Farm Philosophy


Our holistic Complete (Isha-vasya) farming method encompasses most non-conventional and emerging systems of agriculture, including regenerative, organic, permaculture, and Biodynamic.

We draw inspiration from the ancient holistic wisdom of Indian Vedic Sanskrit texts, dating back to the second millennia BC, in particular, these introductory verses from the Isha Upanishad: 

oṁ pūrṇam adaḥ pūrṇam idaṁ
pūrṇāt pūrṇam udacyate
pūrṇasya pūrṇam ādāya
pūrṇam evāvaśiṣyate 

"The Personality of Godhead is perfect and complete, and because He is completely perfect, all emanations from Him, including this phenomenal world, are perfectly equipped as complete wholes. Whatever is produced of the Complete Whole is also complete in itself. Because He is the Complete Whole, even though so many complete units emanate from Him, He remains the complete balance."  

īśāvāsyam idam sarvaṁ
yat kiñca jagatyāṁ jagat
tena tyaktena bhuñjīthā
mā gṛdhaḥ kasya svid dhanam
 
"Everything animate or inanimate that is within the universe is controlled and owned by the Lord. One should, therefore, accept only those things necessary for oneself, which are set aside as one's quota, and one should not accept other things, knowing well to whom they belong."
                     
We believe that every region, every community, every farm is complete in and of itself. It is for each of us to discover how that is so and to be mindful of that completeness in all we do.  We also need to be mindful of what is our "quota" and utilize only that, while preserving the "quota" of others including that of animals and future generations. Here at Gopal Farm, we translate that mindfulness into the way we operate day to day, in right relationship to the earth’s resources, seeking always to utilize them with frugality and the greatest care, avoiding wherever possible extractive practices, external inputs and impinging on others right to use those same resources. 

 

As Complete Agriculturists we are:

  1. Fertilizer-, fungicide, and pesticide-free. We avoid chemical inputs to our soil and plants. By adhering to holistic land management practices our cows provide, through their foraging behavior and their manure, all the organic inputs required to maintain and enhance the health of our soil and the food we grow from it. Additionally, we will be using Sir Andrew Howard's reconstituted Indore Method of Compost preparation which he learned while posted in Indore, India in the 1920s. We utilize cow byproducts for seed germination, growth enhancements, and as pesticides, using ancient Indian techniques. We also use many beneficial insects in our pest management practice. 
  2. A conscientious employer- Those who work our land are paid a living wage. More than that, we wish to promote partnerships with young farmers over working for us, believing that many would excel working for themselves if provided required facilities. This we hope would help form a farm community that would further support the workers. 
  3. Energy independent– The majority of heat, electricity, and fuel we require for our day-to-day farm operations will be produced using renewable resources. We are researching how we can supplement this using “ox-power.”
  4. Cow feed and fodder independent– Our cows are fed exclusively from our farm fields and from our pastureland. In addition to our own pasture, we hope to create expanded, community-deeded pastureland in the tradition of the Indian “gochar.” Our cows also enjoy “gleaning rights” to our fields after harvests.
  5. Professionals inter-dependent- By nurturing relationships of reciprocity and mutual benefit with our neighbors and other community members, we hope to barter for many of our external needs for goods and services. 
  6. Modern construction material independent– Whenever possible we will use materials sourced from our farm to construct essential buildings and infrastructure, acknowledging that we may from time-to-time require external inputs. 
  7. Waste and garbage independent– We recycle all farm products and waste internally.
  8. Violence free– Our animals are part of our farm community and are our fellow residents. They perform specific, valued functions in our agricultural system and we believe they should never be slaughtered for financial gain. Instead our animals are free to live out their natural lives and are provided with comfort care at the end stages of life (10% of revenue from all cow products is deposited into a "cows retirement fund" to be utilized specifically for their old age). We support ethical practices through our Ecownomics nonprofit.