Gregor is known for his special way of simple living and activism based on loving kindness beyond all boundaries. Gregor and his friends established Slovenia Tibet Support Group 24 years ago, which became very influential.
Gregor has never really been into the Buddhist practices, but he had been to Tibet many times, always for good purposes such as organising tracking tours, supporting a school for local children, etc. He was also very active in helping refugees in Slovenia. He travelled around the world, visiting Arab, African and Asian regions several times and volunteering in different projects.
In February 2020, Gregor joined a MED Land art project team on Ikaria (Icarus’ island in the Aegean Sea). He also did a transcription of the story Lena from Lesbos. Recently, he helped with maintenance works on the boat. Gregor is also responsible for MED Land art residency on Ikaria and is therefore the right person to contact in this regard. Bojan and Gregor have known each other since the 1970s, when they collaborated on some projects. Now they have the opportunity to commit to doing something good again. And once again, it is a joyful experience, too.>>https://vimeo.com/443839354
I came on the island in 1997 ... I fell in love with the island,
it was very nice, and I worked as a teacher ...
... My husband is French, and he also could not understand why this need to spend so much time and energy on the refugee issues.
... It is very hard for people who don't feel this kind of social commitment.
... They where drowning in our waters, this is a tragedy because all of this beauty suddenly vanished.
Social issues lead to economical crises, because economical crises are never detached from social crises and a crisis of values.
Pikpa camp > Why ... Because it was necessary, I would say; because when people started to come, it was under the umbrella of many organizations, local organizations of different types ... Twenty organizations at that time. We are trying to unite our efforts in dealing with the Greek crisis ... But at the same time, the Greek crisis and the refugee crisis, and of course, big waves of refugees coming to Greece and Lesbos, we had to handle it all ... I think the biggest flow of refugees.
Pikpa camp is mainly based on and seeks to promote the ideas of community,of people living together in the same community without discrimination and prejudice.
It is entirely based on volunteers and on donors. Now we have a lot of people who support Lesbos solidarity and the camp.
Before I began working and helping in Pikpa, I could never imagine that people could do so many things entirely voluntarily. There where a lot of things that were difficult, but we have a committed team, and where there's a will, there's a way. And I think this power of people, trusting each other to build a relationship of trust - I think it changed our lives in many ways, both positive and negative.
As I told you, personal life is very difficult to maintain. We have relations with all these nations, all these people, since 2000 BC. We should not be so afraid to work together. We should be afraid when we exclude people from the common wealth of this world.
Environmental issues are much more urgent and much more serious than any economic or political issues that we bring up.
Unfortunately, the ecosystem has no voice.
We let people privatize water, air, beaches, privatize public wealth ... these are all social goods.
NAN restaurant project.
First of all, we wanted to have a restaurant where people could work and make there own living.
When people are trapped, only despair can come out of it. When people there earned their income, it changed the entire situation.
To give them a job was one thing ... the other thing was to raise awareness that instead of fighting against these people, we can work together.
We can try to find ways to support them - not all of them, but some of them, the ones that can and want to contribute to the society that welcomes them.
This is the message: that it's better to work together than to work against each other.
Everyone can see what we do everyday, it is transparent. Raising awareness about food - the slow food mentality. That people should take their time to sit around the table to eat and talk and share.
There are many issues that are connected to food.
This is a company in which all employees will hopefully become partners.
Hiring a refugee with no experience of how things work in certain jobs is sometimes difficult.
I would like everything that we dream of the way we want Nan to work and to be ... For Nan to become be "the mother" of many similar enterprises ...
Lesbos has been my place of choice for many years now. But you know, every place is a nice place, depending on people. Last year, there was an attack on some Afghan protesting in a sitting demonstration. They were attacked by some locals. It was a very sad realization that we are living in a bubble.
We mostly have people who support us, not only financially, but also morally, mentally ...When you find out that a large part of the community is silent or even against some actions, it is not very nice.
I think this is sending you away, then inviting you back.
... in a situation like this, you have to choose which side you are on, and this is what we did ...
I would like to be able to leave this place satisfied ... that it will work without our presence.
- if someone says it's a threat, you should say it is an opportunity ...
... you can bring change, and this change can be multiplied by other people and other people ....
The Earth does not give a damn about us ...
... Every day is the last day ...
These were the last days when the Coronavirus was still “safe in China”. Ivana Petan, Gregor Erjavec and Bojan left by ferry from Venice over the Adriatic to Greece, to do the first steps for a long-term art group project on the island of Ikaria in the Aegean sea.
How to move, to touch, to live in times when moving and touching ...
Why Ikaria at all? It was a matter of following instinct. We were doing a research (2018) on MED Land destinations when we came across Dr. Christodoulos Xenakis, a true master of love and compassion in action in his Ikarian way at his age of 80+! Now we are friends and doing things together ... Christodoulos and Ulysses traveling together ...
Ever since, Ikaria is like a lighthouse for me in relation to other islands, deeply connected to the creative pulses of Gaia, with the traces of 15,000 years of continuous presence of humans here. The awareness of this connectedness, as far as I can sense, is still present, and the pulse goes beyond the Mediterranean Sea to Middle East, Africa and Europe.
Our MED Land mission this time was related to the project of Marko Pogačnik and the team of geomancers and artists who were planning to do the stone land art installations project on the island in order to reinforce the connectedness and spread the message over the Mediterranean. Our task was to continue preparation work on determining the location(s) for the installation, connecting to some key places that are expressing the vitality of Ikaria, finding the right stones, all in collaboration with the Ikarian team, artist Vangelis Rinas and Christodoulos Xenakis, the founder of the Association of Ikarian Studies. Ivana Petan, who collaborated in previous geomatic-art projects with Marko Pogačnik, was leading our field preparation tasks on the research of the geomantic aspects of the island, determining the location(s) for the installation and finding local stones that are also suitable for carving. Since Marko and the team could not come, we were doing some research while being telepathically connected, and it worked very well!
Ivanas notes about Drakano and the rock - in connection with the being of the rock, I feel the rock rising up into the sky, and in the red pillar connecting the earth and the cosmos. my back space opens, allowing me to enter the causal dimensions of archetypes and ancestors, giving me the “wings” by allowing the freedom to breathe with awareness of myself. in the vision the head of the serpent - the dragon appears to me, which tells me that this is the place of spiritual power - of wisdom that originates and grows from the heart. I look towards Samos and Turkey. I feel them close, very close; this announces me their energetical connection and co-dwelling with a rock and the space of Drakano.
Icarus has his spot on the south side side of the island, where legend can be understood also in the relation with island. The legend goes that Icarus did not obey his father and followed his call to fly, to explore new dimensions of life. Where and how he ended up is not the point of this legend.
Marko, Ivana, Gregor an myself felt the importance of understanding Icarus as an archetype that maintains the meaning to this day,
pozivam k sodelovanju za kreativno delo trženja “produktov” MED Land projekta - predvsem fotografij, zgodb in keramike / potrebno je veselje in smisel za kreativno komuniciranje z ljudmi, ki želijo tovrstne izdelke, ki so obenem tudi finančni vir za projekt MED Land
•delo je omejeno na honorar in dobri delež zaslužka pri prodaji
•možnost uporabljanja delovnega prostora - studija v centru Ljubljane
Potrebne veščine :
•suverenost na internetu - za objave na osnovni strani, socianih medijih, v "newsletter" in še kje /Patreon...
•posluh in potreba za oblikovanje lastnega kreativnega pristopa, ki je usklajen s projektom in ostalimi, ki smo udeleženi
•pisanje v slovenčini in angleščini
•odnos do vizualnega medija
najprej si oglej MED Land stran ! nakar se seveda slišiva in vidiva - vsaj po skypu :-)) da si izmenjava več. hvala!
email@example.com ali/in 41 765714 bojan
•sporočilo podaj NAPREJ !
"In my experience, the EU played a game, which later became too much for them and they lost control. Nobody was expecting this ... Nobody could ..."
Bojan Brecelj: "Before I even entered the official zone of Moira camp, I had an incredible flashback situation. Ladies from Afghanistan around perfect killeen for their traditional bread and the smell that I still have in my memory from when I was traveling through Afghanistan in the 1970s. At that time, before the Russian and Americans destroyed the country, it was the most friendly and gentle place in the world - hospitality was the keyword. Even the police at the border first gave me some good hashish for the welcome, asking for my passport. These people who treated me so nice and taught me sooo much in my life are now in deep trouble, because of us, first of all! And we do not welcome them??? The Afghan ladies did not mind at all that I was photographing them! On the contrary, they gave me two loafs of very tasteful Afghan bread! Hospitality beyond imagination!"
"It is easy to fix the situation, but at the same time, it is difficult, because the governments don't want to fix it. There are many reasons. You have a lot of smart people in the camp, but to get asylum, you need to be crazy, you need to provide a paper stating that you are crazy ... It is a game."
About future changes:
"Yes, something will change, but it is going to change for the worse … Because no one has enough money. Someday, if they have enough money ... You can get money in many way, smuggling people, having them in camp, creating the war, from the petrol … Everywhere …"
"I do not believe my dream will ever come true, but anyway ... To return home and also to see one day, or just for a few hours, that the people who work with us see that we are humans … And even if they believed we are animals, they would take better care for us. No one gives a shit ... I believe people get tired of the situation, of the government … I believe that A FEW PEOPLE CAN HELP EVERYONE IN THE WORLD, because if just a few people start to help others, those others can help another few ... This mean that no one in the world would need help anymore, and we would not have war anymore … If they would just start with explaining the situation in the camp, explain to the people why they are here and how long they will be here, people will wait, but no one explains nothing, because no-one knows.”
“For instance, I come from the north, there are three families ... One million people. We don’t know each other, but in some way, we are really close. If we see something wrong, we have the right to catch this person. We have the right ... that is what they teach us, but in EU it does not work the same. Now, the kind of people you have in Europe. I am sure it is pretty much the same in Afghanistan, Africa ... If you could just teach these people before you welcome them, everything would be different. They can be in control ... What is freedom in Europe? Alcohol, being with women, and freedom of speech. In Ethiopia, freedom of speech is 0,5 out of 10! Whatever you want to do, you need permission, and for me, this means control, no freedom at all. I cannot say I am Muslim, because everyone believes how a Muslim brings terror. At the same time, I do not want to generalize. I say, before you say something about another person, try to meet this person and understand what he wants.”
"In one of my projects, I have a free shop where people can go and choose what they like. I am trying to show them they are human and they can choose for themselves. I believe everything will be fine and that I can do more for them."
"EVERYONE BELIEVES WITH THE POWER THEY HAVE, WHEN THEY HAVE ENOUGH MONEY, THE WAR WILL STOP ... here! If someone who has power and information about what will happen to those people tells them the truth about what is going on, what they have and what they provide, those people would start their lives, build a new house, start business, live their life here ... But people don't have any info ... They are waiting all the time in front of the ferry, they just want to live here, you can't imagine this feeling ... My idea was to create a workshop here, provide free accommodation and small salary, and after six months, when I teach them something and they gain some experience, they get their own work and pay back from their salary ... But it is a huge project ... Imagine how many people would start their life."
"I don't want to live in this world anymore, because I do not see any future anywhere in the world ... Always control ... Before you even have an idea, they already know what you want and will never let you do what you want. Now I am trying to be against the control, of course, to respect the law but to do something they do not like. Now I am trying to change the living conditions, like cleaning their houses, the surrounding area, working in their garden. I am my own boss, and I'm not even boss to my volunteers. We have some rules in the NGO - if refugees fail to do the work, we try to do it. Personally, I get strength from refugees, they will never turn against me. For example, I was arrested three times in Samos ..."
"If i need to blame someone, I will blame the government. 99,99% of the problem is the government. If they would just explain to their people why those people came, why we have to support them, why we have to help them, welcome them to our country, everyone would be happy ... People who help, they believe their stories or just try to help them, they don't really know why. If you ask me, it is how we were taught. But people get tired, if you try me for one year it will be finished, I promise I would work 23 hours a day. But you don't know how long it will take. In the winter, you start to prepare for emergency, after the winter, you start preparing for the summer. When the summer ends, you start to prepare for the winter. Every day, you have something to do."
Omar Alshakalis is Director and Co-founder of Refugee4Refugee. He works on the ground on a daily basis and oversees the NGO’s entire operations. As a Syrian refugee himself, he brings invaluable insight when designing and implementing humanitarian aid interventions from a practical perspective, using a beneficiary approach to best serve the refugee communities in both Lesbos and Samos. In emergency situations, Omar’s responsiveness is extremely fast, often taking the role of mediator and always knowing what to do, who to talk to and how to keep everyone safe. Omar is an incredible human and humanitarian. He fights inequality every single day, and his drive to help everyone in need is extremely contagious.
Omar fled his home town of Deir Ez-Zor in 2014 after ISIS took control and he was severely injured during a missile strike. He swam for 14 hours from Turkey to Greece to reach safety and, after witnessing the humanitarian crisis that was taking place in Lesbos, he co-founded Refugee4Refugees in April 2017. Nowadays, the NGO is working in both Lesbos and Samos, growing step by step to increase the impact and quality of its interventions.
The first three days of 2020 we, MAD Landers, spend on island Hvar – THE home port of Nalu and main office for the project, located in Museum of Stari Grad (MED Land partner)
The trip started from the Split main ferry port.
Gregor Erjavec on January 1st 2020 in Stari Grad, Adriatic island Hvar. In 1996 Gregor and his friends started “Slovenia Tibet support group” NGO. He never declared himself as Buddhist practitioner, in fact he travels more to Arab and African countries…
Margi was once fisherman with her own boat… she likes jewelry and also draws. On January 1st 2020 she held her “first 2020 open exhibition” of some of her collections on the Helios hotel beach.
The “first three days of 2020 Hvar tracking team ” Ivana, Gregor, Petra (designer of MED Land logo)
Hvar island -view from Humac towards Sv Nikola 626m
island Hvar – or anywhere I move last days – my attention on emerging “more subtle organic new world” gives me another observation – beyond explanation-s
Sv.Nikola highest peak on Hvar island -626 m
Ivana Petan ceramict artist -is supporting and creating MED Land project from the beginning
Island Hvar is 72 km long and has meadows all along the island. Walking here feels like moving along the Dragon back.
Humac – island Hvar – was once a rich village
Humac – island Hvar – was once a rich village.
Jane: “We were staying on the top of island Hvar, in the vicinity of Sv. Nikola peak, for three month and now we are going back to village Dol…” Jane moved from London many years back and runs Yoga retreat place in village Dol – island Hvar.
view on island Vis from island Hvar
island Hvar – or anywhere I move last days – my attention on emerging “more subtle organic new world” gives me another observation – beyond explanation-s
3rd January 2020
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