Biodynamics is a worldwide movement for the renewal of agriculture based on an understanding of the spiritual or cosmic forces at work in nature and in human social life. By understanding and learning to work consciously with these spiritual or cosmic principles, farmers and gardeners are able to enhance the vitality of food, bring healing to the land, and stimulate renewal in their communities.
Biodynamic agriculture is the practical application of the spiritual thinking introduced by Rudolf Steiner in the early 1900’s. The central focus throughout Steiner’s life was his curiosity around the nature of human beings and their reason for being alive on Earth. He called this way of thinking Anthroposophy (literally Anthropo-Sophia: wisdom of humans). Steiner himself defined it as "a path of knowledge to lead the spiritual in the human being to the spiritual in the universe.” This spiritual science is widely applied all over the world by teachers, doctors, artists, farmers and many other professionals. Our focus here is to consider how Steiner’s teachings apply to agriculture.
Biodynamic agriculture is based on three underlying principles:
- Cosmic/spiritual forces in the universe influence life on Earth;
- Each farm attempts to function with a sense of wholeness, that is, it is self-contained;
- The role of the farmer is central in achieving the equilibrium that is needed on the farm.
"bio" meaning "life" and "dynamic" meaning "energetic forces" = working with the natural rhythms and life forces within our farm or garden to bring forth life, food, sustenance, that is imbued with those forces which hold a nutritional vitality.
Watch this wonderful video produced by the Biodynamic Association in the United Kingdom.