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What We're Reading Now: "Farming as a Spiritual Discipline," by Ragan Sutterfield

Here is how Ragan Sutterfield begins his book Farming as a Spiritual Discipline:

What is creation? That’s the question we have to answer to begin our exploration of farming. Farming is essentially the practice of cultivating creation, and how we see farming depends entirely on how we see creation. From there, we could say that how we see food depends on how we understand farming, and how we go about eating reflects what we think about people and our place and role in creation. These are questions that, if we follow them, go all the way down to the essential questions of who we are.

I haven’t finished the book, published by Doulos Christou, but so far Sutterfield is living up to the massive expectations of that first paragraph. I was given Sutterfield’s book last year by a mutual friend, Ramón Chaparro. It’s been high on my to-read list ever since but somehow it kept getting passed over. I finally picked it up this week after a couple conversations with Chris Smith, the guy behind Doulos Christou (and also the editor of the Englewood Review of Books).

Hear me when I say this: if you love the work of Wendell Berry, Wes Jackson, Gene Logsdon, and Norman Wirzba; if you’re interested in creation care, farming, and gardening; if you eat food – you will love Farming as a Spiritual Discipline. I’m going to write more about this book in the coming weeks. For now, you can find more of Sutterfield’s writing at three online magazines you should be reading anyway:

Englewood Review of Books
Flourish Magazine
Sustainable Traditions (Agrarian Notebook)

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