hey Paul, I would def take your class and love it I'm sure, from seeing the articles you've written here and the vids you post. All full of great practical ideas and tidbits.
Personally I love the frosting too, but I also agree as a doer if that's all it is, it gets old real quick. There is a cultural element that needs to be acknowledged and addressed before we can even get to the "do" for the average person however, and that is the simple act of getting dirty and doing hard work. Touching a bug and not freaking out. Getting over the fact that there is sh!t in compost.
Our culture is so sterile and dirtagermaphobic--who lets their kids get truly filthy anymore? Personally I see a huge resource in children as the place to put the effort in to making a real mindset change. While there are adults that do manage to change their thinking, it is very ingrained and difficult to effect self realization and a will to own up to and evaluate one's belief/thought system. If you can get kids to roll around in the mud and throw slugs at each other(like we did when we were kids...), they have a great start to having a deep appreciation and love for the earth.
All real lasting good change starts from LOVE--not guilt or avoidance or (even) snobbery(I'm cool cuz I'm green). LOVE comes from intimacy and understanding of the other, then naturally you want to live in right relation and communion with the other, and the learning and doing becomes more effective and REAL.
Have you read The Practice of the Wild by Gary Snyder? Or any word out of Ed Abbey's mouth is good too--it's all about the knowing and love of the wild as a place to begin, otherwise it's just another pretty slideshow. I love Wendell Berry, but he is still kinda "cultivated"--I think that's what you're balking at maybe.
Another cultural hurdle to mull is the un-usual thing of making something by hand, instead of buying it, or paying Manuel La'Bor to do it for you. THere IS a huge trend in crafting, cooking, canning, simple home repair, etc which IS good--think about what good thigns you get when you make something by hand, for yourself, from your own idea and design. This process is foreign to a lot of people--it's been beaten out of us by the current school system, and the uber-all marketing to consume as well as produce to pay taxes.
Well, just rambling. You've identified the problem--the lack of moving from appreciating to DOING. The audience may not be aware of their mindset regarding all these things, but culturally we've been ingrained to buy, consume, be directed, follow the "experts". I would think an introductory lecture on cultural mindset and how permaculture buck modern society woudl be very helpful. And any hands on element that can be given to a class--say having the class outside so you can make everyone roll down a grassy knoll etc--connect with that latent inner child that naturally craved dirt and bugs, would be helpful in making a visceral gut connection to WANTING something different--going back to Eden...
Mt Goat, you rock. What an interesting person you must be. I mean that.
My Blog, Natural History and Forest Gardening www.dzonoquaswhistle.blogspot.com "Listen everybody, to what I gotta say, there's hope for tomorrow, if we wake up today!" Ted Nugent "Suck Marrow" Henry D Thoreau
They say people don't always know what they feel or maybe don’t recognize what other people feel and so can't relate to others and one theory is that in art you can maybe recognize your feelings. And so handle yourself better. I think art is some ways can be like sex, not because it turns me on but because it is time given to feeling the shape of a thing, or enjoying the shape of a through your eyes its form and psychological characteristics, and giving time to thinking about them.
I am not sure about telling people what you think they don’t know about themselves. I have had friends who tried it out on me, people are endlessly bossy and love messing around with other people’s heads. It was very humiliating experience, you can deduce from what they try to teach you about yourself what they think of you and my friends and family think I am a complete twit, it is hard to know as much before they take it into their heads to play psychological games with you, normal polite conversation covers up their feeling of superiority, though maybe I should have known because of the type of conversation they offered me, twits conversation. I just felt unsatisfied.
I read the autobiography of the Moroccan writer Fatima Mernissi who tries to promote better treatment of women within Islam talking about the use of art to promote mental health in the story “A Hundred and One Nights” and she and her cousins were very proud of the heroine of the Arabian nights story. Or Fatima Mernissi, or one of her girl cousins comments that the heroin of the book the Arabian nights, Scheherazade told stories that would turn the king into a more moderately and fairly behaved man. They comment that one of the stories is of a girl a story whose husband disappears during a journey they are making among a caravan of merchants and she decides the people on the caravan will do something awful to her if they find out that she is an unaccompanied woman so she dresses up as a man and finds she is capable of doing everything a man does herself. She even becomes the adviser of a king who marries her off to his daughter, an embarrassing moment, she in the end decides to throw herself on the girls mercy trusting that women will help each other and explains the situation to the princess who does protect her. The comment of the modern day Moroccan girls, well girls before I was born but only by a bit, of Fatima Mernissi’s book, is that this story comes near the end of the original version of the thousand and one nights, it is not a story the king could have taken at first, mans ego would be so destroyed if he thought women could manage what men do, it is only after the strengthening experience of hearing most of the other tales that such a story can be told him.
People need to get perspective about human complexity and conduct as they have to live with others and if their parents can't give it to them maybe the stories of others can. Art can. This is in a way the opposite of psychoanalysis, it is about giving the person a fuller picture of human experience so as to improve his judgment rather than asking him to come up with answers from his own head.
The kings first wife had been unfaithful to him and so having dealt with her by making use of the death sentence he starts marrying again, but beheads his wives on the morning after the wedding night so his new wives would have no time to be unfaithful to him. His Gran Vizier is in charge of finding new wives and one day his daughter asks to be the new wife she has a plan to tell a story each night but not to tell the whole story so that if the king wants to hear the end of the story he must he must postpone cutting her head off. She succeeds in stopping him from killing her by the ruse of keeping him always in suspense about the end of the story and by turning him into a well balanced person. I think Christians don’t have such a brave and imaginative and talented heroine.
Government health warning I think that the idea that she can save him spiritually and save the lives of other girls with her stories is interesting but it should be accompanied by the warning that it is probably like those films, “Home Alone” not possible in real life except under unusual circumstances. As a child you think that if you had the guts and imagination you could do what the child of the film does but in reality you need a lot of money and time to set up something like that, more time than the child had. A king is a powerful person he is not likely to listen long to his wife’s stories and is likely to smell a rat and get cross about being manipulated, maybe he was scared of the Visor and had fallen in love so he had reasons apart from her stories to listen to her. Powerful husbands refuse to listen to women whether the story interests them or not, it would make the woman feel too important if they spent too much time with them so it would not work, they would not listen to you unless they decided that they had stopped being interested in wearing the pants in the family which activity makes a lot of standing aloof from their wives necessary. The story is great but in real life don’t marry mad men and hope that you can cure them men usually get themselves into a stronger position than their wives and people don’t let people in a weaker position than them play with their heads, they dominate them and play with the weaker persons heads. In Spain lots of women get killed a year by their husbands, you should not take this story as gospel, only practice the sort of psychological ideas Schreherazade practices if you are a psychologist with team support. Which is to say in a respected and strong position.
The Simpsons should be accompanied by a government health warning that says, “don’t marry a lounge potato hoping he will have Homer Simpsons get up and go,” it is unlikely with a real lounge potato so unless you like sitting watching the television yourself give them a wide berth. And, “don’t marry a man who spends his time at Moe’s and similar, holding up the bar, thinking he will spend all his time at home like Homer Simpson does, he probably won’t be seen at home much, he will spend his time at the pub. “House” should be accompanied by the warning that “normally terrible bullies don’t teach people a lot so bringing on other peoples careers or have the team spirit House has when he is discussing cases”. Bullies don’t give an example of very satisfactory group work. Brain storming and such, with everyone’s opinion listened to and evaluated. a good teacher though needs to bully a bit but houses bullying goes way beyond that bit. agri rose macaskie.
Wilde thang people can be abusive with the word love, it is too vague to be just good, it can be used in a lot of different ways. They can ask you to do what is not sensible in its name, they can bully and say that ibullying is hard loving unmrella prases are dangerouse. They can tell you you love abusive people, and so should stand by them they find out you have a glimmer of sympahties for one or other abusive person and resting on that bit of sypathy you feel for even the most terrible people say you love them i truly love people who are much nicer than the ones i feel merely a bit sorry for. I can always think of some moment when a person is looking vunerable that make me feel sympathies towards them though i know they have done a lot of harm to lots of people and resting on that bit of humanity in you there are those that pretend pretend you owe something to people who are av¡busive to you. As a child, rather than being taught to love people, i was taught and for me this is a church of england chariceristic, that you had to look after people, make sure they got exercise, make sure their n¡inds were developed and they the company of those that are congeneal to them at least somt¡mes, company can be comapany a person does not like. t¡I was taught to make sure they had food and drink, work and rest but not love. love is a nice extra you can't always get. People find it harder to make abusive use of more precise instructions like these. CHrist said love your neighbor as yourself that keeps people in order a bit, not like love on its own that leaves to many rat holes. people love their slaves but aren't nicce to them necesarily. Klove your h¡neighbor as yourself means, If i want fame for me i have to get it for all others, if i want an education for me i have to want it for others etc. how many religiouse people get a better education for themselves than they want to give to others?
the idea of finding realisation can also be used by the abusive too. They say, it is hard to to reach self realization and once you have agreed to undergo the hard they can beat you up verbally at any rate without you complaining untill yuou wise up to the situation. If if you find their help damaging and complain they say tha t that is because it is hard to have self realisation that is how sects work and some more respeted religions .too. It is is a way to persuade people to accept a lot of flack. Every one thinks they are the right person to help others to self realisation and not everyone is very kind or wise. I would say i have nearly been destroyed by people who say you need to change. Adults love changing others but why should you want to be like them they think they represent some sort of religiouse idea but they usually represent their version of that idea and wha tthey want you to think like them. Do you remember Kill Bill two, it wa snot so much that Beatrice had tried to leave Bill for another man that ate him up, it was that she tried to lead a different type of life from his that got his goat. She tried to stop being a hired killer like him and he hated it, people are like him in wanting others to think like them but if they pretend what they are is a religion they hav ea stronger arguement. people first seduce you with ideas of how forgiving and kind their religon is and then get at you to make you perfect i have had a lot of experience in these feilds, it has been a terrible and cruel experiencxe and i have had time to think about it, this is not a hysterical first reaction. rose macaskie.
Companion Planting Guide by World Permaculture Association