Thursday, July 3, 2014

Thoughts on "Prepping"

Don't prepare to survive hard times, prepare so that you don't even notice them.
-CajunSunshine, from

I think this statement above perfectly sums up my thoughts on the prepper/survivalist topic. Some of the agriculture and livestock sites I frequent are also hang-outs for some hardcore prepping types, so I see a lot of comments involving doomsday predictions, a sense urgency on stockpiling silver, links to nuclear-safe 55-gallon food-grade teflon-coated stainless-steel storage tubs, ammo discussions involving where to buy the cheapest 10,000 rounds, and so on. Topics like WSHTF, TEOTWAWKI, solar flares, magnetic reversals, global economic crashes, UN takeovers, biological warfare, and so on.

It seems there are 100 different ways in which the fabric of Western society will break down and collapse in the next 5-10 years.

My goal is to carry on so I don't notice any of it.

Basically how I feel.
So how am I preparing to not notice the hard times?

Well, first is my food production system. With cows, sheep, pigs, chickens, and rabbits providing proteins, and the pigs, chickens, and cows providing various services to the garden, I can reasonably hope to produce the majority of our family's food within the next 2-4 years. If things do get really bad, then I'll have a wicked coffee withdrawal headache for a solid week, but then we'll be hunky-dory again. That's the goal, anyway.

Now, there are a few things that would certainly make that easier, and coincidentally, they'd also make my day-to-day life easier as well. Things like a well pump, barbed wire perimeter and paddock fencing, extra storage jars, meat processing equipment, etc. are all things I'd like now, and also things that would help in the event of a societal breakdown.

But these things are not part of a checklist that needs to be completed for me to sustain my current level of comfortable existence in case of something seriously awry. Rather, these things rae part of an ongoing effort to live more closely to the life God designed for humans.

Ultimately, this life is one that is VERY connected to creation. All that God made is good. How often we forget! As a culture, we tend to squirm at the often gruesome and "icky" aspects of reality, opting instead for highly medicated food and its accompanying shrink-wrapped styrofoam trays.

Ah, the paradoxes.

All natural, cage-free chicken. And I've got a bridge for sale.....
For in getting to that neatly-packaged (un)reality, the backstory of mass agriculture is a far more disgusting and unclean abberation of the work of God than self-butchering. The way most food is raised is not only far from sustainable in any conceivable long-term arrangement, but it also a more dangerous and potentially lethal method on such a large (i.e., national) scale.

In breaking away from the unnatural, unhealthy "choices" at the Local Food Depot, we are doing several things. For one, we are raising healthier, better tasting food now. For another, we are developing and cultivating the skills and knowledge to continue to do so, thus freeing ourselves from the reliance on the food industry as a whole.

If we don't rely on it, then its collapse doesn't affect us.

I suppose our goal, while NOT classified as "prepping," does have some crossover into that category. We are preparing, not for the downturn of society, but for a simple life in which we appreciate the joys of God's creation. This lies in stark contrast with a life that strives to appreciate all of man's achievements. Oh sure, we enjoy our computers and our Wii and our new car. But these are not the things that sustain us.

We are preparing to gradually break off our dependence on gadgets spawned from the Industrial Revolution. We are preparing to live life according to the wisdom and rhythms that governed humanity for millenia. We are preparing for the simple life, and have taken dramatic steps toward achieving it.

Pigs, like Porkie here, are great teachers of simplicity.
Shelter, food, water, and rooting is all that is necessary for total porcine contentment.
Would that humanity be so easily satisfied.

But food independence, while a very large part of it, is not the biggest part. The biggest part belongs to the spiritual realm.

And Jesus answering, said to them: Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's. -Mark 12:17

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. -Matthew 5:3

Lay not up to yourselves treasures on earth: where the rust, and moth consume, and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up to yourselves treasures in heaven: where neither the rust nor moth doth consume, and where thieves do not break through, nor steal. For where thy treasure is, there is thy heart also. -Matthew 6:19-21

We are ultimately practicing a form of material detachment here. Getting away from being dependent on the outside world actually forces us to be more dependent on God. It's amazing how my mentality of things as mundane as a rain shower have changed since being dependent on, ya know, vegetative growth for part of our food supply. Staying home and having the whole family contribute to farming also meets very well into God's designs for the family.

And the Lord God took man, and put him into the paradise for pleasure, to dress it, and keep it. -Genesis 2:15

The family is the first essential cell of human society. -Pope John XXIII

Everyone should be taught to consume in a wiser and more responsible way. We should promote personal responsibility along with a social dimension of rural activities based on the undying values of hospitality, solidarity and sharing the toil of labor. -Pope Benedict XVI

The world will go and do what it does, and we will just do what we do. We will raise our family in a traditional, and orthodox way. We will promote the beatitudes and the virtues. We will feed ourselves. We will (slowly) transition out of the plastic-ism of American post-modern materialistic life and into the rich tapestry of traditional Catholic rural life. We will "prepare" insofar as we will strive to make the transition to this life possible.

My hope is that we are so "prepared," we don't even notice the changes to the outside world when they happen.

And they WILL happen.

No comments:

Post a Comment