November 17, 2007


Posted in Education, Environment, Messages, Philosophy tagged , , , , at 7:22 am by randallbutisingh


This article was written for the press around 1958, I was then a teacher at various schools on the East Coast of Demerara in British Guiana (Guyana). On December 1, 2007 I will soon be 95 years old, and as I review the sad state of our attitude to agriculture in many countries, I have decided to submit what I wrote some 50 years ago. This article and others  on education will be published on this website. Here is my original article:

If anyone should ask me who do I think is the most important person in the community, I would say: “certainly, the Farmer, and Agriculture a Noble Profession”. I do not deny the importance of Religious Ministry, but as Mahatma Gandhi puts it: “You cannot preach to a hungry man, you have to fulfill his hunger first.Here we see the importance of Agriculture and the indispensability of the Farmer. Without an adequately fed and healthy body, man cannot divert his attention to that aspect of his existence which does not need food, but which is strengthened and immortalized by qualities of mind and character. “Mens sana in corpore sano” is what is needed; an untuned piano cannot produce harmony, even if it is played by the most talented artist. So, there is need for a healthy mind and body for the effective manifestation of Spirit.

The cause for most of the discontent and physical want is, that this vital necessity of mankind is overlooked and the trivial and nonessential given priority. Although food is needed daily and the absence of it would mean starvation and death of the body, individuals and governments fail to stress its importance.

Year after year, droughts and floods devastate crops and frustrate the efforts of the noble band of men and women who, through sun and rain, labour ceaselessly so that mankind may exist. The farmers’ problems should be the problem of everyone.

It is time that the farmer become aware of his importance and the government give every encouragement in fostering this essential aspect of human existence. Everyone cannot be a farmer, but everyone can encourage and appreciate it. Everyone can have a little kitchen garden or even a flower garden as a refreshing hobby. Even the Queen cultivates a flower garden.

Learning the ways of Nature can be spiritually rewarding as one can observe the cooperation between God and man. He can learn that “man without God cannot and God without man will not.”

Education, has made an important stride in this colony (British Guiana) by encouraging Gardening in schools, but much of its success will depend on the attitude of parents and teachers to this subject. Teachers will have to soil their hands along with their pupils in order to stress the dignity of labour and awaken interest in the potential providers of the future. Agriculture should also be made compulsory in the curriculum of Secondary Schools.

If right sense of values is cultivated, and pupils could become so interested that they will begin their own little kitchen garden at home, we can be sure that British Guiana will produce a stronger, more self reliant and better citizen for the future.

Randall Butisingh



  1. bob nita said,

    please send me the major reason why agriculture should be made compulsory in Secondary schools.

    • raymund asentista said,

      in seciondary,,,it is a process of exposing the students to what is agriculture and what is its importance to humankind.

  2. raymund asentista said,

    agriculture is the backbone of the economy, all activities and transactions derived from agriculture.

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