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There are seven elements of sustainable prosperity altogether. Other two are:
1: Conducting a Business Based On Sanpo-Yoshi
2: Doing What You Like Doing
I have already covered these elements in How to Start a Sanpo-Yoshi-Business Part 1: Making it Urite-Yoshi, and if you want to know about seven elements of sustainable prosperity in detail, please read the book Zen and a Way of Sustainable Prosperity.
Today, I would like to talk about Permaculture since I have spoken of the Permacultural way of thinking several times in the last few weeks, in the posts below:
How We Define Success in Zen and a Way of Sustainable Prosperity: Part 2 Why Do We Want to Live in a Rural Environment to be Successful?
How We Define Success in Zen and a Way of Sustainable Prosperity: Part 3 Does the Family Come First, or the Work Comes First?
Today, let me clarify what it means.
What is Permaculture?
The following is the explanation from Wikipedia
Permaculture is a system of agricultural and social design principles centered around simulating or directly utilizing the patterns and features observed in natural ecosystems. The term permaculture was developed and coined by David Holmgren, then a graduate student, and his professor, Bill Mollison, in 1978. The word permaculture originally referred to “permanent agriculture,” but was expanded to stand also for “permanent culture,” as it was understood that social aspects were integral to a truly sustainable system as inspired by Masanobu Fukuoka’s natural farming philosophy.
It has many branches that include, but are not limited to, ecological design, ecological engineering, environmental design, and construction. Permaculture also includes integrated water resources management that develops sustainable architecture, and regenerative and self-maintained habitat and agricultural systems modelled from natural ecosystems.
Mollison has said: “Permaculture is a philosophy of working with, rather than against nature; of protracted and thoughtful observation rather than protracted and thoughtless labour; and of looking at plants and animals in all their functions, rather than treating any area as a single product system.”
For example, when you design a farm, you think of the location of vegetable fields based on how frequently you visit. You set a field where you visit every day near your house, but set a field where you visit once a month far from the house. In this way, you save a lot of time and energy of traveling.
It can be applied to a city design, too. If you set your workplaces within walking distance or cycling distance, you don’t need a car to commute. Since you get some exercises done on your commute, you don’t need to use the extra time to exercise, and everyone can remain healthy so that you can reduce medical expenses as a community on the whole.
In my novel Hyakusho Revolution, I portrayed a village where every villager works within the village which enables them to commute on foot or by bicycle. It came from the Permacultural point of view, too.
In the real world, it is difficult to design a city like that since we will probably get opposition from the automobile industry, petrol industry, and medical industry, and it is a fundamental problem. Our economy depends on mismanagement of our social design.
It applies to most manufactural industries, too. We already have enough cars, TVs, computers, and we don’t need them for another few years, but makers of those products need to sell us more in order to survive. Therefore they make products which don’t last for many years. It is a big waste, and the majority of world wealth is built this way.
The wealth of the so-called successful people is made based on this dysfunctional system, and yet, they don’t seem to care about it; they’d rather sit on their balcony in a high-rise condo, drinking vintage wine, and think of ways to make more money.
I don’t call that success, success to me is to use the Permacultural way of thinking to redesign our economic structure so that we can start building our wealth based on a functional system and distribute wealth to all population and pass it onto seven generations into the future.
Some success gurus say that once you reach your goal, you want to set a higher goal because you always want to grow as a human being. I agree but instead of setting your goal to attain higher income, why don’t we set a more challenging goal to change our social structure; to shift our planet to be a more advanced civilization?