Hello to all...
I am enjoying reading a new collection of essays by Aldo Leopold. The
collection is titled "For the Health of the Land" and many of the essays
are previously unpublished. The collection was published by Island Press in
An essay that is particularly interesting is titled "The Farmer as a
Conservationist" and was originally published in American Forests magazine
Ponder this section...
"In a surprising number of men their burns a curiosity about machines
and loving care in their construction, maintenance and use. This bent for
mechanism, even though clothed in overalls, is often the pure fire of
intellect. It is the earmark of our times.
Everyone knows this, but what few realize is that an equal bent for the
mechanisms of nature is a possible earmark of some future generation.
No one dreamed 100 years ago that metal, air, petroleum and electricity
could coordinate as an engine. Few realize that soil, water, plants and
animals are an engine subject like any other, to derangement. Our present
skill in the care of mechanical engines did not arise from fear lest they
fail to do their work. Rather it was born of curiosity and pride of
understanding. Prudence never kindled a fire in the human mind; I have no
hope for conservation born of fear... (snip) This necessity for skill, for
a lively and vital curiosity about the workings of the biological engine,
can teach us something about the probable success of farm conservation
Over the years we have had various posts on SANET that have stated that
farmers choose to be or not to be good stewards of the land based on harsh
While acknowledging that economically viable farmers must operate within
the constraints of the market... it is clear to me that a focus on
economics alone without a "lively and vital curiosity about the workings of
the biological engine " will never add up to the ecologically based
innovation of farmers like Steve Groff and many others...
I think you will all enjoy the "The Farmer as a Conservationist" ...
Elsah, Illinois 62028
(618) 374 - 5289
To Unsubscribe: Email email@example.com with the command
"unsubscribe sanet-mg". If you receive the digest format, use the command
To Subscribe to Digest: Email firstname.lastname@example.org with the command
All messages to sanet-mg are archived at:
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu May 11 2000 - 22:02:14 EDT