Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary
I live and work at the Gurukula Botanical Sanctuary (www.gbsanctuary.org), a forest garden and community in the Western Ghats of Kerala that is devoted to plant conservation, habitat restoration and nature education. I write occasionally. My essays can be read in The Indian Quarterly, EarthLines Magazine, Hard News, The Journal of Krishnamurti Schools, The Economic and Political Weekly, CounterCurrents.org and Creatures of Gurukula (the blog of GBS). I also participate in and counsel across the Western Ghats, on the practice of ecological nurturance: a combination of strategies from plant conservation and education, community work, land-based cultural renewal, and resistance.
Talk Title: Where do you end and I begin?
Having lived by a stream for 24 years, one of the tiny headwater tributaries of the Kaveri, every cell in my body by now is nourished by this water. So where do I end and where does the stream begin?
Moreover, all of us in this human-nonhuman community have nurtured the water too, by protecting the banks, and a tiny area of forest, and the myriad plants and animals for whom it’s home. If you are drinking Kaveri water, then you have imbibed some molecules of us, and of the elephants and bamboos and mosses and other humans and mists and frogs in our area. Now where do they end, and where do you begin?
The questions that drive my work, in restoration, education, writing and activism, as well as this talk are very simple. Where do you end and where does your home begin?
Where does your home end and where does the environment begin?
Where does the environment end and…..?
I will share some excerpts from my writings and talk about some of the connections I perceive, as well as the work of my friends and community.