessity, involves the mind, body and spirit. This is also the unique path on which we are developing the Natural Systems Thinking Process. Introduction by Dave and Allison, chapter pulls by Dave.
- The American Dream is Killing Us: A Wake-Up Call-and a New Dream of a Simply Beautiful Life - Ever pause to wonder how Nature has sustained perfectly balanced, life-promoting harmony on Earth for billions of years? Ever wonder why humans are dramatically upsetting the balance? Is there something we can do about itóbefore
itís too late? By Allison
- Natural Consensus - A method of building consensus within groups, communities, and working teams. By Dave and Allison
- A New Story: Culturally Creative Diversity and Finding Home - The diversity within one's self, and the diversity in the social and ecosphere make up our true self and home. With that as a start, we can develop a new story to live by that will allow all others to live as well. By Dave
- Spirituality Ads - Some ad ideas for the New Age crowd that I'll probably never run. Even though I very much agree with the Buddhist thought that there are many paths to the One Way, sometimes it just seems too self-serving, self-centered, or... just too "out there". If you're overly sensitive about your own favorite, or otherwise humor deprived, please skip this page. By Dave
- Terra-ists vs. Terrorists - A lay sermon presented to the Evergreen Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, Marysville, WA, a few weeks after 9/11. By Dave
- Health and Wealth: A Lesson From Nature - The title pretty well sums it up. By Allison
- Nature As Life Coach - When it comes to healing, wellness, and empowerment, sometimes a coach is more in line with what you need than a counselor. Nature is perfectly suited for both roles. by Dave
- Natural Systems: Demonstrating the Interdependencies Between Sustainability and Democracy - Published in the proceedings for the 50th International Society for the Systems Sciences conference, "Complexity, Sustainability, and Democracy," July 9-14, 2006. by Dave
- Reflections on Rep. Grijalva's Global Warming Roundtable - This is a reflection written after attending U.S. Representative Raul Grijalva's (D-AZ) convening of a Climate Change Roundtable at Armory Park Del Sol in Tucson, AZ. by Dave
- Water and a Sustainable Quality of Life - Here's a paper Dave presented at the 2007 Regional Water Symposium, sponsored by Southwest Hydrology and the Arizona Hydrological Society, to answer the Symposium's question, "Sustainable Water, Unlimited Growth, Quality of Life - Can We Have It All?" Can you guess the answer Dave gave?
Published Articles in the Local Press
- Body Burden - Northwest Sun, June 2004. How to tell to what degree you've been turned into a walking superfund site by the chemical industry in the largest unregulated biological experiment in human history. It's actually worse than you think. by Dave
- Experience Your Organic Self - Organic Press, June 2004. Discover self-evidence of your interconnection with the web of life. Health, self-worth, empowerment, and fulfillment are nature's gift to you as part of nature. By Dave
- The Deadly Fallacies of Growth Management - Whatcom Watch, June and July, 2004. This was run as a two part article, and covers erroneous Growth Management Act beliefs, some of the negative effects of sprawl, growth, chemical toxins and industrial pollution, hard numbers on Whatcom County population, land mass, decreasing income, and acres of farmland, and the positive response offered by sustainable development and steady-state economics. by Dave
- Growth At Any Cost? - Organic Press, April 2006 - The Natural Systems Response to Growth. The first in a new regular column, "Developing Naturally," by Dave Ewoldt addressing ways natural systems can inform the growth debate and guide us on a path toward sustainability. By Dave
- Systemic Solutions: Relocalization - Organic Press, May 2006. The 2nd "Developing Naturally" column. If sustainability is our goal, what's the process that will get us there? By Dave
- Common Growth Myths - Organic Press, June 2006. The 3rd "Developing Naturally" column. Some of the common myths that maintain the status quo of the orthodox growth (doomsday) economy. By Dave
- An Analogy - Written for the Organic Press, July 2006 "Developing Naturally" column. You'll just have to read it to see what it's all about. Here's a hint: an iceberg named growth. By Dave
- Rejecting Growth: A Viable Policy Option - This was an op-ed piece published by the Arizona Daily Star. It was written as a response to the Report and Recommendations, "Realizing the Possibilities," of the Tucson Regional Town Hall held earlier in the Spring of 2007. By Dave
Public Testimony on Growth
Talks and Presentations
- The Natural Systems Thinking Process: Creating Intentional Communities and Sustainable Local Economies - Dave presented this talk as part of the events for a Memorial Week teach-in, "Building Democracy in Troubled Times," at Western Washington University in May, 2003.
- Corporatism, Objectivism, and Their Fundamental Clash with Natural Systems - Dave was part of a panel which followed a screening of the Peak Oil documentary, "End of Suburbia," at Western Washington University in February, 2005 to a standing room only crowd. This was Attraction Retreat's second best attended public screening of this documentary.
- Environmental Justice Through Relocalization - Forum on Environmental Racism and Injustice Monday, April 17th, 2006. Co-sponsored by the Whatcom Human Rights Task Force and WWU's "Let's Talk" series. Dave addressed the issue of class, pointing out that environmental justice is not just an issue that goes along racial lines but is very much a socioeconomic issue as well.
- Water, the Commons, and Sustainability - September 29, 2007. Co-sponsored by Tucson's Democracy Organizing Group and Alliance for Democracy, this panel discussion was titled "Our Water: Corporate Profit or Human Right?" We are facing critical issues in regard to water availability in Tucson, and collective and democratic decisions must be made, including Proposition 200, the Water Users' Bill of Rights. This is the transcript of Dave's presentation.
Toastmasters Speeches by Dave
- The Icebreaker Speech - An introduction, who I am, background, etc. This is a combination bio and vita. The path from '60s peace and justice radical to engineer to ecopsychology researcher to anti-corporate environmental radical.
- Overcoming Separation - A short background on ecopsychology, and why I use a methodology of applied ecopsychology known as the Natural Systems Thinking Process in my work and in my life.
- The Earth Charter: Framework for Sustainable Development - Often called the people's declaration of interdependence, the Earth Charter can be used as a soft law document that provides a framework for sustainable development.
- Naturally Sustainable Community - What is an intentional community, and how building mutually supportive relationships can turn any city into an intentional community.
- What, or When, is Enough? - Growth management is a concept that applies to our personal lives as well as the communities we live in. Misapplied, it can cause quite a bit of grief in both. Awarded blue ribbon for best speech of the evening.
- Global Warming - Yes, it's real. Yes, we're causing it. And yes, there's something we can do about it.
- From Dominator to Partner - It's time to move beyond our 10,000 year cultural detour of domination and control based on fear and force. We are naturally part of the creative, cooperative ways of a life-giving universe. There's a whole planet full of evidence to support this alternative to "the way things are."
- Peak Oil - The peak of global oil production and increasing rate of decline spells the end of the Industrial Growth Society that depends on increasing supplies of cheap energy. Here's what it means and what we can do as we head into a renewable, locally produced energy future. Awarded blue ribbon for best speech of the evening.
- Relocalization Campaign - Bringing the relocalization message to local politics, Dave ran for Whatcom County Council in the 2005 local primary. He gathered a lot of support from across the political spectrum, but as the local paper's editorial board said, the population wasn't quite ready. As a non-profit, Attraction Retreat did not officially endorse Dave's campaign.
- Transforming Despair Into Empowerment - The despair and pain we feel for the world and her suffering peoples is not a sign there is something wrong with us, it is a sign of our interconnectedness and a signal that we are empowered to do something about it. Sustainable lifestyles and supportive community relationships are a conscious choice we can make, once we remove the legitimacy we give exploitation and greed.
- A Community Sustainability Project - If a sustainable future is our goal, what does it mean, how do we measure our progress, what do we have to work with, and what's missing? Community awareness and support, and a regional asset inventory are the first steps, and that's what the Community Assessment and Sustainability Inventory project entails.
- Steady-state Economies - The normal operation of a growth economy is an unmitigated environmental disaster, and "market forces" are simply the politically correct term for unmitigated greed. Rejection of growth is more than just a viable policy option. Our very survival depends on halting the growth economy and creating a sustainable alternative.