Saturday 28th January | Fern Verrow

Saturday 28th January

In his unusual and extremely readable autobiography, “Memories, Dreams, Reflections”, the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung describes his encounter with the Native American cheif of the Taos pueblos in New Mexico in 1932.

“I was able to talk with him as I have rarely been able to talk with a European,” Jung recalls. “To be sure, he was caught up in his world just as much as a European is in his, but what a world it was! In talk with a European, one is constantly running up on the sand bars of things long known but never understood; with this Indian, the vessel floated freely on deep alien seas. At the same time, one never knows which is more enjoyable: catching sight of new shores, or discovering new approaches to age old knowledge that has been almost forgotten.”

Chief Ochwiay Biano (which means Mountain Lake) must have sensed a kindred spirit in the Swiss Doctor, because he was devastatingly candid with him, saying:

“See how cruel the whites look, their lips are thin, their noses sharp, their faces furrowed and distorted by folds. Their eyes have a staring expression; they are always seeking something. What are they seeking? The whites always want something. They are always uneasy and restless. We do not know what they want. We do not understand them. We think that they are all mad.”

When Jung asks why he thinks they are all mad, Mountain Lake replies,” They say they think with their heads.”

“Why of course,” says Jung, ” what do you think with?”

“We think here,” replies  Cheif Mountain Lake, indicating his Heart.

After this exchange Jung fell into a deep meditation. The Chief had struck a vulnerable spot. Jung saw image upon image of cruelties wreaked by his forebears:  “the Roman Eagle on the North Sea and the White Nile, the keenly incised features of Julius Ceaser, Scipio Africanus, and Pompey. . . Charlemagne’s most glorious forces conversions of the heathen. . . the pillaging, murdering bands of the Crusading armies. . .the peoples of the Pacific islands decimated by firewater, syphilis and scarlet fever carried in the clothes the missionaries forced on them.”

Chief Mountain Lake had shown Jung the other face of his own civilisation: it was ” the face of a bird of prey seeking with cruel intentness for distant quarry. . .”

What makes this dialogue reported by Jung so relevant, is that it is a living encounter between a representative of the unconscious ” heart-thinking” of the ancients and a modern man of science and pioneer of consciousness who understood that the wisdom of the heart must catch up with our overdeveloped ” thinking heads” if we are to survive. We must marry our thinking with our doing. We have to preserve the gold in the age-old “knowledge of the heart” and keep making it ever more conscious if we are to protect our growing human possibilities from the keen-featured bird-of-prey mentality that circles above. We must develop a new consciousness of the Heart.

We will be at 55 Stanworth st on Saturday as usual, with a good selection of our winter vegetables , and a  few ” bought in” from southern Euorope which shines out: blood oranges from Sicily, Seville oranges from Southern Spain, Bergamot lemons from Morocco.  A feast for the eyes and for your tastebuds and general wellbeing in the depths of winter.

Any of the produce that has not be grown at Fern Verrow, is from small producers and is grown biodynamically or organically and we believe grown with the above in mind.



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