Most of us looking around at the world today can see things are changing. While change is the only constant in the universe, still the changes we see happening seem to be ominous in many ways and foretell a bleak future if they continue. My personal perspective is optimistic about the future of life on this planet, even though that wasn’t the case a few years ago. A few years ago I saw the flywheel effect of carbon in the atmosphere as already past the point of no return, and it would take so long to reduce the Greenhouse Effect we would all be gone before the Earth was able to cool down again.
Certainly there have been external changes in the physical world, many of them ominous with tar sands oil and fracking and new countries joining the fossil energy consumer market, demanding ever more of already strained resources. So the reason for my optimism and new sense of purpose can only be explained in one word, “Permaculture.”
The idea of well thought out human systems that mimic nature in their efficiency and sustainable nature has never quite been put together in the same way as in Permaculture Design. Even though this country seems focused on using things up and throwing them away, this is not the whole picture of the world today.
To get a better picture we need to go deeper than the media controlled by big business. We need to look at those systems outside the traditional consumer economy which don’t get as much attention.
Some people have not yet heard that there are projects reversing the movement of deserts around the world. Fruit and nut trees are growing in bleak landscapes with little rain and salted soils, large desecrated eco systems have been restored to functionality and are examples of hopeful news that doesn’t sell newspapers.
It is my aim to share my experiences as I play with many of these principles on my own homestead, plus there will be numerous links to other sources for those who wish to study more about specific topics. If I can encourage people to take a Permaculture Design Course, or get involved in planting gardens and food forests, then this website will be well worth the time and energy it takes to create and maintain.
Above all, I hope that you will take the time to look at other Permaculture sites. Permaculture is highly individualistic. We all will grow and evolve over time, so the specific systems I might set up today may be quite different from another Permaculture Designer. This website represents a direction to travel, not a finished process.
Bill Mollison, the founder of Permaculture is quite emphatic that this is all OK.
He told students that once they satisfied the basic course “no one can tell you what to do, and don’t you let them.”
This opens Permaculture Design to it’s own evolution, and yet after being translated into multiple languages, traveling through hundreds of countries and all different climates there is still remarkable agreement when Permaculture Designers come together in international conferences.
We are infected with a vision of saving the planet so it remains hospitable to life in general and human life specifically. Permaculture ethics and principles become a part of a vision that infects our souls and transforms the most mundane tasks into acts of worship given on the altar of service.
Bill Mollison was not a religious man, and said many times he never wanted eternal life and thought it was a terrible punishment. And speaking only for myself, I don’t think about a personal “after” life as I dive into these projects, I’m just trying to learn how to build sustainable systems that will serve the Earth, me and all those who live after me. I can only hope that something I do will last a thousand years as a blessing to future generations.
Oh, I forgot the most important principle, “If you’re not having fun, you’ve got the design wrong.”