The following is my first post on another of my sites: Star Nebulea. That site will be for longer pieces and oddments that don’t fit in here. It is also in a bit of happy chaos for the moment as I sort out a design with the new Headway theme.
I was probably nine or ten when my uncle talked my grandfather into bulldozing out the hedgerow along his field. Coming home from school, the devastation and mounds of brush and trees was a shock. Never mind that the next year would see a neat field right to the road. Where would all the bunnies and birds live now? That child of long ago felt that something wasn’t very close to ideal in that situation. Grownups and their thinking seemed very alien.
Are there any farmers left in our world? Very few, it seems. To the modern-day agriculturist, profit appears to be the overriding motive for their work. Their thoughts seem to follow government and business advice and principles…. neither of which know farming, except from a monetary perspective. What does it take to be a true farmer?
- Understanding Our earth has been at this business of growing plants and animals a lot longer than we have lived on her surface. Thus it knows how to feed and nurture her offspring…. all of them. Thus it holds an immense wealth of knowledge for every situation. This knowledge is freely offered. The farmers of old had an excellent grasp of this understanding, even if it was “just” intuitive. Mankind has but to observe, and apply the principles the earth demonstrates.
- Observing When our son was a child I would read him stories, many of which he knew by heart. When I tried to “reinvent” portions of the story, he would become upset, “Read it right, Dad!” Thus we become familiar with what we are told, and don’t want to hear or learn a new way. So to learn what the earth has to teach, we might have to let go of some of our old familiar concepts; allow new observations to become acceptable. Watch an animal that has been caged or penned when let loose into a natural environment. Discovering what it then eats most of can tell you what it has been most lacking in its diet. Watching which insects live on healthy plants can lead to an understanding of the symbiosis that is so necessary for healthy balance. This observation can take a lifetime, yet coupled with one’s natural intuition can bring immediate results in how and why we farm.
- Sharing We seem to feel that mankind has been set apart from, and perhaps above nature. Nothing is further from the truth. Living on the earth, our entire physical being is from the earth, and depends on the earth to remain functioning in a healthy manner. No matter how far apart we may try to distance ourselves from earth, or nature, we are one species among so very many. All of them depend on each other. We have temporarily lost the awareness of that complexity, of that wonderful interdependence…. yet it is of no less importance. Sharing involves give and take in any relationship, and so it is here. True farming is all about sharing…. giving back to the source at least as much as we receive.
- Feeling The concept that the earth, plants, animals, or even minerals have no feelings is one of those human concepts that served to distance us from our own feelings. In true [spiritual] reality everything that exists, is, because it is created by and held in existence by love. All that is is simply different manifestations of love. How powerful does that make love? And can not love be considered the most grand of feelings? A true farmer, if he/she doesn’t begin farming with love, will soon develop it to an ever-increasing level.
- Communication All of nature communicates. Plants and animals are aware of one’s love for them, and they reciprocate. Music is another form of love that they thrive on…. that has been known for decades now, by the scientific community. As a child it was natural for me to sing when I worked alone in the fields, or on those rare occasions I worked with someone who would teach me new songs. A loving touch to a leaf or tree trunk or animal can do wonders, literally miracles.
- Practice It is common knowledge that learning anything improves with practice. New practices can feel alien until we become used to them. This includes learning with nature. Yet from a different perspective, all that is, is already known. To us, perhaps, it might be unconscious knowledge, yet it is there, and can be intuitively drawn upon, thus much shortening the learning cycle.