Within the next few centuries--possibly decades--humanity will see some substantial changes in the way we live. Simply stated, the current path of mainstream society is unsustainable, and some form of permaculture is a viable solution. For a scientific publication that sums up many important reasons why, you can read: Rhodes CJ. Feeding and healing the world: through regenerative agriculture and permaculture. Sci Prog. 2012;95(Pt 4):345-446. Keep in mind, however, that whether "peak oil" is imminent ("A Crude Awakening - The Oilcrash", YouTube Video ID: odCZpBPfFQk) or more likely a strategy of oil companies to drive up prices to increase revenue ("Peak Oil: Myth or Reality," YouTube Video ID: TdawM0PZskY), the culture of waste is conributing to a long-term problem that is already emerging. Similarly, we can debate "climate change," "healthcare and nutrition," technology and "artificial intelligence", and many other topics of the day. In each case, we encounter two sides to every story. If we are objective and committed to learning, we should question everything and ultimately recognize there is a whole lot we do not really know. But while uncertainty makes it hard to study the small pictures, the big picture is pretty clear--civilization (and *NOT* necessarily humanity) is on an unsustainable course.
Flexiculture is permaculture augmented with principles from biology, design, technology, architecture, and other developments that have evolved over time and emerged throughout human civilization. While permaculture is a great idea, many obstacles prevent our society from progressing towards sustainability. Flexiculture is about putting away our biases and magnifying glasses and getting past those obstacles. It is for people who get the big picture. Simply stated, our modern way of life in its current state is deeply rooted in the very unsustainable neoclassical economics ("Four Horsemen," YouTube Video ID: 5fbvquHSPJU).
Flexiculture will take what works and discard the rest, and as such, needs experts from the following areas: agriculture and gardening, natural building, design, architecture, engineering (civil, structural, mechanical, electrical, computer-science, etc.), law, city government, economics, healthcare, biology/microbiology/botany, and (if you get it) any other field that may fit. The ultimate goal is to design properties that are cool looking inside and out, sustainable, "off the grid", food and medicinal plant producing, and, if feasible, augmented with technology to promote security; customized health, nutrition, and fitness, and connectedness. But it is important to note that community is more important than technology, and that cooperation and collaboration are better than competition, as symbiosis is usually better than parasitism.
Finally, positivism is critical for success. You are what you think about. Click here to learn what Earl Nightingale taught us in the 1950's about using our heads and staying positive towards a worthwhile goal. If you focus on a solution, you will find one. But if you focus on the problem and the obstacles, they will probably end up sucking you back into the dynamic evolution of the mainstream. So let us get together to figure out ways to create solutions.
Following are some YouTube videos that I found to be useful:
Permaculture video of co-founder David Holmgren: thoughtful, comprehensive coverage of thoughts in the current era of energy decline, which may take a few centuries to fulminate but is definitely already happening.
Ted Trainer interview: discussion about need for local, cooperative, new economy; inevitable failure of conventional economy; implausibility of "renewable" energy.
Fundamentally illustrates concept of flexibility.
Critical perspective of "peak oil" from within the oil industry, yet explicitly *NOT* suggesting "that we should continue to burn 85 [to] 90 million barrels of hydrocarbons every day" (at approximately 11 minutes into the video).
The story of a wealthy investment professional who changed careers for a better life.
Documentary film about a full experimental implementation of permaculture.
Important film warning about the end of the Western Empire and its unsustainable neoclassical economics. Very fear monger but also deeply supported in a historical context.
Resoration of desolated land back to productive ecosystems
Resoration of desolated land back to productive ecosystems (additional video)
Importance of "social capital" in overcoming local resistance from people
Composting your poo. (To understand why this action is important, watch the video relating soil demineralization to increases in mental illness.)
Decrease in nutritional content in food, lack of optimal nutrition in mental illness, importance of the entire composition of nutrients vs. single nutrients (or other agents)For more information, email: chip at flexiculture dot org.