Portrait of Kosha Anja Joubert
From our category “Portrait of the Month” we can look forward to a very special personality today. Her name is Kosha Anja Joubert. She has been the chairman of the Global Ecovillage Network for many years and continues to work as an international consultant in this field. We met her at the European Ecovillage Conference in Estonia.
Kosha Joubert was born in South Africa, at the time of apartheid, and spent her early childhood years in the bosom of her parents and grandparents. From them she learned a connection and love of nature and an appreciation of simplicity.
Kosha Joubert moved to the Netherlends at the age of 16, where she also completed her later studies in anthropology and linguistics. On the time of her studies she comments, among other things, that her studies could not offer her what she was looking for. She was looking for practical solutions as well as the causes of interpersonal misunderstandings.
“What happened in Germany in the second world war cannot happen if the mothers speak to each other. It can’t happen if we really listen to each other.”
As a young, single woman at age 23, she went on a trek along the African coast. Here she experienced the prejudices and social differences of apartheid and had experiences that shaped her life forever. She encountered the first alternative living communities, where people of diverse backgrounds and skin color lived together.
“It just felt like I just understood that somehow in community we can create the future we’re dreaming of. In the here and now we can live it in our lives.”
The experience in Africa moved her to seek a community with her two children later on. Kosha lived for several years in the ecovillage of Siebenlinden, in Germany, before moving to the Scottish community of Findhorn, where she has found a home now.
For Kosha there is one key aspect of the ecovillage movement that has captivated her and moved her ever since. For her, it is about moving away from a destructive lifestyle and, with the help of the community, designing a regenerative lifestyle. A lifestyle that touches all areas of human existence, provides for abundance and at the same time keeps the planetary boundaries in mind.
This is a path that, according to Kosha, we could not walk alone. But this decision of how to use our power collectively, whether in a beneficial or destructive way, is also a magical decision we make not as individuals, but collectively.
“It’s about waking up as individuals in a way that we inspire each other. Community has a crucial part in that.”
In our interview she discusses the history and the origin as well as the worldwide recognition and outreach of ecovillages. She speaks of a social development towards a sustainable, worldwide culture and a luxurious simplicity. In addition, she clearly identifies methods, factors and results of the work of these communities. In simple examples, she brings us closer to the usability of these things, saying:
“None of these solutions are extraordinary, they’re all super simple.”