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Towards Sustainable Development and
Food Security in Asia
Asian Christian Life-Giving Agriculture Forum IV
November 28 to December 02, 2016
Christian Conference of Asia (CCA)
Church of Christ of Thailand (CCT)
Korea Life-Giving Agriculture Forum
Chiang Mai, Thailand
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Towards Sustainable Development and Food Security in Asia:
Asian Christian Life-Giving Agriculture Forum IV
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All ideas expressed in this publication belong to the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect the
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style, editing, and proofreading were the responsibility of each author or group of authors. All errors and
omissions are those of the contributors.
Edited by Dr. Rey Ty
2016 Christian Conference of Asia
c/o Payap University, P.O. Box 183, Muang, Chiang Mai, Thailand 50000
Telephone: (66) 53-243-906, 243-907
Fax: (66) 53-247-303
Asia Bible Reflection Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) Church of Christ in Thailand (CCT)
Eco-Justice Field Visit and Immersion Food Security Food Sovereignty Genetically Modified
Organisms (GMOs) Korean Christian Life-Giving Agriculture Forum (KCLGA) Life-Giving
Agriculture Nature The Poor Right to Food Seed Bank Sustainable Agriculture Sustainable
Published by the Christian Conference of Asia, Church of Christ of Thailand, and the Korean Christian
Life Giving Agriculture Forum
Printed in Chiang Mai, Thailand
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About the Resource Persons ............................................................................................................5
Chunakara, Mathews George .......................................................................................................5
Ahn, Jae Hak...............................................................................................................................5
Baladjay, Ardniel Amar ...............................................................................................................5
Bicksler, Abram J........................................................................................................................5
Chung Ho Jin..............................................................................................................................5
George, Mariamma Sanu George (Nirmala). .................................................................................6
Guneratne, Nishantha ..................................................................................................................6
Han Kyeong Ho..........................................................................................................................6
Kim In Soo. ................................................................................................................................6
Maneekorn, Nuttapong ................................................................................................................6
Sihombing, Samuel .....................................................................................................................6
CHAPTER 1: Introduction ..................................................................................................................8
CHAPTER 2: Prayers and Bible Reflections......................................................................................11
Morning Devotion ........................................................................................................................17
Bible Reflection 1.........................................................................................................................20
Bible Reflection 2: To Help on the Road ........................................................................................21
CHAPTER 3: Overview....................................................................................................................24
Life-Giving Agriculture Principles .................................................................................................24
Experience, Practice, Approach, and Thoughts on GMOs and Sustainable Agriculture and the Poor...30
International Political Economy: Neoliberal Globalization vs. Eco-Justice........................................43
CHAPTER 4: Eco-Justice .................................................................................................................50
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Vision of ARI Farming as Eco-Just Farming...................................................................................50
CHAPTER 5: Sustainable Development.............................................................................................58
Towards Sustainable Development.................................................................................................58
Arable Area Management with the King’s Philosophy and Local Intellect ........................................72
CHAPTER 6: Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs).....................................................................78
Food Security (Safety) in Korea.....................................................................................................78
Is Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) a Modern Miracle of Food Production or an Art of Life ..88
CHAPTER 7: Food Security and the Right to Food.............................................................................99
Food Security: Back to Basic, Relating Life to Soil.........................................................................99
The Right to Food or the Right to Get Healthy Food .....................................................................107
Final Statement.............................................................................................................................. 114
List of Participants.......................................................................................................................... 118
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About the Resource Persons
Chunakara, Mathews George. Dr. Mathews George Chunakara is General Secretary of
the Christian Conference of Asia. He served the World Council of Churches in Geneva,
Switzerland as its Asia Secretary from 2000 to 2009 and Director of the Commission of
the Churches International Affairs (CCIA-WCC) from 2009 to 2014.
Ahn, Jae Hak. Rev. Ahn (right) is the general secretary of the Korean Christian Life
Giving Agriculture Forum KCLGAF. He is also a co-coordinator of the Asian Christian
Life-Giving Agriculture Forum IV.
Arakawa, Tomoko. She is the Director of the Asian Rural Institute (ARI) in Nasushiobara,
Tochigi, Japan (left photo). She studied at the International Christian University. Tomoko
has been engaged in the work of nurturing and training grassroots rural community leaders,
both women and men, of the developing countries, at the Asian Rural Institute (ARI) in
Tochigi prefecture for 21 years. With those grassroots rural community leaders, staff and
volunteers form an international, multi-cultural and multi-religious community of learning
each year based on sustainable agriculture. (We achieve high level of food self-sufficiency by organic
farming every year.)
Tomoko graduated from International Christian University in Tokyo in 1990. After working as a teacher
at high schools for several years, she took master degree under sociology at Michigan State University in
1995. Since then she has been working at Asian Rural Institute.
Tomoko had been in charge of curriculum for 6 years until 2009 and worked as a general manager cum
associate director of ARI until March, 2014. She became Director of ARI April, 2015. She has been
coordinating Servant leadership class and Gender class. She enjoys sessions learning and hearing real
issues related to those topics from the rural leaders of the world.
Baladjay, Ardniel Amar. He was raised in a rural farming community and grew up with
the church as his second home. In 2016 of April, he finished Doctor of Philosophy in
Agricultural Science with major in Crop Production and Management and with cognate in
Crop Protection. Currently, he is working as full-time college instructor in the Department of Agricultural
Extension, College of Agriculture, University of Southern Mindanao, Kabacan, Cotabato.
Bicksler, Abram J. Dr. Abram J Bicksler is the Director of the ECHO Asia Impact Center
in Chiang Mai, Thailand. For over 30 years, ECHO has been helping thousands of
development workers and organizations around the world to gain better access to vital
information and resources needed to improve food security and livelihoods for small
farmers and gardeners. Since 2009, the ECHO Asia Impact Center has been equipping and
training development workers and organizations in Asia to extend relevant information,
techniques, seeds, and ideas to improve the lives of the poor in Asia. Formerly a Post-Doctoral Fellow
and Instructor for the International Sustainable Development Studies Institute (ISDSI) in Chiang Mai,
Abram spent 4 years teaching American undergraduate students about sustainable development in the
tropics in an experiential learning setting. Prior to moving to Thailand, Abram completed his M.S. and
Ph.D. in environmental science at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, which focused on the
ecology and use of cover crops in sustainable vegetable production.
Chung Ho Jin. Dr. Rev. Chun (right) is the former president and the honorary president of
International NGO LIFE WORLD.
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George, Mariamma Sanu George (Nirmala). She is one of the Co-Heads at Inter
Cooperation Social Development (ICSD) and is currently also working as Team Leader –
Kerala for CPGD-CCIP ((DFID supported Climate Change Innovation Programme to
provide technical support to the Government of Kerala). She has more than two decades of
work experience in development sector spreading across the areas of governance, gender,
climate change adaptation and capacity building. She has been a Gender specialist and also was
instrumental in developing modules on environment and local governments. She is also the working
group member constituted by the Government of Kerala to develop tool kits for Sustainable Development
Goals. She had undertaken assignments for The World Bank, ADB,SDC, UNDP, UNICEF, Lal Bahadur
Shastry National Academy for Administration, Ministry of Panchayati Raj, Ministry of Rural
Development, Government of Kerala, Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA) and Kerala State
Biodiversity Board. Academically she has done her M.Phil in Applied Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru
University, New Delhi. She is pursuing her doctoral studies also along with her work.
Gultom, Justin. Rev. Gultom (right) is the director of the department of
Diakonia, Community Development bureau in HKBP, Indonesia.
Guneratne, Nishantha. Rev. Guneratne (left) is the Director of
Nawajeevanam Farm, pastor of the Methodist Church in Sri Lanka.
Han Kyeong Ho. Rev. Han Kyung Ho (right) is the President of the Korean
Christian Life Giving Agriculture Forum.
Kim In Soo. Dr. Kim In Soo (left) is the president of Dandelion Community
and Principal of Dandelion Alternative School.
Maneekorn, Nuttapong. Adjarn Nut (right) works with the Social Development and Service
Unit (SDSU) of the Church of Christ in Thailand (CCT) in Chiang Mai. He is also a co-
coordinator of the Asian Christian Life-Giving Agriculture Forum IV.
Moon, Grace. Rev. Grace Moon (left) is the Program Coordinator of (1) Mission in Unity and
Contextual Theology and (2) Ecumenical Leadership Formation and Spirituality.
Rajkumar, Christopher. Christopher (right) is an ordained minister of the
Church of South India. Presently he serves the National Council of Churches in India as its
Executive Secretary for the Commission on Justice, Peace and Creation and the Unity
Mission and Evangelism. He facilitates the Life Giving Agriculture Forum - India. He also
serves as a Member of the Global Reference Group of the World Council of Churches - Ecumenical
Advocacy Alliance and the Moderator of the 'Food For Life' Global Campaign Strategy Group of the
WCC - EAA. email@example.com
Sihombing, Samuel. Rev. Sihombing (right) is the chairperson of PODA coffee cooperative,
PETEASA foundation and pastor of HKBP. He is a rural pastor: a “coffee pastor.”
Ty, Rey. Dr. Rey Ty (left) CCA’s Program Coordinator for Building Peace and Moving
beyond Conflict as well as of Prophetic Diakonia and Advocacy. He received his first
master’s degree from the University of California at Berkeley and his second master’s degree
and doctorate from Northern Illinois University. He is also a co-coordinator of the Asian Christian Life-
Giving Agriculture Forum IV.
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Dr. Mathews George Chunakara
Rev. Jung Eun Moon Grace
Dr. Rey Ty
Dr. Alphinus Rantalemba Kambodji
Rev. Dr. Chuleepran Srisoontorn
Ms. Sunila Ammar
Ms. Zeresh John
Mr. Rama Rao Gollu
Ms. Janjarat Saedan
Ms. Phawinee Pinthong
Ms. Patchayotai Boontama
Ms. Casey Lita Lupe Moana Fa’Aui
Ms. Han-Byeol Angela Kim
Rev. Dedi Bakkit Tua Pardosi
Mr. Jebasingh Samuvel
Mrs. Arpa Yai-Chid
Mr. Wittaya Makasuk
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CHAPTER 1: Introduction
Eco-Justice: Towards Sustainable Development and Food Security in Asia—Asian Life-
Giving Agriculture Forum IV
November 28, 2016 (Monday) to December 2, 2016 (Friday)
Life-Giving Agriculture (LGA) is a movement of the people and a way of life that relates to
livelihoods. The land, forest and water are gifts of God to all on earth. LGA is a living
philosophy based on theology of life. It is a life enhancing process grounded in faith and
nurtured in a culture of sharing, caring and loving. LGA is diverse yet holistic, participatory,
non-exploitative and builds equity (gender), respect, dignity and justice.
The present dominant development model of agriculture is corporate and market-driven. It is
capital intensive, export-oriented, and mono-cultural with profit as its motive. It compels farmers
to use GMO seeds, pesticides, and chemical fertilizers. Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)
are plants, animals, micro-organism, or any other organisms, which are products of laboratory
processes in which genes which are extracted from the DNA of one species are artificially forced
into the genes of an unrelated plant or animal. The external genes could come from animals,
bacteria, humans, insects, or viruses.
This leads to soil degradation, loss of indigenous seeds, bio-diversity and concentration of lands
in the hands of few. It restricts diversity of agriculture based on the food patterns that are dictated
by fast-food companies, increases occupational losses, displacement, drought and migration.
Decades of these unsustainable agricultural practices have led to erosion of cultures, traditional
knowledge and sustainable agricultural systems.
The Christian Conference of Asia (CCA) in cooperation with the Korean Christian Forum on
Life Giving Agriculture, organized the 1st Asian Christian Forum on “Life Giving Agriculture”
in August 2006 in Korea. This was followed by a second Conference in Sri Lanka in November
2010 on the theme “Empowering Local Economy of Life in the Context of Globalization”
focused on the Asian context of a globally capitalized world, giving emphasis on life giving
agricultural communities as examples of alternative communities in Asia.
Having clearly identified the need to have solidarity networks at regional levels, an Ecumenical
Consultation on “Life Giving Agriculture” was jointly organized by Justice, International
Affairs, Development and Service of CCA and the Korean Christian Forum on Life Giving
Agriculture. The 3rd Consultation was conducted on 2-8 November 2013 at Dandelion
Community Sancheong, Korea, identifying problems and constraints farmers were facing and
exploring alternative approaches to life-giving agriculture in the Asian context.
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The 3rd Consultation provided much input to the participants with various sustainable and
ecological farming practices that have been observed to have mitigated climate change, assured
food security and sovereignty among communities, and uplifted the conditions of small farmers.
The United Nations Committee on Food Security defines food security as World Food Security,
is the condition in which all people, at all times, have physical, social and economic access to
sufficient safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs and food preferences for an
active and healthy life.
Working for eco-justice requires valuing both ecology and social justice, ensuring the well-being
of human beings on our Earth that thrives, providing us with clean water for drinking, sufficient
food for all, clean air that we breathe, and the land on which we stand. We cannot separate
Nature from society.
Previous Meetings of Life-giving Agriculture Forum
1. The International Life Giving Agriculture Forum was held in Wonju, Korea jointly with
WCC, in 8 – 14 April, 2005.
2. The Asian Life Giving Agriculture Forum was held in Hongsung, Korea jointly with
CCA, in 25 – 30 August, 2006.
3. The 2nd Asian Life Giving Agriculture Forum was held in Sri Lanka jointly with CCA, in
22 – 26 November, 2010.
4. The 3rd Asian Life Giving Agriculture Forum was held in Snachong, Korea jointly with
CCA, in 4 – 8 November, 2013.
1. 28–30 November, 2016 at Chiang Mai – Thailand
2. 1 – 2 December, 2016 at Field Visit and Immersion
50 Participants (Need to have gender balance in composition of participants!)
1. 15 from other Asian countries
2. 15 from Korea
3. 15 from Thailand
4. 5 from CCA
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Date Morning Afternoon Evening
- Rev. Grace Moon
Dr. Rev. Chung Ho
10:30 AM – 12 noon
and Views ofGMOs,
and the Poor”
Dr. Abram Bicksler
(ECHO) & Dr. Rey Ty
Lunch Break: 12 Noon –
1:00 – 3 PM
Coffee Break:3 –
3:30 – 5 PM
S5: 9-9:40 AM
& Bible Reflection
Rev. Grace Moon
Rev. Han Kyung Ho
Rajkumar (NCC-India) &
Response from Local
Food Security &
Right to Food Dr.
(SSC Philippines) &
Indonesia) & Eang
8 AM Departure
Field Visit: Departure 8AM to Mae Hang Village, Lamphang Province, Organized by CCT
Bible Reflection, Rev. Niran Chanta (CCT)
Facilitators: Rev. Nuttapong Maneekorn, Rev. Kim Young Soek (Bokaeo Development Center)
& Bible Reflection
Dr. Kim In Soo
-Plenary Sharing of
-Plenary Discussion on
Rev. Jae Hak Ahn
(If you have to leave by 11 AM or so, kindly fill
out a Sign Up Sheet and inform CCT
coordinators at once. See Adjarn Nut and
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CHAPTER 2: Prayers and Bible Reflections
Prepared by Rev. Jung Eun “Grace” Moon
Our care of creation is an act of worship. And our worship is an act of caring for creation. The challenge
is to be intentional in making the connections between our caring and our worship, and to find liturgical
ways to express that relationship in a way that does not detract from the work of praising God. Worship
can be a time to increase our awareness of the world around us, to increase our appreciation of the
sacredness of creation, and to deepen our desire to treat it with dignity and respect. (Jennifer Edinger)
Let us praise and worship Our Lord!
God, Fill our worship with grace,
that every thought, word, and deed may be acceptable to you,
our Rock and our Redeemer. Amen.
Communal Reading of Psalm 96
Sing a new song to the LORD! Sing to the LORD,
All the world! Sing to the LORD, and praise him!
Proclaim every day the good news that he has saved us.
Proclaim his glory to the nations, his mighty deeds to all peoples.
The Lord is great and is to be highly praised; he is to be honored more than all the gods.
The gods of all other nations are only idols, but the LORD created the heavens.
Glory and majesty surround him; power and beauty fill his temple.
Praise the LORD, all people on earth; praise his glory and might.
Praise the LORD’s glorious name; bring an offering and come into his Temple.
Bow down before the Holy One when he appears; tremble before him, all the earth!
Say to all the nations, “The LORD is king! The earth is set firmly in place and cannot be moved;
He will judge the people with justice.”
Be glad, earth and sky!
Roar, sea and every creature in you;
Be glad, fields, and everything in you!
The trees in the woods will shout for joy when the LORD comes to rule the earth.
He will rule the peoples of the world with justice and fairness.
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“All of creation waits with eager longing for God to reveal his sons. For creation was condemned to lose
its purpose, not of its own will, but because God willed it to be so. Yet there was the hope that creation
itself would one day be set free from its slavery to decay and would share the glorious freedom of the
children of God. For we know that up to the present time all of creation groans with pain, like the pain of
childbirth. (Romans 8: 19 – 22)
O God, our creator,
whose good earth is entrusted to our care and delight and tenderness, we pray:
For all who are in captivity to debt, whose lives are cramped by fear from which there is no turning
except through abundant harvest.
May those who sowin tears reap with shouts ofjoy.
For all who depend on the earth for their daily food and fuel whose forests and rivers are destroyed for the
profits of a few.
May those who sowin tears reap with shouts ofjoy.
For all who labor in poverty, who are oppressed by unjust laws, who are banned for speaking the truth,
who long for a harvest of justice.
May those who sowin tears reap with shouts ofjoy.
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For the whole creation that is groaning in pain, whose vitality is threatened, whose existence in the world
is ended because of human’s ignorant and sinful deeds.
May those who sowin tears reap with shouts ofjoy.
For all who are in captivity to greed and waste and boredom, whose harvest joy is chocked with things
they do not need.
May those who sowin tears reap with shouts ofjoy.
Turn us again from our captivity, and restore our vision,
that our mouth may be filled with laughter and our tongue with singing.
May your Spirit inspire and move all churches and people in Asia to care for your creation in our daily
lives. In Jesus Christ we pray:
Amen. (Janet Morley, Bread for tomorrow, with adaptation)
It was Moses who prayed to God for bread, and there it was in the desert,
Fine flakes like hoarfrost on the ground.
‘What is it?’ they asked.
‘That is the bread which the Lord has given you to eat,’ said Moses.
Bread of Life, give us today our daily bread.
In all the wilderness journeys of the heart,
In all barrenness of spirit
And when we are utterly lost, Jesus offers food which lasts.
Bread of Life, give us this food now and always.
What is this bread from heaven?
It is Jesus himself, his presence, healing, challenge, grace, his hope for each one of us.
Bread of Life, may we take and eat so that you live in us.
For some, affluence has brought a food surplus with much wasted;
Then it is all the harder to trust in the gift of heavenly bread.
Bread of Life, keep us hungry and thirsty for righteousness.
For others, a loaf is the most blessed gift of all, to be received with thankfulness,
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for it is the chance to live another day.
Bread of Life, help us to share – that all may be satisfied.
Blessed are you, Lord, God of all creation.
Through your goodness we have this bread to offer, which earth has given and human hands have made.
It will become for us the bread of life.
Blessed be God for ever.
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Loving God, we have gathered here to meet you.
We have come to listen to your wisdom,
To strengthen our solidarity and fellowship.
In you we become; in you we live.
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Loving God, you are here and everywhere,
Around us and within us; you know our inmost thoughts.
In you we hope; in you we live.
In you we are still; in you we live.
Loving God, we live in you; we praise you.
Loving God, you live in us; we worship you. In Jesus’name, we pray. Amen.
O creator God,
Bless our land and rice field around us.
Bless every molecule and particle of soil in it.
Bless the water spring nearby.
Bless every insect, worm and bird.
Bless every leaf and shrub and tree.
Bless our hands, our strengths, our skills.
Bless our caring together and our unity,
That we may bring back the waters to the river once again. Amen.
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30 November 2016
Our hearts are ready, O Lord, our hearts are ready!
We will sing and make melody! We will awaken the dawn!
We will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples,
We will sing praises to you among the nations.
For your steadfast love is great above the heaven, and your faithfulness reaches to the cloud.
Loving God, we have gathered to meet you.
We have come to listen to you, to seek you, to worship you.
You are the beginning of all things, the life of all things; you knew us before we were born.
In you we become; in you we live.
Loving God, you are here and everywhere, around us and within us; you know our inmost thoughts. In
you we hope; in you we live. You are the source of serenity, giving peace that is beyond our
In you we are still; in you we live. Loving God, we live in you; we worship you.
Loving God, you live in us; we worship you.
Praise the Lord!
Praise, O servants of the Lord;
Praise the name of the Lord.
Blessed be the name of the Lord from this time and for evermore.
From the rising of the sun to its setting the name of the Lord is to be praised.
The Lord is high above all nations, and God’s glory above the heavens.
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Who is like the Lord our God,
who is seated on high,
who looks far down on the heavens and the earth?
The Lord raises the poor from the dust, and lifts the needy from the ash heap.
Praise the Lord!
Lord God, you have provided for us a creation filled with food and water,
a universe rich with energy and resources,
and charged us to have dominion over all you have created.
But we confess that we have often spoiled your gifts,
We have put abused the environment you have provided for us.
Forgive us, Lord, and make us better stewards of your creation.
We pray through Christ, our Lord.
O God, give us compassion, that we may nurse our beautiful but fragile creation. Give us knowledge, that
we may protect it and be protected. Give us love, that we may love it and be loved. Give us a desire for
reconciliation with all your creation.
O Lord, hear our prayer.
O God, we belong to you, being made in your image. Help us to be followers of your true image, Jesus
Christ, your Son, appreciating our differences, not as dividing facts, but as gifts of being and belonging in
your divine multitude.
O Lord, hear our prayer.
We praise your wisdom.
We pray for the unity of the breathing world that we and all your creatures may live together in harmony
In the name of Jesus Christ.
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Bible Reflection 1
We believe in God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and earth.
We believe that God’s love is powerful beyond measure.
God not only preserves the world, God continually attends to it.
God commands us to care for the earth in ways that reflect God’s loving care for us.
We are responsible for ensuring that the earth’s gifts are used fairly and wisely,
that no creature suffers from the abuse of what we are given,
and that future generations may continue to enjoy the abundance and goodness of the earth in
praise to God.
Entrusting ourselves wholly to God’s care,
we receive the grace to be patient in adversity, thankful in the midst of blessing,
courageous when facing injustice,
and confident that no evil may afflict us
that God will not turn to our good.
May God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who is the source of all goodness and growth,
pour his blessing upon all things created, and upon you, his children,
that you may use them to his glory and the welfare of all peoples. Amen.
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Bible Reflection2: To Help on the Road
Dr. Rev. Kim In Soo
Bible Reading : ⅢJohn 2
“Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul
One of the frequently mentioned verse by ‘prosperity theology’ is ⅢJohn 2. Many Christians think that if
we believe in Jesus, and are sincere church members, then we will become rich, healthy, and enjoy
In the process of industrialization, particularly in developing countries, this prosperity theology receives
special attention from Christians. The conviction of the followers of prosperity theology is confirmed
when they took western Christiandom as their model.
This approach resulted in overwhelming social atmosphere in every way. As we all consequently
perceived the outcome of the prosperity theology, mammonism and increasing structural poverty have
taken roots in our society and mind.
Even though material prosperity and wellbeing exhaustion is common in our consumptive society,
reliable and dependable human relationship have become endangered. Real friendship is rare. The future
is swallowed up by present moneygrubbing pressure. The word sustainability is mentioned in every
conference, meeting and daily conversation.
We are on the verge of seeking the alternatives in our thinking and attitude in reflecting with the deep
Prosperity theology has undermined and secularized the Christian Church; its spirituality and modus
Now, let us return to the original meaning of ‘prosper’ as shown in ⅢJohn 2, and reorient our way to the
essence. According to Strong’s Concordance, the original Greek word ‘euodoo’, it denotes 3 similar
translations and 1 different implication in STRONG’s Concordance. Euodoo, in its three translations are
‘to help on the road’, ‘succeed in reaching’, and ‘have a prosperous journey’. The first meaning of
’prosper’ should be ‘to help on the road’. Other two translations ‘succeed in reaching’ and ‘have a
prosperous journey’ are closely related in successful journey in our life. These major 3 translations give
inspiration that life is journey, life is pilgrimage. Only in its last translation does prosper mean to
‘Succeed in business’. However, prosperity pursuers emphasize the minor translation as their bulwark,
accepting ‘succeed in business as their favorite, understanding ‘prosper’ in ⅢJohn 2. It is a clear
The Bible reveals Christians as pilgrim Christian in ⅠPeter 1:1 - “to God’s elect, strangers in the world,
scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia”, ⅠPeter 2:11 - “Dear friends, I
urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world”, and also in Heb 11:13 - “All these people were still living
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by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed
them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth” We are strangers
and aliens in this world, We are pilgrims.
In keeping with our identity as pilgrims, we should keep in mind the following three points,
Firstly, we are requested to transfer our lifestyle from possession to existence.
“Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live
holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.”(ⅡPet 3:11)
“So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him.”(LK 5:11)
Insatiable desires, of possession extend their boundless, devilish state as seen in the cursed city of
Babylon (see Rev 18:10-13). The Babylonian as spirit of possession demanded the corruption and
destruction of the earth
“And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged,
and that thou dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest gave reward unto thy servants the
prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and should destroy them which
destroy the earth.”(Rev 11:18)
“For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth
with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.”(Rev 19:2)
As caretaker of our earth and ourselves, we should preserve the vitality of all living creature and our
Secondly, we are requested to transfer our attitude obtaining wealth to being poorer life. A village may be
impoverished if a man attempts to be a rich. A continent may be impoverished if a nation attempt to be
rich. We were called to help each other on the road to the kingdom of God. We should cooperate with
each other for a successful journey. Possession cannot guarantee a successful journey for a lifelong
pilgrim. Good partnerships, and a communal sharing life can only success in our pilgrims. One of the
greatest joys of the journey are the relationship (good friendship) themselves.
“I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be
welcomed into eternal dwellings.”(LK 16:9)
Voluntary poverty is one way to create a thriving spiritual economy.
“As sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing
all thing.”(ⅡCor 6:10)
“For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became
poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.”(ⅡCor 8:9)
Thirdly, we are requested to transfer our view from stability to instability. Enormous instability globally,
regionally, and locally, is on the rise. Unceasing terror and war, refugee camps, tenacious epidemics.
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Uncontrollable natural disasters and man-made calamities, political unrest, economic recession, and more.
We see these phenomena in daily news. Christians are ones who dare to confront the danger, sufferings,
and instability. Christians are ones who interpret the meaning of affliction into real hope.
We shared three recommendations of life changing transition, in our pilgrimage; a greater concern for
wellbeing and authentic existence than in possessions, a poorer life instead of material riches, and
instability over stability. With these, our pilgrimage will be more enjoyable, communal procedure, in the
name of brotherhood.
Jesus Christ himself is our archetype in understanding and applying this kind of pilgrimage. His life fully
shows a pilgrimage bearing all kinds of burdens, sin and iniquities, while bringing humanity into the
kingdom of God. He is our only reliable friend in sustaining this world and the world to come.
As the decreasing industrial period draws a darkening shadow on this world, we should increase our
spiritual capacity and wisdom. As mammonism reveals its demonic and eschatological phenomena, we
should strengthen our communal interactions and extend more intimate friendship to each other. As
prosperity theology is losing its validity, we should construct, instead, friendship theology for the coming
future. Now is the time to recover friendship and sharing our possessions as demonstrated in early
Church. The last verse of Ⅲ John “The friends here send their greetings. Greet the friends there by
name.” gives us very simple but deep instruction. Our lives should be found upon greeting and
welcoming each other, not upon taking profit.
A pilgrim community encourages greeting each other in any place, at any time.
The best Journey is to be with friends.
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CHAPTER 3: Overview
Life-Giving Agriculture Principles
Dr. Rev. Chung Ho Jin
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Experience, Practice, Approach, and Thoughts on GMOs and Sustainable
Agriculture and the Poor
Abram J. Bicksler, Ph.D.
ECHO Asia Impact Center, Chiang Mai, Thailand
The development, application, and ethics of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) will be explored in
this panel discussion after a brief overview about the basics of the technology and its applications. This
forum will also briefly discuss the creation of hybrid seed and the legal and Intellectual Property Rights
(IP) issues surrounding it and compare/contrast hybrid seeds with open pollinated (OP) seeds in the
context of smallholder farmer agricultural development. Additionally, the concept of sustainable
agricultural development will be highlighted, with particular attention paid to smallholder Asian
agriculture and its implications for informing sustainable development globally. The ECHO Asia Impact
Center and its services will be highlighted as an example of a collaborative non-competitive strategy
providing an example of a way to move forward into a sustainable future of equity, information sharing,
food security, and improved livelihoods.
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International Political Economy: Neoliberal Globalization vs. Eco-Justice
Dr. Rey Ty
The world is experiencing a food crisis, not because we lack food. In fact, we are in the midst of a food
glut: about 1.2 billion pounds of cheese, the size of a small mountain, are sitting idly in cold storage.
About 40% of food in the U.S. alone is thrown away (Light, 2015). Millions of people still live in a
condition of food insecurity (Marshall, 2016). Over “1 billion people struggle to live on less than one
dollar a day”; “11 children under five die every minute because of hunger,” over 800 thousand people
suffer from acute or chronic hunger; “1 billion people are denied the right to clean water,” and “2.6 billion
people lack access to adequate sanitation” (GBCS-UMC, 2016b). Your partly eaten food has a dirty
secret. Food waste kills the Earth. One third of food is wasted globally, which releases a huge amount of
greenhouse gases (Butler, 2013). So much food is produced; yet so much food is thrown away while
simultaneously so millions go to bed hungry every night. The problem is not the lack of food. The
problem is the control of food. The “food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often
put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the…farmer, the safety of workers and our own
environment” (Kenner, 2010).
We live in two worlds on Earth: the utopia of the haves and the dystopia of the have-nots. Inequality has
become the norm. The dominant paradigm is one of conquest and destruction which incentivizes greed
and profit (Chomsky, 2011). There is a growing inequality in income and wealth between the rich and
everyone else (Stiglitz, 2016). Market forces (Stiglitz, 2013) and capital accumulation (Piketty, 2015) are
central to the rise of inequality, which negatively affects democracy and social justice (Stiglitz, 2013).
Only 62 persons own the same wealth as 3.6 billion poorest people on Earth (Oxfam, 2016). On the one
hand, members of the 1% are the economic, political, and cultural power-holders who promote
competition, greed, capital accumulation, profit, war, and genocide (Chomsky, 2002). On the other hand,
the 99% have to deal with poverty, hunger, thirst, genocide, wage slavery, destruction of Nature, racism,
and human inequality. Variances in income and capital ownership are causes of inequality (Piketty,
2015). Economic inequality, which has increased over the past 30 years, is not accidental but a feature of
capitalism (Piketty, 2014). To boot, the rich reinforces the myth that poor people are lazy.
In this paper, the following questions were raised for our critical reflection: (1) How does the
unsustainable neoliberal economic world order affect food security? (2) What are some of the proposed
alternative solutions that promote eco-justice?
This paper, which reviews the literature, aimed to delve into the major problems with which the global
community is afflicted today based on the operation of the dominant economic structures and political
and cultural systems. As a counter-narrative, some alternative solutions are proposed.
This paper uses a diachronic and dialectical method (Hegel, 1977) to portray the historically and socially
determined view of the contradictions between the hegemonic neoliberal economic model and the various
people’s alternatives in the global context, with a preferential option for the poor and the powerless.
1. Eco-justice: Caring simultaneously for Nature as well as the poor and the oppressed
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2. Sustainable development: Development that meets human needs and ensures that the future
generation will enjoy Nature and its wealth (Brundtland Report, 1987)
3. Food security: The condition where all humans are assured to have the physical, social, and
economic access to safe and nutritious food which meet our dietary needs and food choices for an
active and healthy life (UNCWFS, 1996)
4. Right to food: Food not only as a basic need but a basic human right “underpinned by law”
(Marshall, 2016). The government has the duty “to work to provide mechanisms to secure food
where it is needed” and “the government could be held legally responsible if its efforts to
guarantee food is available to all citizens fail” (Marshall, 2016)
5. Food sovereignty: A term that Via Campesina coined in 1999 (cited in Global Small-Scale
Farmers’ Movement, 2005). Around 500 delegates from more than 80 countries at the Forum for
Food Sovereignty in Mali in 2007 adopted the "Declaration of Nyéléni", which states that food
sovereignty refers to “the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced
through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and
agriculture systems. It puts those who produce, distribute and consume food at the heart of food
systems and policies rather than the demands of markets and corporations. It defends the interests
and inclusion of the next generation. It offers a strategy to resist and dismantle the current
corporate trade and food regime, and directions for food, farming, pastoral and fisheries systems
determined by local producers. Food sovereignty prioritises local and national economies and
markets and empowers peasant and family farmer-driven agriculture, artisanal fishing, pastoralist-
led grazing, and food production, distribution and consumption based on environmental, social
and economic sustainability” (Declaration of Nyéléni, 2007)
6. Genetically modified organisms (GMOs): “organisms (i.e. plants, animals or microorganisms)
in which the genetic material (DNA) has been altered in a way that does not occur naturally by
mating and/or natural recombination. The technology is often called “modern biotechnology” or
“gene technology”, sometimes also “recombinant DNA technology” or “genetic engineering”. It
allows selected individual genes to be transferred from one organism into another, also between
nonrelated species. Foods produced from or using GM organisms are often referred to as GM
foods” (WHO, 2016).
Paradise Lost: Problems with the Unsustainability of the Neoliberal Globalization Structure
In almost all universities in all countries, the only theme taught in Economics is the mono-hegemonic
neoclassical neoliberal economic model (Klein, 2007), but we are deceptively told that they offer
alternative economic policy choices. The western-led industrial civilization which provided affluence in
century was based upon the exhaustion and conversion of non-renewable fossil fuels into smoke
and ash. The dominant neoliberal market fundamentalist economic structure, which promotes growth and
consumption, which is focused on private property and money, is hostile to and debases both Nature and
people in society (Klein, 2014). Giant corporations gain for themselves corporate welfare from
government tax exemptions, smashing competition and making “free market” a hoax (The Economist,
2016 September 17). This old economy which relies on fossil fuels including petroleum, natural gas, and
coal causes climate disruption (Brown, 2015) and exploit the labor of others. The current dominant
system has provided so much scientific development and technological innovations. However, there is a
contradiction, as technology leads to efficiency on the one hand and to unemployment and crisis on the
other hand. The political economy of the economic growth in the Global North depends upon the
exploitation of cheap labor and natural resources from somewhere else. About 80% of all resources are
used by the 20% of the world’s population in the U.S. and Western Europe, many of whose products are
made by the labor in the Global South.
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In a throwaway societal structure, Nature is destroyed in order to feed the production of continually
obsolescent commodities for distribution, sale, use, and dumping. Thanks to the aid and power of
advertising and marketing, the endless purchase and consumption of planned obsolescent products are
forced down the throat of consumers who themselves are the producers of goods and services. But as we
live on Earth, there is no such thing as infinite growth, as matter is finite. Exchanging labor value, we use
labor as blue, pink, or white collar workers to earn money to buy commodities produced by the labor of
others but owned by a few. Think of your over-packaged food, drinks, cellphone, gadgets, and other
commodities at the malls and supermarkets. Nature, labor, as well as the lands of farmers and indigenous
peoples are destroyed and exploited in order to mine and extract critical metals and mineral, every time
we buy the latest model of a brand-name gadget. Clearly, there is a deep connection between the
destruction of Nature and socio-economic injustice.
Corporate biopiracy of indigenous plants through patenting plant products threatens ancestral products
(Mora, 2016; Shiva, 2011). Greedy corporatocrats promote the use of hazardous chemical pesticides and
fertilizers as well as seek to control potable water as well as food through genetically modified organisms
(GMOs), which leads to “gene-ocide” (The Economist, 2016 September 17, p. 12). Our food is
contaminated from the soil to our plates. The “merchants of doubt” (Oreskes & Conway, 2011) have
manufactured consent (Herman & Chomsky, 2002) on cigarette smoking, junk food, bottled water, and
climate change denial. Our food supply is threatened by the control of a few powerful monopolies that
control the production of GMO seeds and distribution of food commodities. Some biotechnology giants
have been engaged in aggressive lobbying in an effort to expand their profits to the detriment of Nature
and human rights (Telesur, 2016).
Everything, including water, is turned into private property. Today, bottled water use exceeds that of tap
water (Ringholm, 2016). Shouldn’t access to water and food be free, as they are basic human rights,
considering that they are fundamental to sustain life? Without potable water, we die. Without food for
about 40 days, we die. The rich can buy bottled water, fresh produce, fancy food, and packaged food,
wasting most of it. But the poor and the minoritized groups always suffer the most. Where is eco-justice?
Consumers are made to believe that bottled water is special. In fact, unless otherwise stated, most bottled
water is municipal tap water. Corporatocrats promote industrialized junk food and fast food (Pollan,
2009). The promoters of the neoliberal market economic model rely on economic disasters to promote
and implement this model (Klein, 2003). The neoliberal global order prioritizes profit over people and
Nature (Chomsky, 2011).
The youth work and get a loan to study and support their life. Many join the military and fight wars in
which they do not believe. The middle class loses job security. Governments promise job creation.
Corporations talk of trickle-down growth, which has in fact caused the alienation, pauperization, and
misery of millions of people on a global scale. The dominant economic model, which benefits the rich, is
flawed and unsustainable. Its neoclassical economic model provides abstract measurements of gross
domestic product (GDP), inflation, consumer price index (CPI), and the stock market, all of which do not
measure the well-being of actually existing people. In this worldview, really existing individuals,
workers, farmworkers, communities, other groups, and Nature are made invisible in macro-economic
charts and micro-economic graphs. We have been fooled and lied to for so long now.
Modern-day slavery and labor conditions continue to oppress millions of people who do not eke out an
income that could support their basis needs. In addition, technological advances lead to mass
unemployment: think of agricultural tractors, computers, self-driving cars, and robots in production line.
Typists, clerks, and secretaries are a species going extinct. The few rich who own the means of production
amass more wealth, while the labor force become unemployed in the rich countries and the export of
labor to poorer countries lead to the impoverishment of cheap foreign labor. Climate refugees leave their
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arid lands in search of food and livelihood elsewhere where they are unwanted: think of Syria and North
Africa in relation to Europe (Baker, 2015).
The dominant economic, political, and cultural structures imposed on the rest of the world are
unsustainable, as they rely on the continuing exploitation of others. The contradictions in the dominant
economic model are unsustainable and have reached the level of a general crisis. If we only produce
marketers, advertisers, and service workers, but not farmers,who will produce our food (Eckart, 2016)?
Reconstructing Paradise: Solutions for Eco-Justice and Food Security
We need to question the control of Wall Street over human lives (Chomsky, 2012) and engage in an
economic revolution that promotes a more caring, sharing, democratic, collaborative, and people-centered
economy (Alperovitz, 2013). The elements of such an inclusive and participatory economy alternative to
the neoliberal global economic model include women-and-widows participation, shared research, worker
ownership and control, building the eco-system for economic democracy, the “buy local” movement,
participatory governance, and growth taming. Instead of being victims of brand names and buying the
latest models of gadgets which only lead to the intensification of mining, depletion of ores, and
destruction of Nature as well as indigenous and farm lands, we should support the No Logo movement
(Klein, 2012) and becoming prosumers (producers-consumers, Toffler, 1980).
From Corporate Coup d’État to Grassroots Democracy and Sustainable Development. Almost all
things we use are the products of the labor of others but claimed by owners of capital. Corporatocrats
mainly think of saleability and profit, not use. Decommodify: we must think beyond growth (Daly, 1997),
which is a flawed and unsustainable model and must work for sustainable development (Sachs, 2015). As
proposed solution to the global problems today confronting the majority of the world’s population, more
than social welfare, many today are demanding the protection of Nature, green jobs, living wages and
universal basic income, which will alleviate the suffering of the majority of the people and provide a
decent basic standard of living to all (Chomsky, 2015). In a word: that is eco-justice. Instead of following
the logic of competition, we can join liberatory collective and solidarity movements as well as work for
social benefit instead of private greed, sharing and caring for others, other beings, and Nature (Leclerq,
We need to create counter-realities and counter-narratives (Chomsky, 2015) which balance human needs
and our sense of success and material abundance based on the carrying capacity of the Earth. Question
things-as-they-are. Enter into a dialogue. Critique. Expose and oppose oppressive structures of
domination. Learn from each other. Make some noise. But talk is not enough. Organizing and attending
fora and conference are not sufficient. We need to take action for social change that promotes eco-justice.
Be where the action is. Be where the struggling people are. Organize. Empower the people. Be in
solidarity. Build coalitions and alliances. Deconstruct language and structures and construct new ones.
Engage in policy change. Engage in extra-legal direct actions and civil disobedience. Challenge, propose,
work on, give life, and live alternative structures, new lifestyles, and new ways of being, doing, and
thinking that promote cooperation, empathy justice, coexistence, reciprocity, mutuality, and good
relationships as species on Earth. In the tension between efficiency and fairness, we need to side with
justice (Piketty, 2015).
The economic and social inequality between the rich and the poor is extreme. Instead of focusing on
growth, we need to emphasize justice. Per capita consumption especially in the Global North is
unsustainable in relation to the extraction of ores from Nature. Hence, we need look beyond economic
growth and to take part in the degrowth movement (Daly, 1997).
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We need to expose the flaws of and free ourselves from the dominant economic model as well as propose
and create alternative models. Antithetical to the dominant exploitative model which promotes classism
and discrimination, we can turn around technology and engineering systems—under alternative
sustainable systems—through such means as digitalization, creative commons, peer-to-peer designs, open
sources, and 3D printing as some ways by which we can share our knowledge and empower the people
over corporations. Reclaim the streets and public spaces. Engage in media jamming and guerrilla
communication. Be involved in atomized spaces of resistance such as the Occupy movement (Chomsky,
XXX) as well as broad-based mass movements. We need to join the grassroots movement to protect
Nature (Brodine, 2007) and work for the common good, redirecting society toward people, community,
and Nature to construct a sustainable future (Daly, 1994).
From Corporate Welfare to People’s Welfare and Food Security. Given the current economic crisis, is
labor for income the proper model forward? How can we attain a world without poverty, war, destruction
of Nature, hunger, and thirst? We can work on the individual, community, country, inter-country, and
global scale for social change. There are many ways by which we can free ourselves from corporatocratic
food control. Starve the market beast. Learn from the indigenous peoples: (1) farm like a forest
(biodiversity, intercropping, and agroforestry), (2) eat low on the food chain, (3) restore health to
damaged land, and (4) cultivate reverence for the planet (Penniman, 2015). Put back our organic
“garbage” back into the soil in order to nourish it and make it productive agriculturally.
We need more young people to farm. Occupy the farm! Go natural. Go organic. Support local food
system. “Going vegetarian can cut your food carbon footprint in half” (Plumer, 2016). Eat lower on the
food chain: “Gallons of water needed to produce one pound of wheat: 25. Gallons of water needed to
produce one pound of beef: 2500” (GBCS-UMC, 2016b). Boycotting GMO products is not
“revolutionary,” as it is allowed by the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety according to which countries can
“refuse entry to a GM crop” (The Economist, 2016 September 17, p. 14).
Individual efforts are necessary but not sufficient. Partner with farmers. Provide local solutions to local
problems, while at the same time promoting a just world order. Join the collective efforts to ensure food
security. In many parts of the world, people are already engaged in agropolis, both rural and urban food
gardening, using public and private spaces that serves the common good. Engage in community
agriculture and plant food crops to consume, share, or sell in urban, suburban, exurban, and rural areas.
City dwellers plant food on their window sills, rooftops, and the fire exits. Urbanites, suburbanites, and
exurbanites use raised box agriculture. Where space is available, many engage in backyard agriculture.
Where space is limited, people engage in home-made aqua culture and vertical agriculture. “Guerrilla
grafters” secretly graft fruit-bearing branches on city-owned ornamental trees lining the streets. Grow
food, not lawns! Avoid fast food like a plague and support the local slow food movement. Share and
barter goods and services to meet human needs and pull away from the market economy. We must work
towards the localization of food production, distribution, sharing, sale, and consumption. Reject the
hegemonic control of corporatocrats. Reject greed and promote caring for people and for Nature. Engage
in fair trade, not free trade. Feed the world without destroying the Earth.
Restatement ofthe Problem
Technological improvements should free up human labor from drudgery and alienation. However, far
from fully enjoying the fruits of science and technology, we live in a world in which war, disease, famine,
and daily exposure to toxic chemicals are a way of life, thanks to the neoliberal globalization economic
model, as pushed forward by the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) and the World Trade
Organization (WTO). Instead of solving the problem of scarcity of which it is capable, technological
efficiency leads to mass unemployment and estrangement. Governments and corporations collide to
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promote more growth and more jobs, which are not forthcoming. The dominant way of life is unstable
and unsustainable. Food was a direct cause of the French Revolution and the Arab Spring.
This paper presents a critique of the dominant unsustainable economic model and recommends an
alternative sustainable development model that provides food security. The two contending and
incompatible models at work are the following: one is based on the market forces which favor production,
local commerce, international trade, money, profit, and the exploitation of labor and Nature, while
another is based on the betterment of Nature and society. At the core of the market economy is a financial
system that increases capital without producing goods that benefit society or Nature. The dominant
economic model damages Nature and society. At the core of the alternative economy is one that promotes
the betterment of everyone without being detrimental to Nature.
We need to act to ensure food security not only on an individual but also community, country, inter-
country, and global levels. Lobby for regulation and proactive policies that ensure access to and
distribution of food for all. We need to move away from the neoliberal economic growth model to one
that promotes the well-being of the people and Nature. “Take action for justice… Learn about hunger and
poverty in your area… Speak truth to power! Tell [your governments] to put those living on the economic
margins at the center of our vision of a new just economy” (GBCS-UMC, 2016b).
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CHAPTER 4: Eco-Justice
Vision of ARI Farming as Eco-Just Farming
Asian Rural Institute (Japan)
ARI Exists for Social Justice
Our founder, Rev. Dr. Toshihiro Takami said that “Asian Rural Institute (ARI) exists now and for
the future for achieving Social Justice”. He further defined social justice as “a state where every
person in this world, without single exception, can sit at a rich dining table having a joy of
ARI and Reconciliation
ARI was established in 1973 having its root in the training course named “Southeast Asia Rural
Leaders’ Training Course” under the UCCJ’s Theological School for Rural Mission in Tokyo.
The original request came from CCA back in 1960. At the foundation, there was a hope of
redemption of Japan’s sin committed against many Asian countries during WWII. ARI tries to
seek reconciliation with other Asian countries by our concrete actions of training and nurturing
rural leaders who can lead rural communities toward the right direction. We believe that this
work should be done with servant leadership, practicing sustainable agriculture and community
building where people can enjoy the joy of sharing.
In 1973, in the creation of ARI, Rev. Dr. Takami said,
“We sincerely hope that people will participate in God’s work of building a just and
peaceful world. In order to achieve this, we try to grasp and understand the situation in
Asia with our all effort and abilities and we happily chose the way to devote our whole
souls to the strictly concrete and absolutely necessary work, that is “to nurture rural leaders
who serve rural people”. And we are grateful to be given such an opportunity.
The situation of Asia that occupies more than half of the world population will affect the
future of all human beings. The majority of those more than 1 billion people are the
villagers in the rural areas in the so called “developing countries”, and they are in very
vulnerable and unjust situations being oppressed by increasing social gap. Our Lord Jesus
Christ is a friend of the weak first of all and sacrificed his own life to such people.
Remembering this, we as well live together with such people and make effort to be saved
together with them. There is no bigger joy than this.
Majority of the people in Asia are still captured by the power of evils such as poverty,
hunger, diseases, illiteracy, population explosion, customs, exploitations, etc. We, relying
on God’s power, fight for the freedom of those people including us. We nurture the leaders
who work for the salvation of the whole human race by choosing to live together with such
people. We find an image of such a good leader in Jesus Christ, a good shepherd.
Our Motto : “That We May Live Together”
This is our means and end. We try to find the way to live together with other people, with nature
and with God. And we try to achieve it by living it every day in our Community Life.
Organic Farming and Reconciliation
ARI was not doing organic agriculture from the beginning. When staff members thought of a
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more appropriate farming method which would go with our purpose and motto, they changed
their farming way from conventional farming to organic farming. So our farming is one form of
realization of our motto “That We May Live Together”. So it has to contribute to the achievement
of our mission; Reconciliation with people, nature and God.
The first introduction of organic farming was done by one farm staff in 1976. In 1979 a step style
compost area which used a slope area, dividing a slope into four sections, dumping compost
materials from the top section, and shifting to the lower section when it becomes decomposed. It
dramatically reduced the labor of human beings. Finally, we were able to practice farming
without any chemical inputs from 1981 for vegetable production and from 1988 for rice
ARI Eco System Vision
In 1982, an idea of ARI Eco System was introduced, that is to push the achievement of our motto
“That We May Live Together”. There were 9 principles.
① Making all the 6 ha of campus land a community that has a good balance with nature.
② Allocating forest, fields, livestock sheds, school buildings, sports ground and road in an
➂ Utilizing natural energy at a maximum level.
④ Utilization of rain water and gray water by purifying, reserving them underground and
in ponds. Trying not to pollute land with our gray water.
➄ Aiming at high food self sufficiency.
⑥ Practicing organic farming.
⑦ Planning the works so that every one on the campus has appropriate amount and kinds
⑧ Making efforts to share this kind of life style with other people.
⑨ Promoting worldwide networking with those who share the same vision.
Foodlife is a special term used at ARI to express the reality that food and life cannot be
separated; both are essential for each other. Nature is a gift from God given to us to sustain
our lives through producing food. Human beings cannot survive without food, so we work
to sustain life through a healthy relationship with nature. At ARI we are making an effort
to create Foodlife in which the soil becomes richer as we produce food and human
relationships become more beautiful.
ARI Foodlife involves activities such as producing, processing, cooking and eating food
and sharing with others. Foodlife provides learning opportunities to deepen our
understanding of organic farming, the importance of food, dignity of labor and the
importance of food self-sufficiency for self-reliance of people.
-ARI Training Handbook-
Promoting farming technology and methods that can sustain human life, nature and social
environment in appropriate manners, the idea of Appropriate Technology became important.
Appropriate Technology is not about introducing new technology and transferring it from old
ones. We believe that technology does not have any positive meaning unless it may be well
utilized in a social and economic structure and context that were built for centuries by local
people. Also Appropriate Technology should improve human activities no matter where it is
introduced. Based on this belief, we set the direction of our organic farming method in relation
with appropriate technology:
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1.Developing simple and time saving techniques without depending on big
machineries and high tech.
2. Developing chemical-free farming technology
3. Developing methods to utilize local materials inside and outside campus
4.Developing marketing methods that can reduce waste in production and foster mutual
understanding with consumers
5.Developing methods to make farming fun and interesting
At the base of all these policies and direction of ARI foodlife and appropriate technology,
Christianity lies. In our record in 1970’s, it says. “World trend is centered at money-based value.
It requires a tremendous courage to make a judgment based on another value different from this.
Moreover, organic farming is a voice of minority and still immature in terms of economic point
of view. However, we try to have a value of differentiating “an important thing” out of the voices
of minority and hope to hold such a value.”
Attitude and behavior towards conventional farmers
Not criticizing chemical farming imposing the “Justice of Organic Farming”, we should first
humbly listen to these farmers, their voices and their problems with an attitude and mind of
Five Years from the Massive Accident of Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant
Leak of radioactive substances by this terrible accident, farming in Japan and neighboring
countries was threatened. Especially the farming that depends on circulation of organic materials
in the eco-system was frightened greatly by the intervention of radioactive substances in the eco-
system. Now after five-years of hard efforts of decontamination and repeated measurement of
different kinds of food, soil and farm inputs, we at ARI can produce as we did five years before,
except mushroom culturing, mountain vegetables and wild animals in the forests.
After all these experiences, some questions came to my mind; Is our enemy TEPCO (The Tokyo
Electric and Power Co. , the owner of the Nuclear Power Plants) ? Do we really need to “fight
“against radiation? I had to think deeply about these questions because I found myself/ourselves
not just victims but assaulters as well. I and we (ARI) had not done anything toward national
energy policy in Japan especially going against nuclear energy at all. We committed a sin of
ignorance. We found ourselves as a target that we need to fight against in a form of asking this
fundamental question to ourselves; How does God want us to conduct our training program of
rural leaders in this time of nuclear age ?
What we need to do now are the following three things:
1） Self-realization as an assaulter who caused the nuclear power plant
2） Continuing the training of rural leaders of the world, putting more emphasis on the
efforts of showing problems of development and figuring out what true development
3）Doing all these things in walking a path of Christ’s peace.
Activities for Eco justice should bring about peace, not hatred and conflicts among people. True
peace will be created not by challenging to a fight, but trusting Christ and practicing love of
Christ. It is same with Agriculture. Not trying to change others’ farming methods brandishing a
sword of organic farming over someone’s head, but by trusting Christ and practicing Christ’s
love in farming, true peaceful farming is created.
Example of peaceful collaboration toward sustainable agriculture in Sado Island in Japan
Sado island, is located 40km off the shore of Niigata Prefecture, is characterized by a variety of
landforms and altitudes. In 2011 Sado island was recognized for the first time in Japan as
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“GIAHS – Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems” for their efforts to make Sado's
satoyama (Japan’s traditional agricultural landscapes) in harmony with Japanese crested ibis.
Sado City has started “the ibis-friendly farming method” and a certification system for creation
of the homeland of the Japanese crested ibis to rebuild the satoyama for local economy and
biodiversity. This is one good example of peaceful collaboration of different kinds of people
work together toward environmental and social sustainability of the locality.
Conclusion - Impact on the ARI Graduates and their communities
We researched 229 graduates in 11 countries (about 17 % of all graduates) in 2014 to 2015. The
results showed that many of the ARI graduates successfully integrated the idea of true peace
making with their farming activities, Church and NGO activities and into their family life. The
ARI training program that comes along with servant leadership, sustainable agriculture and
community building is resonant with eco justice and it helps people to realize true peace and to
take action on the way to peaceful societies.
Takami, T (1973, December). That we may live together: the vision and work of the Asian Rural
Institute. Church Education, p.18-22
Asian Rural Institute (1993, October). That we may live together: ARI’s 20 years’ walk.
Asian Rural Institute (2016). Training Handbook
GIAHS, Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems. Sado City Home page,
Cutting, S and Abma, B (2016). Rural Leaders. Asian Rural Inst
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Rev. Nishantha Guneratne
Talking about Eco-Justice issues today indisputably is involved with speaking of fundamental
issues. The issues we are facing are not just a problem or a difficult situation, but it points to a
fundamental rift which exists in the current state and structure of our humanity. In other words, if
we talk about ecology today we have to face some grave structural challenges of injustice within
world society. However we believe that very issues are also an opportunity, a situation which
also provides some space capable of accommodating new and creative alternative for alternative
The global ecological issues today have reached unprecedented levels, as every day more forests
cease to exist and no day is passing in our context, where we do not hear or read of foreign
multinational companies which indiscriminately exploit Sri Lankan soil and resources leaving
indelible marks of destruction on the ecosystems of this region and the world. Instead of treating
this subject of ECO Justice in a piece-meal way like handling climate justice or earth justice, we
need to develop a holistic view of the total devastation done to the earth and the human
This paper tries to delve with the basic theoretical and philosophical issues involved with this
total destruction of Nature. Nature consists of all planets in the space. In simple terms: the sun,
moon, stars, the earth and the oceans with all forms of animate and inanimate life. The soil, the
rocks, plants and animals are all parts of the earth.
The life develops with all the resources of Nature. This can be depicted very clearly in how a
plant grows. It receives all the resources from the Atmosphere – like nitrogen and oxygen. The
monsoonal rains provide a basic factor of life. i.e. water. This water seeps down to the earth. The
microorganisms bring all nutrients and water to the roots of the plant. This is the humus soil. Its
nutrients are absorbed by the sap in the hairy roots of the plant. This process taken up through
the trunk of the plant to the leaves within the structure of the plant. The substance chlorophyll
becomes activated by the solar energy and carbohydrate is produced. This is really the food
Scholars have emphasized that the components of this planetary system are not working
independently from each other, rather each element of what we know as reality is closely
interrelated to other elements. The ecological balance of the planet therefore is a balance within a
very complex structure, integrating multiple and variable components in a perfect fit which has
given origin to life on this planet. Only this complex system of interrelation and perfect
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equalization keeps this planet alive as whole. Any alteration of one of those elements directly
affects everyone else and potentially endangers the survival of the whole system.
Actually, it is the Nature that produces food and not man. Humanity does only a supportive role.
This whole process functioning within Nature is reflected naturally in the human mind. The mind
really abstracts the whole process within Nature. The main characteristic of Nature as understood
by the mind is its continuous flux. It is the continuous, unending motion. The Greek philosophers
– Thales and later Heraclitus brought this changing situation to the fore. Aristotle has refined it
by explaining further the inner dynamics of change motion we showed that it is only the form
that changes and takes various appearances. But the matter remains the same throughout the
The thinking and the outlook of all early Greek philosophers because of their close proximity to
the changes taking place in Nature has been more progressive and dialectical.
The oriental thinking fully absorbed this dialectical thinking which culminated in Buddhist
Philosophy. Birth (Uthpatha) existence (Thithi), and death (Bhanga). The most radical Buddhist
thinkers would like to adhere to Birth and Decay. These two aspects take place almost in union.
In living always the dying process takes place.
In the creation story which is an old Mesopotamian Epic (Gilgamesh) in the 2nd Chapter of the
Bible – man is depicted as one who nurtures the Earth. It is different from the 1st Chapter, where
man’s role is to “increase and multiply and “subdue” the Earth”.
We can draw conclusions from all these;
That the rights are not just restricted to man only as fundamental human rights.
But the rights are embedded in all life, animate and inanimate beings.
Therefore, ECO Justice deals with all rights.
We need to build a society and the earth-planet on the basis of ECO- Communitarian life
It is the regenerative capacity of the Earth and the whole creation that we have to
Therefore, we have to discard Industrial & Chemical Agriculture and we must adopt an
Industrial Policy which is based on the regenerative capacity of Nature.
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CHAPTER 5: Sustainable Development
Towards Sustainable Development
Mariamma Sanu George (Nirmala), Kerala, India
We are in the early part of the 21st century, with a population estimated at 7.4 billion (as of
August 2016) which is expected to reach 9.9 billion by 20501. The 31 percent of the world’s
population follows Christianity, the world’s largest religion. We are on a planet with 71 percent
of the earth’s surface area covered by water2. We are in a world where the disparities between
the haves and have-nots are increasing day by day. We are in a world where 10.7 % of the
world’s population lives on less than US$1.90 per day (2013 estimates) 3. A total of 1.6 billion
people of the 101 countries are living in multidimensional poverty; of these 54% live in South
Asia4. We are in a world where the temperature is rising, rainfall becoming lesser or erratic, sea
level rising, melting polar caps, extreme weather events and related catastrophe’s like floods,
drought, cyclones, storms and other disasters. Post industrial revolution is an era of rapid
population growth. We live in a world in which natural resources are tapped in an uncontrolled
manner, there by leading to an uncertainty on the future of such prized natural resources. Are we
responsible for this ecological crisis? What does the bible say of humanity's obligation to care for
God created the heaven and earth, the sea and all the living beings5. God retains ownership of all
His creation and is in absolute control. Psalm 24:1 says that “The earth is the Lord’s, and
everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” The earth was created for the benefit of
mankind with the right to live, produce their own food and be self-reliant. In Genesis1:28 God
blessed his creations by saying “be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth and subdue it” and not to
destroy it. “God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work and take care of it6”.
Mankind was created in his own image to rule over the earth. So mankind is responsible to live
in harmony with the environment and manage with justice the resources so that the future
generations can benefit. Thereby, bringing in environmental sustainability and hence
Sustainability and sustainable development7 are terms widely used across the globe although it
still lacks a uniform interpretation. The word sustainability has many meanings as maintain,
5Genesis 1;Psalm 146:6;Acts 14:15; Revelation4:11
7Brundtland Commission in1987, from the World Commissionon Environmentand Development’s, (the Brundtland Commission) reportOur
Common Future,(Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press,1987).
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support, endure and withstand. It commonly means ‘maintaining the world we live in’. It
accounts for economic, social and environmental benefits. This refers to the three interlocking
pillars. Therefore, if any one pillar is weak then the system as a whole is unsustainable. On the
other hand, sustainable development is “Development that meets the needs of the present without
compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs8”.
But what does it mean by the needs of the present and the future? Take a minute and write down
five most important needs that you have in your own life. Suppose if you thought of buying a
car, how does it contribute to the three pillars? Economically and socially it will benefit your
present need but what is the environmental consequence it will have? Multiply these needs for
the family, society, country and the world. The earth has limited resources to meet the everyday
needs of the rapidly increasing population.
The basic principle of sustainable development is to act responsibly so that resources on the
planet will be able to support many generations to come9. If this is so, our interventions in
development has to consider not only the three pillars but also in a spiritual perspective which
address the issues of ethics and moral values which are crucial for conserving nature, preventing
over exploitation of natural resources so that they are available for the future generations and
also mitigating adverse effects due to climate change. The 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro
proclaimed that “human beings are at the centre of concerns for sustainable development”. Pope
Francis has said “the urgent challenge to protect our common home includes a concern to bring
the whole human family together to seek a sustainable and integral development”.
Different countries have different priorities in their development policies. Ideally many factors
have to be considered to measure development like levels of poverty, health, education,
employment, social cohesion, safety and security, internal and external conflicts, governance
8United Nations World Commission onEnvironment and Development in1987
Three interlocking pillars
Transfer of skills
energy & water
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systems and many others. The fundamental question is whether mere economic growth
measured in terms of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and similar indictors alone reflect
development? Also what kind of development are we talking about? And whose development
are we looking for? How do we decide whose needs should go first? How do we make that trade
The shift in the economic system from socialism to capitalism has had great effects on the
lifestyle of the people in the world, changing the manner in which they relate with and use the
environment’s resources given to us by the Creator. While the church across the globe has been
working towards the development of mankind, upliftment of the poor and the downtrodden, what
is our approach to development? How can we define development beyond materialistic
development? In order to sustain the development achieved, is it not important to have such a
development beyond materialistic development. Equity is the first step towards achieving such a
Is Equity Important for Achieving Sustainable Development?
Equity has to do with everyone having access to fair and equal treatment under the law,
regardless of race, social class or gender. The concept of equity can be applied to various
spheres of life such as gender, environment, education etc. The ‘haves’ should not use more than
their fair share of the earth’s limited resources.
The challenge of a growing population is the mere presence of so many people sharing limited
resources which strains the environment. Many of the world’s population live in poor countries
which are already strained by food insecurity; inadequate sanitation, water supply and housing;
and an inability to meet the basic needs of the current population. A large proportion of these
populations are supported through subsistence agriculture where everyone has the right to
produce their own food and be self-reliant. When farm lands expand towards fragile lands in
order to keep pace with the needs of a growing population in a region, it can lead to
deforestation, erosion and desertification.
It is usually understood that “intergenerational” equity would be impossible to achieve in the
absence of present-day social equity, if the economic activities of some people continue to
jeopardize the well-being of other people living in other parts of the world. Imagine, for
example, that emissions of greenhouse gases, generated mainly by highly industrialized
countries, lead to global warming and flooding of certain low-lying islands—resulting in the
displacement and impoverishment of entire island nations. Or when people in one region are
poor and undernourished due to many prolonged factors while at the same time in another region
the people are obese and lead a luxurious life.
As mentioned earlier, sustainable development is not just about the present but about the future
too. Natural resources available to us in this generation is a gift from our previous generations.
“Sustainable” development could probably be otherwise called “equitable and balanced,”