Help Develop the Worldwide Permaculture Network

Discussion in 'The big picture' started by CraigMackintosh, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. Chief Cloudpiler

    Chief Cloudpiler Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2009
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ricky, I don't think you are knocking anybody's ego and your comment was appropriate. Please know that you are very welcome here, at least with this Junior Member you are.

    Tezza, your attitude does nothing to create a Permaculture Network. It is the same sort of PDC Bashing that has scuttled much of the U.S. effort to unify Permaculturists across the country. Please desist.

    One of the characteristics that was made clear to me from the PDC course that I am glad I sacrificed much in order to afford is that it does not matter how many elements you have in a system, what matters is the connections and associations between them. I spent thirty years learning techniques and thought I was a pretty good gardener. My homestead, however, never even approached self-reliance (and could not have) until I was able to integrate Systems Analysis with my many tidbits and techniques. I do not denigrate those techniques, and of course, earning a PDC did not relegate them to a shoebox somewhere. I use them every day - better, more efficiently, more sustainably. I am more satisfied and confident because of the PDC. I feel I would be handicapped without it, notwithstanding years of education, experience, blogging, surfing, and trying.

    PDC Bashing cannot provide any appropriate yield, is associated and entangled only with division and disunity, and contradicts everything that works in Nature. I want to talk about Permaculture here. Is that too much to ask? I happen to believe that Permaculture is more than just growing a garden, building a trellis, digging trenches and swales, composting, and so forth and so on. Permaculture revolves around a set of Ethics and Philosophy that have the potential to turn this train wreck we call a planet around. Rugged individualists here and there cannot do it. Unified, educated, motivated, and yes, even rewarded (God In Heaven, Jesus, Mary and Joseph forbid!) Permaculturist can. That fact is the ONLY justification for the sacrifice, pain, and even suffering that will come with even attempting to create a World Wide Network. It is worth it. It is the only thing that is worth our time, talents, everything we have been blessed to possess, and everything we will ever be blessed to possess. A future for my grandchildren is a worth so much more than your ego, or mine. Without such an ethic, absent that realization, void of that morality, all the years of labor, study and free advice is just sounding brass.

    "We don't need a PDC to do Permaculture..." That's all too true. Frankly, by that same logic we could make the "brash statement" that we don't really need Permaculture at all. We could have done it all on our own. Who the hell do any of these guys think they are coming in here and telling us what to do? I'll tell you who they are! They're the guys who helped us define the problem, create the solution, and then, by God, they were gracious enough to step back and turn it over to us to promote and to govern by the seat of our pants and the ethical standards we decide to uphold and to live by. After these guys have carried us across the river, are we like the scorpion who turns and strikes just because that's how we are? I hope not. I choose to live with the hope that we can and we will create an ethical, sustainable environment without minimizing the standards and ethics and philosophies that created US. You say you just "do Permaculture." Well, I don't think you do that by bashing the foundation of the movement. If you think your words are a metaphor for Pragmatic Permaculture (which seems to be your mantra), then I invite you to take your shovel and dig out the corner of the foundation of your house and just see where the removal of that function association takes you. PDC Bashing, its not even a slow poison. It's just mainlining failure. I find that unacceptable. You say you just "do Permaculture." May I make so bold as to request that you practice what you preach in the soil of this forum.

    Creating a World-Wide Permaculture Network. It is a good cause. It is an essential cause. If that's not what this thread is here to talk about, if you'd all rather talk about methods and techniques alone and forget that there is a standard for Permaculture Education well established that seems to be teetering because of EGOS out there, well, Moderators, shut this down and lets all revert back to the kind of more milk-toast, palatable, and politically correct topics like the Moderator at Permies.com demands. I just left Permies.com because I couldn't take the blatant jettisoning of the very basic foundations of Permaculture. If we cannot come to what amounts to the center of the movement to discuss such fundamentals, it is a very bad indicator. If that turns out to be true, the canary will not last the day.
     
  2. Fernando Pessoa

    Fernando Pessoa Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Messages:
    316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I was surprised to find today that pigeon pea was as good as coal for fire.............you never know what you are going to pick up.It just goes to show when you keep your eyes open you see a lot more,when you are not to proud to hear your learn a lot.I am trying at the moment to listen twice as much as I speak,it's very relaxing.I would like to make a point that Bill and David never took a PDC;>),just to stir the pot:>)
    Best wishes Fernando
     
  3. Chief Cloudpiler

    Chief Cloudpiler Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2009
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Ricky, I think I've made it clear that I don't think a PDC ought to be a pre-requisite for participation in a World-Wide Permaculture Network. I too, know people who have taken PDC courses that they were not satisfied with. I obtained a Doctorate in Natural Medicine that I had to supplement with years of additional study because I was not satisfied with the original. I hope I have not convey the idea that I think little of actual practical experience. I think it is essential. What I would like to see absolutely dropped here is the popular fad of bashing the PDC in general. It is a good concept and a good institution, without which I have to ask, "how many people would actually be doing any Permaculture anywhere?"

    Why don't we talk about a World-Wide Network instead of whether we like the PDC or not?
     
  4. Ricky Stevens

    Ricky Stevens Junior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2010
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    thanks for that chief I appreciate your wise words, seems a bit weird to get bashed by seniors and welcomed by juniors in a new place, but hey the world is pretty messed up.

    back on track, one other thing i wondered was how the apt training done by robyn francis will fit in, will it be the same as someone doing a pdc?
     
  5. Fernando Pessoa

    Fernando Pessoa Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Messages:
    316
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
  6. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    2,456
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Farm manager/ educator
    Location:
    Hunter Valley New South Wales
    Home Page:
    Climate:
    warm temperate - some frost - changing every year
    I contend that they both have done many PDC - much of what I have learned has come from my PDC with Bill, much from observation and experience, and much too from teaching.
     
  7. matto

    matto Junior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2009
    Messages:
    685
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    16
    I think he was referring to David and Bill not having sat in on a class. Although we could see the Masters degree in Environmental Design was indeed the first PDC done by both of them, with Permaculture One being the outcome of that course, and the following years were getting the hours up to become proficient in design.
     
  8. Chief Cloudpiler

    Chief Cloudpiler Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2009
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The internet has created a different world than ever existed when Bill and Geoff developed the original training model. Of course everything in the PDC, in terms of theoretical work, is available on the www. I did not experience anything like the guided education in practical application from reading and trying permie techniques acquired from reading alone, as I did from the PDC. I must also say that my extensive book knowledge of the mechanisms of action of the therapeutic herbs was no where nearly as useful to me until after guided residency. O.K., I didn't serve time in a hospital like a Med Doc, but I was personally mentored by a man with decades of practical experience in the field.

    Pragmatically, Permaculture exists in the hearts of many people and is called by many names. A World Permanetwork must recognize this. The PDC should not be held up as some kind of "worthiness test" as is very common in religious doctrines. It can't be that, no way! But, by saying that I do not mean to denigrate the PDC. I believe uniform education is of great benefit to the creation of community. This is the very effective manner in which the colonialists conquered Indigenous Peoples all over the world. It is a proven method. We need to understand this issue and look at it with eyes wide open. It doesn't make sense to reject the best proven method of dismantling the present, unsustainable system just because it was used successfully by that system.

    Einsteins' definition of insanity is to continue to do the same things, but expect different results (paraphrased of course). Conversely, it would seem a kind of insanity to reject the idea of duplicating a proven successful methodology. Uniformity in education is such a proven methodology.
     
  9. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    2,456
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Farm manager/ educator
    Location:
    Hunter Valley New South Wales
    Home Page:
    Climate:
    warm temperate - some frost - changing every year
    It is my point too Matto - In many ways Geoff and Bill "sit in" on every course they run.
     
  10. Chief Cloudpiler

    Chief Cloudpiler Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2009
    Messages:
    38
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    It is my profound hope that when we teach a PDC course, we are entangling ourselves with not only the subject matter, but also the very spirit and intent of the people who brought that subject matter together. I know that the vast majority of people in the world do not subscribe to my version of religion and that my spiritual orientation may seem strange to many, but I add this - when I teach a PDC course, or otherwise disseminate information I received from mine, I am inviting that portion of the Universal Creative Energy my people call the "Light of the Peacemaker" into the work. That same energy distilled in the hearts and minds of the founders and creators of Permaculture. By inviting into the discussion that same element of spiritual intention (All My Relations) I hope that, in a very aetheric sense and I know it's a stretch, I in a way inviting Mollison and Holmgren into my PDC.

    O.K. before you roll your eyes and get all up about it, I know these guys are just regular folks like all of us, and I am not trying to put them so high that should they fall it would be like Babylon the Great. It's just that, when I took the PDC it cause so many ahaws to well up in me that I felt a great kinship to these men. They had found a way to express the things that my body was telling me (with sensations of a sort that make them hard to misinterpret) were so relevant to a sustainable future that I found it hard to respond in any other way than to exclaim - "Damn! That is so right?" and "Wow! That makes so much sense!" I felt a sudden kinship with them both. The emotion in me made it almost as thought they were there shaking their heads in agreement and saying, "See, even the sensations elicited by your own nervous system remind you that there is a built in, balanced, and natural way to overcome this train wreck of a world we live in!"

    To me, and you all might think me wacked (and that's O.K. too), but I feel like they were there in my PDC, and it was a couple generations out from them at least.
     
  11. DonHansford

    DonHansford Junior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    Messages:
    207
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Actually, I do have a PDC - but I also have a hell of a lot of life experience to go with it. :)

    It's a pity that your PDC was not more enjoyable and educational. I did mine with Geoff, and it was very good. But it wasn't only good because of the calibre of the teacher - the interaction of the students was a huge part of the equation. People from so many backgrounds brought such a rich diversity of thought-patterns and ideas, and I came away with, not just some life-long friends, but some other ways of looking at things from a broader range than just my own experience. That added value made the course truly worthwhile.

    Personal observations on these points; experience You have to get it somewhere :) - just remember, Experience is a great teacher, but she kills quite a few of her students!; wasn't a very capable gardener - personally, I think the whole "gardening" thing is a bit overdone in Permaculture - it tends to overshadow the "real" design science that underpins the whole concept. For good or ill, though, it does seem to be the defacto face of Permaculture.; apart from regurgitating the manual - I have seen so many highly paid (and apparently highly regarded) university professors who do that - $100K a year, and not an original thought in their empty f-- heads! (Sorry, old hobby horse of mine).; he also lacked people skills - You cannot share knowledge with, or educate people (or horses, bullocks or dogs for that matter) unless you engage them first. (I really hate that term "engage" - I got engaged once, and two wives later, I'm still regretting it!). You don't have to become bestest buddies, but you need to find a point of mutual respect to work from - sort of like the difference between talking "to" someone, or talking "with" someone.

    I agree with your point that there are many "unqualified" people on this forum who give some very high quality advice (quite a lot of which I have found invaluable), and whom do not possess a Certificate. I temper their advice with the same amount of caution that I would from someone with a PDC, or even from Bill, David and Geoff themselves. The situation in my backyard is unique enough that most things need to be massaged a bit before they work to their best advantage in that particular setting. So having a PDC doesn't, in it's own right, make someone's advice any more or less "worthy".

    I could always study a heap of online stuff, then advertise as a specialist in "womens troubles" - "I'm not a gynecologist, but I'll have a look at it for you, ma'am." :rofl:

    Same as if I didn't have a PDC, but offered to teach a Permaculture Design Course. No certificate for the participants, no matter how good (or bad) I was as a teacher. Wonder how many students I'd get?

    There is much, much more to being a teacher, than having a piece of paper. I have already been a teacher, and now I have a subject that I not only have a qualification in, but I have a deep passion for as well, so I am confident of being able to deliver a course that the participants will remember for all the right reasons.

    Can Permaculture be a business, without sacrificing the ethics and principles? I certainly hope so! I have to pay bills, but I also see a great need for Permaculture training to be delivered in areas of great poverty, not that far from where I live. The options, as I see them, are to spend large amounts of time applying for government and other grants to deliver training that doesn't (yet) fit any government or NGO pigeon-holes (at least in Australia), so has a limited success rate - or, I run some courses where I charge those who can afford it, to subsidise those courses I run for those who can't. Anyone with some other methods, I'm all ears.

    Anyway, David - welcome aboard! I hope you get as much out of this forum as all the rest of us do. :D
     
  12. MFox

    MFox Junior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2011
    Messages:
    16
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Really interesting discussion guys.

    I got my PDC by fluke- we (my fiance and I) went to become eco volunteers on a kibbutz in the south if Israel, just intending to learn everything we could about strawbale building, organic gardening, composting toilets etc. There was a group of American students there doing a course called 'Living Routes' which included doing a PDC course. We were invited by our amazing boss to attend- after the first permaculture lesson we spoke to him and literally said "our lives are changed" and he let us hitchike onto that course- we fully completed the design projects and received our certificates at the end.

    We were lucky enough to be able to do it for free. If we had to pay I don't know if I would have been able to do it.

    I agree with both arguments to a point. It shouldn't be about a piece of paper, it definately should not be about money. Bill's dream of teaching the world permaculture surely didn't come with a $1000 price tag! It's not about that! The courses should be cheaper, for sure.

    BUT

    As someone mentioned above, it's not just a piece of paper. By doing this course I was flung into the depth of permaculture life, emmersed in the ethics and surrounded by like minded people. It taught me a very specific process to go through not only in designing but in looking at the whole world. It married together my passions for human rights and for the environment. The whole course is a design process, and as you go through it, different parts of your brain get opened up in a specific order, so by the end you really look at the entire system of everything in a different way.

    Please don't laugh at me everyone! I'm only freshly back, so I still have the buzz and the glowy inspired eyes.

    If it helps at all my fiance and I are planning on running PDC courses in Perth, we could make them cheaper so more accesible. I'm thinking about travelling around the world and teaching it for free, like our friend above from Serbia. Like the amazing organisation 'Builders Without Borders' surely uses permie ideals.

    Very interesting food for thought. Thanks!!
     
  13. Alex.s

    Alex.s Junior Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2010
    Messages:
    63
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I haven't been in here for a while but often check for the network updates. Is it up yet? Is there a forecast? I haven't found a link and would assume it would be made forefront. Hope it hasn't fallen through..
    Thanks
    ALex
     
  14. purplepear

    purplepear Junior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    2,456
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Occupation:
    Farm manager/ educator
    Location:
    Hunter Valley New South Wales
    Home Page:
    Climate:
    warm temperate - some frost - changing every year
  15. Earthwizz

    Earthwizz Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2011
    Messages:
    26
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I was introduced to PC in '76, immediately obvious of course, devoured everything I could on the subject and it informed much of my life from then. I didn't do my PDC untill '95. Wasn't expecting much as I had a pretty good handle on things but was surprised at the integrations made. It tied up a lot of loose ends and was the inspiration for the idea I've been working on ever since. The global permaculture design, an idea for the rapid transition to our sustainable future. Check my profile.
    The growth of sustainable practice, of which PC is part, is a response to the growth of environmental awareness which is now universal. If we compare the current growth of the response to the growth of the awareness 30yrs ago (snails were faster) it's much more advanced and, therefore, will be universal in probably less time.
     

Share This Page

-->