Wednesday, June 24, 2015

A Farmers Inner Compass

Have you seen these books about "True North"?  There are organizations and even a movie with this title.

True north refers to the North Star that aligns with the rotational axis of the earth. Every junior high student learns that you can always navigate at night by looking for the North Star, which is in always in alignment with the edge of the big dipper.

Compasses are another matter. A magnetic compass does not quite point to true north as it is attracted to a large magnetic ore deposit near but not quite exactly at the north pole.

Compasses have largely been replace by satellite based GPS (Global Positioning Systems). With GPS you can tell your location anywhere on the earth within 3 meters. With high precision GPS you can go a lot better than that.

So what does this have to do with farming

Faith - one of the inner compasses of the farm family is their faith.

Family - rural families are the inner compasses that holds the farm together.

Community - farming is all about relationships whether we realize it or not. Relationships form an inner compass for the farm.

Land - the some what fragile ribbon of soil and biology is what feeds the world. We feel grounded in the land as an inner compass.

Market - you knew I had to us this one.  Farmers markets are one of the cultural centerpieces an inner compass of the community.

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