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There are many treatises written on the subject of consciousness expansion, and a number of these allude to the precepts of a philosophical practice called “Magic”. When exploring the fundamentals of magical practice, one discovers that at its essence is the realization of a “magical consciousness”, a sensitized state of being in which one ultimately perceives the interconnectivity of all things included in one’s universe. It is written that upon entering into this realm of universal holism the conscious party will begin to relate to every occurrence in his or her surrounding; the universe opens itself up and begins to communicate directly. This is not always of such a magnitude where inanimate objects begin to speak or Nature personifies herself in some impossible way. It is more like a consistent sense of synchronicity or perhaps an ongoing feeling akin to déjà vu which allows little room for doubt or disregard, an undeniable feeling of integration into the immense web of sentience that pervades the cosmos, each strand detecting reverberations from every intersection. The objective of achieving this awareness is empowerment of the individual, who, upon this development in consciousness can now manifest his or her will to affect a change that resounds throughout the entire web.

When reading Steiner, one understands that he is speaking from a magical consciousness, and when he communicates from such a place is using what we can consider to be a “magical language”. As all areas of magical practice subsist on the notion that there is a subtler influence guiding all actions, so too is the speech assigned to it an attempt at truth only adequately expressed through a series of symbols we call language. The magical use of this language is filtered through what we’ve been conditioned to accept as normalcy, and thus filtered often comes across as cryptic in our literal sense of understanding speech. This is why Biodynamics may seem so difficult, and why Steiner’s lectures on the subject may appear alien. His methods for doing things are immaterial; they are more vibrational.

My inspiration for introducing this blog entry in such a tone is a neighbor of the Farm named Doug, who was present for our mixing of the BD#500 preparation. He’s the bearded gentleman in the red cap from the video. Doug referred to someone who coincided with a memory I was carrying from a class I had attended the week prior – a scientist named Masaru Emoto. A young woman in my class had written a prayer on the dry-erase board for everyone to see, and (although I was not to know the name of the Japanese scientist who had created the prayer until Doug uttered his name) Masaru Emoto had written it. It was a prayer meant to heal the waters of Fukushima, which had recently endured a nuclear crisis in Japan. Emoto has conducted a series of experiments with water, and one of his conclusions from these experiments is that human language directed at water droplets affect the behavior of the water. The prayer on the board in class ignited discussion on the reported efficacy of prayer in general, which prompted me to question to whom or what the power of prayer is to be attributed. Debate ensued, and I asserted that when one prays, he or she is admitting the divine power in his or her self and in his or her Word. Prayer is meant to be an emission of one’s own divinity, directed at oneself, imbuing the subject of the prayer, which is made indistinguishable from the one who prays. The prayer to heal water is meant to heal holistically, beginning with the power of one’s own word.

So, when Doug mentioned Emoto, I began to ruminate (as a cow chewing its cud) on the essence of what we were doing with the 500 prep. Of course, this was ritual, from the burying of the horns six months ago to the one hour of stirring in which we were then engaged, and as I stated in the last blog, ritual is a means for the expansion of one’s consciousness. The ritual itself is superficial; it’s the willful manipulation of the time required to prepare the BD500 and the deliberation of our actions that create a shift into a more profound or poetic way toward accomplishment. The preparation, once prepared, is something accomplished, and this prepares our selves for the further success of our crops. The completion of the task, marked by the energized focus of Steiner’s lecture, imparts the energy directed at the soil into the purveyor of the preparation. This sense of completion reveals the power of the applicant in regards to the integrity of the farm.

As for the poetry inherent in this way of doing, this was realized when my son asked to join me in spraying the field. As he sprayed, I asked him to imagine that the spray gun was a magical wand, or, better yet, a conductor’s baton from which he was propelling musical droplets onto the soil, enthusing the ground with the energy of their notes. Later, at home, we imagined that when one conducts an orchestra, the music we hear is not really coming from the instruments but is sounding from the tip of the baton. In concrete reality, this belief is absurd – everyone knows that the sounds are made by the drawing across or plucking of strings, by breath passing through reeds, by skins and metals struck in time. Then why the simple wooden stick waved before our eyes? This is an analogy for the phenomenon of magical thinking.


The Essentials


Spring has sprung!

In the West greenhouse at Morning Star, we have quickened the rites of Spring. Greens have begun to sprout prominently from beds sown just over three weeks ago, withstanding severe frost potential under doubled row covers and with a deliberate misting of a valerian root preparation on the coldest dates. Visitors to the greenhouse in the past week have been flabbergasted at the resilience of our upstarts. How they were able to maintain through bed temperatures as low as 14°F is remarkable and promising. Simply the proud sight of them flourishing has inspired several folks to faithfully leap right onto the CSA opportunity we’ve been promulgating since the new year. While we gear up for what can only be a bountiful growing season, assembling our resources with practical goals for the farm envisioned and at hand, here is a moment to address the essence of this endeavor itself as we await the impending harvest.

The impressive achievement of our Spring greens recently has spurred only two possible explanations: it is a result either of blind chance or conscious retention. In upholding the farm’s continual observance of biodynamic practices, we enacted recommended measures to give the presence of phosphurus in the plants an energetic boost with the valerian root preparation, a spray composed simply of the crushed root and diluted water. Understand that this method is a theoretical one privy to the biodynamic process. Biodynamics, as created by Rudolf Steiner, is heavily founded on an esoteric way of thinking. It considers very subtle influences in the atmosphere that are interpreted as an extension of planetary or otherwise universal activity. From seed on, the plants grown are conceived of as an evolving microcosm mirroring our entire cosmic system and occurrences within. Commonly throughout the myriad modes of esoteric practice, it is believed that one’s environment, including the cosmos itself, can be manipulated to serve an individual (yet not entirely discrete) purpose, and this belief prefaces the indoctrination of ritual.

The idea of ritual practice can be a formidable one to most people although it is a daily life process that creates preferred (or lamentable) conditions in an atmosphere of our own devices. The principles of the use of the greenhouse themselves can be perceived as ritualistic ones in that we are effectively altering the “consciousness” of the plants by devising an atmosphere in which they believe we have entered a season more conducive to growth, i.e. Spring. Much in this way, practitioners of ritual performance seek to affect their own consciousnesses or those of others to promote growth in a specified direction. The rituals themselves are wholly contrived, but total acceptance is necessary for their efficacy, and if there are more people ready to accept it, its reality grows more powerful.

For instance, the application of the valerian – an established ritual of biodynamics meant to harness available warmth in the soil via Saturnine influence. Many people use the herb valerian to alleviate stress, and folk magic utilizes it in love spells in hopes of evoking warmth from the human anatomy. Are we to accept the idea that the valerian preparation is responsible for the soundness and stamina of the plants? Of course, this is not a quantifiable matter, so it can not be explained scientifically, at least with practical science. A control group could be set up for any similar applications in the future and a comparison can be made, but biodynamics seems to rely more on the acceptance of the environment it hopes to create. In reading Steiner’s agricultural lectures, his espousals sometimes demand a willing suspension of disbelief, often appearing far-fetched or, at most, tenuous in their foundation; but one can easily adopt the essential attitude that is being transmitted. Biodynamics is a deliberate means of developing a conscious relationship with one’s farm, its land and vegetation, and also of expanding that relationship into an astral connection. The objective of biodynamic thought and practice is to heal the earth to a point where it is able to willingly provide everything one’s body needs to survive. But it lends itself to a spiritually scientific process for the sake of those properties of life not so immediately visible.

This directly relates to the concept of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), a farming method also implemented at Morning Star. The CSA method has its very practical applications: financial assistance is offered from shareholders in exchange for a substantial amount of food, thereby encouraging local economy and endorsing salubrious dietary habits. But when meditating on the word “community” and attempting to realize what it means to be part of a community, one may begin to absorb a deeper implication. Community, like ritual, thrives on acceptance and externalization. It is not enough to adhere oneself to a localized effort – community at its purest and most genuine also recognizes its universal application. In participating in a CSA, one is entering not just into a contract with the farmers but with the farm as well. A relationship with the earth and everything it encompasses is established and its activity will react to each shareholder directly and reflect exactly what each shareholder decides to contribute. Everyone can sympathize with this correlation to the Biodynamic philosophy, that a conscious effort yields a definite result. A community can act according to its unique intentions, but it must maintain a freedom of thought that allows for an open communication with the natural world. This current will run beneath the ground, which is where Steiner believes the “head” of the farm lies, the crops growing downward into the “belly” that is above the ground. The head is where we must look to see the effects of the distant heavens. To quote Steiner, “Although the head must be provided for out of the universe, it must also truly interact with what is occurring in the belly up above”.