[permaculture] right livelihood advice request (Tripp Tibbetts)

fdnokes at hotmail.com fdnokes at hotmail.com
Fri Jan 22 00:51:13 EST 2010

Great story, Deston!
I just read a book (borrowed through inter-library loan, and then 
recommended for purchase in the library system here):
Instructions for the Cook.
Fits nicely with the 'updraft' of your message.
Has anyone here read that one?

The book is by Bernie Glassman. My friend who mentioned the title described 
him as a "a fully cooked, socially engaged Zen roshi."
The book is about life and engagement with life, and includes some telling 
stories about business ventures that 'do good' or even, as the book cautions 
'do less harm' as everything makes demands on the system.

From: "deston denniston" <cobbuilder at yahoo.com>
Sent: Thursday, January 21, 2010 12:15 PM
To: <permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org>
Subject: Re: [permaculture] right livelihood advice request (Tripp Tibbetts)

> Tripp, I did real estate development for 3 years after graduating with a 
> BA/BS in ecology and design
> I worked for a company that did exclusively urban infill renovations of 
> dilapidated buildings. They weren't LEED remodels, but we did our best.
> I left as I was not satisfied that i was doing the most possible according 
> to my convictions, not really any sense that i was part of a damnable 
> march of so-called progress. anyhow, i think I get your dilemma - and I 
> also sense, If I read you right, that you know the answer to your 
> question. the good thing about this down turned market is that it is 
> slowing development at the same time (non enforceable) environmental 
> regulations are tightening.
> You may have an opportunity to mole away, but i suspect from your letter 
> that your vision of right livelihood is challenged by that. still, as the 
> old indentured peasants adage goes "beans before morals".
> I sucked up and bough a bit of land with my savings and surpassed my 
> college education with permaculture- in the 5 weeks of my PDC, a practicum 
> skillshare and  teachers certificate I saw the entire 8 years of my 
> college work from civil engineering to community ecology studies to 
> environmental politics and ethics flash before my eyes. there wasnt any 
> new information, but as you all may have experienced, there were many 
> revelations about how to use the information I already possessed, and this 
> amazing global community to share and witness in it.
> and now I'm moving back into real estate development. 
> (http://www.abundancepermaculture.com/papers12.html) The time is ripe. 
> Farms everywhere are crying out under the weight of regulation about the 
> 50% or more decline in real earnings that have gone on in the last 30 
> years, farmers are compressed- and in compression is potential energy- by 
> land use law on one side and production demands on the other. aand the 
> truth is that people arent going to stop eating. we need farms, and the 
> question is now HOW farming needs to change- its WHEN will it 
> comprehensively make that change. as a permie, you know what changes are 
> need in your region. the potential energy in the compression of farmers is 
> vast. If you find a way to tap it, you'll do well. of course, you also 
> need 'some' money. I wont lecture self righteously on tightening your 
> belt, you might livein an a refridgerator box for all I know, and permies 
> tend to be frugal, so ill excesise absolute faith that
> youve done all you can. after I bought my small plot of 16 acres I lived 
> in a old pig barn for three years. I thought I'd have income but didnt, so 
> the site development I imagined is just now starting 7 years later- the 
> site systems are getting dialed in enough to feed me and interns with a 
> small excess to market out. I went 4 years with no income to work the 
> place, just me and my shovel scavenging nursurey seconds from dumpsters, 
> etc.
> do what is hard today and tomorrow youll find things are easier, huh?
> heres what I did: I started presnting at schools on the basic tale of two 
> eggs. kids get it immediately, and they tell thier folks, and some of 
> those folks are policy people, some are farmers, others have various roles 
> in the food system, all of the eat.
> from the school presentation it went to presenting to county staff, to a 
> full blown non acredited 72 hour course and a deed signing for a 80 acre 
> sustainable farming demo that county commissioners have repeatedly said 
> "this will be largely defined by permaculture systems thinking for the 
> benefit of our local food systems" all this from showing up for kids.
> Im not on that project anymore, and while the income isnt great (Ive 
> underpriced my services to as low as $5/hour, but I own my land and dont 
> have kids, so I can afford that) I am picking up contracts now and farmers 
> are asking for services from my LLC. The state university is considering 
> the PDC cirriculum as a part of the extension service continuing ED 
> courses (the owrk of many PC pro's regionally, including moles, has 
> created this), and we have started about 50 acres of perrenial poly crop 
> demos across the western side of washington state.
> Youll have to decide if your need for immediate income demands the job, 
> but I suspect your vision is larger than being a mole in that capacity, no 
> matter how usefull such a role would be. I know many moles and they do 
> great work. But your indecision speaks to a vision that is bigger than the 
> capacity you are considering. weigh your need for income carefully, and if 
> you can trudge a bit more and stay in circle with all of us, I suspect 
> your vision will lead you to greater effect than this position can offer. 
> and that your needs will get met. Im not a psychic, but I do know we can 
> actually live well on little more than a few hundred square feet of 
> productive soil and a good rainfly....especially in the sub tropics 
> (though I understand you hit the mid 20's f. in FL recently! better add a 
> nice sleeping bag to that list ;)
> keep the faith: honor your inner fire and life vision
> Deston
> Peace,
> Deston Denniston, M.S., C.P.I.
> Steward, Abundance Permaculture Consulting
> www.abundancepermaculture.com
> (360) 673-2124
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