HomeCommentaryAn amazing reservoir

An amazing reservoir

"In this ordinary language is an invitation to listen to messages from nature"

The transfer of thoughts and messages is as old as man himself. The ability to communicate and develop means to communicate whether through sound (hearing), origin (sight, feeling), has, however, not solved man’s problems and lack of understanding or miscommunication still plague societies.

Since the time when the first woman used communication to entice the first man to eat the forbidden fruit, to this day when threats of nuclear annihilation are relayed through veiled double-talk using the most sophisticated communication equipment, we still have to study and understand one of the most reliable sources of truths, nature.

We believe that the truths that somehow elude us in spite of the knowledge explosion and the information highways available to us, are actually ours for the picking, from nature.

And to go further, from these truths, lessons can be joyfully learned. From the diverse day-to-day changes that occur in nature, be it the blossoming of a lilliputian wild grass flower, to the rushing madness of flash floods, there is always something to discover.

The Holy Book teaches us this, that in nature, we can explore what we cannot find in books or computers. Jesus used the mustard seed, the rainbow, the lilies, birds, fish, foxes, the rain, wind, fig trees and the branches and vines as a means of getting His messages across, as a means of revealing the truth in His teachings.

This is the prevailing mode of life in the farm — where I now live — a heightened awareness of nature’s messages.

Just like the message of typhoon Karding’s unwelcome brief visit to the farm.

- Newsletter -

Typhoon Karding, (international name: Noru) the 11th tropical cyclone for 2022, lashed with torrential rain and fierce winds wrecking havoc along its path, entering through Burdeos, Quezon and Dingalan, Aurora, crossing Nueva Ecija, Tarlac then emerging over Zambales waters.

Our town, San Miguel, in the province of Bulacan, like all those areas that lie in her path, suffered losses to lives and property, from the floods caused by the rains, especially in the agricultural lands.

The Department of Agriculture put the cost of agricultural damage due to Karding at PhP3.12 billion, (as of October 3) with at least 108,594 farmers and fisherfolk affected. These figures, though big, have less impact on ordinary farmers like me. What is felt by individuals and families, is the problem of confronting those who depend on the land for their day to day survival in the face of zero harvest and no source of food. A neighbor lamented, “We could not even find decent camote tops good enough to boil and make salad.”

When I arrived in San Miguel, waiting for a ride to the farm, I overheard four farmers exchanging “woes.” They were saying they could no longer till the rice land beside the highway in Camias, San Miguel, where several houses were completely washed away by the floods because one of the structures damaged was a glass and aluminum shop. The glass panels in the shop’s storeroom were shattered to pieces and carried away by the floods spilling into the fields. The farmers here still work the fields, barefoot.

The farm was not spared, the vegetable gardens and the rice field is now a sea of tattered leaves and broken twigs and branches. The blue ternate hedges completely uprooted and the passion fruit vines bare without leaves and fruits, reveal gnarled creepers and climbers. The sight could have been heartbreaking if it were not for the hidden promise presented by the twigs, vines and roots.

Three Christmases have passed since I last made homemade Christmas wreaths. They hang in our doors and windows to the delight of my daughters who are artisans themselves. Those gifted to special people were received with much joy. Because in my present state, expensive and bought gifts are not an option, we have responded to nature’s invitation to make use of whatever is available and produce something worth gifting.

There may be no harvest of passion or dragon fruit for a year or two but the fruit of offering these losses produce unquantifiable fruits for the soul. It can bring you to tears to see all the flowers of the dragon fruit on the ground and the young unripe green passion fruit scattered all over, but feeling God’s presence in an ordinary natural consequence of nature’s wrath somehow makes a sacrament out of the ordinary.

One other message I received is that I can make my own rainbows. But this would be another short story which we will share along with our discovery of silver highways in the air.

And in this ordinary language is an invitation to listen to messages from nature. Perchance, you too would stumble into an amazing reservoir of not so ordinary messages.

Edita Burgos is a doctor of education and a member of the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites.

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