Our summer brings hot, dry weather. This week a lightning storm launched hundreds of fires in our dry province. The biggest fire started near our neighbouring town of Ashcroft, where the fire remains very active and continues to grow and burn out of control. Fortunately for us, the southern winds are blowing the fire away from our village. However, our valley is often filled with smoke which is being carried thousands of miles away due to the magnitude of the fires.
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 with more reason. We are also running sprinklers to keep the area wet, in case a fire 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, who 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