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The week of May 18, 2020

IT'S UNFORTUNATE THAT IT'S TAKEN A VIRUS to wake up the world to how closely intertwined all forms of health are, but better late than never! Now is the moment to create healthier lives in greater harmony with the natural world! Given the myriad of social circumstances that have undercounted disenfranchised groups and brought us all to these moments of vulnerability, we must together build a new vision of health, defining health as a robust, delicate balance that includes: Nutritional Health, Economic Health, Environmental Health, Psychological Health, Intellectual Health, Spiritual Health, Cultural Health, and Physical Health. 

So many of you are master teachers of these truths and we need your voices heard far and wide. Let us know what you’re saying and doing and we’ll share it. Please do the same! 

Here in Louisville an incredible health collaboration has been forming in response to the dreadful virus. Our ENVIROME INSTITUTE at the University of Louisville along with healthcare CEOs and hospitals established the Co-Immunity Project. It brings Kentuckians together to protect each other with randomized testing. This story talks about Phase I with the hospital worker populations. Much more is yet to come!

OF COURSE, OUR COLLECTIVE SICKNESS RIGHT NOW reaches far beyond physical illness. The chairman of Tyson Foods recently warned that the food supply chain is breaking. What we know to be true is that our modern factory farming system is broken, and factories like Tyson Foods have long been a part of the problem. 

Many of our bodies will develop antibodies to the COVID-19 virus, but what are the antibodies for our food chain? We turn to the work of some of our most serious partners, that have been deeply focused on this work for decades, for wisdom. In 2018, MARY BERRY gave a talk on why she has devoted her life to investing and scaling up our local food systems and SUPPORTING SMALL FARMERS in a video from the 2018 Festival of Faiths.

THE BERRY CENTER'S, OUR HOME PLACE MEAT PROGRAM is currently offering a sustainably sourced, milk-fed, grass-fed Rose Veal and sales of meat online that will ship directly to your own home. Order today
We highly recommend The Berry Center’s Newsletter.

Other farmers have stepped up to the task of meeting new demands where the mass meat industry is coming up short. WILL HARRIS of WHITE OAK PASTURES, a model farm for us all, makes the economic, ecological and moral case for bringing America’s meat supply closer to home.

ONE OF OUR OTHER GREAT LEADERS, PATRICK HOLDEN from the SUSTAINABLE FOOD TRUST, has penned a letter about the important work they are doing to support the transition to more sustainable food systems worldwide. He sees Kentucky as an important laboratory lifting up our local farmers and local food system during the most fragile time for our world’s industrialized food systems.

Read an update from Patrick Holden at the Sustainable Food Trust

THE CIRCLE OF HARMONY & HEALTH is one of our greatest tools in reminding us all of the interconnectedness of health – each of the eight parts represents a different aspect of health, be it nutritional, economic, environmental, psychological, intellectual, spiritual, cultural, or physical. 

At times like this, in the midst of a global pandemic, it seems like it is more difficult than ever to balance all forms of health. Each of us faces a great challenge within our own homes and with our families to prioritize our HOLISTIC HEALTH and to also BE A PART OF THE SOLUTION

With each of us sharing and caring for one another, and with our inspired leadership from all sectors, we can together find the resources we need to make it happen! Here are some of OUR FAVORITES this week:

  • One of our great organizations, the JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT OF KENTUCKIANA, has partnered with the ENVIROME INSTITUTE to bring holistic science home to children. Here are a few links to explore and do of course let us know how it goes!
  1. Our first experiment is the At-Home Healthy Air, Water & Soil Experiment Series
  2. Our second experiment is one that focuses on the importance of clean air
  • THE CENTER FOR INTERFAITH RELATIONS held a virtual Festival of Faiths (watch it here) and is also hosting a virtual Festival of Faiths Book Club through their Facebook Page.
  • For a fascinating trip to the outdoors without leaving home, PBS is offering an EcoSense series and some Kentucky-specific programming.
  • We have also been loving Bernheim’s series and the Nature Conservancy bird-watching opportunities!
  •  LiftUpLou is providing daily opportunities to interact with local artists and to bring cultural health to top of mind.
  • The KENTUCKY NATURAL LANDS TRUST also has a great archive from their Pine Mountain Sessions at Home that make for a great evening show from home!

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO SHARE any of your favorites with us! Together, we must all be a part of the solution. In the words of Thomas Merton, "If a man is to live, he must be all alive, body, soul, mind, heart, and spirit." 


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