Ras John Cresswell - Educator Profile

Biography

After being born in London, England. At an early age, he realised that the urban landscape and the modern ideas of ‘productivity’ were truly unsustainable and in many cases suicidal. With a naturally and deeply-installed sense of respect for Nature, Ras decided to study all that he could about Sustainable living and Permaculture.

After studying Garden Design and Organic Management with the ‘City and Guilds’ program in London, he became a resident at the Center for Alternative Technology in Wales. There he completed courses in various subjects; ‘Solar Hot Water systems’, ‘Alternative Building Techniques’, ‘Timber frame self-build’, ‘Compost toilets and sewage systems’, ‘Organic pest control’, ‘Solar electricity’, and ‘ Live willow weaving’ to mention a few. Amongst the times between these courses he was volunteering in the vegetable garden at the centre, helping out with the rest of the crew assigned to on-site food production. Ras managed to help start one of the first hydroponic systems in one of the greenhouses, with the plants growing completely from nutrients from human waste.

The next step in his studies was to move to Australia to study Permaculture. After meeting some people from the first Permaculture village in Australia (the home of the term ‘Permaculture’) Ras decided to start his studies in this direction by taking part in a Permaculture Design Course (PDC) at Crystal Waters in Queensland. He expresses that ‘it was a great place to study as there were so many examples in action, that one could see in effect, for all the different theories and concepts that we were soaking up in the classroom’.

After completing the ‘PDC’, more than fifteen years ago, Ras became a member of WWOOF. which stands for – ‘World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms’. It is a network of organic farms worldwide that take people in to work with them, in exchange for a room and three meals a day. He volunteered on a number of different farms in a sub tropical region of Eastern Australia, learning through practice and hands on experience how others were living sustainably. Eventually Ras found his own 5 acre permaculture farm on the edge of a ‘world heritage’ rain-forest where he practiced his Permaculture knowledge, working with the local environment. And where he had his first oppurtunity to take on ‘Wwoofer’ volunteers onto his own farm, being now in the opposite role of a ‘Wwoof Host’.
Specialization
Ras John Specializes in ‘Pattern understanding’ of Permaculture to a very deep level, which is a topic often over-looked or rushed-over by many teachers. He likes to study complex Mathematics, Physics and Geometry of the natural world, and turn it into a very easy to understand and digestible subject. His knowledge of indigenous and ancient living wisdom, together with a long term practice in Shamanism, helps him to express the hidden mysteries of suppressed cultures and bring history and her-story to life. Turning hard to understand concepts into easily usable and practical activities and design that we can use in our every day lives.

Current practice

After Going back to being a volunteer on other peoples farms in southern spain for almost three years, he finally settled on a patch that he could call home.

Ras now runs a small permaculture project in The Alpujarras, Where he grows a huge mix of plants, bushes, trees and climbers to create a well balanced garden. He tries to put into effect all the things which he has learnt along the way,And at the same time is learning how to adapt to this Mediterranean environment. the project experiments with sustainable structures…. solar cooking…. composting……. energy production…. And now Ras and his partners are getting enough knowledge together to feel the need to share it with others through workshops, courses, videos, etc .

After helping others teach their courses , Ras has now been running his own Permaculture courses for 6 years. As well as running the farm and the permaculture courses, Ras John also runs a large reggae soundsystem to promote permaculture to young people and create much needed awareness in mostly urban and underprivileged areas. Have a listen https://talawa.fr/Qedamawe+Fyah+Sound+System

Qualifications and skills
Skills, technical expertise and areas of interest: 

= Food production
= Natural building
– Natural patterns
– Natural geometry
– Natural mathematics
– Natural flowforms
– Shamanism
– Beekeeping
– Indigenous cultures
– African studies and black history
– Music, rythym, waves and vibration
– Sound engineering
– Mycology, mushrooms and mycelium
– Micro-organisms
– Etnobotanicals
– Medicinal herbs
– Plant biology
– Quantum physics
– Megalithic contsruction and its practical uses
– Sacred economics
– Hydroponics
– Breeding and genetics
– Nonviolent communication
– Her-story (History)
– Myth-story (mystery)
– The art of story-telling
– Solar electrics, hot water, solar-steam and hot oil
- Energy production and storage



Areas of Permaculture Design Experience: 

=Continuing the management of the design process for one year of a pre-existing and established permaculture farm (7 acres), in the sub-tropics of Australia, Blue Springs Eco Village. 2001 -2002

=Exploring and Experimenting in the world of urban permaculture and incorporating permaculture into large scale urban mushroom production. London, England 2003 - 2005

=Exploring the limits of kaos and random placement within intensive production gardens of zone two. Cortijo los limones, Granada - Spain 2006=2008

=Designing and implementing a mandala garden for a private project at 2000meters altitude, in the shape of the 'seed of life' Sierra Nevada 2009

=Buying, designing and maintaining a food forest farm over eight years in a sub tropical valley of Granada Spain. the project was called Huerta Lechuza it was visited many times and respected by the famous permaculture teacher Patrick Whitefiled, whom I had the pleasure to teach with, and i am also equally blessed to still be working with his Wife Cathy..check out some pictures here of Huerta Lechuza (Garden of the Owls) https://www.flickr.com/photos/huertalechuza/albums Alternatively see an article written by Patrick Whitefield about the project here http://patrickwhitefield.co.uk/growing-abundance-in-southern-spain/ Spain 2008-2016

=Successfully designed and implemented not only a successful house and garden but an education centre to go alongside it, within three months of arriving, by the time the 25 students arrived for the first course the garden was producing enough vegetables to feed them. for more information please check out the website... www.supernatural-permaculture.com or our recent gallery https://www.facebook.com/rasjc/media_set?set=a.10155211561182534.1073741... Granada - Spain 2016 - until now

=Design consultancy service and helping others such as Clients, Students, Interns, and Apprentices with their design processes especially mapping contours .

Teaching Information

Please contact me for details.