What is prosperity to you? how do you define it? What has you feel prosperous, truly prosperous? Knowing with some clarity what it is can be a helpful endeavor, for focusing and for recognizing resources as they arise. I just wanted to invite some playing around with ideas. This could include the aspect of art and aesthetics too.
for me some thoughts that come to mind...
having my own excavator!
having an excavator in the neighborhood that can be shared
having an excavator and someone who knows how to use it who's a willing participant in permaculturing the neighborhood
and knows how to construct swales and stuff in the best way for the context
having an excavator that runs on biodiesel or something else renewable, and a supply of that
having the many elements of my garden working together well
having a variety of plants
6' deep loose crumb-structure soil with a good balance and variety of mineral content
lots of people who have smart ideas wo can add to what I know or expand my thinking
beauty in hte garden
feeling of harmony with the birds and the grasshoppers and the timing and cycles of everything
bare feet on soil, soil that is free of lead
lots of people around who see the value in a good garden and are supportive and helpful
seeing new possibilities frequently, innovating and being inspired to new ways of thinking and outside-the-box ideas
seeing others getting inspired to new ideas
having dollars invested in the local economy, in sustainable and local and sane businesses
having capital flow to support innovators' new ideas that will support the whole and enrich everyone's life
Community Building 2.0: ask me about drL, the rotational-mob-grazing format for human interactions.
Great topic, Joshua! If you don't know where you're going, then any path will get you there. Clarity is valuable.
Myself, I've overdone it in the last few years pursuing BOTH money AND family.
I got them, but I traded away too much of my time and energy. Now I'm burned out and trying to recover. In the meantime, I'm operating at a fraction of my former liveliness. By liveliness, I mean the impetus to do things like the dishes (or other chores), or make tools (or other projects), or plan and execute romantic getaways (or other relationship work). My wife and I pushed really hard for the last two or three years:
moving back to Michigan from Arkansas,
having the third baby,
changing jobs three times,
I was self-employed for a while in there,
sinking the life savings into the homestead,
and then six intense months fixing the house up to move in,
working too many hours for months at a time,
and (this is probably THE problem, I'm just starting to realize) the baby doesn't sleep. Wakes us up LOTS of times every night. Always three times, sometimes twelve times.
In terms of money I have a pretty respectable salary, and a paid-for nascent homestead, but I'm not up for doing much with it yet. The thought of moving 25 asparagus plants, for example, from the nursery bed to their permanent spot is just crushing me. I'm too spent. I have to recover.
And in terms of family, we have three kids now, homeschooling, living the country freedom dream, but I'm too whupped, for example, to build them a treehouse. I'm too spent. I have to recover.
What's the point I'm trying to make about prosperity? For me, freedom is the top of the prosperity list, with community and family close behind. Money serves freedom, and I'm glad I went out of my way to get some. But I overshot the mark, and I spent my mental health to get it.
Prosperity is having enough of all of the above.
Diego Footer on Permaculture Based Homesteads - from the Eat Your Dirt Summit