Transition culture, social tolerance and moral courage

Why Permaculture Activists Must Work for Human Rights and Social Justice
by Lisa Rayner

Photo by Lisa Rayner

Permaculture began as a foresighted response to the needs of energy descent. Initially, permaculturalists focused on food production. As the movement has evolved, it has begun to merge with the Transition Culture movement. There is an emerging awareness of the social side of descent culture among permaculture activists. Transition Culture spurns individualist survivalism and emphasizes the need for neighbors to work together to make our communities more resilient. The Transition movement is rooted in community.

As high-energy societies like ours descend from the peak and experience accelerating levels of economic and political instability, we are at risk of losing centuries-worth of human rights gains. It’s a well-known fact that resource scarcity leads to conflict and the mass migration of refugees, which in turn have an unfortunate tendency to inflame xenophobic, in-group/out-group tendencies in human nature, with a resultant scapegoating and persecution of minorities. Download the pdf to read more.
Lisa Rayner is a permaculturist and Transition Town community organizer in Flagstaff, Arizona. She is the author of the permaculture book Growing Food in the Southwest Mountains, The Sunny Side of Cooking solar cookbook and her latest book Wild Bread. More at

Forest Symphony

by Dr. Theresa Sweeney Ph.D. Ecopsychology

“If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it does it make a sound?” My friend and I jokingly debated this age-old question on our way into the woods for an afternoon hike.

We walked together for awhile before coming to a familiar fork in the path. One leg led to a small pond the other up and over a ravine. This day my friend was attracted to scaling the ravine but I was feeling rather tired and wanted to take the easier trek towards the pond. So we split up agreeing to meet at the water in a couple of hours. Continue Reading →