The conference was organised by the Sustainable Food Trust, a global voice for sustainable food and health and the main host was Patrick Holden the CEO of FST and I must congratulate Patrick on a wonderful job, he was truly amazing.
I first heard about the conference from Professor Dana Flavin, who we met at a cancer conference in the summer of 2016. Professor Flavin has been a consistent supporter to our cause in the Organic Institute and for that we are eternally grateful.
I had already read HRH Prince Charles’s book “Harmony: A New Way of Looking At Our World“, and I was very excited at the thoughts of attending a conference based on the principles of this incredible book.
The conference was held in Llandovery College, Wales. A very interesting place in itself but difficult to get to with planes, trains and buses. I arrived on the Sunday evening before the conference and had pre-booked a basic room in the student quarter, so I was on site and raring to go.
My first introduction to the food was dinner that evening and what a ‘wow’ moment! It was the beginning of three days of the most delicious organic food, cooked by the charity Square Food Foundation. This was led by their famous chef Barny Haughton, whose passion for clean organic food was electrifying and I also noted that Ballymaloe Cookery School in County Cork had a least one chef contributing.
Monday morning, the first day of the conference, it was breakfast at 7am and registration started at 8am. The first series of lectures ended at 12.30pm and these lectures were delivered by HRH Prince Charles and many other brilliant conservationists, soil scientists, etc. Also the award winning music conductor Sir John Elliot Gardiner gave a speech on the connection between the harmony of music with food and nature. All of these wonderful people, including HRH Prince Charles have one common cause, supporting our planet and everything living of it by eliminating toxins from our food, water and air, by working with and enhancing nature.
After a delicious organic lunch, the first choice of lectures which started at 2pm were:-
- Harmony and the circular economy (4 speakers)
- The farm as an ecosystem (5 speakers)
- Science and spirituality (3 speakers)
- Farming in harmony with nature (5 speakers)
I chose Harmony and the circular economy.
The second series started at 4pm and they were:-
- Eating as an agricultural act (3 speakers)
- Harmony and local food systems (5 speakers)
- Harmony principles in farm architecture (3 speakers)
- Sacred soil, sacred food, sacred science (4 speakers)
I chose ‘Sacred soil, sacred food, sacred science’. The main speaker was the venerable master Chin Kung.
His Holiness Chin Kung, a Buddist monk who grows pears on a 200 acre farm and allocates 4 acres for predators, birds, insects, etc. Through pure land Buddism practices, which does not use any chemicals whatsoever and only works with nature. The crop of pears are not affected by birds, insects, etc. as they are fed from the 4 acres especially prepared for them, truly, truly amazing!
At 6pm on the Monday evening before dinner, young musicians from the college played extraordinary music which sounded angelic. This concert was held in a very beautiful old church within the college grounds, truly a unique occasion which will stay in my memory for aeons.
Dinner was then served in the college courtyard under a canvas, what a feast of delicious organic food and drinks and an opportunity for the 400 plus visitors to mingle and discuss the day’s events. I met and spoke to many of the speakers and for me it was one of the highlights of the conference.
Tuesday was again, breakfast at 7am and registration at 8am. The first four of seven events to choose from were:-
- The role of Agriculture in re-balancing the carbon cycle (4 speakers)
- Harmony, diet and health (4 speakers)
- Sacred life, sacred death (4 speakers)
- Music in the spheres (3 speakers)
I chose ‘Agriculture’s role in re-balancing the carbon cycle’.
The second variety of lectures started at 11am and they were:-
- Harmony and bio-dynamic agriculture (5 speakers)
- Principals of harmony education (2 speakers)
- Reconciling system discord (2 speakers)
I chose Harmony and bio-dynamic agriculture.
12.30 to 1pm was the closing plenary session led by Patrick Holden CEO of FST and followed by three speakers, after which delicious organic lunch was served.
At 2pm we had a choice of 4 field trips, I chose Patrick Holden’s Organic Dairy and Veg Farm which is the largest standing registered organic dairy farm in Wales. This included a walk around the farm and a visit to the purpose built cheese production facility. Patrick is moving the farm towards total self-sufficiency in nutrients, animal feeds and animal bedding, a holistic approach which echoes harmony thinking. The weather was atrocious as it rained all afternoon, but the day ended with a spectacular barbeque on the farm, where everybody from all the other field trips attended.
It was a beautiful end to a conference which was inspiring beyond words and I am so grateful to Prof. Dana Flavin for informing me of its existence as otherwise I would have missed this wonderful, unique occasion which will guild me on our journey in our Organic Institution in Ireland.
This conference has strengthened my belief that not only is humanity one with nature but as the highest consciousness in nature humanity is the guardian of nature.
This means that the planet, the soil, the forests, the rivers, lakes and oceans and all the living creatures and animals are under our protection. By protecting the animals, the elements and aspects of nature, we are protecting ourselves as we are all one.
The wisdom of nature comes from the wisdom of the universe, the wisdom of the universe comes from divine wisdom. When this wisdom is expressed in the divine intelligence of all individual souls, it outstrips the domain of anything or anybody on earth at any time.
If we come to the conclusion that we have and are being mislead by others who do not have our best interests at heart or the interest of nature in our planet, who are driven by greed, the lust for power and the intent to manipulate and control us for their own selfish purposes. Then we must look elsewhere for the answers to our desire for our spiritual connection with nature and our re-connection with oneness. We must search out like minded people and join together and understand that all the answers will always be found within us.