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8 forms of capital agroforestry apples beans bees beneficial berries biodigester blackberries blackthorn book review brain budget build building campesino capital Celtic festivals change changes chemical-free chickens circular clay pot climate change climate solutions climbing cob comfrey community compost compost teas connection consciousness conservation cooking coppice coppicing cordial cosmology crafts crisis cultural emergence culture cycles design diary diversity DIY do it yourself earth care Earth's energy economics ecopoetry ecosystem edges education efficiency elements energy ethics fair shares Fairtrade farming feedback feminine ferns figs firewood flowers food food forest forage foraging forest garden forest gardening fruit fruit trees future future care gardening garlic gift economy gin global poverty grapes greenhouse grow grow your own growing guilds habitat harvest harvests hazel hazelnut health healthy soil hedging herbs holistic planned grazing home homestead Hugelkultur humanure IBC tanks Indigenous inexpensive influence jam land landscape life livelihood livestock logs low cost market garden market gardening marmalade mass heater medicinal microbes mimic mindset mitigation money moringa Mother Earth multifunctional mushrooms native plants natural natural building natural fertiliser natural skincare natural swimming pool nature nitrogen no dig no-dig nutrition nuts observe off-grid orchard orchards organic outdoor shower oven oyster pallets pasture-fed patterns people people care perennials permaculture permaculture design permaculture magazine award permaculutre pests pips pizza oven plant profile plants pollinators polyculture polycultures preserving principles propagating pruning psycho-spiritual awareness psychospiritual transformation rainwater raspberries recipe recipes reduce reed beds regenerative agriculture relative location relative matter renewable renewable energy resources reuse revolution rootstock rootstocks roundhouse roundwood runner beans Scotland seasons Sepp Holzer september septic tanks sewage treatment shrubs skincare sloes slugs small solutions small-scale smallholding social justice soil health solar solutions spiritual spring stacking functions straw straw bale sustainable systems temperate terraces thistles timber timber framing toolkit tools trees upcycle urban vegan vermicomposting walnuts waste watering weeds wellbeing wetland wild food wildlife wings winter salads wood stove woodburner woodland woodland management woodlands worms year-round food yield zoning

Topics

8 forms of capital agroforestry apples beans bees beneficial berries biodigester blackberries blackthorn book review brain budget build building campesino capital Celtic festivals change changes chemical-free chickens circular clay pot climate change climate solutions climbing cob comfrey community compost compost teas connection consciousness conservation cooking coppice coppicing cordial cosmology crafts crisis cultural emergence culture cycles design diary diversity DIY do it yourself earth care Earth's energy economics ecopoetry ecosystem edges education efficiency elements energy ethics fair shares Fairtrade farming feedback feminine ferns figs firewood flowers food food forest forage foraging forest garden forest gardening fruit fruit trees future future care gardening garlic gift economy gin global poverty grapes greenhouse grow grow your own growing guilds habitat harvest harvests hazel hazelnut health healthy soil hedging herbs holistic planned grazing home homestead Hugelkultur humanure IBC tanks Indigenous inexpensive influence jam land landscape life livelihood livestock logs low cost market garden market gardening marmalade mass heater medicinal microbes mimic mindset mitigation money moringa Mother Earth multifunctional mushrooms native plants natural natural building natural fertiliser natural skincare natural swimming pool nature nitrogen no dig no-dig nutrition nuts observe off-grid orchard orchards organic outdoor shower oven oyster pallets pasture-fed patterns people people care perennials permaculture permaculture design permaculture magazine award permaculutre pests pips pizza oven plant profile plants pollinators polyculture polycultures preserving principles propagating pruning psycho-spiritual awareness psychospiritual transformation rainwater raspberries recipe recipes reduce reed beds regenerative agriculture relative location relative matter renewable renewable energy resources reuse revolution rootstock rootstocks roundhouse roundwood runner beans Scotland seasons Sepp Holzer september septic tanks sewage treatment shrubs skincare sloes slugs small solutions small-scale smallholding social justice soil health solar solutions spiritual spring stacking functions straw straw bale sustainable systems temperate terraces thistles timber timber framing toolkit tools trees upcycle urban vegan vermicomposting walnuts waste watering weeds wellbeing wetland wild food wildlife wings winter salads wood stove woodburner woodland woodland management woodlands worms year-round food yield zoning

Putting the ‘Permanent Culture’ into Permaculture

Looby puts the permanent culture into permaculture by looking at our pre-conditioned habits. She explains how permaculture could change future ideas of cultural awareness.

Personal sustainability is the ability to sustain ourselves: our energy levels, health and connection to our dreams and visions, other people and our higher self. People have a responsibility to maintain their own physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health and avoid a burnout. We need to have an understanding of our own needs and have mechanisms in place to meet them.

Social sustainability

A socially sustainable culture will have a common understanding of ethical behaviour. Social responsibility is woven into everyday actions; our lives filled with interactions that feed us, nourish our sense of self worth and encourage honesty. We are social creatures and it is not possible to do everything on our own. We need nurturing relationships for our mental well-being.

When we recognise our need for interdependence we are willing to support each other. It doesn’t mean that we all have to be best friends; permaculture teaches us that we can respect, co-operate, co-exist with our differences rather than competing or trying to extinguish diversity.

What is culture?

Culture is the beliefs, customs, arts, institutions, practices and social behaviour of a particular nation or people. It is composed of internal thinking and external behaviours.

The systems we have for managing the earth’s resources and for how we interact with each other depend greatly upon our culture – its traditions, values and ways in which people organise themselves.

There are different layers to our culture. Race, class, language, education, locality and work all contribute to the environment we live in. Our cultures are a composite of our homes, family, work, community and wider groups that we belong to.

Every person is a part of many homes and will have a unique set of culture that they identify with. We have a family culture and a work culture as well as being part of even bigger groups such as age groups like children, teenagers or elders.

We often act from these cultural perspectives without necessarily being aware that it is our cultural conditioning that is dictating our thinking. For instance the time in the morning or evening that we consider is fine to phone people is conditioned and not the same cross-culturally. Each culture has preferences and aversions, beliefs and actions.

The future

Shifts in cultural beliefs and actions occur around us all the time and can come about quite quickly. The mobile phone culture has taken root and spread rapidly around the globe. There has been a dramatic increase in the availability of organic food over the last decade and it is now more usual to recycle and compost food.

Over the next ten years, it may become as normal to re-use our grey water and buy second hand clothes. The current economy relies on products having built-in obsolescence but it could become the norm for items to be manufactured for disassembly and reuse or replacement of component parts.

This is an excerpt taken from Looby Macnamara‘s People and Permaculture.

Further Resources

Watch

How to Understand & Change Culture | Looby Macnamara on Cultural Emergence

Books

Cultural Emergence
by Looby Macnamara

People and Permaculture
by Looby Macnamara

Permaculture Design Companion
by Jasmine Dale

Articles

What is Permaculture: Part 1 – Ethics

About the Author

Looby is a permaculture teacher and author, including the first book to explore the people care ethic, People and Permaculture.