Archive for the ‘Seeds’ Category

Ancient Filipino Science

Filipinos’ deep and ancient culture is an exciting and intriguing exploration. The science behind indigenous practices of Filipinos and that of other groups reside in quantum. One cannot sufficiently explain or give justice to the validity of indigenous knowledge and practices if only material science is invoked. One cannot find deep alternative or quantum solutions to climate change and other seemingly hopeless challenges if ancient knowledge and practices is not invoked. Documentation and study necessitates looking at rituals, festivals, seemingly superstitious beliefs and practices; these bring the general condition of the area to one that is more akin to the intention of the community, farmers or individuals. They alter the subtle energy and formative forces of the place. One site one could go to for a journey to the past and the science application of the indigenous is http://simplescience.multiply.com/. I wrote earlier articles on the subject of indigenous seed practices, two of which may be found inftp://ftp.ciesin.org/kiosk/ElectronicBkShelf/Newsletters/IKMonitor/IKMonitorSep94/5art4.txt  and in  http://www.cipotato.org/library/pdfdocs/SW55512.pdf. Dr. Boni Comandante has applied his scientific study to the sleeping fish, giant shell or taklobo, baybayin or ancient Filipino scripts http://www2.baybayin360.org/ , alternative student learning through dance and writing http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veoxSckke0A , terahertz and many more realms. And yes, to baybayin farming (will be featured later).

Schoolchildren dancing the Baybayin script. Learning is greatly enhanced through this movement.

Pam giving an introduction to Baybayin talk by Dr Bonifacio Comandante

 

Organic Seeds as Basis for Sustainable Agriculture

by PAMELA G FERNANDEZ


Based on ‘Organic Seed: Implications For Sustainable Agriculture,’ SEARCA Professorial Chair Lecture, July 11 2001, Department of Agronomy, UP Los Banos, College, Laguna, 162 pp. The original manuscript was designed as a sourcebook on organic seed and sustainable agriculture.
Professor, Department of Agronomy-Crop Science Cluster, College of Agriculture, University of the Philippines Los Banos, College, Laguna 4031, The Philippines.

 

The demand for organic products in the global market reached US$ 20B in 2001. In Europe, there is a very strong formal initiative for organic seed. Organic seed is a requirement in organic agriculture, according to the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) and other international as well as local organic initiatives. An organic movement in the Philippines has launched an organic standard for certification this year.

For both local and international use, the criteria for organic seed currently are, and should be at the minimum, based on the principles set for organic production systems, ranging from organic plant breeding (for variety development) to seed utilization (for crop production and eventually processing and marketing). The paper expands the list of criteria to include pre-plant breeding steps, ie, genetic conservation especially by the informal sector. Biodynamic farming principles provide much of the basis of the organic agriculture criteria, while the use (as well as products) of genetic engineering is banned in varietal development, farm inputs and processing. Tissue culture and Fi hybrid development especially through cytoplasmic male sterility are highly restricted in the production of organic seed.

Organic systems provide overwhelming advantages over non-organic systems. Benefits derived from and constraints related to organic seed and farming are given. Differences between opposite systems (ie, chemical or non-organic vs organic farming given the different forms) are presented in terms of effect on soil health/quality, product yield and quality (storability, losses, nutritional value, animal health, and vital energy). Three techniques (crystallography, chromatography and photon emission) which are well used in biodynamic agriculture, provide graphic comparisons of the products of two opposite systems (organic and chemical
farming).

Mechanisms or biochemical/physical bases for better storability of organic products are further explored; the result points to the realm of the relatively new concept of ‘glass’. Water in glass state and other natural substances (such as sugars) that enhance the glass state, can be contributory factors to the longer shelf-life of organic seed, other crop produce and processed food products. The current use of formally produced/bred organic seed in the Philippines is low but if the contributions of indigenous and local seeds/breeds are included, the number improves considerably. The prospect of organic seed partly depends on the success of organic certification in the country, the demand abroad for organic seed and products, and the presence of local companies who will go into this business. A large part of this success, however, will be determined by how successful local initiatives will be in community seedbanking/genetic conservation, and by improved general awareness and willingness of consumers to pay for organic produce.

 

You can download the whole article in PDF here:
http://www.cabi.org/gara/FullTextPDF/2009/20093019285.pdf

THE BIODYNAMIC WORKSHOP – An Outer & inner Quest for Sustainable Farming


Thirty-four people from Luzon to Mindanao gathered at the Vidar Garden 2.0 at Libongcogon, Iloilo to participate in the 5-day (Aug. 17 to 21) Biodynamic workshop facilitated by Nick Perlas.  Many were farmers, some educators, doctors, hobby gardeners, religious, mothers, and businessmen.

 

The first hours in the morning were spent in observation of nature. Learning to observe,  immersing oneself, listening.   Nick had thankfully prepared a narrow gravel pathway edged with bamboo.  Beside this pathway was deep muddy sludge.  Sunflowers and zinnias and mature okras lined the path.  The farm itself is edged by trees.  There is a river running nearby.  This is originally a swampy area with heavy clay soil.  Soil was dug up to raise the farming area thereby forming ponds and trenches.  A diversity of weeds and grasses abound making the area ahaven for wildlife.   Those who did not take the matter of bringing boots seriously had a surprise.  They had to trudge in the mud.  Joffel, a farmer, enjoyed being barefoot and we secretly admired his feeling of freedom.   Nick brought us to the compost piles, one a BD compost, another one, an organic compost.  Our untrained noses were challenged to smell the difference.

Every day early mornings and late afternoons were spent outdoors before the heat of the day descends in full blast.  We were blessed in that most days were sunny. As if by arrangement it rained before and after the workshop week.  We prepared a plot (1×10 m) from scratch.  Wild grasses were cut and their resistant roots dug up.  A trench was dug to bring soil up for the plot.  34 pairs of hands helped in crumbling the clay soil, our hands happily squeezing the mud.  We took turns making a vortex from a BD preparation with water.  Then this solution was sprinkled on the new plot.  The next day we transplanted lettuce seeds after which we spread a mulch of dried rice straw to prevent compaction from rain and from the soil drying up.

Following the BD sowing calendar, we started lettuce seeds by wetting tissue paper.  Each one also planted Terry’s sweet papaya seeds in black bags, including an avocado.  One afternoon was spent in preparing a BD compost from scratch which included using the BD preparations 502 to 507.  These preparations stimulate the life energies of the pile, and are used to “manage the formative life forces that abound in the farm”.

Our workshop indoors challenged us to answer questions like Why am I here?Why did we start with a walk around the farm? What did I observe on the field? What are the hazards of chemical farming? What and where is the plant?  A plant study was made by groups one afternoon.  We observed patterns in the plant growth (of expansion and contraction) and other phenomena.  We answered the question What is the spiritual function of food?, and came to realize that eating processed food, junk food, chemical laden foods or chemical-mimicking food is actually blocking the body from being a worthy receptacle for the divine.

A sharing from Gilbert of Dumaguete Mission Node with promptings from Teresa re China’s rice production problems….led us, in short, to the 3 gorges dam project in China is a failure.  Many parts of China is drying up, even lakes.  China is looking into other countries including the Philippines to lease huge tracts of land to grow rice to export and feed the Chinese.  They will use our land and our people to grow rice for them.  Many questions arise.  Will they require the use of chemical farming?  What about our own needs to feed our own people?  Gilbert is encouraged to write about this in more detail to the MISSION group.

We come up with more questions.  How do we revive the respect for agriculture?  How do we bring back the dignity due to the farmer?  We see that in working the land these past few days, we were sweating, huffing and puffing.  We are suddenly made aware of the hard work our farmers give to be able to produce and feed us real food.  We realize that, as the workshop ended, our baby steps towards biodynamic  farming are just beginning.

 

Report by
Esther Windler
MISSION Dumaguete

 

THE QUANTUM EXHIBIT Syensaya 2011

New science or that which resides beyond matter and subtler than magnets, electromagnets and other known forces, is now for our grabbing; formerly only very few know about them. Great challenges that confront us can no longer be effectively solved by old approaches, no matter how hard we try. We don’t have the luxury of time. Earth is nearing its “tipping point”. We have ran out of solutions to address global, societal, health concerns, and we are merely doing treadmill approaches in solving our problems. We need to do something that is truly effective, strategic or has wide and deep impact, is fast-acting, and multidimensional in effect, BUT so simple and uses or takes so little. In short, we need to do a quantum leap; we need to harness the power of the small and the invisible. Quantum is now used in generic terms, to refer to something extraordinarily small, invisible, undiscernable to many, but contains so much power to form or to destroy. In physics it is about that which lies beyond matter, inside the atoms, and which is attuned to that which is in the cosmos. In other sciences, it is about the formative fields and organizing forces. Read more

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WAVE OF CHANGE

A new wave of change is here. This wave permeates all aspects of human and earth existence. On the other hand, new knowledge is being revealed and new tools are being developed to answer current challenges: illnesses, pests and diseases, climate changes, calamities, etc. Approaches have been 2-pronged: one hangs on to the old mechanistic reductionist model, the other explores what is beyond that, as well as the fundamental role of human beings in addressing all these challenges in a synthesis way. Einstein’s premise is that we cannot find solution to our problems with approaches that come from the same framework that created the problem in the first place. These solutions must be coming from outside the box. And that outside the box space has been there all along, among ancient practices and teachings, and is now confirmed by the new science of “quantum”.