Gardening, reasoning and feeling compassion

I recently read something by the great science fiction writer Ursula K Le Guin, writing in the Guardian review. She said:

“The idea, so powerful in 2oth Century literature, that the slow processes of creation are less interesting, less real, than the cataclysmic dramas of destruction. And this leaves us right back where we are now. If cultivating our garden stultifies our minds, if using reason prevents our seeing visions, if compassion enfeebles us – what then? Back to conflict as our default solution? Cultivate hatred, anger, violence, reinstate the priests, politicians and warmongers, and finish destroying the earth?

I wish we could abandon this false opposition, which neglects the possibility of more imaginative uses of both the light and the darkness in us.”

I totally agree with what she is saying. Bioregioning is all about tuning in and working with nature’s power, which, by and large, is loose, steady, slow and subtle. Plants – the only life-forms currently capable of making their own energy on a big scale – do so in this manner.

It is also about using our reason, using science to improve our yields by rebuilding our soils, restoring our damaged ecosystems. This doesn’t prevent us having a vision of a better world, far from it.

And it is all about compassion. Compassion for those less fortunate than me, for I count myself as fortunate, living as I do in a warm, caring environment, and a beautiful natural environment to boot.

gigha sunset

About edwardtyler

I live in Kintyre, the long peninsula acting as a natural breakwater for the Firth of Clyde, west of Glasgow. A Permaculture and Transition practitioner, I am working with fellow community activists to co-create a resilient and vibrant local bioregion.

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