Permaculture Magazine Editorial
Editorial notes from Maddy Harland, Editor of Permaculture Magazine
Wednesday, 10 February 2010
Building Community & How a Book Was Born
A couple of years ago a manuscript called Birthrites landed across Tim Harland’s desk and he started to read it immediately. ‘It engaged me straight away. The manuscript was very well written, grounded and I found it deeply moving,’ he says.
We have been publishing books about ‘earth care’ – permaculture design, edible forest gardening, woodland management, eco-building, renewable energy – since the early 1990s but the ‘people care’ aspect of permaculture which we consider vital had not been explored. I was also aware that our wonderful list of talented authors are mostly men and I wanted to redress this so I sent out an inner request for more women authors. The intuitive Jackie Singer must have registered because the manuscript arrived soon afterwards.
I have long felt that ceremony and ritual has an important role to play in building community and inner healing. If we can celebrate and mourn together, mark rites of passage and significant events in groups, we will rebuild and strengthen community and thus our capacity to co-operate. We will also build group consciousness. These are vital aspects of our evolutionary journey as humans – underpinning values for living more peacefully and more ecologically. They engender sharing of skills and resources, compassion and nonviolence, and a sensitivity to the limits of the earth.
The joyful times that I spend with Glennie Kindred, another intuitive and masterful celebrant, have long emphasised this aspect of inner sustainability. We of course need practical approaches like permaculture design and other low carbon solutions but, without the connections found in community, the hands do not have the opportunity to work with the heart in a wider arena. The opportunity to collaborate with and serve others is the key to creating a civilised and low carbon society, one that ultimately can repair the damage our postindustrial growth society has so effectively done.
Read the whole article here.