Wednesday, 28 August 2013

The master finished with a line..

“The Master fished with a line, but not with a net; when shooting he did not aim at a resting bird”
Confucius, The Analects, Book 7 (VII) Chapter 26 (XXVI), Dover Thrift Editions, 1995

While reading The Analects for my own personal enjoyment I came across this gem, indeed I came across many but this particular one made me think of Greenhouse and our own mission. Although like many Greenies I’m vegetarian and so I do no catch my own food myself (I may be prone to picking the occasional fruit however), this statement, written many Many MANY years ago reflects an attitude of consciousness with which today we are struggling with.
I have mentioned that I do not catch my own food, in this industrialized world, a few percentage of the world does. It would be better if we did, because then at least we cannot fake that we do not know where it came from.

This phrase, which constitutes a whole chapter of the Analects- as the book is made up of sayings of Confucius and his disciples- ironically sums up in at least the attitude two of our major projects at the moment. The third being the EndEcocide project which is broader although it fits with the saying.

The Master fished with a line, but not with a net

Greenhouse Malta forms part of the fish4tomorrow coalition which apart from Greenhouse consists of Sharklab Malta, GetupStandup and Din l-Art Ħelwa. This coalition works towards implementation and awareness raising on sustainable seafood. Together we have produced a short video  to introduce the issue. We have compiled a study and are currently working on a website and a seafood guide. Get to know more on the issue here 

When shooting he did not aim at a resting bird

Currently in Malta, this could be applied to mating birds. Spring is the time when nature is alive, where most of the events happen. This is the time when birds catch a breath some breath and repopulate as well as migrate. Spring Hunting makes no sense, even for the hunters, because if the numbers go down in spring, they will go down not only that year but for many years to come. And if this barbaric practice is kept up for many years, do the math and the number will be somewhat close to 0, 0 birds in the sky that is. CASH- the Coalition against spring Hunting which at the moment consists of, apart from Greenhouse, Alternattiva Demokratika, Birdlife Malta, Coalition for Animal Rights, Din l-Art Helwa, Flimkien ghal Ambjent Ahjar, Friends of the Earth Malta, Gaia Foundation, Moviment Graffiti,  Nature Trust (Malta) and the Ramblers Association of Malta is actively working to abolish spring hunting and are collecting signatures to hold a referendum. Greenhouse is also collecting signatures on their behalf and whoever wants to add their own, please contact us on our email 

The third ongoing project which we are part of is EndEcocide in Europe. This group is working through an European citizen’s initiative (ECI) to make ecocide- that is the extensive destruction of ecosystems- illegal in Europe and this could also have impact apart from the EU. Greenhouse has been translating the website into Maltese (should you notice any spelling mistakes, do let us know!!) and helping spreading the word. In the future we hope to hold an informative event on the subject- any expressions of interest for the event or anyone willing to help should send an email. For more information visit the website 

In the end, what these projects and others that we are involved in such as the Animal Rights Coalition, have in common is the attitude of care and being conscious of what is going on and acting in reaction to it. Signing or joining in any or all of these causes, will not take you much time, but will definitely leave an impact. For anyone that has some time to spare, I also suggest you grab a copy and read the Analects- it is one of those books that will sometimes make you go ‘huh?’, sometimes make you go “I knew that!” and sometimes will leave you to ponder on something for a day.

Adieu for now! I will leave you with this very flattering image of Confucius.

Greenhouse Malta

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