And that is what you can gain from the Jenkins book. He takes our fears – smell, disease, mess, complexity, behavioural change etc- one by one and sorts them out. He sets up a deep perspective on what our responsibility should be to the earth as humans. Are we doing the right thing by the planet as the other life forms are doing? Or are we humans the pathogens that are endangering the web of life?
Jenkins says: “composting is an act of humility…. Humanure composters can stand under the stars at night gazing at the heavens, and know that, when nature calls their excretions will not foul the planet. Instead, those excretions are humbly collected, fed to microoganisms and returned to earth as healing medicine of the soil.”
As you read you get practical lessons on how to compost, gain a new appreciation for composted humanure and realise what material profits you stand to gain by composting your excrement. “Agricultural land must produce a greater output over time,” says Jenkins. For that, one must nurture the soil by returning everything that once lived, after taking what we need. Humanure is one such thing. It is full of beneficial life.
This book should be essential reading. No one wanted to touch the manuscript when Jenkins searched for a publisher; after all the very word is anathema to many. He published it himself because of his convictions. It is a runaway success. It is in it’s third edition. It is available free as an eBook but I hope you will buy a hardcopy as a tribute to this caring friend of the earth. Click here
At pointReturn we take our lavatory behaviour seriously. From a two pit latrine that needed very little water to flush it, we have progressed to a urine diverting composting toilet. There have been no traumas in using it; instead, a great satisfaction that we are doing the right thing. The practice belongs right up there with living off-grid; we are off-sewers as well. Our explorations continue. We are fascinated to learn what a tremendous impact that this small change is having on our soil- first, it is not polluted; then it is enriched. We live like all life forms do: by connections.