Each day thousands of visitors are fed by the ashram. The preparation of food inevitably produces waste peelings. ‘Premix’ is the combination of wet food waste and wood chip. One of many buckets of the day’s ‘premix’ is emptied on to the compost heap, over a layer of elephant dung. Slurry (cow’s urine and manure) and dry leaves are added to the compost heap. Thus, heaps of organic waste are formed each day to form healthy fertile soil. African worms are also being farmed to aid the composting process.
In this way, the ashram recycles at least one ton of compost a day. The circle is complete when students from GreenFriends learn to grow plants on campus using the compost. The ashram is growing vegetables, and uses the compost as fertilizers.
By choosing to compost waste, we are actually completing the natural cycle and following nature’s path. Our own food and organic waste is transformed into healthy fertile soil. Composting completes the natural cycle, reversing the modern trend. As we restore balance and harmony to Nature, the same qualities blossom in us, and we smile gratefully, seeing the bounty of Nature offered lovingly to us.
“Whatever is provided by Nature, the very source of flowers, plants and our food, should be lovingly returned to it. This is the symbolism behind offering flowers to God. — Amma