“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom” ~ Viktor E Frankl
Many people first encounter Permaculture as a gardening “method” and think it is all about organic/sustainable gardening, growing your own food, etc. In a way, this is correct…but there is many more to Permaculture than just sustainable gardening. And no, it is not about hippies!
If you ask a beginner permaculturist about its definition, she will probably look at you surprised and will struggle coming up with a congruent definition.
Why is Permaculture so hard to define? Because Permaculture is about having a new, ethical relationship with the world around us, and this relationship starts with how we take care of our basic needs (food, water, energy, shelter) but extends to how we choose our likes and wants, our relationships with others and even how we earn a living.
Permaculture has its roots on a combination of traditional wisdom, systems theory and ecology, and while the two initiators of the concept are clearly identifiable, many others have contributed to what is now known as “Permaculture Ethics”: Earth-Care, People-Care and Future-Care.
Are you a Permaculturist?
If you understand the deep relationship between human beings and their environment and do your best to minimize the impact on others and the world, if you care deeply about our current challenges and want to be part of the solution, you may already be a permaculturist: permaculturists grow at least a portion of the food they eat, save water and energy in creative ways, explore caring ways to run businesses, design their lives around ethics and base their decisions on deep observation of the already existent relationships and elements that conform their “Landscape”: a landscape may be your workplace, your school, your household or your community. It may even be your relationships and how you choose to live your life. Permaculture is about being mindful about who we are and how we live in this world. It is also about taking responsibility for ourselves.
While many early permaculturists embraced simplicity, off the grid living and moved away from “mainstream”, that has started to change: as more people realize we may need to re-design our relationship with the planet and other peoples in the world, we are starting to see Permaculture in urban areas, schools and even businesses.
Curious about what Permaculture may have to offer to you? Book an introduction to Permaculture for your group, community or organization!
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Silvia Di Blasio’s Bio:
Silvia wears many hats: mother of two boys, Silvia works as a certified career counsellor and community facilitator/trainer, coaching people in their next career move. She has embraced simplicity and Permaculture in 2010 and offers workshops and courses on topics that build household and community resiliency, including First Aid and Emergency Preparedness, Organic Gardening (Growing Food), Permaculture topics and Food Preservation.