(“Old Gardener” Cezanne, 1906)
Meditation is of course, a very personal matter. No one is suggesting, certainly not I – that one must meditate to be a good farmer, gardener, agricultural manager or to be a good person.
However, I am suggesting, from experience, that meditation can greatly enhance our powers of observation, our sensitivity of reflection and our ability to make wise decisions.
Meditation is also an incredibly good management tool: helps us focus on the essential, understand things we might not when we are so often in a rush and it adds a dimension of openness that can unlock new ways of seeing and doing things. Most of all, perhaps, it helps us remain calm in the face of the many decisions we must make on a daily, monthly, annual basis.
In his Agriculture Course, Rudolf Steiner suggests the importance of meditation for farmers.
What is the “anthroposophical” or biodynamic path of meditation?
Most biodynamic / anthroposophical practitioners take their cues from the work of Rudolf Steiner on this matter. However, no law or dogma or directive exists to do so. Biodynamic practitioners are truly completely free to meditate or not. In fact, no one should meditate who does not really want to do so and feels ready to take the time and effort. And: there are many different types and formats of meditative practice.
However, Steiner’s meditative “path” or “system” is quite attractive for people in our time, as it is very individualistic (meaning, you can adopt and adapt it to your person), it is study based (so, you can develop at your own pace), it is ethics-based (nothing is suggested that is not in concert with highest ethical standards) and it is self-guided (you decided how, when, how much, etc. and what kinds of exercises you want to start with, etc.).
Furthermore, the anthroposophical meditative path is very idealistic (furthers the best in us, so that we can do good things in life), systematic (there is a clear, organised logic to how one goes about meditating and developing meditative capacities) and it is empirical (meaning: its based on YOUR experience, as you go along).
What does one need to do, to start?
In truth: nothing. It is only a matter of wanting to try. There are no absolute rules, only the good advice of those who have experience. In this sense, Steiner offers “general requirements” – meaning things that those with lots of meditative experience can tell you: really help prepare you for a successful meditative practice. Here too, is a reason, I like Steiner’s approach: he is not a guru with absolute rules, but simply says: in my experience, these guidelines will help you only your path. His approach is much like a guide or a teacher of any subject.
In my courses I go into each of these steps (that you can see in my diagrams) in detail, carefully and with many practical details and examples. You will be able to ask questions and we will discuss the meaning and effect of such exercises. No one should start meditating without knowing why, how, what the effects will be and where to get more advice along the way.
In the near future, I will add links in the “Library” – with what I consider helpful texts on meditation – and times and dates of my courses on meditation.
The next course on “Meditation for Farmers” will be on the 26th-27th of January, offered in German language in the South Tirol (German-speaking) region of northern Italy. For more information, please contact me via email.