I had a vague idea of what Camphill was before I went and soon I realized I knew next to nothing and truly had a lot to learn.
The Camphill movement was started by Rudolf Steiner, I later found out. Steiner is an entire concept in and of himself. I mean, people have devoted life-times to the study of Steiner, he’s an extremely esoteric concept.
It’s said that Steiner was clairvoyant and partially because of this had (and still does have) a following.
The Camphill movement encapsulates an intentional community that is formed around volunteers and serving those with disabilities who are an active part of the community, if not the center.
The community was made for people with disabilities.
The communities are nearly world wide and follow a specific architectural design, as well as modeling certain behaviors and spiritual practices/beliefs.
Life long or long term, live-in volunteers are all anthroposophists and follow the anthroposophical movement that Steiner began.
The Camphill villages are self-sustaining, thereby supporting themselves financially through biodynamic farming, herbalism, selling their crafts and creations, and receiving donations.
Camphill Village Kimberton Hills (the Camphill Village I specifically was on) was situated on ~300+ acres, containing a field garden, dairy farm, orchard, herb garden, a fiber arts studio, pottery work rooms, a weevery, and much much more….
There were ~100 people at all times living there, spread out across various community houses in which a set of house holders lived and ran the house, with other temporary volunteers and villagers living there too.
So… In a nutshell, that was Camphill.
Even though I had just finished a quarantine, I was required upon arrival to quarantine again. At first, it was sort of a bummer, but after I started it, I was actually very thankful for this. I didn’t realize it beforehand, but I really needed that.
2 weeks of predominant solitude in a serene location was so healing.
I spent my quarantine in Rosemary, a small fairy-esk circular cottage tucked into a forest just beyond a large grassy field looking out at a literal mansion.
There would be bunnies on the porch in the mornings. Inside was totally white-washed, open, and lovely. There was a small kitchenette, bathroom, and a ladder leading to a loft area. I loved it.
Actually, heading in any direction from my front door would lead to beautiful walking paths.
My food was always fresh, healthy, vegan and/or vegetarian, and hand delivered to my front door... Wow...
My schedule was different than the rest of the village during my quarantine. Most of the village went to their assigned workshops at 8:30AM, broke for lunch at 12PM, had an hour rest from 1-2PM, and then went to their afternoon workshop at 2:30-5PM, had dinner about 6:30PM, and then bed whenever past that, with one evening and full day off a week.
I would go to the garden about 9:30AM, work ’til lunch alone, assigned to a rogue project which kept me away from people, and was told the afternoon workshop was optional due to me having to work alone anyways. I decided to take all but one afternoon to myself because of this.
My solitary morning work fluctuated from seeding to invasive species removal which was mostly targeted at thorny (and painful) roses. Although, my first day was glorious, as I was asked to harvest dandelion flower heads to aid in biodynamic compost preparations! I spent an entire morning picking flowers.
My day-to-day during quarantine included the morning work, where I joyfully awoke each morning to make my breakfast and coffee.
The afternoons ranged from exploring the incredible land, hanging out with my new friend and his bunny who were quaranting over the same time as me, meeting other new and perfect friends (from a COVID safe distance, of course…), reading, writing, drawing, playing ukulele, watching movies… Basically, whatever I wanted and it was truly beautiful.
A lot of personal development occurred at Camphill, starting with the cultivation of important and influential friendships and following with long hours of self-discovery work (much of which happened during walks in Nature, but also through good books, developing consciousness of elemental beings, and a new and profound sense of awareness for what felt like everything).
Quarantine was incredibly fulfilling and I am so grateful for that.
With love and light,
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