We have a week or so before the end of summer. The Equinox, the official end of summer, begins September 22nd and I’ll write about that next week. Many people will be glad to see the end of the summer of 2017. Hurricanes, floods, wildfires and tornadoes have battered and continue to batter friends and family. I am counting my blessings. Here on my little farm, I’ve had just the right amount of rain; my plants are thriving, for example, my banana tree is 11 feet tall; I have dozens of butterflies on my mistflowers; the hummingbirds are noisy and busy; my pastures are in good shape and I have plenty of hay for the stock. I actually have a few apples on my apple tree.
These are the gifts of nature. And I am safe for now from the devastation occurring all around us. The gifted Japanese farmer and philosopher, Masanobu Fukuoka warns us about a human-centered view: “… that we are receiving that which nature decides to give us. A farmer does not grow something in the sense that he or she creates it. That human is only a small part of the whole process by which nature expresses its being. The farmer has very little influence over that process… other than being there and doing his or her small part.”
I have chosen to move from the city to my semi-rural home to try to understand the whole process of nature. And that is not easy with death and failure a daily occurrence even if the wind is not blowing 125 mph. Author and farmer, Gene Logsdon, believed deeply that country living, with all its faults, allowed one to see under “the skin of our existence”. He wrote that people travel the world to find wonders and that wonders are available in the place where we live, “if only we would really live there.”
If only. If only one could embrace “really living” and avoid worrying over the ennui and grief endemic in our modern world. I am going to try to look deeper into the peaceful visage of nature I am living at present. Mindful that raging winds and fire are stalking others in the summer of 2017.