Sunday, September 2, 2012

The virtue of fertility

Virtue: Fertility

When I first saw that fertility was listed as a virtue I really wondered why on earth it would be considered a virtue, especially with the issues we have as a species with population. But again, like a lot of the virtues, I looked up the meaning. Though I had heard fertility used in phrases like ‘a fertile imagination’ I never really thought of it as a virtue. Then I read one of the several definitions and realized that it could be a very good virtue.

Fertility by definition means the state of being fertile or capable of producing offspring, yet it also means the property of producing and sustaining growth. This last meaning is the one I believe would be the most important as a virtue to me personally.

Sustained growth and production are driving forces in life. They prevent stagnation in the cycles of nature. With everyday mundane life, growth allows us to advance and keep moving forward in our lives. With our population growing every second, fertility of the Earth should be something we think about more. We have to find new ways to sustain the Earth’s ability to provide food for the great numbers of creatures that live upon Her surface. I think that with our growth we should also very concerned with the value of moderation. Through moderation with the amount of foods that we consume we will be able to help keep the Earth healthy enough to sustain life.

Fertility in art or craftsmanship allows the individual to produce on a scale where there is enough to sustain themselves. But I think that fertility in this form works well with the value of vision. They seem to complement one another in a way that the vision the artist carries about his work and the world around him helps to fuel the fertility within his craft, which in turn then sustains the artist.

As for spirituality, growth is a must. One should never have stagnation in this part of their lives. Fertility on one’s path allows the seeker to grow, reaching further than they currently are. One of the ways of growing spiritually is to continue to learn, reaching further for knowledge of the past and present. The fertility that I see in ADF is one of the things that drew me to the faith. I had become stagnate in my spirituality, not really knowing where to turn. Then through my friend James I found ADF. I saw for the first time in many years a place where I could grow from where I was in my life and continue to grow throughout my life working within all the guilds and with my grove.

Like all the virtues, fertility is a powerful tool, when used in moderation and tempered with wisdom, to make life better. It also is a virtue that others will see you living, in many cases giving them the chance to change their own lives.
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