The 2014 Radical Mycology Convergence was held October 9-14 in Orangeville, Illinois. Thank you to everyone that came and help make the RMC one for the history books!
What: The Radical Mycology Convergence is a unique gathering of mycologists, mushroom enthusiasts, and Earth stewards coming together to share skills and information on the numerous benefits of the fungal kingdom for humans and the planet. The RMC is a weekend long event consisting of workshops, presentations, and various mycoremediation installations. Beyond the skills shared, the RMC also works to build a community among like-minded mycophiles (aka mushroom lovers) and community-based earth healers to collaborate on remediation and restoration projects during and after the RMC.
Why: The organizers of the Radical Mycology Convergence feel strongly that these skills need to be shared. We want to make information on the fungi and their healing powers accessible and tangible for as many people as possible without making it overly-heady or technical. By creating an encouraging and welcoming space we hope to “be-mushroom” all who attend in an effort to bring about greater planetary health.
Who: The organizers of the RMC would like to invite anyone interested in participating in this event to come and learn, help out, or teach! The RMC is family friendly, non-discriminatory, and is donation-based to provide open access to people of all backgrounds.
Where & When: For more info on this and how to help us, visit here.
The organizers of the Radical Mycology Convergence see the use of fungal species for environmental betterment as an extension of “radical” or “deep” ecology, which considers all beings as having an inherent value and interdependence. Through the use of fungi to enact change, we are attempting to challenge assumptions about the importance of the fungal kingdom in western culture in an effort to help shift society’s relationship to the fungi (and, by extension, the Earth) toward greater harmony. The values behind the RMC focus on directly reducing ecological destruction and human oppression in the world by emphasizing community building, sustainable lifestyle practices, and personal empowerment to bring about positive and lasting change. The RMC shares skills that help one live outside of detrimental industrial economies and in better balance with the world. For all these reasons, we see the emphasis that the RMC puts on working with the fungi for social and global change as a distinct (and somewhat “radical”) shift from the traditional approach of a more individualistic mycology that has long focused on foraging for mushrooms and eating them.
Wikipedia on Deep Ecology
The Radical Mycology Convergence (RMC) is a volunteer-run gathering of mushroom enthusiasts working to share knowledge and skills related to the use of fungi for environmental and personal betterment. A non-discriminatory and family-friendly event, the RMC brings together people of all backgrounds and abilities to build network of like-minded people through the engagement of various learning modes. The RMC focuses on skills related to the use of fungi (and other organism) for the remediation and restoration of damaged environments to create a better world with greater ecological health. Workshops at the RMC emphasize low-tech and low-budget techniques that support community building and self-sufficiency while encouraging independence from corporate, non-local, or environmentally exploitative materials and/or practices.
- Provide hands-on mycoremediation training. Emphasize low tech/budget techniques for soil, water, and forest restoration.
- Create a decentralized, inclusive network of mycologists to facilitate the expansion of knowledge, techniques, cultures, and community.
- Be as inclusive as possible to people of various class backgrounds, races, culture, abilities, genders and ages.
- Engage multiple modes of learning (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, etc.).
- Normalize and de-stigmatize mushrooms and their many uses. Promote a better understanding of fungal biology, and the role of fungi in soil science.
- Create a world with cleaner soil and water and greater ecological health.
- Building community, building a decentralized network of mycologists.
- Emphasize local, non-corporate, non-industrial, non-exploitative practices wherever possible.
- Encourage building a barter and gift-based economy.
- Maintain an egalitarian, horizontal, and inclusive organizational structure.
- Integration of anti-oppression principles, creating a safer space. Being non-discriminatory and highly accessible.
- Keep everything as free/cheap and in the commons as possible.