We’re continually being told that we don’t have time. For ourselves, for each other, for our planet. We’re so flat out so rushed so negative so stressed, so strung up with guilt about all the things going on in our country and around the world and our privileged position and so on and on. Really negative.
So let’s go straight to the positive.
If the Blue Mountains is anything to go by, there’s a great deal of excellent work going on, all over Australia, under headings that we would broadly class as ‘sustainability’.
Of course this word ‘sustainable’ is, like any other really gorgeous word eg ‘love’ or ‘peace’ – even God, which is a very old English word for Good or Goodness – this word ‘sustainable’ is very hard to define and much fought over. But I agree with David Suzuki that we really must stop fighting over unimportant, or even important, things. We must sit
down together, around the world, in large groups and small groups, governments, families, couples, and talk about all the things we really need, and how to get them.
So here goes:
One of Australia’s most important exports, and it’s all over the world.. is permaculture. Rosemary Morrow, (pictured here) our famous international permaculture teacher and author – who of course lives in the Blue Mountains – says, ‘Permaculture is the future.’ And I think she’s right.
If you want to know more about permaculture but don’t want to actually read a book, yet, let me recommend my son Nick Earl’s interview for Healthvibed Radio with permaculture consultant, designer, mentor, and educator Robert Lawrence.
Rob’s also my/Baglady’s GT, Garden Therapist. He used to live here in the Blue Mountains and he did a lot of wonderful work in my garden, but now he lives way up North in South-East Queensland, so he’s advising me from afar via skype. You’ll soon be able to hear him in our very short, <60sec70max podcasts together [GASAP with Baglady]; meanwhile I seriously suggest you slow down or do a household chore or have a cuppa with Rob and Nick on Healthvibed Radio. If you want to check out Rob’s stuff, you can do so here too.
Nick’s style is very relaxed but he is going somewhere interesting so I actually enjoyed listening for an unbelievable 75 minutes. Heavens. Me? I’m usually struggling to listen to 3 minutes.
So what do I like about Nick and Rob’s permaculture conversation? First, as I said, it’s relaxed and chatty. You don’t have to think, though it helps, or take notes… but I just washed the dishes and listened, first time; and then I went into my garden and started looking around and noticing how many of Rob’s ideas came to mind, as I knelt in the
sunshine transplanting spinach seedlings and searching for snails in the celery.
Realising how much I’ve learned, without even really suffering, over this last couple of years; how people are starting to say my garden’s lovely, and beautiful….and how my whole attitude to my garden and the world’s garden, has changed… and how good I can be about getting things wrong, so it’s lucky we have our wonderful Blue Mountains Food Co-op here, to fill the gaps in the larder and fridge. And the Growers’ Market and Sustainable Market in Blackheath, the steadily growing number of community gardens, Crop and Swop, Seedsavers. And of course wonderful bread shops like Hominy, the Bakehouse and, for me best of all, Peter’s Breads which I buy at the Leura Market at the weekend.
The 2nd thing I like is that Nick’s questions follow a clear line: first, introduction of Rob, who tells the story of permaculture, which I find fascinating. Then Nick steers us into the garden for some specifics Here’s Rob on how to get started with permaculture: [clip 50.55-53.40ish] And I just love all the stuff about ponds, and ducks and reed-beds!
The podcast ends with lots of info about source, youtube, things to read, watch and listen to. Nick’s listed these here:
The final moments:
Rob: I think it’s just time to start reframing our relationship with our planet, and as you said, take responsibility for our role in the story of life on earth. Just to move forward gently with open eyes, compassionate hearts, without attachment, or greed; and I think that is a sensible blueprint for a much longer life on earth than we would otherwise have.
Nick: And happier.
Rob: And happier!
Nick: More satisfying.
Rob: Moving towards an abundance paradigm. Just create that abundance