The Theory and Practice of Green Philosophy. MASANOBU FUKUOKA. Preface. Natural farming is based on a nature free of human meddling and intervention. I believe that a revolution can begin from this one strand of straw. Seen at a glance, this rice straw may appear light and insignificant. Hardly anyone would. Masanobu Fukuoka is a farmer/philosopher who lives on the Island of I had not heard of permaculture at the time, but I can see now that Fukuoka's farm is a.
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The Natural Way of Farming. The Theory and Practice of. Green Philosophy. By Masanobu Fukuoka. Translated by Frederic P. Metreaud. Japan Publications, Inc . Farming Satori: Zen and the Naturalist Farmer Fukuoka Masanobu. Ron Green This paper looks at how Masanobu Fukuoka adopts Chan Buddhist philosophy in . By Panos Manikis. Sixty-five years ago, Masanobu Fukuoka, just after the end of Second World War, went back to his native village in Japan and started working.
He taught the making and sowing of clay seed balls in Vietnam during He travelled to the Philippines in , carrying out Natural Farming research, and visited Greece later that year to assist plans to re-vegetate 10, hectares around the Lake Vegoritida area in the Pella regional unit and to produce a film of the major seed ball effort. The next year he returned to Europe, visiting Mallorca. That autumn he was to visit Afghanistan with Yuko Honma but was unable to attend, shipping eight tons of seed in his stead.
The system is based on the recognition of the complexity of living organisms that shape an ecosystem and deliberately exploiting it. Clay seed balls were originally an ancient practice in which seeds for the next season's crops are mixed together, sometimes with humus or compost for microbial inoculants , and then are rolled within clay to form into small balls. This method is now commonly used in guerilla gardening to rapidly seed restricted or private areas.
Rodale in the United States. His books are considered both farming compendiums and guides to a way of life. She then organised a visit by Fukuoka to the Kut Chum District of Yasothon Province in northeastern Thailand, which, together with his books, were influential in the rapid and widespread adoption of organic and chemical-free rice farming in the district.
Fukuoka's techniques have proven difficult to apply, even on most Japanese farms, and have been described as a sophisticated approach despite their simple appearance. I do not disagree with his criticism of the way research is done in the scientific world. Yet I would say his "natural farming" is very much a science itself. Or perhaps it is an arts. Either way, it involves intellectual thoughts, a lot of personal attachment, beliefs, love.
It is a science of a different standard, one that is difficult to be accepted by the conventional society, but a good one indeed. In denying all the achievements of sciences, is he denying his own work? Well, ok, my definition of science is slightly different from his. The book is also a great deal about philosophy, about the way of life, about living. It reiterates some ideas in Zen Buddhism, even though the author does not necessarily practice Zen. My trouble with Fukuoka's ideas is his imagination of "the primitive," of the "old" or "original" way of farming.
Does that beautiful, romantic way of living and farming ever exist? Does it exist only for a few elites and a few enlightened ones? The world is full of problems. It has always been and it will always be. Fukuoka wants to rid the world of those problems. What I am saying is most realistic and correct. All paths lead to the path to nature. God and man coexist. If he doubts and looks with a mind of attachment the view based in space and time.
In order to achieve this. It depends on whether or not a person is able to become detached and to see this sight.
Art is something God creates. The blossoms of the cherry and peach trees. To put it in more concrete terms. When man makes art. When you know that these are all God. A painting is not equal to the true God. The value of a Van Gogh painting does not amount to that of a single sunflower. God dies. The wisdom of God has never been needed. There has never been a generation like the present when people have felt so perplexed.
Rather than praying for the rebirth of God. Disorder in the world begins when men's hearts are in disrepair. The present age is one of those times. This is true of every area of life — politics. We must not think selfish things. God does not rescue people. PART 5. We must accept the fact that there will always be a gap between human knowledge and God's wisdom.
It might appear that people are responding to this increased religious activity by humbly hoping for the rebirth of God and seeking God's salvation. Looking at the present fin de siecle mood. It is also evident in the degradation that comes from the luxurious material life produced by the current trend to materialism and the ugly sight of industry. But God doesn't rescue people. People are under the illusion that God exists for the benefit of man. Accomplish your selfreform.
That religions are essentially incapable of transmitting teachings can be proved by the fact that.
Sakyamuni Buddha. The transmission of God relies only on the unspoken word. No matter how much you listen to the voices of saints. If there are no words for explaining God. People who are not conscious of the proposition that man is an animal that cannot know a single thing and who carelessly believe that everything can be expressed with words are the ones who throw themselves into religious activities.
The question of how to carry out religious activities has been a fundamental problem for religions both in the past and today. Only the people who know God can achieve this one and only transmission. The people who say that there is no need to spread or propagate belief in God are. God is preached. The only thing that can be said to link them is that they affirmed a single. Those who know God always come into existence in an intermittent succession.
Rather than abandon human knowledge and seek the true God. I am convinced that religions that try to express the deities in terms of spirits and ghosts are the greatest source of evil sending religion down the wrong path. Rather than embodying the deepest mystery. It can be tolerated. I am concerned about the degeneration of Buddhism. One would think that. Recently religious rituals involving guardian spirits.
Even if an idol of God is of some value in helping people draw closer to God. If this serves the purpose. When we approach the end of an age. Religionists are people for whom directly grasping God is their goal and their work. The true God doesn't need shrines or temples. Today it is a concept of God that has taken hold in human society. There are few seekers of truth who aim at an affirmation of God.
In my view.
Even among naive religions such as mountain worship and primitive Buddhism. He had made a strenuous effort to learn such things as physiognomy. When I hear about how they take advantage of this human weakness.
The point is that you cannot approach God by simply relying on another power and praying to the deities. The form is not important. God and False Gods Let me give one example of a religion that preaches wealth and good fortune. He was revered as the founder of this new religion. The deities are silent and do nothing. Even earnestly sitting in Zen meditation. He brought with him a written disclosure that related in great detail the schemes he had used to get believers into the palm of his hand.
A young man who was worshipped as the founder of a religion in Kobe came to my place with ten or so of his disciples. Nothing makes a more powerful weapon. This young man said that he had received various kinds of training to transform him from an ordinary religious person to the founder of a religion. Man cannot know a single thing. He realized now futile his efforts were and said he wanted to become a natural farmer. The smile of the Buddha.
Even if the trees and grass say nothing. We can only say that those who mislead and those who are misled are fools. Religious leaders forget their own religious awakening. The time has come for people to cease being infatuated with the deities When we empty our minds and meet with nature. Religion and War.
I am led to reflect on how man is nothing more than an animal dancing to the tune piped by ideas. The name of God is sometimes used by men and is made into a kind of spell. Whether religion becomes a narcotic like opium or a secret remedy for liberating mankind depends on the people who use it.
A single flower will cleanse man of his past sins and tell him where his future happiness lies. The words of Christ. Then there will be no need for sacred scriptures or sutras. How unbearable the world of man has become. There is no longer any reason to be confused. When we pursue wealth. Where ideology is concerned. When people struggle over food or riches. But because the laws made by man are always imperfect and are filled with errors and contradictions.
Humans are the only ones who go to the foolish extreme of fighting wars. When someone is a winner. The world of mankind never leaves the realm of relative contradictoriness. Man is the only living thing on this earth that wages war. Why is this so? When we look for the reason why unsettled quarrels between individuals. Other living things do not even do battle in earnest. From the time that man began to live according to his own selfish ideas.
While groups of people appear to have different gods. We must part with. There is no pleasure without pain. The law of natural providence. In this human world. While acknowledging the contradictions. The laws and morals of men are mostly for their own benefit and are not precepts for the purpose of pursuing and remaining faithful to a knowledge of what is the true joy and peace given to men by God.
But it is only natural that. Christ would be appalled and Sakyamuni would weep. If they were to see the present situation. Other animals are transcendent. The meaning of the Buddhist commandment that forbids killing is that one should not kill unnaturally.
They struggle bitterly to acquire a false joy and happiness with human knowledge. Even if we say that there is no beauty superior to that of the white lilies of the field. Even though they know that this world is a world of relativity and contradictions. Since losing sight of God. If it is wrong for man to sacrifice the lives of cows. I do not know if Sakyamuni actually said not to kill cows. They have lost true joy and pleasure and live in futility. We would have to consider all decisions made with human knowledge.
According to the Jewish books of prophecy. The only thing that can completely shatter this evil drama written by man.
It is all up to man. Today Japan has lost its beautiful coastline. The same can probably be said of the Jewish prophecy of the end time. I doubt. God is not a prophet. They say that after this only the chosen people will be returned to life. Because of a commandment not to eat fish. The true meaning of Sakyamuni's words must have been that man should not use human knowledge to interfere with nature.
While able to discern man's future. Without God. It makes me doubt whether there is a future for the islands of Japan. The mountain vegetation is half gone. There is also current a Buddhist eschatology concerning the 21sl century. There is nothing so easy to distort as the word of God.
Now people are just running about aimlessly and displaying their shame to the world. Sakyamuni never taught anything about the future of the human race or about some place called "hell. God does nothing. Only man prophesies about the world of man. To kill tigers and elephants while protecting cows is unjust and destroys the balance of nature. He was pointing out that the people of his time were not living true lives but were existing in an eternal hell.
God is silent. At the very least. My fear is that people will appear who will use this scenario. Without truth. He is a lost sheep. They are nothing but evil. If man can regain his original nature. The true civilization and cultural life of man is a life in the midst of the abundance of nature.
He is at a loss. When we are truly alive. From the time that primitive man is said to have been driven away by God. The ideal society I am describing is one in which all men will hold the entire world within their grasp and will create a free. Contemporary man looks back and longs for the natural life and yet. The more people pride themselves on their wisdom. Originally civilization based on human knowledge must have begun when men yearned for the natural civilization they had lost. I will hear the retort.
But human knowledge could not grasp the reality of nature. They have begun a reckless attempt to control. He has simply degenerated into an agent of the devil.
Only fools with empty. But now modern man thinks he can strive for harmony with nature while enjoying civilized life. They say that now one species of living thing on this earth becomes extinct each day. On the macro level. The disappearance of one bird or one plant is not just the death of the bird or plant. Which is to say that the destruction of nature also is approaching its utmost limits. It is clear that.
It is absolutely impossible to adjust the natural order with human knowledge. That is like trying to catch fish in the trees. The natural universe is an organism generalized under the name of God. The scholars. Now man rules the earth like a king standing atop all the other plants and animals and cares not at all about the selfish destruction of nature he carries out in the name of civilization.
All thought and action based on discriminative knowledge is fundamentally opposed to nature. It is of grave significance. Once the primal source of nature is destroyed. On the micro level.
There has been only one thing for man to do. That is the only work allowed to mankind and the only path to the continuance of the human race. It can only be saved by abandoning human knowledge. Fifty years ago. The salvation of God will no longer be available then.
I have negated the basis of civilization culture. But people who are filled with a sense of foreboding are wondering whether we can solve or at least evade the problem using human knowledge. The only thing that can rescue the human race is man himself. But the destruction of nature is directly linked to death of God.
The time has come to put an end to the human delusion that building a desirable human life with technology. Advances in human knowledge are of no use in gaining the enlightenment of God. The significance of this. That is to return to true nature and rely on God for support. There is no happiness for mankind in estrangement from God.
Today man is unaware of the fundamental principle that civilization comes into flower in inverse proportion to the flowering of nature. Or else they hope to be rescued by God or lose themselves in indolence. We must put ourselves at the service of the revitalization of nature. I began a method of natural farming that does not involve cultivating the earth. For that reason I am convinced that the only thing for man to do now is to participate in the greening of the earth. While modern civilization says.
Natural scientists believe that they know nature well. PART I: Naturally their value judgments fluctuate according to time and circumstance.
The most important thing is for people to realize that they cannot know what nature is. Philosophically speaking. He can also nurture it and cause it to increase its numbers. The moon. Even when they do not understand something. But he cannot create a firefly. But the nature that men make a subject for study is not nature in its true stale.
What does it mean then for man to know nature? It is said that man knows the mountains. As a result. The nature that people think they know is nothing more than a false conceptual nature that they willfully concoct inside their own heads. They are unaware that their knowledge is as different from grasping the true state of nature with enlightened perception as night is from day. All philosophers must be familiar with Kant's statement that in theory human knowledge is impossible.
They simply distinguish red from green. If we do not. So what is the true form of nature? The time has come when the human race must consider deeply and ask in all earnestness what is the nature that exists in truth.
We could say that the biggest difference between humans and other living beings is that humans have clocks. If time and space have simply been created by human concepts and do not really exist. The fact that we see them as two is merely the product of our relative. When we consider the matter from an absolute point of view. This is what the Buddha referred to as "things turned upside-down.
As long as natural science continues to proceed under the illusion that the view of nature constructed on the false notions of space and time is the true nature. If we consider them from an absolute point of view. He is unable to give himself up to the eternal flow of time and to pursue a life of knowing nothing. If this alone were known. Westerners call me a "do-nothing man. In fact.
I even discarded the Buddha. In the eyes of man. The reality of nature is not something that can be understood simply by analyzing with a computer the nature that man confronts everyday. Fifty years ago I realized my own foolishness and went into the hills.
Only when we live together with nature and take refuge in the bosom of God will we be able to serve God and protect nature. Man cannot and ought not do anything apart from God. But nature is not indulgent with a lazy farmer. If we make nature into a mental image. If we do not know God. If you wish to know nature. So I simply stood by and watched the changes of nature.
I hoped that. God's mind lies not only within living beings but is omnipresent. Scientists suppose that if they can clarify the nature of the gene. He can only instinctively infer the genuine truth. It can be said that God created this world.
By chance. Although the shape and form of God are before man's eyes. After fifty years the only thing I have learned. I had thought that there was no need to do anything and that there was nothing to do.
But is it really relative? Humans can only think in relative terms. But the nature I sought had almost died out. The Windmill of Cause and Effect While the world of man is said to be shrouded in mystery. I knew that what had to be done to bring the natural world to life again was to sow seeds in the desert.
These were journeys in search of nature's true form and of people who could affirm that they knew God. Even in his actions. In any case. Because human thought and action cannot break free of this relative view. That is indeed a case of cause and effect. Both the advocates of nature and those opposed to it are taking part in the same tug of war. Human judgment says that if.
In his conceited view. When I saw the earth. Once man has made this observation. The outcome of everything that man does is the result of cause and effect.
Lovely green pine trees growing on white sandy beaches have long been a representative landscape of this island nation of Japan. I was unable to sit by and watch as the large green trees around my farm suddenly died. In about five to ten years. This was said to cause the pines to suddenly wither and die in summer. The Forestry Offices' theory was that.
As a way of explaining how man cannot easily grasp the relationship of cause and effect. During the past ten years they have conducted aerial spraying of the insecticide Simethion throughout the country in an attempt to exterminate the beetle.
The order of human society can be said to be preserved by this law of causality. My own village is in an area of red pine forest that nourished the growth of matsudake.
This law of causality. Hawing my doubts about the experimental method that had determined that the beetle and the nematode were the culprits.
Because natural science also believes that everything comes into existence according to the law of causality. I put my past experience in plant pathology to use and spent three years doing research in my hillside hut. The Regional Forestry Offices determined that the source of the damage was a nematode approximately one mm long carried by a long-horned beetle.
My experiments shoved completely different results. The nematodes cannot live on pine sap. However, even when I inoculated pines with the hyphae that these fungi produced, they had little parasitic effect. They were nothing more than indeterminate pathogenic fungi.
The pine and matsudake are symbiotic plants. The matsudake fungus breaks up and penetrates stones, absorbing minute amounts of nutrients that it then supplies to the pine. The matsudake fungus is rapidly dying out throughout Japan. The direct cause is that it is being preyed upon by black linear fungi as I call them that seem to be non-specific fungi. What has caused these black linear fungi to increase so rapidly in Japan's pine forests? What has given rise to the aberration among the microorganisms of the soil?
It has been established that the soil of the pine forests is becoming strongly acidic, but even though I suspect that there is a direct relation between the black linear fungus and the microorganisms in the soil, and that acid rain is the source of the acidity, I cannot say so with certainly. I have not yet reached a conclusion, but in relation to the cause, my results are exactly the opposite of the theory of the Forestry Offices. The source of the problem is that the matsudake fungi have died, and as a result the pines have grown weak, filamentous fungi have invaded their trunks, and finally, nematodes that feed on those fungi have invaded the pines.
The nematodes are not the true culprits. The true culprits causing the death of the pines are the black linear fungi in the soil, and the nematodes and long-horned beetles that have been considered the cause are doing nothing more than clearing away the corpses of the pines.
At the very least, they are only accessories to the crime, while the ringleader lies underground. But even in the case of the black linear fungi, if smoke pollution and acid rain turn out to be. Of course, this research was done in my crude hut in the hills, so there may be some mistakes, but what the world sees as cause and effect is clearly deceptive.
Although I speak of the cycle of cause and effect, no one knows what is really happening. For some years the pine blight has appeared to hold in abeyance in western Japan Kansai , but it has spread in eastern Japan and the areas facing the Japan Sea, and it is possible that large pines will die out completely. The older the trees, the more easily they die abruptly. Pines are hardy plants, but they are susceptible to pollution. I hope this is not a sign of the coming desertification of Japan.
In any case, if we mistake cause and effect, the origin and the result will be reversed, and the measures for dealing with them will lead to grave errors. We can look at it as a windmill turning round and round, with cause and result set as alternate blades. As in the composition of a poem.
The effect becomes a cause, then a new effect is born, then than effect exerts an influence and becomes the next cause. Therefore, there are various causes, with names such as fundamental cause, primary cause, immediate cause, remote cause, and proximate cause, and they are continuously spinning round. The windmill of causality spins to the right or to the left, depending on the direction of the wind.
If it reverses according to time and place, then the result becomes the opposite of what it was before. Scientists believe that once they have assured themselves of the true cause, they will always be able to work out basic countermeasures. But although they make great efforts, they cannot.
That is because only the blades of the windmill of causality can be seen with man's micro-vision. No matter how much you investigate the outer appearance of the blades of cause and effect that spin round and round, there is no way to grasp the constantly changing chain of cause and effect.
There is no way to ascertain whether something pulled, pushed, or was pushed, whether the apple fell on its own or was dropped by the heavens. This does not mean, however, that the true cause does not exist.
The absolute true cause is in the center of the windmill. The central point becomes the unmoving, absolute true center. If we start from this true center, then at once we will understand all things completely.
This central point cannot be grasped by a scientific, inductive method. Even if you try to grasp all things and phenomena by scientific induction, by observing the external, you will be obstructed by the wings of the spinning windmill of causality and will not be able to plunge into the center. Because you cannot inspect the interior, you will not be able to come in touch with the center.
The only possible way is by an intuitive, deductive method. It might appear that we can understand the fundamental true cause that is at the heart of things rationally or through the senses, but unfortunately the deductive method hardly goes beyond the relative situation of the inductive method. For this reason, even when it appears that we have tentatively grasped the true cause and a tentative conclusion has been reached, as our relative thought regarding the central point deepens, the one point becomes two points, then three points, and continues developing vertically to form shaft of the windmill.
While in theory there is only one true cause, in fact it becomes numerous true causes. Therefore, while we start at the fundamental cause, and the result or conclusion that is our final goal is obvious, various human contrivances and efforts become necessary, even though the direction and route we must take are a single path straight as a shaft.
Nevertheless, the superficial cause and effect do not become intertwined and confused, as with scientific judgments based on the inductive method. If this world is a riddle, then the riddle cannot be solved by science, but only by relying on a deductive method, in which a clear-cut cause and effect can be grasped. It goes without saying that the true cause that is obtained by intuitively touching the center. It is nothingness and emptiness, can neither be spoken of nor named, but it is absolute truth and can attain its goals and conclusions by itself in do-nothing nature.
This theory is quite applicable in the case of practicing natural farming. The conclusion that I could grow rice without doing anything was not mistaken, and I could in fact grow rice, but nature is not the same year after year, so in order to conform with nature, close attention and various adaptations have been necessary. The Illusion of the Law of Causality Natural scientists have found that if you chill a cup of water, it will turn to ice, and if you heat the ice, it will turn into the original water.
In the repetition of such experiments, they have seen that there is a cause and a result in every change of matter. When sea water is heated by the sun, it evaporates as water vapor, rises in the sky to form clouds, turns to rain. With this, meteorologists learn the cause of rain and clouds and think they have grasped the true nature of the water that is the result, but they do not understand the first, fundamental cause that explains why there is water on the earth and why the clouds float in the sky.