Recent Blogs

Private Room may be Available in Shared House

Join Lotus Lodge - our unique shared-house, "un-intentional community" of 9 adult men and women (about half each), ages 20-60s, in a 2-story of farm house that was converted to a triplex (yes 3 separate kitchens, dining rooms & immediate shared space, and 4 bathrooms - all under one roof). Private rooms become vacant for short and long-term from time to time. Click on ad to the left and contact us if interested.

Residents generally are hight-functioning, progressive, creative and health-conscious - some meditate and/or do Qi Kong or Tai Chi regularly, some lean toward vegetarian while most do eat some meat. We tend to be more educated yet all are down-to-earth, friendly, supportive of each other's uniqueness and enjoy good conversation and laughter. Currently everyone here is age 40+.

***Link to a 3.5min video of Lotus Lodge "Golden Girls" that aired on CBS in 2011.

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I'm Finally Writing my Book!

I’m focusing on my book! The Wisdom Council (WC) and followup Community Wisdom Café event that reported it out on Tuesday, Oct 14 was well attended. And this week (Oct. 29th issue) our local Independent publication, the Mountain Xpress, has all of it featured as the main, front-page article.

I put off focusing on the book for months, in part to contribute to the WC events. Also during this delay, I received wonderful guidance on how to proceed with the book – in a way very different from how I would have before. So maybe it was about timing!

I would love to hear from others who have written books – especially if how you did it was at all similar to what I’m about to describe.

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Enhancing our Democracy & Future!

These are upcoming events I'm helping to make happen here in Asheville. Please read and attend - if interested in enhancing democracy & our future!

Dynamic Facilitation Seminar
Ever want your cherished organization, business, HMO or church to have an expertly facilitated meeting to make needed changes? Dynamic Facilitation Seminar, Oct. 6-8th at Highland Lake Cove in Flat rock, N.C. Either take this course or hire someone who has – and experience how a diverse group can establish a highly co-creative – even compassionate space together. In truth, we are wiser together – but only when we have full participation, deep listening and authentic collaboration. Click here for details.

1st Asheville Wisdom Council & Community Wisdom Café

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Join us Sunday, Aug. 24, 6pm for a Potluck, Presentation & Discussion!

International speaker, workshop leader and author of
Creating a Life Together: Practical Tools to Grow Ecovillages and Intentional Communities, and
Finding Community: How to Join an Ecovillage or Intentional Community,
Diana Leafe Christian will present, “The 3 Aspects of a Healthy, Thriving Community, and the Role of Sociocracy on Sunday, August 24th for this month's Community Network Gathering Meetup at Lotus Lodge in Candler.

Potluck starts at 6pm and by about 6:30, Diana will start her presentation. Based on decades of research and experience, she will share what she has considers to be the three essential factors for intentional communities or member-led organizations to succeed and thrive, and will introduce "Sociocracy" (also called Dynamic Governance in the US).

Moral Monday August 4th - 5pm, Pack Square in Asheville, NC

The Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, President, NC NAACP and leader of the Moral Monday Movement, will speak.
Kat Williams, Westsound, Slam Asheville Youth, more!

5-6:30pm Rally.
Bring a sign!
A limited supply of tee shirts is available–get yours early!

880 The Revolution will broadcast the event live.
Nationally syndicated talk show host Bill Press will co-host the Jeff Messer Show beginning at 3pm from Pack Square.
Come by the broadcast tent from 3 to 5 before the rally to meet Bill Press.

You can help spread the word by joining the event on Facebook, and re-posting it on your page. Mountain Moral Monday 2014 Facebook Page:

Potluck & Discussion THIS Sunday, 7/27 @ Lotus Lodge, 6pm

We have a Potluck/Presentation & Discussion starting at 6PM every month - on the 4th Sunday - which is this Sunday, July 27, 2014 - and you are invited.

Join the MEETUP and RSVP here.

Usually 20 people attend and the conversation always is quite lively - with many staying late and exchanging contact information to continue.

This month's Topic:
How Do We Catalyze Community in our Neighborhoods?

I (Gaya) will share a vision of a network of communities around our city (and every city) that involves catalyzing existing neighborhoods (of mostly strangers) into true caring communities. And, I’ll feature one of the two major tools that can make it happen: Assets-Based-Community-Development (ABCD). Ever heard of it?

Two Rooms Open in Lotus Lodge

Magic is in the air. Transformation abounds as this new season of life explodes in green and morning birdsong. Here at Lotus Lodge our abundant gardens grow new life and promise new harvest as the end approaches for the crops of arugula and kale. By the end of June, residents Jesse & Shannon (who shared a room) and Julia will have moved on to their next adventure (in Virginia for Julia), and my good friend David will begin his here. And Marc, who thought he was moving to Thailand, is staying a while longer.

Thus, we announce two rooms opening up as of July 1 for long-term residents, and our yet-to-be-created living salad mix of delight awaits.

You're invited - May 25 Potluck & Presentation, 5pm!

Please come to our next Community Network Gathering Potluck & Presentation this Sunday, May 25 (5pm).

This month we are blessed to have Annaleah Atkinson teach & show us the transformational power of The Fellowship Game ...."a playful way to deepen our alignment with our spiritual nature, move forward joyously in our journey, and better know our fellow travelers." Sr. Deborah

What IS so Special or Different about Asheville?

I've lived here since mid 1993 (OMG, has it really been that long?) and seen a LOT of change. It’s been only in the last 15 years that Asheville has become the cool, artsy, progressive and alternative-rich destination point we enjoy today. And I have noticed a distinct pattern in what happens to many who relocate here.

Most of the people I've asked have said they came here to live life somehow differently from before - in a way that expresses more of what they really care about; to be more in alignment with their heart, passion, values and/or soul purpose. Interestingly, many of those same people then proceeded to seek virtually the same kind of things as before and experienced rough waters. Those more trusting and open to change (or became so) would be blessed with surprising opportunities.

Join in the potluck discussion on Sunday, 4/27!

28,000 people in the Moral March on Saturday, 2/8!!!

I was on one of the 5 full buses that left Asheville at 4:30am to participate in the Moral March on Raleigh. One of the speakers said there were about 28,000 participants. It was great! The NC state head of the NAACP, Rev. William Barber II, was the main speaker at the capital and he gave a great, very intelligent, informed speech that mentioned how it is really fanatics within the Republican party that are doing the worst immoral deeds, and that we shouldn't blame all Republicans but look to work together. The last few minutes of his 40+ min speech, however, were heavy Christian rhetoric, so he could have left that part off - given the diversity of the crowd, in my opinion. Check out this link:

You’re Invited to our 2nd “Future Visions of Asheville” Potluck & Discussion on Sunday 2/23.

You’re Invited to our 2nd “Future Visions of Asheville” - Potluck & Discussion, 6pm @ Lotus Lodge on Sunday 2/23.

Last month’s Community Network Gathering Meetup Potluck & Discussion was packed. We expected 22 – 25 and ended up with over 40 people! Great food, wine and awesome visions were shared. The excitement continued on until well past 10pm – so we decided to have a visions-focused gathering again!

This time we’ll focus on two particular visions for about 15 minutes each – two that are well along the way (to be announced on this CNG Meetup site soon). That leaves plenty of time for everyone to contribute during our whole group discussion, and to have the usual fun, engaging social time.

It’s our monthly Community Network Gathering MeetUp Potluck here at Lotus Lodge this next Sunday, February 23rd (always the 4th Sunday) @ 6pm!

Please join this Meetup and then RSVP to this month’s gathering at:

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You’re Invited “Visions of Asheville” - Potluck & Discussion

You’re Invited “Visions of Asheville” - Potluck & Discussion, 6pm @ Lotus Lodge on Sunday 1/26.

2014 seems to be the year that visions will be birthed. Every time I turn around, another person is sharing a wonderful vision they intend to manifest this year. Many of these visions are big and have been gestating for years! And many are by people who are new to the area. There seems to be an excitement in the air that was quite present back in the mid to late 1990s and early 2000s, but I have missed. Any of you notice that? What has shifted, and what wants to emerge here?

So, we decided to have our monthly Community Network Gathering MeetUp Potluck here at Lotus Lodge this next Sunday, January 26th (it’s always the 4th Sunday) @ 6pm with a presentation and discussion on “Future Visions of Asheville.” Are you in?

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Join this 1st-ever workshop!

Please join this workshop - and see my Musings below.

It Takes a Village: Transforming Neighborhoods into Resilient Communities; Saturday, July 27, 9am-4pm, Fee $89 if register by Monday, July 22 (or $55 each if 5 or more register from the same neighborhood), or $99 at the door. Includes lunch & materials. @ Land of Sky Regional Center, 379 New Leicester Hwy, Asheville, NC.

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I AM excited - see 3 events below

Today I think that the most important thing we can do to address our pressing issues – of the environment, jobs & the economy, affordable housing for all ages, raising our youth and honoring elders, feeding everyone, our health and well-being - is to create caring communities.

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Death of a friend, Birth of Renewal: Solstice 2012

For many months, people have talked about a big shift occurring on 12-21-2012. Since that date, some have expressed letdown. Shift is happening, however. Rather than being an outside force rescuing us from ourselves, I think it is an inner shift. For me, anyway, it’s an inner shift in favor of allowing inner guidance and sense of deep, heart-felt purpose more fully direct my life.

Yes, outer shifts have happened, and some have been very challenging. On Monday, November 19, my good friend, daily companion and housemate died suddenly of heart failure. It was totally unexpected since he seemed in good health, was a Qi Kung master and 56 years young. We talked just 45 minutes before when he called, as I began my (almost) daily 3-mile hike.