Although unfortunately I am not aware of the posting which, as I
understand, alleges that orthodox christianity considers Permaculture
some sort of heresy, I feel compelled to make the following observations.
I have been following Permaculture with keen interest since I
first saw Mollisons' TV appearance in 1989 on the ABC (Australian
Broadcasting Company), so much so in fact, that I attended a 2 week
course in Lismore, NSW, 2years ago. Furthermore, I dare call myself a
Christian, and a Catholic at that, and I hate to think that Permaculture
and Christianity are somehow imcompatible. I am very much aware of the
difference of opinion within christianity, and within the Christian
denominations themselves. For instance, Catholics are in conflict among
themselves over a range of issues. Unfortunately, I suspect, not all
non-Christians seem to be aware of this. Christianity is not a monolyth.
Often I find that Christian
fundamentalists speak out on issues as if they alone represented
Christianity. In fact some of them assert that other christians, such as
myself, are not really christians. Fundamentalist christians have at times
spoken against environmentalists and their objectives. some conservative
Catholics have done so too. However they only
represent a small proportion of the whole of the christian population.
Many mainstream Christians are supportive of environmentalism and its
aims. Indeed some of them are active environmentalists. In Brisbane,
Australia, for instance there is a small organisation called Christians
Respecting Earth And The Environment (CREATE) which aims at increasing
environmental awareness in the churches, and at furthering environmental
objectives in the region. A growing number of theologians are also
resuscitating our creation consciousness. Matthew Fox is, notably, one of
I write this to underline that permaculture practitioners should
not be fooled by some christians into believing that *all* christians
oppose them. I have great hopes for Permaculture. Indeed Permaculture
keeps *my hope* alive. I would be very saddened to see that vision of
permaculture hampered by the false assumption that christians oppose
permaculture. The Assisi farm in India, which appeared in one of the
earlier Permaculture International Journal issues, is evidence to the
contrary. The ideas of permaculture should be furthered in the churches
as much as possible. Indeed the churches need Permaculture to grow
spiritually. One of the definitions of Catholic church is: "here comes
everybody!". So lets get everybody on side.
What I'd really like to know is what is the "unaccountably
bitter comdemnation of the Powers That Be"???
Regards to all
Emanuele John Gelsi
Anthropology and Sociology/ University of Queensland
On Sun, 10 Sep 1995, Gil Hardwick wrote:
> That Permaculture can be interpreted as such a heresy against
> orthodox Christianity is what appears to have attracted to it such an
> otherwise unaccountably bitter condemnation from the Powers That Be.