Arc 38 is a not-for-profit intentional community situated on over 188 acres of protected wetland, agricultural property and forested hills teeming with biodiversity.
Located in the beautiful Harlem Valley in Amenia, New York, we’re a mere 2 hours from New York city, directly adjacent to the last stop of the MetroNorth Harlem Line. Being within such easy access of big cities, and so close to the Appalachian Trail, has opened opportunities for many diverse people to experience our vision.
With its roots firmly grounded in activism, sustainability, agriculture, building networks, spirituality, philosophy and radical pacifism, ARC 38 strives to embody a living experiment in community building. Our experiment upholds diverse principles of many models for society developed throughout history and attempts to modernize them, creating a manner of transition to new ways of living. In doing this we hope to provide a support system to help people in need throughout the greater community outside of Arc 38 and build a model which others may use to help other communities all over the globe.
To foster a community in which we can all find self expression, empowerment, spirituality, purpose, responsibility, and understanding. We strive to live in a simplistic and sustainable manner by implementing social ideas and resourceful projects. Ever moving toward a peaceful coexistence of natural biodiversity and human society. Key components of this deep Consideration have been a meditation for us who dwell in this particular coincidence:
is a noun describing an environment containing a myriad of organisms that are different from one another, though resilient these environments are also highly sensitive and responsive to change. Our community is one of biodiversity in life forms, life styles and life well lived. Through our goals and values we cultivate and allow for a wide variety of organisms and cultures to share habitat and enrich our environment, uplifting one another and all things sentient.
is very important to us. We wish to create community by facilitating places where people are able to collaborate, share thoughts, feelings, space and resources to help promote personal and mutual growth, stability and overall well being.
for us means the active and efficient motions of contributing thoughts and actions toward the betterment of our circumstances, of our own selves, of the Arc 38 community, of the greater community and of humanity as a whole.
refers to responsible planning, tending to our environment (natural and domestic) and managing resources mindfully. Striving to consciously improve everything we interact with for the greatest good.
encompasses all things and means that something is able to continue on without running into scarcity, the ability to sustain it’s running without tiring out or to sustain it’s way of life without need for more. Conducting ourselves and our projects in manners which eliminate waste, produce and provide abundance without destruction and hold mindfulness of our finite resources. Implementing practices that are mindful to the environment and working with nature to responsibly use the resources it provides.
is being truly present to ourselves and our perceptions, the ability to be more mindful of one another, realizing the gift of each presence we share space with. Giving awareness to see without judgement and nourish the value in all those we meet.
entails aiming to know one’s self for how we really are, to truly know, without judgement, our flaws and attributes. To be conscious of how we share ourselves, for in self-expression there is freedom. Acknowledging and embracing our true selves helps us progress, providing the individual with deeper internal understanding, making it easier for the external world to better understand each individual.
is being clear with your intentions, actions and motivations by communication and positive examples to the community. To be transparent is to be unhindered by fear of rejection, it is honesty and how we gain trust and form meaningful relationships with one another.
means considering impact and reception, forming clear thought before speaking, studying before trying new things, planning before taking action. Ensuring we stay true to our goals, create clear instructions and complete supplies lists and task lists before moving forward. Such as proposing new projects coherently in a worded structure and submitting it for a majority community approval.
is having the presence of mind to develop an awareness and understanding of differences. This includes fully listening with the intent of understanding and being gracious in our expressions and interactions.
is taking ownership and responsibility for our actions and neglections. This includes acknowledging and making preparations for falling short of commitments and intentions.
In Geometry an arc is any unbroken part of the circumference of a circle or other curved line. In Electricity, it is the luminous bridge formed between the gap of two electrodes. In astronomy it is the part of a circle representing the apparent course of a heavenly body. It is also in general, anything bow-shaped. The name arc means that we strive to be an unbroken part of a whole movement, to be the energy that connects many nodes, to be the rainbow promise of new hope arching over the ark of Noah, to think forward into the future of the planet, and to be pulled taut with an arrow well aimed into that future.
The number 3 is the number of dynamic creation. It is two coming together to make and hold a third above themselves. If we are to hold our ideas above ourselves to create a more playful, abundant, and fertile world we must use the power of 3, the number of Jupiter, god of fortune, the sky and thunder.
The number 8 is the strong external and revolutionary spiral which is the supreme signature of the universe and all evolutionary systems. It is the number of Saturn, the god of agriculture, liberation, and time. It represents itself using the symbol of infinity. It is the number of electrons that noble gasses have in their valence shells. We use eight as a symbol of order, and strength.
The 38th chapter of the Tao Te Ching reads:
One of subtle universal virtue is not conscious of being virtuous,
therefore, he is truly virtuous.
One of partial virtue attempts to live up to an external standard of virtue,
therefore, he is not truly virtuous.
One of whole virtue does not need to do anything in order to be virtuous,
because virtue is the very essence of one’s true nature.
But, one of partial virtue believes that something must be done in order to prove that he is virtuous.
Thus, partial virtue becomes prevalent when people fail to follow their own true nature.
Benevolence becomes prevalent when people fail to be naturally kind.
Etiquette becomes prevalent when people fail to be righteous and considerate.
When people find no response with etiquette,
they roll up their sleeves and force others to respond to them.
When people stray from the subtle way of universal nature,
they can no longer perceive their own true nature.
Thus, they emphasize relative virtue.
When natural virtue is lost,
society depends on the doctrine of humanism.
When humanity becomes corrupted,
social and religious teachings appear and become powerful forces.
When social and religious teachings become corrupted,
what is left behind is the empty shell of superficial ceremonies and artificial etiquette.
When etiquette is emphasized,
it is because people lack the simple qualities of fairness and kindness.
This is the starting point of people of confusion.
All of these man-made, partial virtues are merely superficial flowers, a false nature.
When people begin to move away from their own true nature,
it is the beginning of hypocrisy.
Therefore, one who integrates his own individual being with the deep nature of the universe sets his heart upon the root of reality rather than the husk, and upon the nourishment of the fruit rather than the fleeting beauty of the flowers.
Truly, he cherishes what is deep within rather than what is shallow without.
Knowing this, he knows what to accept and what to reject.