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Drifting, fudging, dancing, initiation and subsistence with Gregori Papanastasiou

We’ve had the joy of spending this week with Gregori Papanastasiou, and numerous conversations have flowed through the labours of each day. As we’re beginning to take in volunteers again, which we call SWAPs (social warming artists & permaculturists) or SWANs (social warming artisans & neopeasants), we thought we’d share some of the gifts people bring to Tree Elbow and our School of Applied Neopeasantry, exchanging food, labour, fuel, medicine and story.

In this first, long-form podcast offering, we hear Greg’s passage from migrant parents to growing up in suburban Melbourne, his self-directed rites of passage as a youth, to dance, music, meditation and exploring subsistence lifeways in an urban context.


The conversation goes for well over an hour, and contains the wisdom, curiosity and direction of a young man seeking meaning and rich life without money. So feel free make some space for it, and let it slowly unfurl. Like much slow media the gold is hidden in the fissures of deep and open listening.

We hope you enjoy this gentle, meandering yarn. What is your rites of passage story as a young person? Where are your nodes of connection to Greg and his story? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.

Here are the books Greg and Patrick mentioned:
Martín Prechtel’s Long Life Honey in the Heart: A story of Initiation and Eloquence
Vandana Shiva’s Oneness Vs the 1%: Shattering Illusions, Seeking Freedom


  1. Rachel says:

    This is lovely. Thank you for sharing your history and experiences, influences and passions. As a small child, I remember the beauty of drifting, running through the local fields and woods. We used to make nests in the long grass and arrive at the biggest tree with a sense of excitement – and LOVE. It was a challenge to climb but had a big ‘lap’ for us to snuggle into as we were held in its’ centre and that felt so good. I long for these rites of discovering these unions for our children as they escape from our arms, out of the house and into Mother Country. I think she holds the right spaces for all our rites of passage, including some of the other things you talked about – sacred circles, celebrations, dancing, extending our souls beyond the known into the mystery of the universe. I wish Greg all goodness for his urban community building, what a wonderful thing to do! Very inspiring, as are Meg, Patrick and family. Thanks again 🙂

    1. Oh, to receive a comment as beautiful as this makes sharing these stories all the more worthwhile. Thank you Rachel!

  2. Gregori says:

    Thank you for your comment Rachel.
    So heart felt those memory’s of youthful adventure.
    I received a msg today, someone reaching out to get there hands in the dirt to which I’m glad I can provide space for.
    To sit in sacred circle among this urban setting is a little vision I see.
    I warms my heart to know there is a shared feeling of drifting through our mother country.

    1. Thanks for sitting in that vision, Gregori. We’re seeing you seeing that.

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