Gaurav Sangwani writes: Permaculture tries to utilise the existing elements in the land to take human freedom further, with a far lower ecological effect. Primitivism is the perennial belief in the need to go back to where we started, the lost Golden Age of freedom and guiltlessness which is at the heart of all the world’s religions.
PART 1: Permaculture: How do we save the environment from us & our technology?
“We just have 175-200 years more on this planet, after that we’ll be done with. I have no doubt that we’ll figure out a plan to survive but is that really necessary? Why not just work with the environment and extend its age to another 300 years?”
People have been and dependably will be social animals. Where our food comes from and how we get it, to a great extent decides how we interact with each other.
As animals, the way we interact with each other is established in the way we live. When we are encompassed by nature we will act differently in contrast to when we are encompassed by machines and concrete. When we are surrounded by domestication we act, think and feel in an unexpected way. The secluded, calmed, strained, and overpowering reality that we’ve made now is as one from the material world our elders have constructed and that we keep up. It gets increasingly hard to envision a world not quite the same as the one we are brought up into.
So we give in. We accept this reality as our lone reality. We accept that humans have a characteristic slant to make a move to the detriment of each other and to the detriment of the world on the loose. We attempt to make the best of our time and that will be that. A few of us swing to god, some swing to politics, some swing to sedatives (chemicals or electronics); we turn anyplace that we can discover some break from the dry, inhuman condition that suffocates us.
The Human Nature
I believe in Human Nature. It’s a lot to ask, but rather there’s a lot about human society and conduct that must be offered an explanation to, in any case. Put in specific circumstances as for socialization, we tend to act in comparable ways. In like manner, the progressing domestication process has dependably worked in the same ways, controlling and diverting human need into reliance. Our comparable responses are a piece of our legacy as social creatures. Furthermore, that is the way millions of years of advancement and social living have made us.
There’s a natural nature to developmental change. Yet, transformative change is something big that spreads out over thousands and millions of years. It is a reaction to long haul conditions regarding transient changes. We survive in light of the fact that, as a species, we are versatile. Furthermore, that has been a sort of blended gift. While it helps our body store fat and water so we can cover long distances or that we are fit for taking in such a variety of sorts of nourishment, it has likewise made it workable for us to get by in urban areas and maintain ourselves of the excessively processed food. What we’ve been equipped for making due for a brief period has been seen by some as a transformative change in itself. It has permitted some to surmise that humans were proposed for city and mechanical life or that thusly of survival and destructive development can keep on existing, either by the Hand of God/s or the Knowledge of Science.
Development has been consolidated into a social reality. That is the reason we have racism, sexism, class or caste societies, and their substances of slavery , war, colonization, government, and so forth. As we ventured into the tamed countryside, the requested city, the modern air pocket, the worldwide framework and the virtual reality, we’ve seen change as far as eras as opposed to a great many years. The individuals who shape and profit by the society can just do as such with an armed force, producers and reproducers. They take their fleeting advantage as reality and transformed history into advancement. They made God and afterwards got to be them.
We live in a society that could sensibly be portrayed as fixated onTechnology. Technological arrangements are generally promoted as the route forward (paying little heed to what the issue is!) In such a ‘techno-fix’ society, it is vital to stretch different courses forward – changes in conduct, cultural changes, new thinking and values. Be that as it may, technology has a considerable measure to offer, and it would be stupid not to make utilization of the best of science and technology.
So where does the “appropriate” in ‘Appropriate Technology’ originate from? To me, it is technology that “fits” well into a spot or setting. For the “technology” part, I like W. Brian Arthur’s definition, whereby technology is the catch or utilization of a phenomenon for a particular reason. So this could be everything from development of a manure heap to an arrangement of group administration. The “appropriate” comes in when you perceive that some methods for creating sustainable societies resound better with human conduct over others — say, group land trusts instead of landowner/occupant arrangements.
Permaculture: An Urban View
Permaculture is demonstrated on the connections found in nature. The term was coined by Bill Mollison (permanent agriculture and perpetual society). All the more, it is the configuration of agriculturally profitable ecosystems which have differing qualities and solidness while considering the current environment and natural ecosystems.
Permaculture, is not simply organic farming, the ideology in practice means agreeable mix of environment and individuals — providing them food, shelter, and energy in a very sustainable way.
One part of permaculture that emerges straight off the bat for analysis is the means by which it shows in urban milieu. Permaculture, as found in urban areas can incorporate group gardens, city ranches, lawn plants, and is an endeavour to make urban spaces more independent and reduce our carbon footprint. An anti-civilisation critique of urban areas is that their presence is predicated on the importation of assets (e.g. food) from rural regions. Permaculture, particularly of the urban variety, attempts to mediate this.
As it may be, with such a convergence of humans in a restricted space, there isn’t room in their quick range to deliver the method for their subsistence. The importation of assets, above all food, then makes a bigger carbon footprint. The further the separation required to import these things, the more the framework depends on of the presence of mechanical base to move (e.g. a truck moves food from a ranch to a supermarket in the city, which is fuelled by petroleum, which is transported by boat from some other country, which is mined by gear which is additionally fuelled by petroleum… etc).
So then, permaculture takes a gander at a given circumstance and tries to utilize plan standards so as to utilize the prior elements on a land parcel (whether provincial or urban) to progress further freedom, with a lower ecological effect (i.e. carbon footprint), and for the most part to make a property more green. This in fact goes past food, as it is an all encompassing way to deal with investigating a given place, and can likewise incorporate such things putting away water, utilizing regular light, composting, and so on.
“The kind of future I view, is one in which via simple methodological and technological changes on local level, coupled with macro level shifts towards what the macro/mainstream considers “sustainable” creates a future in which the human race is given the privilege of surviving another 200 to 300 years. My view is of us reaching a star trek level socialistic/transhumanist level civilization but via the backbone being that of a new ecological perspective in regards to human habitat and or settlement.”
* We interviewed Dylan Hanson, a man who lives in nature and for the nature, and a few others with in-depth knowledge of agri-tech and permaculture. They gave us some very interesting insights on technology and how it can help in sustaining the environment. A few quotes have been used in this article, the rest will be continued in part 2 of the article where we’ll talk about primitivism, its history and why is that these people (Primitivists) want us to go back to the hunting and gathering stage.
PART 2: Give up Technology & Go back to ‘Hunting & Gathering’
“Was Civilisation a big mistake?”
From the perspective of any non-civilized individual, this thought would seem, by all accounts, to be dipped in irony. Here we are, all things considered, the absolute most civilized individuals on the planet, examining in the most civilized way conceivable whether civilization itself may be a blunder. The vast majority of our kindred civilians would likely discover our discourse, notwithstanding being unexpected, likewise disturbing and pointless: all things considered, what individual who has grown up with cars, electricity, and television would savour living without a house, and of surviving just on wild rations?
People need to believe that their ideas of change are really progressive. Regardless of the possibility that you can come to the heart of the matter where they will concede that the greenest processing factory conceivable would now produce pollution and they will figure out how to oppose you. At that point people will say, “This is excessively compelling!” The impact of the old Athenians lives on. Extremity is anathema. In the event that it’s not direct we are molded to think there is some kind of problem with it. We overlook that the Athenian notion of equalization and the brilliant mean was created by a general public that subjugated just about its whole populace, conceded no privileges of any sort to women, colonized a significant part of the Mediterranean, and considered non-Greeks to be subhumans. Why we ought to listen to anything that such people believe is a riddle to me.
Hunting & Gathering over Comfort & Technology
By most estimates, the oceans are collapsing, the human populace is extending long ways past the long haul conveying capacity of the land, the ozone layer is vanishing, and the worldwide climate is hinting at troubling flimsiness. Unless extreme strides are taken, in fifty years half of the world’s populace will probably be existing in conditions such that the way of life of for all intents and purposes any undisturbed primitive tribe would be heaven by correlation.
“When we (advocates of Primitivism) talk about it, people are like ‘Are you freaking crazy?’ Sometimes they just ask me ‘Why’ with words dipped in sarcasm. Most of them try to defend civilisation, saying, what about medicine? People used to die all the time with tons of diseases. What about women rights? They used to get all bashed and raped by men at that time. What about convenience and ease? What about peace and safety? The strong have always exploited the weak.”
The picture of a lost Golden Age of freedom and guiltlessness is at the heart of all the world’s religions, is a standout amongst the most powerful themes in history, and most characteristic expression of primitivism- – the perennial belief in the need of going back to where we started.
As a philosophical thought, primitivism has had as its advocates like Lao Tze, Rousseau, and Thoreau, and in addition the greater part of the pre-Socratics, the medieval Jewish and Christian scholars, and nineteenth and twentieth century rebel social scholars, every one of whom contended (on various bases and in various ways) the prevalence of a basic life close to nature. All the more as of late, numerous anthropologists have expressed reverence for the otherworldly and material points of interest of the lifestyles of the world’s most “primitive” social orders – the surviving gathering-and-hunting people groups who now make up short of what one hundredth of one percent of the world’s populace.
As Bailey quoted, “Unfortunately, the precautionary principle sounds sensible to many people, especially those who live in societies already replete with technology. These people have their centrally heated house in the woods; they already enjoy the freedom from want, disease, and ignorance that technology can provide. They may think they can afford the luxury of ultimate precaution. But there are billions of people who still yearn to have their lives transformed. For them, the precautionary principle is a warrant for continued poverty, not safety.”
Individuals are formed from birth by their cultural surroundings and by their interactions with the general population nearest to them. Civilization manipulates these essential relationships so as to tame the newborn child – that is, in order to familiarize it to life in a social structure one stage expelled from nature. The real procedure of training is describable as takes after, utilizing terms obtained from the item relations school of brain science.
Domesticated Vs Wild
The newborn child lives totally in a condition of immaculate trust and straightforwardness, profoundly reinforced with her mother. Be that as it may, as she develops, she finds that her mother is a different thing with her own needs and points of confinement. The newborn child’s experience of relationship changes from one of unconstrained trust to one that is suffused with need and yearning. This makes a hole amongst self and other in the consciousness of the child, who tries to fill this extending fracture with transitional items – at first, maybe a teddy bear; later, addictions and convictions that serve to fill the psychic hole and consequently give a suspicion that all is well and good. It is the effective human requirement for transitional articles that drives people in their quest for property and power, and that produces organizations and advances as individuals pool their endeavors.
This is totally different in primitive childrearing, where the baby is treated with liberality, is in consistent physical contact with a guardian all through earliest stages, and later experiences soul changing experiences. In primal societies the requirement for transitional items has all the earmarks of being minimized. Anthropological and mental exploration unite to propose that huge numbers of socialized individuals’ emotional ills originate from our way of life’s deserting of normal childrearing techniques and initiatory ceremonies and its deliberate substitution of alienating pedagogical practices from home through college.
Capitalism & Primitivism
Capitalism actually fears primitivism. You can tell that since everyone from over the political range is against it. Primitivism is the one study that is not permitted to sit at the table. It’s fine to say “We ought to purchase better, cleaner items!” It’s not fine to say “Never purchase anything! What’s more, don’t have any cash!” It’s fine to say “Corporations ought to have less impact over legislative issues!” It’s not fine to say “Corporations and governments ought to be abolished altogether!” This is the reason articulate people have been contending for more fairness in society for a large number of years but then we now have more disparity than any point ever. Since we can’t keep expecting, hoping, and asking that crazy, detestable frameworks can be improved and kinder. They must be torn down and left to rot and disintegrate.
No reasoning or “- ism” is a solution of every single human problem. Primitivism doesn’t offer simple answers, yet it suggests an option. For a long time, civilization has been going towards imitation, control, and domination. Primitivism lets us know that there is an inherent breaking point to our proceeded with development in that bearing, and that sooner or later we should start to readapt ourselves to nature. The purpose of a primitivist critique of civilization is not as a matter of course to demand an outright dismissal of each part of modern life, yet to help with clearing up issues so we can better comprehend the tradeoffs we are making now, develop a way towards renegotiating our own deals with nature, and along these lines add to the reframing of our society’s collective undertaking.