Our summer brings hot, dry weather. This week a lightning storm caused several hundreds of fires in our dry province. The biggest fire started near our neighbouring town of Ashcroft, where the fire is very easy to grow and spread out of control. Fortunately for us, the southern winds were blowing, taking the fire away from our village. However, our valley often gets filled with smoke which is carried thousands of miles away due to the magnitude of the fire eruptions.
The best prevention for forest fires is to remove dry tree materials. Our brahmacharis have been clearing and sorting through the forest debris every day, now for more reason than one. We are also running sprinklers to keep the area wet, to wrap the fire if it sweeps through. Another preventative measure is to create a buffer zone around our living spaces, removing trees for about 10 meters.
Summer is not only a time for fire, but also a time for rattlesnakes to descend from the hills and “clean up” the mice. These mice have a bad habit of breaking into our homes and temples and making a mess.
“This material existence is compared with a blazing forest fire. Nobody goes to set fire in the forest, but it takes places automatically. Similarly, in this material world, however peacefully you want to live, without God consciousness, you cannot live peacefully.” -Srila Prabhupada