Introducing Dark Mountain

Buddhism of the Future Eco Action Engaged Buddhism Environmental Issues

Just sent off Cataloguing in Publication applications for two books I'll be publishing in May, and I'm very excited about them. They're both by members of the Dark Mountain writers collective in England.

Here's how DM describes itself:

In 2009, two English writers published a manifesto. Out of that manifesto grew a cultural movement: a rooted and branching network of creative activity, centred on the Dark Mountain journal, sustained by the work of a growing gang of collaborators and contributors, as well as the support of thousands of readers around the world.

Together, we are walking away from the stories that our societies like to tell themselves, the stories that prevent us seeing clearly the extent of the ecological, social and cultural unravelling that is now underway. We are making art that doesn’t take the centrality of humans for granted. We are tracing the deep cultural roots of the mess the world is in. And we are looking for other stories, ones that can help us make sense of a time of disruption and uncertainty.

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Loss Soup and other stories is by Nick Hunt, a well-known travel and environment writer. The fourteen stories in his debut collection of short fiction travel from sixteenth-century Mexico to a post-collapse near future, from a visionary supermarket to life on other planets. All of them revolve around different forms of loss.

By turns blackly funny, disquieting and fantastical, Loss Soup and other stories is a journey through the Anthropocene, climate chaos and the Sixth Extinction to the strange new worlds that might lie beyond.

After Ithaca is by Charlotte Du Cann, a well-known European journalist. After Ithaca is a non-fiction work – part memoir, part essay, part travelogue – that follows a real life journey of descent in a world on the tip of crisis. It is set in the Peruvian rainforest, in the backrooms of Suffolk towns, in Mexico, Chile, Australia, in the borderlands, in borrowed houses and Occupy tents, in kitchens and burial chambers, underneath a lemon tree on an abandoned terrace…

It is a personal story and also a social story, one that looks at writing as an existential practice, a way of perceiving and making sense of a world in fall: showing how myth can be a techne for finding our lost voice, our knowledge of collaboration and time, a medicine of how to put a crooked thing straight.

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If you've been following my columns for Buddhistdoor Global these past two years, you know I am particularly interested in publishing books about the future from a Buddhist perspective.

In my research, I've found a few European sanghas and intentional communities with great vision and pragmatic action plans and I am eager to make their voices heard more broadly. These Dark Mountain books are the beginning of what I hope will be a meaningful series of wayfinding guides to a world of regenerative design and sustainable co-existence.

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