The purpose of this post it to encourage reflection.
Reflection upon what is actually happening in the world and reflection upon our own roles in what is happening.
We are on a path of transforming all of the earth’s valuable resources into masses of unusable and toxic garbage and waste.
A man came upon thousands of starfish stranded on shore sure to die unless returned to water. He began picking them up one by one and placed them into the water again. Another man came and incredulously asked him what he was doing. The first man simply said, “I am trying to help the starfish”. The second man shouted at him, “Are you crazy? You will never make a difference! There are thousands of starfish!”
The first man just continued and placed another starfish into the water and said “It made a difference to that one”.
Turn problems into solutions
The adage goes: “With freedom comes responsibility”. I think it is the other way around. With responsibility comes freedom. Real freedom. When you become responsible for producing your own food, obtaining your own access to water, for building your own home you become empowered. You are no longer dependent on others who do not have your best interests at heart.
Making a Transition
By foreseeing potentially negative consequences we can take action to try to avoid them. But these actions often involve trade-offs and opportunity costs and so there is often debate. This is true for climate change, peak oil and many other issues.
Thinking about these endless eventualities and scenarios can be frustrating and can be used as an excuse to avoid doing anything.
This is not mere theory. This is what we are faced with everyday in our life with the decisions we make.
We tend to extrapolate from the past and make most of our decisions in life based on linear projections. However, reality rarely follows a linear course.
Safe is Risky.
As I child I was told over and over what the path to success would be. But long before I got there, I saw that that path led to a dead end. We need to think about our definition of success.
Money does not grow on trees but fruit does.
Two children are fighting over an orange. The mother comes along and cuts the orange in two and gives one-half to each child. The children part their separate ways and one eats the fruit and tosses the peel. The other uses the peel to make a cake and tosses the fruit.
Sometimes our interests don’t conflict.
Sometimes they do.
What does all of this have to do with Permaculture?
The knowledge gained from an understanding of Permaculture can be useful in at least three ways:
1) Permaculture can be used to redesign a home and personal life to live in a more sustainable way, in a more healthy and satisfying way, and a more affordable way.
There is a range to what extent you can do this. For example you might just attach a few solar panels to your house to save electric bills or you might go buy land in the country and go completely off grid and 100% self-sufficient. Both of these scenarios and everything in between fall within the ambit of Permaculture.
2) Permaculture can be used to redesign your business or commercial enterprise in a more sustainable way, in a more healthy and satisfying way, and a more profitable way.
3) Permaculture can be a career assisting others to redesign their personal or commercial systems by teaching and consulting.
My thinking on this has led me to develop a strategy where I prepare for the worst, hope for the best and take actions to fit differing eventualities.
For me a career in Permaculture fits these criteria. A career in Investment Banking does not. But everyone should figure out the best path for themselves. These are merely my suggestions.
From the womb to the tomb presume the unpredictable.