The Problem IS The Solution
The Mind is a trickster, and as much as our mental capabilities stand as one of humankind’s greatest powers, we also tote it as one of our greatest weaknesses. Early on in the 20th century, a man named Edward Bernays would revolutionize the way human beings manipulate each other with their minds. Bernays was the cousin of Sigmund Freud, and used his uncle’s deep insight of the human psyche to father what we know today as Corporate Mass Media. He is the Progenitor of Modern Day Spin Doctoring and False Flagging, and single handedly turned the Nasty Word Propaganda into what we now know as Public Relations. Sounds a lot better doesn’t it? It’s the same Orwellian magic wand that turns the Departement of War, into the Departement of Homeland Security. It is of course a mind trip, designed to hypnotize and manufacture ‘Democratic’ consent. As we wake up to a neo-feudal world in which our sovereignty has been hijacked, our most basic rights have been commodified, and our consciousness regulated by law, we find as the comedian George Carlin aptly put, that it’s the American Dream, because you gotta be asleep to believe it.
In his book ‘The Turning Point’ the human potential writer Fritjof Capra starts his vision for a better world with the Chinese Character FU, one of 64 Hexagrams from the I Ching, a 3000 year old manuscript, known to us as ‘THe Book of Changes’. This classic was written by the power of a human mind trying to grasp reality not in terms of numbers, figures and hard Science, but in terms of re-occuring Natural phenomena, rhythms, pulses and cycles, the Organic Language of the Universe. FU is the Hexagram of Return, the stage of Transition, and can be understood in terms of the axiom, that in times of crisis lie the greatest opportunities. It is easy to dismiss the I Ching as quackery fortune telling, but it would be a case of throwing out the baby with the bath water if we would deny the power that lay hidden within this type of reverse psychology.
To bring all of this back to Earth, we must acknowledge that it is here we find the seed of a powerful way of thinking that is also incorporated in the Design Principles of Permaculture. Namely Facing up to the Problem, drawing in some deep breaths, letting the wind whirl and whisper around your EPIC hair….. Ehrm, Observing the Challenge, BEcoming the Issue, taking one step back and Seeing the Bigger Picture, supercharging that UNwaivering Positivity, and in anticipation of those two steps forward, constantly realize that ‘The Problem IS the Solution!!!’
The classic example Bill Mollison likes to mention, and by the way he’s a real Bastard sometimes :-), is the way we deal with those most detested of pests, gardeners’ biggest adversary on the battlefield of their food producing gardens……..the Slippery Snails and Slimey Slugs. Instead of taking these creatures that nibble away your once exquisite lettuces as your enemy and hauling in some Environmentally hazardous Petro-Chemical product, we can employ the problem to serve as a Solution, and just by turning around our perspective on the issue, the Gastropod Molluscs become our Allies. Then suddely, an overabundance of Snails and Slugs, is really just a Deficiency of Ducks! For Ducks love the Slimey Critters, and if trained in that way, will leave your crops alone and pick out all the Slithering Snacks, including other harmful bugs. Now we’re starting to think Permaculture, making this small change in your system, turns a pest problem, into a more diverse and healthy ecosystem. In addition, you get some great company from the ducks, they produce beautiful manure that will only add to the fertility of your garden, and they’ll even eat the unwanted Weeds and other organic waste you might have. One element with many functions! Minimum effort, for maximum effect! OKay, granted, if you’re down at Wall Street reading this, you’re thinking, ‘yeah well what does this mean to me!?’ Perhaps you have no space for Ducks! However, as we come to think Positively and solution oriented about the Issues confronting us, we see that problems arise from mental obstacles, such as inertia and ignorance, and that the same issues can be approached with a completely different attitude. We don’t have Too Many Empty Urban Lots, We have a Deficiency of Urban Communal GArdens!! If anything we must demonstrate the power of Positive thinking, orienting ourselves in terms of solutions, for that is what we need in order to identify the opportunities that lie in front of us in these times of crisis, or should we say, these times of Opportunity? 😀
Similarly, the perception that the Occupy Wall Street movement has no organization, or guidance, or demands, as its main problem, is in a way just creating another mental obstacle that blinds us from the reality of the situation. To move forward in a Sustainable way, to deal with the direct challenges of the economic crisis, to realize that we CAN move away from fiat currency and say SCREW YOU to private Central Banks (Yes we are FED up!!), we need to get out of the Isolation and Inertia of our Drone like lives, and inform each other about the Healthy and Sustainable practices we can use to get out of this mess. Educate ourselves on how we can cooperate in meeting each other’s most basic needs, form alliances, cooperatives and friendships with our neighbours and kin. We will have people of all ages, colors, faces and places coming together, implementing a new kind of co-existence, finding meaning once again in their lives as part of a larger whole, without Fear and Redeemed from the Dark night Of Apathy. By changing ourselves first, and Helping each other similarly; by bringing back the community, Positivity, and Mutually Beneficial Self-Reliance, we become the Solution. So strap on your Permaculture Hat and dont’t forget: “The Problem IS the Solution”, as we are getting out on the streets now, we are meeting each other again, and that in itself IS exactly part of the Change we wish to See.
Stay Tuned for More Sense and Non-Sense on the Permaculture Front, Practical Tips of WHat You can Do, and How to Spread the Permaculture Virus!!
The Danghiz Post’Umus For Occupy-Wallstreet.com and Permaculture.nl
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