Food made with love tastes better. Perhaps we can all remember a special meal from our childhood, one where a simple dinner steeped with family love stayed with us long after we left the table. Food grown with love tastes different, too. Food cultivated and harvested with tender care contains more than just nutrition and calories; it contains nourishment.
But love doesn't just happen. Love is cultivated and grown, as well. Sure, some people understand love naturally--organically, if you will. The love between a mother and child, for instance, is powerful and primal. But too often, mothers and children live in areas where political instability, violence against women, and social, financial, cultural, and religious persecution interfere with love--and interfere with nourishment. Worldwide causes of hunger, for instance, are most often due to political instability, war, and insufficient investment in agriculture rather than Earth's lack of ability to provide.
According to recent studies, including those by the United Nations and the Rodale Institute, we can both feed the world and solve the climate crisis by focusing on small, diversified family farms with food grown organically. Organic farming creates healthy soil, which enables the soil to do what it does naturally, which is store carbon. Storing carbon in the earth is the most simple and "organic" solution to restoring balance to our planet's atmosphere and ending the climate crisis. But organic farming takes love.
Why love? Because good, true love is about understanding and compassion, the willingness to open your mind and heart--the willingness to learn, be curious, create intimacy, and trust. In order to be successful organic farmers and gardeners, we have to approach nature with love and openness. When we approach nature with love, we are able to understand what she needs to be happy and healthy, and we are able to provide it. We actually have the power to leave the Earth better, improve the soil, and help our children be healthier and happier than we were.
This means we need to stop looking at the Earth as a fearful foe that can only be tamed with science, domination, and chemicals. We also need to stop looking at our hunger as something that can be satisfied with anything edible, rather than real, wholesome organic food.
Real love thrives on freedom, not control. Real love seeks to understand rather than destroy. Real love feeds the body and the soul, which is where our deepest hungers usually live. These deep hungers can only be satisfied with love and nourishment grown with love. And that means organic food.
For more from Maria Rodale, visit www.mariasfarmcountrykitchen.com