Many Korean men do not like the life of being a farmer. It is really rough, so I hear, and the income is small and the stress that one faces in such an occupation is understandable. Many resort to getting foreign brides as no Korean women want to marry a rice farmer… I find that sad and disgusting that honest, young men who would like to have a job close to nature cannot achieve this goal without a massive social stigma.
What is more natural for mankind than to live off of the land in both cooperation with and struggle against nature? What could be more educational about the natural way of things, and what could be more peaceful than work on a rice farm?
But people are shallow and seek to have deep pockets because they have shallow hearts.
When being a farmer in one’s own country is not a valued profession we’ve lost something… When plastic surgeons whose job it is to indulge the destructive vanity of the feeble minded are considered exponentially more prestigious than people who connect with nature… What?
It would be very difficult yet rewarding to be able to be a farmer… I would like to feel water and earth between my toes and though I am sure the labor would prove tedious and and backbreaking, there would be a sense of accomplishment and an irreplacable sense of honesty in the work that one does.
When a nation forsakes its roots and claims to be growing it is not actually growing in any healthy direction — the steel and metal of civilization rusts and the discontent within each city grows, and the confusion that is faced can be immense. The stress of walking through constantly crowded subway terminals and being elbowed and pushed on the streets is enough to make anyone feel trapped — to live in tiny, one room apartments can be repressive.
I fed some ducks on Namiseom two days ago and it was a liberating experience… I wish I could see nature more.
I have taken more steps on hard cement than on the Earth.
My Chinese character teacher recommends that once a day for an hour we go to a place full of grace and walk barefoot so we do not forget that humans to some degree are a part of nature.
My Japanese classmate Masayuki had a lot of very interesting to say on the issues of mental health and the lack of nature in cities and the lack of large families, the isolation of modern society and the lack of harmony…
Yeah, life is rough whether you are farming rice or toiling in the city; but at least the folks who farm the rice can walk barefoot on grass and lay down to nap under a tree.
The closest I get to nature is the small patches of grass that line the running / cycling paths on the polluted Han River.
I remember the time I took a train home from Gwangju with Grant McKenzie in the early morning; he fell asleep while I looked out at the rice paddies and fantasized about making a family in the dirty, impoverished villages of old folk across Jeolla province; connecting with nature and being content with poverty & simplicity.