Living local in a globalized world!  In this newsletter, we highlight lessons-learned from our first year.

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Pachaysana: Arts fos Social Change in the Ecuadorian Amazon

Pacha… Mundo… World

What is "living locally" and "thinking globally"?

Last month we discussed the "Aysana" of our name, exploring how our Rehearsing Change program seeks to create a more balanced relationship with our world. This month, we share some reflections about living in the world, or "Pacha." 

We often hear the phrase, "live locally, think globally," referring to the importance of acting ethically at the local level because our actions have global consequences. The phrase is catchy, making it easy to spread and teach, but also easy to take for granted, equating our ethical action with little more than recycling. As we celebrate one year of formal activity, Pachaysana reflects on some lessons-learned while working with local Amazon communities and passionate international students. We share them now.

Expand your "Thinking" - Pacha is more than "Mundo"

Our experiences working with Ecuador's Indigenous peoples have taught us that our westernized approach to thinking is certainly limited. Pacha does mean World and Earth, but only because we ease translation by finding the closest words in our languages. Most indigenous scholars suggest Pacha actually means "space & time." 

Our project participants often tell us that their greatest lesson is realizing just how interconnected the world is. However, this lesson goes beyond the obvious, such as oil from the Ecuadorian Amazon is consumed by the rest of the world.  That is too simple, too limited to "space."  

Thinking globally must include the "time" as well as the "space," which interconnects us with generations past, and those yet to come.  We can't help but wonder that our project participants feel empowered by our work because recognizing interconnection represents the ageless celebration of our humanity. It is the magical mirror in which we see ourselves reflected in the "other"  

So, Pachaysana's lesson is that "thinking globally" means thinking about Pacha, not the globe; it cannot be static or over-simplified. We must go beyond observing the world as something distant and foreign, we must observe it as a reflection of ourselves. That way, our thinking becomes part of the celebration. 


Diversify your "living" - pluralize the "local"

Thinking globally is enhanced by expanding our experiences in living locally. While we certainly respect the need for a home and embracing your long-standing local community, we also recognize the seemingly endless comments from our participants, all of whom declared greater levels of consciousness because they were asked to leave their comfort zone and engaged in another local life.  Whether you are an international student living in an Amazonian community or a member of a non-indigenous community spending time in the communities of your indigenous neighbors, it is clear that diversifying perceptions of local realities will help you "live locally" back at home.  We all have the opportunity to learn about other communities, since even our smallest cities are now so diverse. We hope you will pluralize your local experiences.
Rehearsing Change applications are OPEN
Our study abroad program to begin Jan 2105

REHEARSING CHANGE announces the opening of applications for the spring 2015 semester. No other study abroad program in the world will give you such a "living local-thinking global" experience. Be part of the first Fair Trade Learning semester-long study abroad program, where local community counterparts work and study alongside of the international students. Facilitated by leading scholars and teaching artists, our project-based classes ask participants to examine the conflicts between local and global realities, and to use dialogue and innovation to create change.  REHEARSING CHANGE is academically accredited by the University San Francisco de Quito, which provides official transcripts to international students. Write for more info.

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Pachaysana shares articles and videos on Facebook

We do our best to share pertinent articles and videos available on our Facebook pages.  Keep up with news and interesting articles at:  You can also view images from our latest project, Searching for Balance, at the Rehearsing Change Facebook page. Here are links to some of our most popular articles and videos: a video of a controversial government-built village in the middle of the rainforest for a community that concessioned its land to oil exploration, a well-researched CNN article on oil exploration in Ecuador, an article/petition to stop oil drilling in Yasuni National Park, and a Newsweek article from January about a tragic massacre of an isolated indigenous community. We are even starting a YouTube channel, where you can see our guide walking on top of a cesspool of oil waste,
Copyright © 2014 Pachaysana Institute, All rights reserved.

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