I picked agriculture as my Pagan Blog Project "A" topic because growing my own food helps to keep me connected with the universe and the local spirits. It also fits in neatly with last month's "Z" post about finding magic and mystery in the mundane.
When I prepare my garden I speak to the spirits of the land. I whisper words of strength to the seeds as I plant them. I give thanks to the plants as I harvest them for the life that they give to me. It is a mystical experience and I hope it always will be.
A lot of people my age and younger have never grown food for themselves. I've been lucky to have grown up with a garden. My father was the son of a farmer and we always had at least a small garden. Now I have a daughter and I will pass along this tradition to her. Below is a picture of spinach growing in the raised bed she "helped" me build last year. Spinach is a winter crop and it grew until we got almost a foot of snow a couple of weeks shoo.
It doesn't matter who you are, if you trace your roots back far enough you will find a farmer. Creating a garden can not only help you connect to the land, but it can also help you connect to your ancestors.
I find that my garden also helps me to connect with my faith. Many pagan religions are earth religions. The major festivals and holidays revolve around agriculture. As an example, I will use festivals that most on the Pagan Blog Project will be familiar with. Planting is done around the three fertility festivals of Imbolc, Ostara, and Beltane. Fruits and vegetables will be ready for harvest around the three harvest festivals of Lammas, Mabon, and Samhain.
Aside from the spiritual benefits of having a garden, there are practical benefits as well. Growing your own food can be a lot cheaper than buying it in a store, and better for you too. Plus there are the additional health benefits of being outside working in your garden getting fresh air and sunlight.
Even if you don't live where you can plant a garden in the ground, you can still grow things. I've seen gardens grown on rooftops, balconies, and window sills. If you are new to gardening, start small and with something easy, like garden herbs.
I really enjoy my garden and I hope I inspire you to start your own. Remember to always find the magick in the little things.