Chelsea Green Publishing

Ancient Futures, 3rd Edition

Pages:244 pages
Size: 6 x 9 inch
Publisher:Local Futures
Paperback: 9780692530627
Pub. Date April 27, 2016

Ancient Futures, 3rd Edition

By Helena Norberg-Hodge
Foreword by H.H. The Dalai Lama

Availability: In Stock

Paperback

Available Date:
April 27, 2016

$19.95

A moving portrait of tradition and change in Ladakh, or “Little Tibet,” Ancient Futures is also a scathing critique of the global economy and a rallying call for economic localization.

When Helena Norberg-Hodge first visited Ladakh in 1975, she found a pristine environment, a self-reliant economy and a people who exhibited a remarkable joie de vivre. But then came a tidal wave of economic growth and development. Over the last four decades, this remote Himalayan land has been transformed by outside markets and Western notions of “progress.” As a direct result, a whole range of problems—from polluted air and water to unemployment, religious conflict, eating disorders and youth suicide—have appeared for the first time.

Yet this is far from a story of despair. Social and environmental breakdown, Norberg-Hodge argues, are neither inevitable nor evolutionary, but the products of political and economic decisions—and those decisions can be changed. In a new Preface, she presents a kaleidoscope of projects around the world that are pointing the way for both human and ecological well-being. These initiatives are the manifestation of a rapidly growing localization movement, which works to rebuild place-based cultures—strengthening community and our connection with nature.

Ancient Futures challenges us to redefine what a healthy economy means, and to find ways to carry centuries-old wisdom into our future. The book and a related film by the same title have, between them, been translated into more than 40 languages.

REVIEWS AND PRAISE

"Ancient Futures is one of the most important books of our time. As corporate powers threaten to destroy diverse cultures all over the world, Norberg-Hodge portrays an ancient way of life practiced by a people who live in greater harmony with each other and nature. Indeed in these pages one encounters a living example of a future that could save us all."--Susan Griffin, author of Woman and Nature and A Chorus of Stones  

"An indispensible book for people who are trying to protect rural life."--Wendell Berry, author of The Unsettling of America and The Way of Ignorance

"Some books provide insights into our problems, others offer guidelines for a different future.  Ancient Futures does both, brilliantly.  A true classic."--Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy and The End of Nature

"What the noble and intrepid Helena Norberg-Hodge beheld in Ladakh becomes a lesson for all the world. Lucid and poignant, Ancient Futures ranks with Mutual Aidas a classic of human ecology and unyielding hope."--Stephanie Mills, author of In Service of the Wild

"Though full of stories and photographs of the Ladakhi way of life, [Ancient Futures] is much more than a travelogue; it is… an ecologue…. The Western industrial ‘monoculture’ that has infected and endangers the rich ancient culture of Ladakh is the one that is endangering us, its progenitors, as well. A book that must be heeded."--Kirkpatrick Sale, The Nation

"When I first read Ancient Futures in 1992, it changed my life, and it has colored my thinking in all the years since. Today, after nearly a quarter of a century of globalization — and the expansion of economic inequality and the decline of ecosystems that come with it — this book's insights are more current, and more needed, than ever."--Richard Heinberg, author of The End of Growth

"Now more than ever we need to read and heed the lessons Helena Norberg Hodge offered us 25 years ago. We can wish we had changed course since Ancient Futures was first published, but now is the time to turn regret into strong determination to be change-makers, each one of us, in our spheres of influence."--Vicki Robin, co-author of Your Money or Your Life

"This passionate book is a gift to us all… an experience-based manifesto for change."--Alice Waters, founder of Chez Panisse

"Ancient Futures shows us a world that once was, that might inform the world to be. Its grief is tempered with hope, its radicalism with compassion. It was a formative influence on my worldview. That it is still so relevant today, 25 years later, shows how far ahead of its time it was."--Charles Eisenstein, author of Sacred Economics

"Helena Norberg-Hodge’s telling of the story of Ladakh carries insights that will be increasingly vital for us all."--Wes Jackson, founder of the Land Institute

"Ancient Futures is a magnificent book that has had a huge impact on the course of my life’s work. Its central message is wonderfully empowering. As Helena Norberg-Hodge shows us, so many of the problems we face in the modern world are not the product of “human nature”, and therefore out of our control,  but of clearly-defined political and economic decisions. Another, better world is possible!"--Francis Moore Lappé, author of Diet for a Small Planet and EcoMind

"A sensitive, thought-provoking account."--New York Review of Books

"Everyone who cares about the future of this planet, about their children’s future, and about the deterioration in the quality of life in our own society, should read this book."--The Guardian (England)

"Masterfully, Helena Norberg-Hodge conveys that when we engage in the artisan world of ‘local’ and ‘less’ we have more time and more meaningful lives. At this point in history, we have little choice but to move quickly in that direction. Ancient Futures lights the path to those important next steps!"--Randy Hayes, Founder of Rainforest Action Network

"In this outstanding book, the story of Ladakh is told by Helena Norberg-Hodge with passion and compassion. Ancient Futures has proven to be a wonderful guide and companion providing a positive vision of an economy that respects traditional values and brings wellbeing to people. I recommend the book wholeheartedly to business leaders, policy makers, academics and those who are concerned with the future of our planet."--Satish Kumar, founder of Schumacher College

"Ancient Futures seems all the more relevant today because of the widespread contemporary efforts to build up local economies, to reweave the social fabric of relationships (so necessary to health and well-being), and to cultivate ecological wisdom in living on this Earth. The very real possibilities so beautifully and insightfully conveyed by Helena Norberg-Hodge are inspiring and timely. This book is a gem."--Charlene Spretnak, author of The Resurgence of the Real 

"Ancient Futures was a critical early warning about the enormous social, spiritual and ecological costs of exporting “Western” lifestyles to every corner of the globe."--Naomi Klein, author of This Changes Everything

"Twenty-five years ago, Helena Norberg-Hodge published Ancient Futures chronicling the mostly depressing changes to the lives of the Ladakhi people as Western civilization disrupted their traditional existence. This new edition reminds us of the fragility with which we all coexist on this planet, and helps us to see that industrialization exacts a price."--Lester R. Brown, author of The Great Transition

"Ancient Futreus is a classic. An inspiring story of a grounded way of living, it was one of the first books to highlight the values of happiness and sufficiency as indicators of genuine progress. Today, this message is more important than ever."--Mary Evelyn Tucker, Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale University

"A classic when it appeared 25 years ago and even more so today . . . a story that offers authentic hope that we can create a humane, joyful, and life-centered future."--David W. Orr, Counselor to the President, Oberlin College, and Minter Fellow, Cleveland Foundation

 

"For decades Helena Norberg-Hodge has been a thinker ahead of her time. Her reflections on the pressures exerted on Ladakh's traditional culture in the name of 'modernisation' come not from the ivory towers of academia but from in-depth, on-the-ground experience. Ancient Futures is a profoundly important book that can help us to redefine the whole notion of 'progress'."--Doug Tompkins, founder of the Foundation for Deep Ecology

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Helena Norberg-Hodge

Helena Norberg-Hodge is the founder of both Local Futures (formerly ISEC) and the International Alliance for Localization (IAL), and is a founding member of the International Forum on Globalization (IFG) and The Global Ecovillage Network. A pioneer of the new economy movement, she has been awarded the Alternative Nobel prize and the Goi Peace Award. She is also the producer and co-director of the award-winning documentary The Economics of Happiness. Helena was the first Westerner in modern times to master the Ladakhi language.

ALSO BY THIS AUTHOR

Gaian Economics

Gaian Economics

Gaian Economics is the second volume in the Four Keys to Sustainable Communities series and sets out to explore how we can develop healthy and abundant societies in harmony with our finite planetary resources.

Using contributions from a wealth of authors (including Small Is Beautiful’s E. F. Schumacher, eco-philosopher Joanna Macy, and Rob Hopkins of the Transition movement), the editors address ways of reducing our consumption to levels that enable natural systems to self-regenerate and to do so in ways that permit a high quality of life—that we live within our means and that we live well.

Since the advent of the Scientific Revolution in the sixteenth century, humans have stood apart from the rest of nature, seeking to manipulate it for their benefit. Thus, we have learned to refer to the natural world as “the environment” and to see it, in economic terms, as little more than a bank of resources to be transformed into products for human use and pleasure. This has brought us to the brink of collapse, with natural systems straining under the weight of the population and the levels at which we are consuming.

We are, however, on the threshold of a shift into a new way of seeing and understanding the world and our place within it—called, by some, the “Ecological Age.” It will be characterized by a new understanding of our place as a thread in the web of life, of our interconnectedness with all other living things. Gaian Economics offers ways forward toward this Ecological Age, giving suggestions for how it may take shape, and how it would work.

The Four Keys represent the four dimensions of sustainable design—the Worldview, the Social, the Ecological, and the Economic. This series is endorsed by UNESCO and is an official contribution to the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. The other books of the series are Beyond You and Me, Designing Ecological Habitats, and The Song of the Earth. The Four Keys to Sustainable Communities series was completed in 2012 and is now available in the U.S. for the first time.

Available in: Paperback

Read More

Gaian Economics

Jonathan Dawson, Ross Jackson, Helena Norberg-Hodge

Paperback $7.49

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

The Organic Seed Grower

The Organic Seed Grower

By John Navazio

The Organic Seed Grower is a comprehensive manual for the serious vegetable grower who is interested in growing high-quality seeds using organic farming practices. It is written for both serious home seed savers and diversified small-scale farmers who want to learn the necessary steps involved in successfully producing a commercial seed crop organically.

Detailed profiles for each of the major vegetables provide users with practical, in-depth knowledge about growing, harvesting, and processing seed for a wide range of common and specialty vegetable crops, from Asian greens to zucchini.

In addition, readers will find extensive and critical information on topics including:

  • The reproductive biology of crop plants
  • Annual vs. biennial seed crops
  • Isolation distances needed to ensure varietal purity
  • Maintaining adequate population size for genetic integrity
  • Seed crop climates
  • Seed-borne diseases
  • Seed-cleaning basics
  • Seed storage for farmers
  • and more . . .

This book can serve as a bridge to lead skilled gardeners, who are already saving their own seed, into the idea of growing seed commercially. And for diversified vegetable farmers who are growing a seed crop for sale for the first time, it will provide details on many of the tricks of the trade that are used by professional seed growers. This manual will help the budding seed farmer to become more knowledgeable, efficient, and effective in producing a commercially viable seed crop.

With the strong demand for certified organic produce, many regional seed companies are increasingly seeking out dedicated seed growers to ensure a reliable source of organically grown seeds for their farmer and gardener customers. This trend represents a great business opportunity for small-scale commercial growers who wish to raise and sell vegetable seeds as a profitable part of their diversified small-farm operation. Written by well-known plant breeder and organic seed expert John Navazio, The Organic Seed Grower is the most up-to-date and useful guide to best practices in this exciting and important field.

Available in: Hardcover

Read More

The Organic Seed Grower

John Navazio

Hardcover $49.95

Journey of the Pink Dolphins

Journey of the Pink Dolphins

By Sy Montgomery

By the acclaimed author of The Soul of an Octopus and the bestselling memoir The Good Good Pig.

When Sy Montgomery ventured into the Amazon to unlock the mysteries of the littleknown pink dolphins, she found ancient whales that plied the Amazon River at dawn and dusk, swam through treetops in flooded forests, and performed underwater ballets with their flexible bodies. But she soon found out that to know the botos, as the dolphins are locally called, you must also know the people who live among them.

And so in Journey of the Pink Dolphins, Montgomery—part naturalist, part poet, part Indiana Jones—winds her way through watery tributaries and riverside villages, searching for botos and hearing the tales of locals who believe these ethereal dolphins are shape-shifters—creatures that emerge from the water as splendidly dressed men or women only to enchant their human onlookers, capture their souls, and then carry them away to the Encante, an underwater world. Montgomery takes readers on four separate journeys, exploring the river-dwelling dolphins’ natural history, chronicling their conservation pressures, unraveling their prehistoric roots, and visiting with shamans who delve into the Encante.

Available in: Paperback

Read More

Journey of the Pink Dolphins

Sy Montgomery

Paperback $24.95

Beyond the War on Invasive Species

Beyond the War on Invasive Species

By Tao Orion

Invasive species are everywhere, from forests and prairies to mountaintops and river mouths. Their rampant nature and sheer numbers appear to overtake fragile native species and forever change the ecosystems that they depend on. Concerns that invasive species represent significant threats to global biodiversity and ecological integrity permeate conversations from schoolrooms to board rooms, and concerned citizens grapple with how to rapidly and efficiently manage their populations. These worries have culminated in an ongoing “war on invasive species,” where the arsenal is stocked with bulldozers, chainsaws, and herbicides put to the task of their immediate eradication. In Hawaii, mangrove trees (Avicennia spp.) are sprayed with glyphosate and left to decompose on the sandy shorelines where they grow, and in Washington, helicopters apply the herbicide Imazapyr to smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) growing in estuaries. The “war on invasive species” is in full swing, but given the scope of such potentially dangerous and ecologically degrading eradication practices, it is necessary to question the very nature of the battle. 

Beyond the War on Invasive Species offers a much-needed alternative perspective on invasive species and the best practices for their management based on a holistic, permaculture-inspired framework. Utilizing the latest research and thinking on the changing nature of ecological systems, Beyond the War on Invasive Species closely examines the factors that are largely missing from the common conceptions of invasive species, including how the colliding effects of climate change, habitat destruction, and changes in land use and management contribute to their proliferation. Beyond the War on Invasive Species demonstrates that there is more to the story of invasive species than is commonly conceived, and offers ways of understanding their presence and ecosystem effects in order to make more ecologically responsible choices in land restoration and biodiversity conservation that address the root of the invasion phenomenon. The choices we make on a daily basis—the ways we procure food, shelter, water, medicine, and transportation—are the major drivers of contemporary changes in ecosystem structure and function; therefore, deep and long-lasting ecological restoration outcomes will come not just from eliminating invasive species, but through conscientious redesign of these production systems.

Available in: Paperback

Read More

Beyond the War on Invasive Species

Tao Orion, David Holmgren

Paperback $22.95

Mycorrhizal Planet

Mycorrhizal Planet

By Michael Phillips

Regenerative practices for the farm, garden, orchard, forest, and landscape

Mycorrhizal fungi have been waiting a long time for people to recognize just how important they are to the making of dynamic soils. These microscopic organisms partner with the root systems of approximately 95 percent of the plants on Earth, and they sequester carbon in much more meaningful ways than human “carbon offsets” will ever achieve. Pick up a handful of old-growth forest soil and you are holding 26 miles of threadlike fungal mycelia, if it could be stretched it out in a straight line. Most of these soil fungi are mycorrhizal, supporting plant health in elegant and sophisticated ways. The boost to green immune function in plants and community-wide networking turns out to be the true basis of ecosystem resiliency. A profound intelligence exists in the underground nutrient exchange between fungi and plant roots, which in turn determines the nutrient density of the foods we grow and eat.

Exploring the science of symbiotic fungi in layman’s terms, holistic farmer Michael Phillips (author of The Holistic Orchard and The Apple Grower) sets the stage for practical applications across the landscape. The real impetus behind no-till farming, gardening with mulches, cover cropping, digging with broadforks, shallow cultivation, forest-edge orcharding, and everything related to permaculture is to help the plants and fungi to prosper . . . which means we prosper as well.

Building soil structure and fertility that lasts for ages results only once we comprehend the nondisturbance principle. As the author says, “What a grower understands, a grower will do.” Mycorrhizal Planet abounds with insights into “fungal consciousness” and offers practical, regenerative techniques that are pertinent to gardeners, landscapers, orchardists, foresters, and farmers. Michael’s fungal acumen will resonate with everyone who is fascinated with the unseen workings of nature and concerned about maintaining and restoring the health of our soils, our climate, and the quality of life on Earth for generations to come.

Available in: Hardcover

Read More

Mycorrhizal Planet

Michael Phillips

Hardcover $40.00