One excellent way to “Think Globally, Act Locally” is through the remarkable benefits to you and your community of a few hours a week gardening. I will get to the gardening, but first, with your permission, a little story.
A few days ago, returning from San Miguel de Allende, I paused at one of the magazine stands in the airport. It seemed other cover story complained of the sad state of our planet. But few offered any suggestions as to what we could do about it other than enjoy the royal wedding. I think that we actually can do something about it.
If we truly wish to survive the global collapse that has already begun, we must, as Gandhi said, think globally, act locally.
In my most recent book, I explored the various symptoms we see throughout our culture, and how the prognosis is dire indeed – unless we choose to change. The truth of my main points is even more obvious now: we must recognize on an individual, as well as a national and culture-wide basis, that we need to connect not only with people locally but also with our local environment, and realize we are all in this together.
How To Think Globally
Thinking globally quickly reveals to us that — if we wish to sustain any semblance of our accustomed lifestyles — we must put real energy into creating local community (in addition to the distributed communities we are developing online). That includes establishing a different relationship to our local environment. One thing we can do is to begin buying locally and eating locally – as the “New World Order” collapses we will have to depend our local support system – the big corporations won’t be here to support us, but our local farmers will, if they have not gone out of business
One of the most valuable ways to do this is to grow your own garden.
During the two World Wars of the last century, we acted locally by growing so-called “Victory Gardens” or “War Gardens.” These gardens helped significantly, providing sustenance for millions by reducing pressure on the public food supply that was brought on by the global war effort. Perhaps our gardens can save us again.
An important step in the Treatment Plan to make things better globally would be for more of us to start growing a garden locally. Now.
Why? I’m glad you asked.
One reason might be the fact that so many more people are doing it, and that the global food price index at an all-time high – and going up, and there are food riots throughout the world. In 2009, 38 percent of the people in the U.S. (41 million households) planted a vegetable garden. An American Gardening Association survey showed a 19 percent increase from 2008 to 2009 in new hobby country farms and urban edible gardens.
Why Grow A Garden?
The main reason most people gave for increasing or maintaining edible gardening last year was to supplement household food supply — to help save money on food. And if “locally grown” is important to you, there is nothing more local than food grown in your own backyards, windowsills, or patio containers.
Furthermore, if eating in a healthy and organic way is important to you, growing your own fruits and vegetables means that you know exactly what does and does not go into your food and exactly where it comes from.
Growing your own will make you healthier because not only will you eat more fruits and vegetables (let’s face it, few of us eat as many of these as we should), you will be getting the best kind of exercise, the green kind. Studies show that in 45 minutes of gardening, you can burn as many calories as in 30 minutes of aerobics.
What’s more, diverting your mind to the nurturing of life reduces stress and will make you more creative when you do go back the challenges in your life.
And if you have kids or grand kids, you have a green opportunity to help them make the fascinating discovery that their food actually does not come from the supermarket but from Mother Earth. What better way for them to learn how important it is to protect her?
Even if you are in a city, you can build a raised garden bed and get your garden started!
To learn more about how you can support a sustainable food system, check out the article “Healthier Food for the New Year“.