I am blessed to live in a sacred place of water, mountains, trees, wildlife and lots of sky. It is somewhere where nature is visibly king and the humans who are allowed to sojourn here are incidentals in this landscape of magic.
For some here the land is special as a home for among the most wonderful wildlife in the world. For others it is valuable as a facility for food production to provide a living, and many farmers live frugally to enable them to acquire or keep as much land as possible. The land is treasured.
For many years in the UK and in other countries, the importance of land was disregarded. Cheap food imports and pressure from supermarket giants devalued traditional agricultural land, and complacency about the source of our food along with the undermining of the farming sector have become endemic. It is time for us all to wake up.
The warning signs are with us, as the recent revolts in Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt show, all of which began as protests against high food prices resulting from aberrant weather. Drought and floods will continue to destabilise previously reliable food production areas and not only will food costs escalate but agricultural commodities will become relatively scarce. Productive land anywhere in the world will be increasingly valuable and in time not so far from now land will be the most valuable asset there is. It will be treasured once again.
The test for man, who must eat, is how far he is able to honour the land both for what it can provide him for survival, and for its position as the safe harbour for the world of nature. To do both brings much needed balance to the world we are privileged to inhabit. To see our planet as a food factory to exploit to the the ultimate would be unfortunate, bringing about exactly the paucity our leaders are trying to avoid. What a test we humans have been set by Spirit!