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New Culture is a grassroots network that seeks to build a sustainable, violence-free culture through transparency, equality, and compassion. These principles are applied in every aspect of human existence, including intimate relationships, social networks, parenting, education, employment, and activism.
We have a strong focus on social enterprise: creating and operating self-sustaining businesses that foster social benefits as well as providing income. Unlike many conventional non-profit organizations that depend on grants, gifts, etc., social enterprise is self-funding, and can be more independent than grants-based agencies. Our Abrams Creek Retreat Center, for instance, provides an affordable venue for life-affirming events. These include workshops and celebrations focused on ecology, permaculture, primitive skills, personal growth, social change, spiritual development, music, the arts, and education of the whole person. The great natural beauty of the site contributes significantly to the growth and healing of the individual, to the power and depth of the event, and to the cohesion and vitality of any organization.
New Culture focuses both inward and outward, developing personal insight and empowerment while developing effective social change strategies; a core insight is that "It is hard to bring peace to the world when you are at war with yourself." It also incorporates a continual reaching out to other visionary individuals and groups to expand our insights and practices.
Unlike many visionary groups that try to conform reality to their principles, we acknowledge that our principles must be informed by and consonant with real-life experience. When the principles and the reality don’t match, that is when the most exciting learning begins.
Through workshops, open houses, weekend events, and ten-day summer camps, the Center for a New Culture has built a network of participants stretching across the country and beyond. There are also intentional communities and businesses that have been built on New Culture insights, extending its scope and reach. These varied contexts give us opportunities to test our ideas against what actually happens.
- Michael Rios
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