This is the image that sums up summer the best! It has been an enriching season for learning, venturing down brand new pathways that opened up from discussions with the core group of the Farming For A Future Network (FFFN). We backed off the organization of the FFFN, allowing for what needed to emerge. A whole new realm revealed itself to be explored or perhaps we gained access to a morphic field of human consciousness ( :) ) – the meaning of Mary Magdalene, not only in our own lives but also in what has happened in agriculture – how we produce unhealthy food (misogyny and agriculture) while destroying our home (Earth).
I think that we need to bring back awareness of the sacredness of growing of food (farming is a sacred act working with the soil, the ecosystem, all life) through renewal of sacred relationship, which will extend to re-establishing a healthy relationship with Earth. (Sacred relationship can be defined as a balanced and harmonious partnership; the union, fusion, merging of the masculine and the feminine.) To transform agriculture – to facilitate the emergence of a new narrative for farming, we must first experience regeneration ourselves.
regenerate (verb): to undergo or cause to undergo moral, spiritual, or physical renewal (www.collinsdictionary.com). It is to this that I return to school today, to continue the work that started with a Nuffield Agricultural Scholarship in 2013.
And what does transformation really mean? I was given this beautiful pendant which is so symbolic of what transformation can mean – “a symbol of peace, fashioned from a legacy of war” (from Ten Thousand Villages).
Tree of life bombshell necklace from Cambodia
“This elegant tree of life necklace, hand-cut from the shell casings of bombs that litter the Cambodian countryside, is a testament to the transformation that is shaping the Khmer people. From hardship emerges hope – Rajana is an artisan group proudly transforming a legacy of conflict into a brighter future.”
It is time we all did our own regenerative work; of “spiritual transformation” and “aesthetic renewal” (Anthony Parel in Satish Kumar’s Soil-Soul-Society: A New Trinity for our Times, Leaping Hare Press, UK, p.76), so that we may ‘be the change‘ and help bring about a healthier world.
Brother David Steindl-Rast offers great guidance in his book ‘Gratefulness, the Heart of Prayer: An Approach to Life in Fullness.‘ We are headed for a world that will look very different, if we succeed as societies to become more resilient, with “well-trodden paths from house to house, that is the image that holds hope for our future.” Interwoven relationships seen visually as well trodden ‘desire’ paths – can you imagine how it might look from above?
(Wikipedia – A desire path (the beaten path, also known as a game trail, social trail, herd path, cow path, goat track, pig trail or bootleg trail) can be a path created as a consequence of erosion caused by human or animal foot-fall or traffic.)