Activism, Balance Work and Life, Carbon Detox, Climate Change, Community, Community Gardens, Community Resilience, Financial Independence, Food Security, Food Sovereignty, Gardening, Growing Food, Life Choices, No Waste Living, Peak Oil, Permaculture, Reflections on an unsustainable world, Resilience, Resilient Living and Choices, Right Livelihood, Simply Living, Social Justice

Happy Hunger Games! And may the odds be ever in your favour


The first person who, having enclosed a plot of land, took it into his head to say this is mine and found people simple enough to believe him was the true founder of civil society. What crimes, wars, murders, what miseries and horrors would the human race have been spared, had some one pulled up the stakes or filled in the ditch and cried out to his fellow men: “Do not listen to this imposter. You are lost if you forget that the fruits of the earth belong to all and the earth to no one!”
~ Jean-Jacques Rousseau, The Social Contract and The Discourses

A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude.”
~ Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

I wish people would put the same attention and energy they do with the World Cup and so many other inconsequential “events” and “news” to things that really matter…

I wonder how our world would look like in 2020, 2030 or 2050…I may live to those years and even more…would I see the development of the current crises?

What we do seems so small compared to the greed, the stupidity, the blindness, the selfishness, the complete ignorance and unresponsiveness of mainstream masses towards all what’s happening!

I spent a wonderful day yesterday, learning more about organic food gardening and meeting with my great friend…

And then this morning, I visited my community garden plot and discovered why we do what we do, and why we need to continue…it is an ant’s job, step-by-step, day-after-day, working first towards our own independence and re-learning…and, at the same time, showing others what is possible.

My plot went from this in early May:photo 1To this today:

10442354_10152437529463898_8986504441052539857_n10389558_10152437530173898_8950772700133400621_n10402453_10152437529918898_6788057130927471596_n10390226_10152437529123898_558216139512279752_n(for those who complain and struggle with the idea of gardening: I work full time in an office and most of my “free” time I dedicate to volunteer for community programs where I facilitate workshops on Emergency Preparedness, Permaculture and Food Security…I’m not an expert gardener and have never studied horticulture or gardening…I also have a family and three pets at home, read, take online free courses and write a few blogs. Believe me, if I can grow stuff, anybody can do it, even better…)

Somebody out there said Permaculture is a cult: a fashion good for blue-eyed white people who can “pretend” having a garden and a “free” lifestyle while the real masses starve or go further into debt and dependency. The same blogger suggested it is also wishy-washy (lacking scientific and serious roots)…

I really don’t care: Permaculture has helped me to re-connect to what I was and the way I was raised in a struggling and mixed South America; it has helped me to start a real change in my life towards independency and a more sustainable and resilient living (still a long way to get there) and to encourage others to do the same…all the science and seriousness of all the studies, books and papers I’ve read or encounter before didn’t do that for me.

10363963_10152437530393898_1955388352732094839_n

However, I would like to see more people from all walks of life using Permaculture in their lives: no matter how it is called or whether they “know” the ethics and the principles…but how wonderful and life changing for everybody it would be if people who really need independence and resilience in their lives have access to what this teaches us…

How many are out there enslaved by debt, survival jobs, abusive employers and systems, waiting for the next “saviour” to help them, be it the next government, the next lover, the next country where they flee to, the lottery or God…

For those entertained by TV shows, the planning of their next vacation, Father’s Day or the World Cup: we have managed to impact the soil and the water that sustain us, we have managed to change the weather that allows current ecosystems to work as they do…we have managed to create societies where people need to work for others to get access to land, food and other basic needs, while a few become richer and more powerful and the rest stays the same or worse than they were…

Today, I visited my little plot, the one that complements my own balcony garden at home. Between the two (no much space nor time invested) I can feed myself and my family, with the exception of some staples such as rice and flour, some fruits, eggs, cheese and other animal products…

I produce salad greens and stir-fry veggies, all the herbs I need (medicinal and culinary), some roots (carrots, beets, etc), strawberries and edible flowers…I’m now waiting for the potatoes and tomatoes, squash, beans and corn!

Imagine how it would be if (apart from stopping our greed for more “comfort” and “stuff” that we “deserve”) we start converting every single useless lawn into a vegetable garden, every yard or abandoned area into a food forest with nut and fruit trees and every rooftop into a community garden for those who live in the building…

My (edible and pollinator attractor) borage plants…

10419437_10152437530528898_7801543244017325991_nAnd my (medicinal herb, preventive health support) chamomile:

10441526_10152437529368898_2976981367593542498_nAnd don’t tell me that a vegetable garden cannot compete in beauty with a piece of land…

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The greatest change we need to make is from consumption to production, even if on a small scale, in our own gardens. If only 10% of us do this, there is enough for everyone. Hence the futility of revolutionaries who have no gardens, who depend on the very system they attack, and who produce words and bullets, not food and shelter.”
~ Bill Mollison

Sitting at our back doorsteps, all we need to live a good life lies about us. Sun, wind, people, buildings, stones, sea, birds and plants surround us. Cooperation with all these things brings harmony, opposition to them brings disaster and chaos.”
~ Bill Mollison, Introduction to Permaculture

4 thoughts on “Happy Hunger Games! And may the odds be ever in your favour”

    1. Thanks Carola, many times I fall into despair, lack of hope and pain for the world…I can’t help continue reading and witnessing the “dark” side of things…my garden and community work keep me sane…

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      1. I do understand the despair. My research and past work has focused on Ojibwe people and other Native American peoples. It’s hard to have hope when I read or write on these topics. Trying to grow a garden for the past two years has actually added to my feelings of hopelessness some days. A large herd of urban deer roam through my neighborhood and have repeatedly walked over the low fence to eat most of the plants and pull up others that they didn’t want. Of course, their behavior is understandable. We’ve imbalanced natural controls and live in their environment. So, I appreciate the chance to focus on ways to plan for climate change in my teaching. And seeing your gardens and hearing about your work helps me to continually rekindle hope and continue to experiment with healthy ways to protect my gardens.

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      2. Hi Carola, not sure what you can try for deer eating your garden…maybe dogs, a llama (lama?) or a high fence…other poeple use things I don’t ;like such as electrified fences or hunting them down…

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