What is Cultural Emergence?

The Cultural Emergence Project

Cultural Emergence is a toolkit for expanding our positive impact in the world. The toolkit is designed to support us to bring about fertile emergence in our own lives, in our groups and communities and taking this wider into the world.

Cultural Emergence is at the pioneering edge of permaculture and the toolkit is a further evolution, expansion and emergence of Looby’s work with People Permaculture (personal, social and global permaculture).

Since 2016 Looby has been collaborating with Jon Young (founder of 8 Shields) with the Cultural Emergence Project. The toolkit has emerged through the collaboration, distillation and synthesis of Jon Young and Looby Macnamara’s pioneering work in the arenas of personal and social permaculture and deep nature connection and village building. The project started with asking the question – How do we make the cultural shifts necessary to bring us into a more caring, connected society?

This has led us to our vision for global cultural transformation towards a peaceful, connective society and a positive regenerative future.

Our mission is to develop a profoundly effective toolkit that can challenge and awaken, move and invigorate, nourish and empower.

We are collaborating with other visionaries and leaders including Starhawk, Maddy Harland Andy Goldring and Delvin Solkinson to create the most profoundly effective toolkit. Looby is currently researching and developing for a forthcoming book Activating Cultural Emergence.

Cultural Emergence uses conscious design and action to help us manifest our ideal scene, for ourselves and the world. The toolkit is designed to support us to be proactive and facilitate visionary responses to our global crises.

Cultural Emergence Book 

The challenging times we live in show us that there is no going back to ‘normal’ life, but how do we step forward? Looby Macnamara, international thought leader and teacher, introduces ‘Cultural Emergence’, a framework and toolkit that enables us to design the world we want to live in. It activates healing and revolutionises our approach to creating life-sustaining and regenerative cultures.

Drawing upon the lineages of indigenous wisdom, permaculture design and systems thinking, Cultural Emergence is a profoundly effective toolkit for creating a new understanding of culture.

Cultural Emergence should be on the must-read list for all change makers 

Sal Gencarelle -  helpers Mentoring Society

Over 300 pages filled with stories, illustrations and activities

ceed deck

Cultural Emergence Empowerment & Design Deck (CEED Deck)

The deck shares thinking tools, design tools, connection tools, reflection tools.

There are 96 cards in the deck. Each card has beautiful artwork and wisdom for playful engagement and easy access. Regular use of the cards brings them more to life. They become part of our own culture and ripple out to a group culture around you.

While it is a great companion to my books, the deck is also accessible for those completely new to Cultural Emergence and permaculture.

Cornerstones of the Cultural Emergence toolkit

The toolkit is extensive with practices, phases and principles. The cornerstones of the toolkit are

  • Awareness of culture
  • Systems and patterns
  • Manifestation through design
  • Connection practices
  • Empowerment

Together they provide the framework for deep transformation and alignment.

Learning pathways

There are 3 modules to become familiar with the Cultural Emergence toolkit. Each module focuses on a different area, while reinforcing and deepening previous learning. The Activating Cultural Emergence course is a great place to start your learning journey with Cultural Emergence, this can lead to either of the other 2 modules. There are 3 phases of Cultural Emergence and each of the modules specifically dives deeper into one of these phases. Each course will build your understanding of the cornerstones of Cultural Emergence.

After these 3 modules you can become a Cultural Emergence facilitator.

ACE - Activating Cultural Emergence course
CEED - Cultural Emergence Effective Design course
PEACE - Peace, Empowerment And Cultural Emergence course

In this recording of our 2024 Cultural Emergence Courses Information Call you can find out more about all the courses and being here at Applewood Permaculture Centre. 

ACE - Activating Cultural Emergence -
Awaken to possibilities

This module intends to ignite, awaken and inspire change in us. enables us to think differently, to ignite our curiosity and inspire change. During the course we deepen our awareness of Culture and explore and challenge our existing paradigms and cultural conditioning. We open up to a systems view of the world, bringing forth a sense of magic and hope. We connect to a bigger vision of possibility for ourselves and humanity.

It is a good starting point to become familiar with the overall concepts. This module focuses on the Challenge and Awaken phase.

Upcoming ACE courses

The Activating Cultural Emergence course is over a weekend.

Click here to find the next course 

Recommended Reading

7 Ways to think Differently by Looby Macnamara

Fertile Edges by Maddy Harland

CEED - Cultural Emergence Effective Design -
Manifest your ideal scene

This module is about manifestation and growing in effectiveness. We explore the ecology of our personal cultures and look at our inner landscape and the social landscapes we are a part of and how we can interact with these to create solutions and support growth.

Creating a design for ourselves is the backbone of this course. Using the Design Web (created by Looby) as a framework we move with intention and clarity to create flexible, motivating designs for an aspect of our lives. The design you create becomes a 'CEED' that you can grow and cultivate beyond the course.

This module focuses on the Move and Invigorate phase.

Upcoming CEED courses

Click here to find the next course 

Recommended Reading

People and Permaculture by Looby Macnamara

PEACE - Peace, Empowerment and Cultural Emergence -
Connect to self, people and land

The PEACE course provides an opportunity for deep connection with ourselves, each other and the more than human world. We come into an embodied sense of peace and empowerment that enable us to continue developing a culture of peace around and within us when we return home.

We focus on empowering ways to connect, collaborate and co-create. We explore ways in which we can nourish and empower ourselves. Through experiential activities we come to a sense of our own personal peace, from which we can bring peace making into our lives as a regular practice. We look at ways in which we can empower ourselves, and the groups we are a part of, for each person to bring forth their own gifts and talents.

This module focuses on the Nourish and Empower phase.

Upcoming PEACE courses

Click here to find the next course 

Recommended Reading

Coyote's Guide to Nature Connection by Jon Young, et al

The Empowerment Manual by Starhawk

Strands of Infinity by Looby Macnamara

After you have completed the 3 modules you might be keen to share this toolkit with others, and the Cultural Emergence Facilitator Training is designed to give you the tools and confidence to do this in different situations, including running your own courses. (You will need to take at least one of these face to face).

The Cultural Emergence faciltiator training is a year long programme with 2 residentials and online coaching, mentoring and design work. See here for full details

For for the full list of upcoming courses, both face to face and online  see here https://applewoodcourses.com/courses/