I have my Diploma of Permaculture in Education amd Community Services and been teaching the PDC since 1993, and have always used the Permaculture Designers' Manual (Mollison 1988) as the base for my curriculum. When teaching the ethics and principles as any permaculture teacher knows it is a matter of dragging them out of the manual and also from Introduction to Permaculture (Mollison & Slay 1992). The majority of he principles are on pages 34-35 of the manual but are not in any special order. A few years ago David Holmgren published his version of the permaculture principles, and condensed them down to 12 simple principles. He also shortened the third ethic to 'fair share', which while being snappy and rhyming with the first two principles it could lead people to assume it means don't over consume rather than devoting excess time, energy and money towards earth care and people care. Getting back to the principles, as there has never been an ordered and clear arrangement of the original permaculture principles this has led to a plethora of arrangements and interpretations. Many permaculture teachers use Holmgren's set, which come with cards and adownloadable e-booklet, but I found these don't include some of the important attitudinal principles. I saw a need for a set of Mollison Permaculture Ethics and Permaculture Principles that was comprehensive, well ordered, and as true to Bill's original vision as possible. I knew I had to limit the number of principles so it wasn't too difficult for people to remember easily, and that it is best to chunk information in groups of 7 or less as that is about most peoples's memory limit. I also looked at other principle card sets 'on the market' and realised many covered techniques and strategies as well as some of the principles, with cards on alley cropping and banana circles, but none gave a comprehensive set of the principles. After months of trying different orders and even names for some of the principles I finally came up with a 21 card set. The first three are ethics cards with the first card covering the three main ethics, ethics of natural systems on the second card, and ethics of resource use on the third. I then ordered the principles into energy principles, functional design principles, principles from nature, and attitudinal principles. To assist in memory retention the cards can be organised into a pyramid with the first ethics card at the top followed by ethics on natural areas and on resource use, then the three energy cards, then the four functional design principles, then the five principles from nature, then the six attitudinal principles at the base. I also noticed that some existing principle cards are difficult to use in a design situation and dont clearly spell out the principle but tries to condense it into a short snappy saying. I designed these cards to be 'information dense' and have included practical examples whenever I could. I have taught a number of short courses using these cards as well as using them when teaching the full PDC, and have recieved great feedback from my students. Most find that it is all they need to revise the whole course and can do a design by going through the principle cards. I also realised that if I wanted people to use them I would have to make them freely available and easy to print. I chose a 6x4 photo size as you can get this size photo printed very cheaply in many areas. You can also get very cheap 6x4 24 page photo album books for putting the photos in, turning it into a photobook rather than a loose pack of cards. To make them available I also purchased a domain name and am slowly getting the web page together. To recoup some costs I will be selling an accompanying e-book of A3 mindmaps that go with the card set, though the cards on their own are fairly self-explanatory and they are posted as full sized images for people to freely save and download. I have given a copy of the cards to Bill, over a year ago now, and he loved them and gave his blessing for them to be called 'Mollison's Permaculture Ethics and Design Principles'. His daughter Frances Mollison has done a few of the illustrations and is working on the rest, so while the names and order are set some of the pictures will be upgraded as they are completed. In the mean time the current draft of the cards can be downloaded from <www.permaculturefundamentals.com>
* The PDC is based on Permaculture: A Designers' Manual.
* When teaching the PDC one should cover all the principles and not use a condensed set.
* Through my experience gained ftom 25 years of teaching and thinking permaculture I have distilled the ethics and principles into a 21 card set.
* With Bill Mollison's blessing this set of cards is called 'Mollison's Permaculture Ethics and Design Principles'.
* The cards are free to download from the site I set up at <www.permaculturefundamentals.com>.
* I will be making a cheap e-book available soon of A3 mindmaps that go with the cards.
* The current illustrations on some cards are to be changed once Bill's daughter Frances Mollison completes them.
Brett - The cards are beautiful! I want to thank you by helping promote the Penan project. Since I don't have Facebook etc, I'd like to do it here and hope that people who DO have Facebook/Twitter/etc will echo and amplify the message (in addition to downloading these awesome cards).
;tldr/War-and-Peace: Geoff Lawton published this link to some GORGEOUS & thought-provoking free "card" downloads. From Geoff:
"Absolutely beautiful. Brett Pritchard, a permaculturist since 1991, put together something that really caught my eye: A 21 card set of the original permaculture ethics and principles. Many of the illustrations were painted by one of Bill Mollison's daughters, Frances, and the entire set is free to download. " http://www.permaculturefundamentals.com/?p=72
What neither Geoff nor Brett is promoting is the fact that Brett has a GoFundMe to raise funds for a Permaculture project in Borneo. From Brett:
"Hi all. I have made the ethics and principles card set freely available as I didn’t want to do it as a commercial venture but as a way of honouring Bill Mollison and his incredible visionary work. Permaculture altered my life totally and gave it real meaning for the first time. While I enjoy my permaculture work here in Australia, where I’m currently developing community food gardens, my heart has always been in overseas permaculture aid work.
I’m currently seeking a little bit of financial help to initiate an alley cropping demonstration site in a village in the Borneo rainforest. The Penan people were traditionally hunter gatherers with a tiny number are still living this lifestyle. The Penan village I work with settled around 45-50 years ago and began carrying out swidden agriculture like the settled Dayak tribes. Now due to a doubling in population size and a reduction in available land due to plantation developments the people are having to go into their undisturbed rainforest reserve area to clear for rice growing."
I originally didn't have the link up to the project I'm doing in Borneo but a couple of people who appreciated the cards asked how they could help me in return. I don't want anyone to feel they have an obligation to help or that they had to pay in any way to access the cards, as the two projects are not connected except by virtue they were both conceived by me. The alley crop trial is actually one part in a greater design, which is detailed in more depth at Permaculture Design for Reducing Emissions
BEAUTIFUL, and fittingly generous - thanks for walking your talk and sharing these freely! time for me to get ink for my printer and put those saved empty photo booklets to use! (i knew they'd be perfect for something SOMEDAY.)
btw, different folks read differently, and i'm one who liked the longer, rambling, and VERY INFORMATIVE first post. bullet points are great for skimming, but the full story is worth a careful read. THANKS!
"Fair share" and "redistribute"are so politically loaded that they risk turning off a large portion of the audience. I learned it as "return of surplus" and i still think it most accurately reflects what nature does. Nature doesn't distribute, and it certainly doesn't seem to have a sense of fairness. Surplus just gets dropped where it is.
One might argue that fungus plays the 'distribute' role, but only to a very limited extent.
For my next feat, I will require a volunteer from the audience! Perhaps this tiny ad?
Paul will be at the Idaho Panhandle Preparedness Expo on October 1-2, 2022