My zero-waste journey started 15 years ago, by an inspirational friend. Louise would bring her own plate, cup and cutlery to every function and event, to avoid using plastic or paper. She grew her own vegetables, wore second-hand clothing and was Vegan except for the occasional palak paneer that she enjoyed at our table. At the time, her lifestyle seemed severe and would often get a raised eyebrow. Today, its clear that she was the visionary amongst us.
I have since edged closer to the ideal, in our Grihastra ashram (family home). With the aim of being more aware of the earth and my connection to it and impact on it. ‘Busy’ has often made me choose the quick convenience over the conscious choice.
With Diwali coming, and its allusions to enlightened thought and action, I’m hoping that this Diwali can be: plastic free, sourced locally, hand-made, Vegan or at least ethically farmed. I invite you to do the same.
Some helpful hints, please share yours, in the comments:
- Donate your lightly worn Diwali clothing to children’s homes or people in need.
- Get in touch with local organic suppliers and pre-order your in-season vegetables.
- Plan your menu according to what is seasonal. Indian food is delicious, the more so when we experiment with new produce. Of course, family favourites will have pride of place.
- Support artisans: the lady who makes roti from home or the tailor down the road.
- Buy tiffins instead of fireworks that make loud noises and gift these to your friends.
- Ask family and friends to bring their own tiffins to your celebration meal. The mandatory “take some home” can be packed in these instead of plastic or Polystyrene.
- Avoid the use of single use plastics. Curry, the food of kings, should just not be served in a plastic or paper plates. Eat on banana leaves or pay someone to do the dishes instead.
- Let’s inspire truth, love and kindness in all around us.
Useful links and contact details:
- Tiffins: Cape Town https://ecoelephant.co.za, JHB Milan’s Pooja Shop (011 854 3603)
- Organic Urban Farmers: Cape Town https://umthunzifarmingcommunity.co.za, http://abalimibezekhaya.org.za, JHB Mosimo Pale aka Comrade Carrot Cell: 079 323 7990