Is greed in our own self interest?
11 years ago
In looking toward the future of a changing world, this question, that we have been trained to answer "yes" to, takes on a new light. The hoarding mentality, in times of scarcity has served us well, to some extent. It has gotten us through short term periods such as frozen winters when food plants could no longer provide enough for us to eat. But when it becomes so all encompassing that the motivation is not simply having enough for our needs, but to have more than everyone else or even have it all, that is a sign of imbalance. In a changing world, we need to look beyond the right here and right now. We need a plan B, and a plan C, and so on. The more alternatives the better. Be it hurricane, flood, fire, or earthquake, things that can alter the status quo are potential factors in the equation at all times. Not preparing for their eventual possibility is short sighted. This does not mean you have to go overboard with it. But small, inexpensive steps can be taken to move in a more balanced direction. If you live in a high population area with limited food and water resources, Moving on may be wiser than staying put. you don't need a years food and water in a bunker underground unless you are going to fight for it. and if it ends up under water or a blanket of plutonium residue, is it worth having at all? On the Hawaiian Islands, the Kanaka Maoli (Native people) learned through the hardships of life, that things came easier if they worked together. That everyone working for the betterment of their friends and neighbors, as well as their family, meant that more help was there when they needed it as well. It is simply a matter of your neighbor killing you to get something to eat, or helping you to get something to eat. The choice is yours. I personally think that food should not be a commodity. Hunger often has a direct correlation to war. Fat and happy people don't tend to pick up guns. That is why you see so few of them serving in the military. Why should they? But do people ever get around to thinking that if they have it all, they will be the ones most likely to be targeted. Do you want the big juicy apple, or the small dried out apple? I have lived on streets and beaches in some pretty rough areas. No one ever tried to mug me. What could they get? But if you came driving by in your Lexus or Humvee, blinding passers by with all your "Bling", you might as well be oozing sweet nectar. You are going to get picked. I learned a valuable lesson, perhaps a few, in trying to get as much food as possible planted on the Eco-Ark grounds. Even though my goal is to grow far more than I need for my self, I can still do one better. Perhaps I can feed a small tribe out there in the Hawaiian rain forest. But there will always be more mouths to feed. And those that feel, or even are left out can quickly turn in to your most immediate threat. That led me to make best use of all the excess plant starts that came during propagation efforts. It is wise to start more seeds and cuttings than you can actually use. The best of the best can be planted in your garden. The rest can be given to your neighbors. Right there you have less mouths in your immediate zone needing food. Now they have their own, and you have more "for you". But what happened next was beyond my expectation. All those neighbors, who I was supposedly being generous to (in my own self interest) more often than not showed up at my door with gifts as well. Many food and fruit bearing plants that I neither had access to, nor in some cases even heard of, came back my way. As it turned out, in giving away my unneeded excess, I got valuable (to me) commodities in return. And that is not to mention a lot of good will and assistance from neighbors that came to be like extended family to me. After all, when it is your turn to be the one helping out, are you not going to show preference to your family and friends over all others. If you do not have land of your own to plant on, Consider starting a community garden. Talk to your local parks dept. city council or church group about providing a planting site. Talk with groups that already work to end hunger in your community about starting a project along the lines of The Green Ribbon Project as a resource to aid in their goals as well. One tree will not feed the world. One tree every so many feet...Will! Even if we never get to the point that we need it for our own personal survival, it will do a lot of good for our world. Plants and trees convert carbon dioxide to oxygen, filter impurities from water, shade the ground and other plants from overheating, attract and hold moisture. All this as well as possibly preventing a crime of desperation.