PERMACULTURE - HEALTHY SOIL - GMO

Mar 18, 2015

by ANN HOLADAY | in LIVING IN HARMONY WITH NATURE

 

 

The Law of Karma being a natural law not a moral law is not defined by our culture but applies to the whole human race. Whatever is happening now has at some time something to cause it to happen. This not only applies to us personally but collectively as humans.  


 

The damage that humanity as a whole has inflicted on nature over a relatively short period in history is clearly evidenced by the results of the destruction to the earth. The earth is a living organism which consists of the five elements which support life and has evolved over billions of years to what we see in nature today.  Over the past 50 years or so, which is nothing in terms of the life of the earth, each of the five elements has been polluted. Space is buzzing with microwaves, radio waves, radar waves to say nothing of all the debris floating around in space. Fresh clean air is harder and harder to come by and the earth’s natural system of replenishing the atmosphere cannot possible cope with all the pollutants that are produced. Fire is natures way of sterilizing, cleaning and transforming in a way that life can continue on earth, but fires are not allowed to burn and to burn naturally. Rivers are diverted, dammed and polluted to the point that the delicate ecosystem which has evolved is disappearing. Oceans which are our life-blood are getting closer and closer to being dead seas. 

 

The earth is our mother, but we create scars on her with mining, we suck her life-blood when we take oil from her and smother her when we cover her surface with concrete so that she cannot breath. Sustainable forces in nature are being pushed to the point that they will no longer be able to maintain life on earth. We only have ourselves to blame for this distruction. One of the most critical areas of destruction is from the industrialization of food and plant life. The entire ecosystem which has sustained life on earth is teetering on the brink of destruction as species disappear from the land and from the oceans. Man hardly understands the complexity, delicacy and balance of nature on which we depend and yet feels we can control plant life and destroy insect life for our own greed.  


 

Geoff Lawton from Australia is one of the world’s experts on permaculture and is poised to help each and every one of us to become involved making our soils fertile again. We are all responsible on earth for our little space and the interactions with nature. It is time for every single person to think about their home and to put its priorities for survival before our own before it is too late. It may already be too late. 


 

Permaculture is a sustainable and self-sufficient system of agriculture based on natural ecosystem design. Geoff Lawton has spent his life developing methods of making soils productive in a natural way, in different climates, environments and soils. He offers a series of free videos which anyone can follow to bring back their soils to a natural state through permaculture.  Agriculture in modern society has been industrialized over the past fifty years or so and this is monoculture. In a natural ecosystem, in a forest for instance many different varieties of plants grow together and what grows where and with what is a complex natural mechanism which ensures not only the health of the plants but the health of the soil. For example, only certain types of plants will grow where there is less water, or sunshine and require certain things in the soils for them to flourish. Plants also return nutrients to the soil. Soils are replenished by rain, which has washed over rocks, comes from the sea and brings micronutrients and minerals for the health of plant life. Soil is a living entity needing, worms and moles etc to keep it aerated, bugs and microorganisms and organic material all adding the health of the soil. The health of the plant and its nutritional value depends on the health of the soil and the suitability of its environment for growth. Nature has it’s own methods of keeping plant-life, in fact all life healthy, strong and reproducing itself. 

 


Monoculture is for mass production and weight not for the quality of food. In a natural environment insects and bugs eat weak plants and other plants which bugs don’t like will protect other plants. In monoculture plants are sprayed because the natural system of keeping them healthy is gone. Soils are artificially fertilized which helps above ground growth, but does not replenish the soil. Soil has to rest and be rejuvenated which is why there are seasons for growing. Nature has a very complex system, which man cannot hope to reproduce and a natural ecosystem takes thousands of years to evolve. The effects of monoculture on millions of acres of land seems so overwhelming to the point that most of us feel there is nothing we can do. Permaculture is the only way to change this chain of cause and effect. 

 


There is a lot of concern about genetic modification of food, GMO’s, in fact many countries are banning the importation of GMO seeds and food, Russia for example. There have been some horrific things done particularly terminator seeds which render plants unable to reseed. This has caused famine amongst subsistence farmers who rely on seeds from one crop for the next year. Many crops which are sold to poorer countries where they cannot afford the fertilizers and do not have the water for GMO crops end up with no crops at all and famine devastates because the GMO’s will drive out the local seeds. GMO’s are used to kill insects which eat a crop, this essentially means that the insecticide is in the food we eat. We are already seeing a decline in the bee population which not only is affected by insecticides but by the altering of the plants themselves, through GM. The long term effect on plant-life and life on earth in general is quite frightening to consider. In my limited study of nature I never cease to wonder at its efficiency, nothing is wasted, it’s a continuous cycle of creation, maintenance and destruction and each phase is equally important. Particularly in the decomposition of plant material. I wonder about the long-term effect of GMOs and the chemicals used on the soils of the future. But apparently there is hope, nature has it’s own ways of repairing soil as long as GMO’s and monoculture is halted, if it gets to the point that there is no healthy soil to repair the rest, then we have a serious issue. 

 


Composting is vital and something that we should all be doing, it takes a little effort but we should all be responsible for returning to the earth what she has given us. More and more communities are doing it but still organic material is dumped into the landfills rendered useless by all the garbage and chemicals mixed into it. I have noticed changes in my own garden which is only over 30 years which is nothing. Many local wild flowers have disappeared, I have noticed a considerable depletion in the worm population and their are fewer birds and no mosquitos. Manure that we buy is useless, it’s sterile and contains antibiotics and hormones fed to poor animals in factory farms. 

 


We have to be conscious of what we throw away, packaging and disposable stuff is burying life on earth. Only nature has efficient systems of disposal through decomposition and fire. If we can’t come up with anything as good as that we have to come up with a way to clean up after ourselves, because nature doesn’t have a method of doing it, and is not an infinite resource. There is an out of sight out of mind mentality, every time we throw something away we must remember that it has to go somewhere it doesn’t go away. Something has to change we cannot continue to create more landfills to accommodate more and more rubbish. The earth can’t cope, each and every one of us has to be aware and to companies who are destroying life on earth I quote  “Only after the last tree has fallen, the last insect has been poisoned, the last fish has been caught will we find out that money cannot be eaten.” There has to be a shift from profit to sustainability and responsibility, and a committed effort on everybody's part. 


 

When it comes to living on earth we are all in the same boat, regardless of race creed or color. Each and every one of us must do our part, work as individuals, work as communities, connecting to larger communities. The earth is everybody's responsibility.  

 


We must get away from the mentality that humans are the only important beings on earth, even more important than the earth itself. We all depend on mother nature to provide us with water, with air, with earth, with fire. and a space to live in. We are not so clever that we can live without her so we must treat her with the same respect and love that she shows us. There are many documentaries demonstrating that human life will  disappear if we continue this way, the earth is a finite resource, everything we take from her we must put back then she will reward us ten fold. Living in harmony with nature cannot be so difficult to achieve, especially as we are natural beings ourselves. 

 

Geoff Lawton can point us in the right direction, every journey begins with the first step.


Symphony of the soild is well worth watching...it is quite long but well worth the time. It puts everything that Geoff says in a nutshell...we must work together to bring our soils back and let nature do her work. 

http://www.symphonyofthesoil.com/

 

According To Ayurveda & Yoga - Ann Holaday 

 

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