In the realms of technology, nothing seems impossible to humankind anymore – Nanorobots are running like immune cells through the blood stream rendering cancer cells harmless; space probes are dashing six billion kilometers through outer space in order to place a refrigerator-sized laboratory on a comet not more than four kilometers long. These are masterful technical performances illustrating what is possible when human vision and human intention ascend to almost superhuman dimensions.
The book Terra Nova: Global Revolution and the Healing of Love moves in similarly bold dimensions, but in an area where only little belief has so far been invested. Nonetheless, here too it is true that everything we think can also be done. For more than forty years the author Dr. Dieter Duhm, a psychoanalyst and sociologist, has been working with his partner Sabine Lichtenfels and others on a new concept for inhabiting planet Earth, with the question: How can we globally develop a culture that has left behind all war and cruelty?
The book was written in compassion for the pain and suffering of the world. Through different approaches it leads its readers to a global peace plan, the ‘Healing Biotopes Plan.’ At the center lies the vision of a healed humankind and a healed Earth: Terra Nova. It is the vision of human existence free of fear and violence; a vision for ending the war between the genders, for free love and free sexuality, for a fulfilled creative life, for cooperating with nature and all its beings, for freely supplying all living beings with enough food, water, and energy. It is humankind’s dream of peace.
But who is still able and willing to believe in it, facing everything that happens day after day on this planet? Facing Iraq, Rwanda, Syria, Ukraine… facing military budgets and arms industries… after Auschwitz, My Lai, Srebrenica… after this endless history of infinite horror which continues to date, day after day. War against human beings, against animals, against nature.
Which plan could put an end to all of this? Which power is strong enough to do so?
The destruction happens on behalf of single groups, governments, militaries, secret services etc., but they could not prevail against the rest of the world if they were unable to step into resonance with a latent readiness for violence present in each individual. It is the result of a collective trauma, a structural fear that was deeply ingrained in the cellular consciousness of every human being over a long epoch of war.
“Behind the epidemic of merciless violence hides the experience of a pain which can no longer be dealt with in conventional ways. Yet it can be healed” (Dieter Duhm).
Here is the way out. The leverage point able to tip the system lies in healing the trauma. This is the very point where we need to start in order deeply break the cycle of victim and perpetrator once and for all. When fear ceases to exist, war and globalized capitalism lose the basis of their power, which enabled them to turn people of all nations and religions into their willing henchmen.
This form of healing does not only succeed by way of individual therapy; it requires a healing surrounding. It is the societal being that determines consciousness. In this regard Dieter Duhm, former activist of the 1968 students movement and author of the then-bestseller “Angst im Kapitalismus” [Fear in Capitalism], has remained a Marxist to this day.
His peace plan is based on implementing specific peace centers, so called ‘Healing Biotopes.’ Like miniature societies, they are pilot models of the desired peace culture. In his ‘Political Theory’ he explains and substantiates why only relatively few such centers worldwide could suffice in bringing about a global shift from the matrix of violence to the matrix of life. “How can the conditions of structural peace established in a few places impact the entire planet? The answer results from the characteristics of holistic systems. (…) Crucial to the success of these local centers is not how big and strong they are (compared to the existing apparatuses of violence), but how comprehensive and complex they are, how many elements of life are well combined and united within them. Evolutionary fields develop not according to the ‘survival of the fittest,’ but the ‘success of the most comprehensive.’ Otherwise, no new development could prevail, for they all started small and inconspicuous” (Duhm).
As soon as the first centers of this kind have gained sufficient complexity and function without inherent contradictions, peace is no longer a vague idea, a word attached to the smell of old churches or strict parental homes. Peace is thus a realistic, highly energetic life practice of human beings who free and heal themselves from the specters of fear and psychological wounds of the past.
Peace is the coexistence of human beings based on trust and community. It is hard to imagine a system change that could be more radical. Building trust bit-by-bit requires the disengagement from all systems of violence. It requires regional self-sufficiency, mutual support in the neighborhood, compassion for the situation of the world, healing the cycles of water, developing decentralized energy systems, building holistic schools and education systems, creating new social structures wherein the feminine can again assume its original high position and wherein love can endure, grow, and expand.
Peace is much more than the absence of war. It is the greatest revolution of our life conditions we can imagine. Peace is a life fulfilled and lived to the fullest.
The conditions however that life needs to freely unfold collide with systems based on fear and mistrust. That is why building such centers demands the courage to take a stand for life without wrong compromises and without stepping into fight with the existing system. “If life wins, there will be no losers” (Duhm). Everyone will benefit from the peace work done in Healing Biotopes. We all are human beings. There are no enemies. Healing Biotopes are crystallization points for a new idea. Above a certain level of development they show that peace is viable, tangible, experienceable. What is possible at one or a few places in the world is in principle possible everywhere. Peace has become an attractive life perspective; a genuine alternative for humankind now possesses the knowledge to make it come true. This could awaken the potential for action in many people worldwide. An unending wave of enthusiasm could spread around the globe. “Nothing is more powerful than an idea whose time has come” (Victor Hugo). And humankind needs nothing more urgently than an idea of how it could continue.
These are not only theoretical considerations and dreams. What is unique about this book is that it is based on a mental-spiritual vision developed and verified in real life. The author writes from a place of deep insight into human nature and long-term experience in building functioning communities. Already in 1975 he decided to end his university career in order to develop the concept for a convincing peace perspective outside of academic life. In 1978 he founded a first research community. In his book Terra Nova he writes, “In order to find out how to end the global insanity we had to set new foundations for human coexistence. (…) If one wants to know how humankind functions, one should find out how a group functions, for it contains all light and shadow sides of our human existence within it.”
The Healing Biotope Tamera in southern Portugal emerged from the initial community. Around 160 people are currently working there in cooperation with a growing international network. The project collaborates with initiatives in the Middle East (‘Peace Research Village Middle East’), Colombia (‘Peace Community San José de Apartadó’), Brazil (‘Favela da Paz’), Kenya (‘Otepic’ permaculture center) and others. Tamera is one of the most radical community projects of our time; it is still far from finished, but is continuously working in the desired direction.
Further steps for manifesting the global peace plan are connected with the publication of the book. They include:
Healing Biotopes and peace centers need international protection and support. For this purpose a kind of ‘planetary peace council’ is to be established with people who pick up the idea, cooperate with one another, and support the plan with all available means and possibilities.
Both the book and the plan require international distribution and acknowledgment. This way more and more people will be able to see the endeavor as realistically feasible.
Alongside the indispensable political awakening to what is happening on Earth, a new peace movement needs media professionals and media channels to develop and spread the archetypal images and words of peace, for example through political art, films, comments on global events, and ‘diaries of transition.’ Attention is thereby withdrawn from the collective trauma, from powerlessness and resignation. Instead the underlying potential of revolutionary power is awakened, for this information is in resonance with a dream anchored in every human being’s soul.
All those interested need free access to the necessary knowledge. The Terra Nova School is an emerging worldwide network of people studying these new thoughts. It is to become a global education platform freely offering this content as much as possible. In collaboration with similar education projects, a common curriculum for the social, ecological, and technological knowledge necessary for building communities of trust and other future projects is to be developed.
All the aforementioned points require donors, journalistic support, and committed human beings who want to contribute to the manifestation.
We give thanks to all those who contact us in this regard!
To conclude we wish to remind you that there was not yet an airplane 150 years ago, not a single computer 70 years ago. Whatever can be thought can be done. Humankind is able to achieve anything it places at the focal point of its will power.
“Is it still possible to free the Earth from the immeasurable violence? I push all illusions aside and answer, ‘Yes, it exists, if we want and do it will all powers available to us.” (Duhm).
On behalf of the following generations.
On behalf of planet Earth and all its living beings.
On behalf of life.