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Money & Permaculture

MONEY & PERMACULTURE

Money, though valuable in its own way, probably should not be the motivating factor for adopting a permaculture lifestyle, that is unless the idea is to escape the perils associated with it. Nonetheless, how and where money will come from seems to be one of the more frequently asked questions when I tell people my plan for setting up a small homestead somewhere, building a home, and growing food. Most think the idea equates to wanting to sell stuff at a farmers’ market for a “living”. For me, it doesn’t.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean I don’t need any money. My wife Emma and I have saved a modest amount to buy a property, and we have been looking for pieces that leave us some start up for building and setting up gardens, etc. We also plan on having ongoing sources of income, but the permaculture lifestyle—at least the one we’ve adopted and/or continually strive for—has appealed to us from the start because, while money still has value, life isn’t centered around acquiring it. For us, that’s huge.

While explaining our goals to others, it becomes more and more clear that money does not have the same role in our life or our plans as modern systems seem to dictate. “Working” isn’t solely based on earning a paycheck; rather, we plan to work for what money pays for: food, shelter, energy, etc. And, life’s luxuries, the ones many fear giving up, look more like a burden: Satellite TV or the new iPhone don’t improve life so much as add bills and persuade a sedentary, dull existence. For once, or once again, life can be about living.

Photo: Courtesy of the USDA

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Olduvai II: Exodus
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Olduvai
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