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Sunday, August 17, 2008

Simple Living, High Thinking #11

For the week of August 11th-17th, 2008

Cloud-gazing and green-bean razing, it's all in a week's work. Join us as we take a look into what went on this week in the Small Farm Training Center here at New Vrindaban.

What we got done
-Click here to read the wrap-up of a very enlivening Farm Circle we held this past Thursday on the importance of the role of women in agriculture and in creating varnasrama culture. You're sure to be inspired.

-Tapahpunja was gracious in his efforts to help out with our recent Kids Camp that was held this past weekend here at New Vrindaban. Hay rides and small workshops abounded, and as you can see below, we even got some of the kids to relish hand-washing their own clothes. Truly a marvel experience in our modern times.

-Construction continues at a steady pace in our Workshop Extension in the Teaching Garden. This week, Tom was working on placing the leveling out and placing of wood for silk plating, which will provide a bridge of support between our tire foundation and the wood to be used in the actual construction of the building itself. Tom has also been reinforcing some small sections of the tire foundation with concrete.

Tom will present a workshop on alternative housing in one of our upcoming Farm Circles.

Shawn get his saw on.
-Our harvest this week up top at the Garden of Seven Gates included healthy bundles of okra, green beans, and chard. All this, and more, including new items in-season such as karella (bitter melon), loki squash, and cucumbers can be purchased at our weekly Organic Farmer's Market under the yajna-shalla in the RVC Temple Courtyard. Our Market is open after breakfast until after the Sunday Feast.

-Paws Paws are a super-ecstatic local fruit delicacy here in West Virginia. Click here to check out a short account of the first excursion into the season's harvest with the paw paw acarya himself, HG Soma Prabhu.

What we realized
is not just self-sufficient farm communities in the Vedic model that Prabhupada prescribed for us. Of course, our farm communities can be the most honest and fruitful representation of varnasrama that we can create in this Kali-Yuga, but the real foundation of varnasrama is a strong internal culture of trust and devotion between devotees.

It is absolutely the most important task of our society of devotees to develop this strong internal strength, as individuals and as a collective. We risk getting lost in the essential externals of our seva if we do not have the proper, consistent development of coming in touch with the Lord inside our own hearts.

Our farm communities can be such a catalyst for this kind of internal development. Just the nature of the seva itself entrenches one more in a mode of pure goodness, away from the wireless radiation of the ugra-karma culture. Taking the time to pull the weeds from the earth can help one to really pull the weeds out of one's heart.

Please help us out! Your hands, heads, and hearts can help us restore Srila Prabhupada's vision of self-sufficency here at New Vrindaban Dham. We're out shining and even in the rain in the Teaching Garden across the street from the RVC Temple, or up the hill at the Garden of Seven Gates. See HG Tapahpunja Prabhu for all the details.

Click here for more info on the Small Farm Training Center.

Stay tuned for next week's update! Hari Haribol!

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