Thursday, 6 September 2012

What does agriculture mean to you?

On his blog Agriculture Proud (which you should read if you don't already) Ryan Goodman recently asked "What does agriculture mean to you?"

I spent some time thinking about this and came up with several thoughts, but it always came back to one thing.  Feeling connected.

Agriculture provides a connection to the world around me.  There is the obvious of working outside and seeing the sun rise and set, the stars shine, the wind blow through the grass, etc.  But beyond that, getting dirt under my fingers and learning to relate to animals gives me a feeling of peace.  They are the world, they are real and natural.  By spending time in their world I can be a part of that 'real' world.

In addition, as an uncle of mine recently posted on facebook, in agriculture and nature we learn to accept that bad things happen, but we can and will persevere and get good things in the end.
"I am all about being one with nature, and savor my alone times in the garden,watching the mourning doves flap out of the field, and the curious goats and cows hoping for an over ripe or damaged treat. However, today I think mother nature was sending me some kind of message. Zen and the art of okra picking, one should expect the itchy spines of the plants, but it should not include stink bugs on my pod, wasps that sting my finger, and fire ants that chemically assault my feet."
Some people will tell you that the real world is the job, the city, doing all the grown up things and 'living life to it's fullest by doing".  I say that those people don't understand that life isn't found in paper, desks, plastic and glass.  Life is the living plants and animals.  Spending time in a pasture just feeling the sun on your skin, the wind through the grass, and hearing the animals quietly grazing.  That's real life.  At least for me.  It's about slowing down and enjoying little things, not doing and experiencing as much as possible.

I don't know that I've explained this well or not.  It really all boils down to my experiences in agriculture providing me with a sense of connection to the world around me.

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