Am back from attending the 3 day JLR NTP (Naturalist Training Program) at the Bannerghatta national park, conducted by JLR’s Chief Naturalist, Karthikeyan.
It is an amazing program (and Karthikeyan is a super-fantastic teacher) and I am extremely happy that I attended it. A long pending wish got done in my bucket-list.
During the program, one of the discussions was about how much effort actually goes into food production and how we trivialize it into simply idli and sambar. We often do not realize how intricate and inter-connected things are in our lives.
We take for granted, the plate of rice and often end up wasting quite a bit. There’s so much that goes into the process to enable that plate on our table.
We pay for it. We pay in paper currency. Why bother with trivial data? Why care about some farmer’s hard work? Or about the involvement of nature in it? Or the time it takes to grow it?
We have jobs. Good pay. We have a right to enjoy the best. We have a right to consume!
We have money! We pay for it. It is nobody’s business if we waste things!
Is it right? Give it some thought.
Being rich and capable doesn’t mean that one has a right to abuse consumption. Of course, am not talking Socialism vs Capitalism here. Just simple economics. Of production and consumption.
Today, we take for granted a lot of things:
- food that takes months to produce
- electricity that takes a lot of effort to generate and to bring it to our homes
- fuel, clothes, electronics and what not, that can be consumed in a very short span, but takes months, years and decades to produce
All these things take an awful lot of effort to make it available to us. Sometimes (mostly, actually) involving those who aren’t as fortunate as we are. As a society, if we continue doing things as we do now, it could get bad. We cannot eat our paper currency, gold and silver!
We need to be responsible consumers! And minimize wastage in our consumption.
Well, am not preaching you not to indulge in things. By all means, do. But please do realize the entire story behind what you consume and respect it.
And yes, aim to be a net producer and not a net consumer (and produce in ways acceptable to the environment / ecosystem).
When we consume only what we need (and not necessarily what we can afford), waste less, produce more (in the right manner)… we can definitely be more self sufficient!
Self sufficiency, which our forefather’s practiced diligently, is fast losing its way in our generation of iPads, DSLR’s and 500mm prime lenses.
And we look towards the west for answers. They are an horrible example when it comes to self sufficiency. Let’s go back and look at our own ancestors. Let’s learn a thing or two from them.
Let’s try to be self-sufficient!
PS: Thank you Karthik for being a wonderful teacher!