Getting started...

Bill Christensen bchristensen at
Mon Sep 12 20:20:03 EDT 1994

Hi Mike, and all. 

I find it best to add a piece at a time as you are comfortable and feel the

I've been learning about Permaculture for 6-8 years now, and i think it is a
continually evolving field.  Each of us can increase our web of knowledge
about the processes which surround us and our part in them for as long as
we're here.  

If you were to try to run off in the woods and go "totally permaculture", it
might not be right for you.  Then again it may, and you are the best one to
make that decision.  But i find that people who react to fads tend to
continue to react to the next fad and the next, whereas real learning is a
life process.  You can't change the world tomorrow, but incrementally you can
make a difference.  

A question like "are you living it or just integrating small pieces?" is
invalid.  Where do you draw a line like that?   Last I checked, Bill Mollison
was not, in my opinion, living a perfectly permacultural lifestyle.  (No
offence, Bill!  Neither am I.)  We all have areas that we can improve, more
small pieces to put in place.   We may not even realize that a particular
piece is out of place until we have finished arranging 20 others.  

That slow process of building your dream that you refer to will allow you to
adjust as you go, and create the closest thing to what your dream really is. 

The book is a great resource, but it's not a bible, as I think you're aware. 

In my own situation, I have been working on and living in an intentional
community for 12 years or so.  There are many positive aspects to this, but I
can see many aspects that could be more sustainable.  I've done a lot to use
the principles of permaculture in my own dealings with the building of the
community, and I'm happy about that.  I will continue to do so, wherever I

Margaret Mead once said "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful,
committed citizens can change the world;  indeed, it's the only thing that
ever has."

Bill Christensen
bchris at

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