Interview: Gustavo Soto Santiesteban on El Buen Vivir & the Commons

I think Buen Vivir is a proposal aimed at making visible and expressible aspects of reality that are ignored by the dominant paradigm. It is a proposal from a radical and spiritual perspective of ecology, and is logically incompatible with development and industrialization. It speaks of the possibility of living in common, for which the very concept “development” 4 is not only insufficient, but mistaken.

Javier Medina, a philosopher dedicated to Andean studies, writes: “There is always more in reality than one can experience or express at any given moment. A greater sensitivity to the latent potential of situations, assumed as a sort of broader social paradigm, may encourage us to think about things not only as they are, in the Newtonian paradigm, but also in terms of where they are heading, what they may become” (quoted in Soto 2010). El Buen Vivir/Vivir Bien is the name given to something that is like a new principle of hope grounded in ancestral practices of indigenous communities in the Americas.

Read the full article at The Wealth of the Commons


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