Experiencing the Bounty of the Farmer’s Market

My friend Lana Grover has likened systergy to the experience we have at a farmer's market.

As shown in these beautiful images, courtesy of Tableau Vivante, fresh fruits and vegetables and homemade goods are bought and sold. There is bounty, there is exchange, there is a personal touch that is nurturing; there is community.


But isn't there bounty, exchange, a personal touch at a flea market, an antique market, at Nordstrom?

Just looking at these images tells me it's not the same.

And after several days of thought, I think I know why.

With the release of the film An Inconvenient Truth, going green/being green have become household words, part of our mainstream culture.

And I will confess there are times when this movement seems all too conveniently impersonal — save the planet, save the forests, save the animals — even as I have become much more conscientious about recycling.

But when I read Bill McKibben's words (thanks to Mary Pipher), “The emergent science of ecology is easily summed up: Everything is connected. But interconnection is anathema to a consumer notion of the world, where each of us is useful precisely to the degree that we consider ourselves the center of everything.”

I had an a-ha moment.

For many people, environmental concerns moving mainstream aren't about the environment per se, they are about people feeling disconnected. We don't know that we feel this way, but I believe we do. And because we don't know what to do to make it better — we look for something tangible, concrete to help us re-connect — like save a tree.

Which is why a farmer's market nourishes us in ways that other markets can't.

Because when we buy fresh fruits and vegetables, something deep inside of us knows that they are given to us by a Creator. We also know that these delicious peaches, cherries, apricots and plums aren't just for us, but will sustain, and most likely be eaten with, our loved ones.

In other words, a farmer's market reminds us that we are not the center of everything, but we are a part, that we are connected.

What comforting food.

What are your thoughts?

Do you agree with my premise about the linkage between the environment and our relationships?

Do you agree that a farmer's market is a metaphor for systergy? Why? Why not?

When was the last time you experienced systergy?

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