This is the story of “The Illuminated Elephants”, a modern rebel tribe and their kaleidoscopic adventures where they meet exciting people and discover amazing places. They learn about arts and crafts, about rituals and traditions. With their avant-garde theater plays, they also — with humor and seriousness — spread the vision that it is possible to live in harmony with nature, a wise alternative to the many, often devastating lifestyle that characterizes Western culture.
NO MAD LIVING is a sequel to Jan Svante Vanbart’s previous book Vi drog – jorden runt med 68-generationen (Wahlström & Widstrand 2005). It also begins with a summary of the journey that began in 1973 at the legendary artist commune “Drakabygget” in northwestern Skåne — through Europe and Asia, via Australia — to Mexico, where they arrived in April 1975.
Now they travel up to the US and then back to Mexico. The book is divided into forty-seven chapters with headings such as “Haiti Babas Died Here”, “Soma”, “A new Base”, “The White Mountains”, “The Tucson event”, “Nihe nahuko pueblo” and “Huehuecoyotl”.
Although “The Illuminated Elephants” is always on the road, their stay is sometimes a little longer. As a reader, one may for a while think that meetings and discoveries do not appear to be coincidences. Probably their special applicant is a combination with the inviting openness they encounter. After all, it is the 1970s that are often characterized by “peace, love and understanding”. New worlds, spiritual and sometimes psychedelic experiences, do not frighten them but provide inspiration to move on to a goal that will eventually emerge in clarity.
The trip ends on March 6, 1982 when The Illuminated Elephants reaches the location in Mexico where they establish the ecovillage of Huehuecoyotl. But they don’t stop. Involvement in the environmental and “alternative” movements, regular trips and other groups that visited them, has contributed to more eco-villages in the region.
“To be continued!
FP–145 • ISBN: 978–91-88765–20‑8