Feeding the Pollinators, making a difference
Updated: Jun 1
On Friday May 19, 2023, 3 adults, 1 personal support worker and 9 friends from the SFN* (Special Friends Network) gathered around Amma Canada’s farm kitchen table to help revive Mother Nature making seedballs** also know as earth balls.
This idea was inspired after Eric "Magoo", and I attended an online retreat given by some of Amma’s renunciates from around the world. Following the retreat, Magoo created 108 seed balls with his Art earnings and distributed them at a special Satsang*** in the presents of Br. Rāmānandāmṛta Chaitanya, from Amma’s DC, USA Ashram.
When people started asking what these seed balls represented, the passion to educate and spread more arose. Wasting no time, an idea to do them with friend from SFN came to life.
At Amma’s C20 campaign launch, her youth wing wanted to spread 1 million seed balls around the world … our thoughts were "WE CAN HELP"!
Here are some words from what Amma said:
“Humanity is facing many extraordinary challenges today. At this point, human beings need two qualities: the wisdom to recognize the problem and the intelligence and mental attitude to correct it. Unfortunately, we are like a student who starts studying the day before the exam. We think correctly only when we are on the brink of disaster. The future belongs not to single entities who stand divided, but to those who mingle and cooperate with others. Countries and societies which try to rise on their own will surely fail. This is a warning from nature to mankind. Hence, let our mantra be ‘Mingle, Not Single’. A single nation, race or religion cannot survive in isolation. This earth belongs to us all.”
Amma added: “There is an underlying rhythm to our universe; the universe and every living thing in it have an unbreakable connection to each other. The cosmos is like a vast, interconnected network. Think of a net that is stretched out by four people holding its four corners. If it is shaken slightly in one corner, the vibration is felt all over the net. Similarly, whether we know it or not, all of our actions reverberate throughout creation, whether done by an individual or a group. So let us not think ‘I will change after they do.’ Rather, even if they do not change, if we change, we can bring this change to others. From ancient times, the world is one family has been the mantra of Indian soil. The presidency of G20 nations is a unique opportunity to model this truth before the world. Let us light a new lamp of change here. May innumerable lamps be lit from this flame and carried across the world.”
Also, here are words taken from Kunga Nima Lepcha, Hon’ble Minister, Land Revenue & Disaster Management, Govt. of Sikkim of “The Sustainable and Resilient Communities (SRC) Conclave of Civil 20 (C20):
Said Shri Kunga Nima Lepcha, Hon’ble Minister, Land Revenue & Disaster Management, Govt. of Sikkim:
“All of us in the world need to come together to join hands to secure the future of our next generations. This cannot be Donne by working in isolation. Despite remarkable diversity, all people need to consider themselves as world citizens so that all mouths can be fed and the nature protected.”
Said Swami Amritaswarupananda Puri: “Amma highlights the false sense of security provided to us by modern technology which makes us forget the delicate nature of life on this planet. We need to think beyond our borders, diversity, and differences, and see the world from a perspective of oneness, as emphasized by India’s G20 slogan of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam.”
“During the event, a seedball distribution campaign was launched in Sikkim by the C20 Sustainable and Resilient Communities (SRC) Working Group, in association with AYUDH, the Mata Amritanandamayi Math’s global youth wing. The global campaign aims to disperse one million seedballs in fragile ecosystems worldwide and create general awareness in people about the significance of seedballs in restoring ecological balance.“
With permission to use Amma Canada’s space for free, everything and everyone seemed to come together. Members from Eric’s community were delighted to help! Carolyn Martin provided clay and native seeds. Julie Powers provided the bulk of native seeds from her front garden along with her friend Eva. Chantal Garneau gave of her time freely to educate what a difference we could make with seed balls. From the money Magoo makes from the he sale of his painting and cards, he provided soil, crafts, snacks and all the materials needs to make this program a successful day. The friends were overjoyed to be out in the country enjoying the beauty of the land. They were curious to know who Amma was. They asked many questions and wanted to know where Amma was and if they could meet her.
Chantal Garneau, Ward 3 Councilor of Halton Hills spoke to them about why they are making seed balls and how the native plants attract and nourish native wildlife. After Chantel’s talk the group prayed Amma’s Nature Prayer together and got to work doing their part of selfless service to help create native seed balls for our pollinators.
After they completed 491 seed balls, they enjoyed a healthy snack and went outside to create some special garden tiles to be gifted for display in Amma’s gardens around the farm. They were all each given a small pot with their own seedball to nourish, and a seed journal as a thank you from Magoo. Spending the afternoon at the farm was a blessing for these adults as there is a lack of quality programming or activities in the Halton Hills area. Many adults with intellectual disabilities attend subpar day “programs” that are often little more than a day care. Others may spend time alone at home in isolation. A day well spent!
After the day at the farm, we took all the seed balls home to dry. Once they dried Eric, "Magoo", and I wrapped them in burlap, and bagged them into groups of 21. We then brought the seedballs to one of the Monday Art Classes at the Milton Library (run by one of the SFN Mom's). They were distribute to all the friends present. Some were also gifted back to the ladies that offered their resources and the final bag we given to a teacher who will distribute them during a walk in nature. Our hearts are full! 599 seedballs distributed back to Mother Earth!
NOTE: To read more please follow the link: Chantel Daniel
* SFN is a grassroots organization that was created to develop social events to bring together individuals of all abilities AND, to create opportunities for community involvement and inclusion. SFN hopes to raise awareness about individuals with intellectual disabilities and all they have to offer.
** Seedballs, also known as earth balls or nendo dango Japanese: 粘土団子, consist of seeds rolled within a ball of clay and other matter to assist germination. They are then thrown into vacant lots and over fences as a form of 'guerilla gardening’. An ancient technique, it was re-discovered by Japanese natural farming pioneer Madanobu Fukuoka.
*** Satsang is made up of sat, meaning truth, and sanga, meaning association. It is a gathering together to seek truth, and it creates a strong spiritual atmosphere that allows a deeper experience of meditation.
Feedback from the seedball workshop:
Rose and Eric, thank you so much for arranging the seed ball making and for a really lovely afternoon at the Amma Canada property. Madison loved spending the time with her friends, hearing all about seed balls, and helping our pollinators. It was a fun and peaceful way to spend the day. Elaine
Thanks, Rose and Eric for organizing this workshop. Personally, I thought it was a very meaningful and worthwhile endeavour. My daughter loved being with others in this fun group activity! Thanks for your efforts! Pegan and Roslin