Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Word from a harvest Book

On Drying Food "There is now a strong trend among gardeners to think dry, just as farmers have been doing for thousands of years, and as many gardeners still do in countries where each person is directly responsible for producing at least some of his own food. The reason is that more Americans are thinking about gardening as a way to produce food that will be used all year long. Pressed by rising food prices, international uncertainties, and worries about power shortages, they are looking more to a small plot of land as a means to supply food for the family table all year long."*

This sounds a whole lot like modern sentament but this book is actually the *"Organic Gardening Harvest Book", by the editors of organic gardening and farming, Rodale Press, Emmaus, PA 1975. Fourteenth Printing 1984.

There is a lot of talk about total economic collapse these days. These are tough conversations that frankly scare me a bit - and make it so that we are preparing to make do because I think that the climate and economic situation is dire enough that tough times are on their way.

But I also think it is always healthy to have a ballast to this thinking. For me that balance is that every decade (yes even the 1980's) has had this kind of thinking going on. Every generation and envisioned their generation as being the last - whether from religious apocalypse or a man-made one.

I have to take the attitude that I do what I do because it is the right thing to do. I think that the most responsible way to live is to not be utterly dependant on a system of grocery stores, and economic systems. It think stewardship of God's earth (not the human's earth) means we have to reduce our wasteful and trash-producing ways and to try and leave something for generations to come.

So even if TEOTWAWKI doesn't arrive, hopefully other generations will - and that there will be someting left for them.


LisaZ said...

Bravo! Bravo! I am so with you, Verde, on the need for balanced thinking and acting. It's wonderful to read others who are trying for the same thing.

Lisa in MN

Anonymous said...

my thoughts as well - not to choose to act out of fear but out of a good sense of stewardship

Robj98168 said...

I think man was put here as caretaker of the earth and I must say he should be fired! We have done a terrible job. ANd I am afraid that it is not going to be better in the near future.

Tara said...

I don't want to get too deeply into a religious debate, because I an NOT religious, so all my arguments would be purely hypothetical, but all the same, here's something that nags at me a bit. Based on the way that most western Christians think about God, I have to assume that when He created mankind, he knew we would do this. If that's the case, I have to wonder why He'd allow it...seems quite the conundrum. A larger lesson, perhaps? As I said, I'm actually not religious at all, but I do still find this sort of hypothesizing to be thought-provoking.

ilex said...

Americans are particularly prone to this brand of apocalyptic zeal. Always have been. I think it has a lot to do with the religious extremism that founded the country (not the Founding Fathers, who were Deists, but the myriad groups who were deemed 'too radical' and thrown out of Europe).

To continue Tara's thought, I think the three desert religions "granting dominion" over all living things is at the very heart of our troubles with ecology. If only the word had been translated to "caretaking" or "stewardship". I know that a lot of Christians these days are takeing a fresh look at environmental stewardship, but it's been a long time coming.

Verde said...

Interesting conversation happening here.

Lisaz, thank you for your comments. I think by linking together in blogosphere there is support to live differently

Tara, certainly pondering and thinking is encouraged around here. One comment I would make is that part of God's creation of humans includes the idea of free will. We have freedom to choose good or evil. This thread of conversation, interestingly is connected to the whole evolution/creation debate. (Evolution and free will one one side, creationism and omnipotence on the other)

Elastigirl, always good to have you reach over here. Yes, indeed a proactive choice.

Rob, 'fraid I've got to agree with you there.

Ilex,interesting thoughts, though some of the Zwingli ideas were pretty out there. After the Reformation we start seeing reading the bible in one's own langugage and a literal reading of the bible, rather than an interpreted reading of ancient language.

One interesting historical note is that the brand of fundamentist Christianity that I think so many react to, really began around the time of the industrial revolution as a reaction to science, machines taking over, moving away from more extended families on the farm to city centered lives, Darwin and his trials..it was all too much change for folks.

And on Dominion, if it is translated with a testosterone infused meaning you get dominance and control. With the introduction of women into academics the word translates from the original language with a stewardship, caretaking (as in take care of this place) emphasis.

....gee all from food drying.

Gina said...

Great perspective on transversing all this negativity that seems to be dominating our current culture right now. I get mighty scared by it all too, but I keep a little nugget that what goes up goes down and back again. Magazines like Mother Earth News (MEN) were born in the '70's when things must have seemed so permanently bad (I was a child and don't remember much). The '30's of course were bad and all those movies about industrial revolution of England always depict that period as dark, depressive, and dirty (e.g. Sweeny Todd, Great Expectations, etc.)

I am preparing my family for the worst, but keeping a little hope that my boys will inherit a world worth living in.

Tara said...

Ahh, Verde, you make a good point re: free will. I suppose one's take on the whole thing might depend on whether you subscribe to free will or omnipotence...

Wendy said...

That's exactly the stance I take.

I'm not thinking that the world is going to "end" any time soon, but how much nicer would the world be if we were all working so hard toward something that mattered rather than working so hard so that we can "afford" yet, another, gadget?

Speaking of "gadgets", you've given me the motivation I need to get outside, clip my herbs and get them in that dehydrator.