foreword of my book: in search of paradise. Further chapters to be shared soon…
if you have your eyes and ears open, you might have noticed, that we are living on this planet in a way that soon might cause us to need a replacement. well, we don´t have one. even if the efforts and researches to live on mars are successful. media is full of warnings about the consequences of climate change. “if any entrepreneur would lead his business in the same way humanity deals with the world, he would be bankrupt soon.” says bil molison, founder of the philosophy of permaculture.
there are many uncertainties about the current ecological, economic and social situation in this world. for example the problem of rainforest deforestation; big strips of rainforest are cleared to implement fast growing and profitable agriculture. but after a few years those parts are uselessly left behind. this calculation lacks because there is no huge amount of hummus. the whole abundance of the rainforest is growing on a surprisingly thin nutrient layer. if the ecosystem of the forest is destroyed, and humans have implemented agriculture, nothing is there that can protect the nutrients from being washed away. the yield is getting lower each year and soon it will not be profitable. the basis of the old ecosystem is destroyed with little chance to rebuild the rainforest. the only thing left behind is only thorn steppe. where there was thousands of plants and a huge amount of species, a vast quantity of resources (maybe not as easy to harvest as wheat or corn) there is only a new form of desert now. the rainforest is one of the best examples, that even with bad soil and difficult circumstances, a fullness of different lifeforms is possible. the permaculture principle is inspired by this and other ecosystems. why should we not try to understand how nature can make such an intensive use of resources, nutrient, energy, water and soil possible and then copy that?
in the early 70s, bill molison introduced the permaculture design with david holmgren, in order to start the race against climate change. incessantly, the two australians built up a system based on indigenous knowledge that can be understood as an extension to empirical practices of science. the lifestyle of the australian aborigines, traditional economy based on multiple use of plants were their main role-models. permaculture is a new idea and ancient practice. combining the knowledge that we have today about ecology, biology, conditions of growth, resources, technology and recognizing the peculiarities of cultivated and wild plants that are bred in different parts of the world, make it possible to combine ecological agriculture, high yields and small workload.
peter bane describes permaculture in his handbook for permaculture as following:
“permaculture provides people who have been cut off from their own traditions, land bases and even from basic contact to nature with a healthy and productive relationship to the natural world around them. one basic of the relationship is ecology, or informed observation of the living world; the other is design – a positive creative response to our own needs and the logic of natural systems. permaculture is thus system for taking responsibility for our lives at the most fundamental level, that of energy. we eat drink, pass wastes and shelter ourselves; we live together in villages, towns, cities; we move around the landscape. the way we do those things presently is destructive for the natural world, making it harder and harder for us to continue as a species. it needn´t be .“
permaculture gives us new ways to answer the questions: how can we live for the best? how can we design our lives that our grandchildren are not negatively affected? how can we be sustainable, do-good, be fair and socially just? what does an eco-lifestyle look like? and can we find paradise in there?
in order to learn more about the aspect of permaculture, i made my way to people who live alternative lifestyles. i looked at rural life and, how exiting society works and where the drop-outs reach. i experienced how self-love and spirituality encourage a deep connection to ones soul and other beings. i learned how visions are realized how they fail or transform and what connection or disconnection to the conventional society they choose.
the development of this documentary is a personal search of a lifestyle that i can justify. where is my place in this or another society? how much responsibility can i carry, and how do i want to live?
after almost one year of intense research, travelling, and a lot of experiences, i can say that most people don´t really want to live carefree. on the contrary, people are worrying a lot, perhaps more about humanity than about themselves. they draw conclusion out of what might be right or wrong and give up their own comfort in order to do good. they are the anti-model to a classical citizen. a new species that is post-capitalistic, environmentally friendly, prepared for any catastrophe and customized to nature. possibly exactly the kind of human, that planet earth needs now, who knows…
the following posts will give you an insight of my experiences and will show you what i have learned in word and pictures. stay updated!
further information about permaculture