On this our 50th episode we welcome Dr. Vandana Shiva. A fearless advocate for peasant farmers throughout the world, Dr. Shiva is one of the most outspoken critics of industrial agriculture and its dire environmental and spiritual consequences. S
he is the founder of Navdanya, an India based organization that advocates for biodiversity, seed sovereignty and food independence. Navdanya runs an organic farm in the foothills of the Himalays and counts among its members millions of farmers across India, where the group has set up more than 100 seed banks. She is the recipient of many awards, including the Right Livelihood Award and the Sydney Peace Prize.
She is also the author of several groundbreaking books, including Making Peace with the Earth, Soil Not Oil and Who Really Feeds the World?. Her latest book is called Oneness vs the 1%: Shattering Illusions, Seeding Freedom. This is the book we desperately need right now. In an age of growing economic inequality, globalization and relentless corporate propaganda, we need people like her who are willing to stand up and speak the truth.
Despite the fact that Dr. Shiva is routinely standing up against corrupt global power and what she calls the Toxic Cartels, she embodies joyousness. At first, it might seem incongruous. How can one be joyful in a time of such darkness. But maybe joy, in this case, is the absence of fear. Maybe that’s because Dr. Shiva has seen, again and again, peasants in her country standing up to power, whether it’s the British Empire or Big Ag.
Drawing inspiration from the Chipko Movement in the 1970s and from the millions of farmers who are today resisting corporate domination, Dr. Shiva believes that a right relationship with the Earth is always possible and ever-present, even in the bleakest of days.