The principles of permaculture in my wise woman practice
As those who have read my bio on my site will know, one of the passions is permaculture. There is a reason I mention this specifically. First of all, I consider everything I have learned to be an inseparable part of myself. My knowledge and experiences are what make me me. But when it comes to permaculture, there is more. It is pre-eminently linked to what I find important in life and my wise woman practice. This becomes evident when looking at the principles of permaculture.
Permaculture principles: earth care, people care, fair share
The principles of permaculture are threefold: earth care, people care, fair share. That motto sums up what drives me. I want to take care of the planet, but also of people and share my knowledge in an honest way. Permaculture is more than just a way of working the land. It’s a way of life.
This way of life was normal once. We did not work against nature but with nature. It was natural for us to care for and share with each other. There is sufficient archaeological evidence for this. When agriculture arrived, that all changed. Very slowly at first. The first agricultural settlements were still very egalitarian and community oriented. But, over time, more and more inequality emerged and it became more and more normal to ruthlessly go for your own gain.
The definitive end of natural farming
Nevertheless, people kept working with nature rather than against her for a long time. It was the last of the aforementioned 3 principles still standing. Old farmers almanacs are still full of wisdom that bear witness to this. In many food gardens you also could clearly see that people were still aware of the benefits of using the power of nature in one’s favour. However, more and more monoculture was practiced.
The definitive end for this principle came with the Green Revolution. Although the intention of the Green Revolution was noble – wanting to eradicate hunger, which unfortunately still has not worked – the effect was disastrous. The Green Revolution wasn’t all that green, but resulted in upscaling, more monoculture, more pesticide and fertiliser use and in the almost complete disappearance of small mixed farms that still had an eye for the effect of nature. It resulted in soil erosion, salinisation, extinction of many species and much more misery.
The moral side of the agricultural dilemma
In recent decades it became clear to an ever-growing group of people that it could not continue like this. Bill Mollison and David Holmgren were 2 of them. In response to the soil erosion and desertification in Australia, they investigated natural ecosystems and traditional ways of producing food. But they did more than that. They also saw that there was a moral side to this whole story and that nothing would change if human attitudes didn’t change as well. Permaculture was born.
This notion is integrally important to my work. As a wise woman, I realise that the three principles of permaculture are essential to human well-being. Earth care: the main reason we don’t take good care of the Earth is because we don’t feel connected to it. We don’t care, or at least not enough. And if we don’t feel connected to the earth, we’re not doing too well ourselves. By promoting good care for the earth, I recreate that connection and automatically improve human well-being. And by reconstructing the connection, I also ensure that people will again care about the earth and look after it more.
Permaculture principles in my wise woman practice
I don’t think ‘people care’ needs an explanation in relation to my work.
It is the hub of my practice. Everything, my consultations, my plant vademecum and my information about magical life are aimed at contributing to better human health, physical, mental and spiritual. And fair share, well… this entire website is about making knowledge available in a fair way. I also like to share what I have, personally. Whether it’s the eggs that our chickens lay every day, a nice meal or just my time.
Mind you, fair share does not mean that you have to sacrifice yourself.
A healthy life starts with valuing yourself properly and taking care of yourself well. After all, you can’t be there for someone else if you are in bad shape.
Hoping these principles will put an end to injustice
But it does mean that enough is enough.
That if you have more than enough, you share your abundance. Unfortunately , we don’t do this often enough in our current society. I find it outrageous that I live in a country where there are people who own 600 properties while there are homeless people as well. I cry when thinking that there are people who are starving while others go on regular holidays to the other side of the world. That we say without blinking that there’s no money to support each other, while we do launch rockets into space.
I can cite a thousand more examples of injustice. But that won’t change things. Action will. In the end, the world will be a lot more beautiful if we all apply the principles of permaculture to our own square metres. For me as a wise woman, someone who aims to promote wellbeing, an additional reason to propagate these principles.