I thought I would share some writings from John E. Ikerd in his book 'Crisis & Opportunity' as he can express what I am thinking better than I can.
'One thing we all have in common is our dependence on the land and on each other.'
'...an acre claimed by urbanization is an acre irretrievably lost from human food production.'
'Many people now know that agriculture has become the number one nonpoint source of stream pollution in the United States...'
'An increasing number of consumers in the industrialized nations of the world want something more than organic; they also want to know where their food is grown and who grew it. They are concerned about freshness, flavor, nutrition, and overall food safety and quality, not just pesticide contamination. They are concerned about the impacts of their food choices, not only on the natural environment but also on the health and well-being of farmers and farm workers.'
'[Rudoplh] Steiner considered the rightness of relationships among the farm, farmer, food, and eater to be divinely determined. He was concerned that food grown on the increasingly impoverished soil of conventional farms could not provide the inner sustenance needed for spiritual health.'
'The historic purpose of organic farming was permanence - to ensure the sustainability of agriculture, and through agriculture, the sustainability of human society... Permanence requires sustainability - an ability to meet the needs of the present without compromising the future. A system of farming that destroys the natural productivity of the soil cannot sustain its productivity.'
'Deep-organic farming ultimately depends on people making a personal commitment to maintaining the health and productivity of self-renewing, regenerative, living ecosystems, societies, and economies. Such personal commitments require a sense of personal connectedness to people and to place.'
'Deep-organic agriculture is a land friendly, people-friendly approach to farming.'
'Potential positive solutions to farming and living in an increasingly crowded world are endless. The key is the pursuit of harmony through sustainability in farming and living, which requires ecological integrity and social responsibility to ensure economic viability. Mutual respect and consideration arises from the realization that caring for neighbors and caring for the earth, as we care for ourselves, is simply a more desirable way to work and to live.'
Ikerd's book focuses on sustainable agriculture and the need for action. The above notes came from just one chapter, entitled 'Local Organic Farms Save Farmland and Communities.' It is this importance on communities that interests me the most.
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