Almost every day we’re in the paddies preparing for seedlings. As I walk through the mud I observe and come to notice all existence that lives in a single hector. One paddy consists of much life. When first flooding the paddies all creatures submerged from the soil. Observing monster earth worms, as fat as or even fatter than a Bic pen, frogs of vibrant colors, lizards with orange bellies, and many insects that fly and crawl of many kinds. I also noticed when looking in a neighbor paddy it was barren with little to no life, no diversity. The answer was also in the birds. When we plowed our field’s crows would come in flocks scratching and feasting completing the food chain. But when looking in a neighbor paddy there would be a lone bird scavenging searching for life. I came to realize and understand what I didn't notice during winter, when all life was resting, that majority of neighbor farmers were chemical farmers. That fertilizers and pesticides were applied killing all life. Where wheat is sown like sardines in very crowded, tight neat rows, and weed killer is applied. I also observed that neighbor farmers were old timers, aunties and uncles. With the younger generation abandoning the land to find success in the big city, with no one to take the role of caretaker, leaving the elderly to care for many hectors all on their own. Than I could understand that it would be impossible for them to go organic on their own. We are killing life to feed life, and it seems as though that the animals are wiser than we. This is not Japanese reality but ultimately the reality of all humanity and all living things.
|The women group of the Anglician church of Japan, long time supporters, invited us and blessed us with a space to sell product at their bazaar in Tokyo. ARI product: shoyu, carrot juice, eggs, cookies, cooking oil, udon noodles.|
|3rd generation fish farm: also long term supporters of ARI allowed us to come and enjoy. inspired with new leaning|
|Farm raises both rainbow and brown trout|
|open ceremony: sitting with the founder Rev. Takami Sensei|
|Agriculture specialist and philosopher: Thanks to Mr. Chatterjee for late night class for volunteers and staffs.|