Rabbits by Ravenscroft

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Rabbits by Ravenscroft

Post by Mark »

The rabbits on Count Keyserlingk's estates in Silesia had become a menace. Formerly kept in check with guns, the shortage of manpower and the absence of organised shooting parties throughout WWI has allowed their numbers to grow to serious proportions and the rabbits were overruning the farm lands in the region of Koberwitz.

The situation become yet more chaotic after the war when Count Keyserlingk announced that he would no longer countenecne the shooting of any form of wildlife on his own estates or the land of his tennant farmers. He also refused to permit the use of poisons. "I am searching for some alternative method to get rid of pests", he told his angry neighbours.

In the spring of 1924 Count Keyserlingk invited interested landowners, farmers and market gardeners from all over Europe to attend an Agricultural conference at his Koberwitz home in order to promote 'an attitude to farming in which the earth and nature were no longer regarded as objects of short sighted financial exploitation'. The conference would also consider a new bio-dynamic method of farming to produce healthier crops, prevent soil erosion, combat pollution, and curtail the multiplication of plant and animal diseases arising from the use of industrial poisons and synthetic fertilisers. The highlight of the conference would be a demonstration of a new form of 'Pest Control' which would rid the estate and neighbouring lands of the whole rabbit population in three days.

A rumour circulated amongst the local peasantry and small holders that Count Keyserlingk was bringsing to Koberwitz a celebrated 'Wizard' who, like the Pied Piper, would spirit the rabbits away. They waited with a mixture of apprehension, superstition and curiosity for the appearance of this magician who would wave his want and conjure away the teeming rabbit population without recourse to guns or poisons.

The man about to preform this apparent miracle was Dr Rudolf Steiner who was to deliver a series of lectures at the Rudolf Steiner conference. On arrival at the Koberwitz he requested that a male rabbit should be shot a brought to the room temporarily set up as a laboratory. He removed the spleen, testes and a portion of the rabbit skin. These items were burned to ashes. The ashes were then mixed with a neutral powder, sugar of milk, and homoeopathically potentised beyond the boundary of ponderable existence. There was nothing new itself with potentisation. It is a process used regularly at such institutions as the Royal Homoeopathic Hospital in London and by several thousand fully qualified medical practitioners throughout the world. It was the purpose for which Dr Steiner intended to use this particular potentisation that was of startling significance.

His intention was to induce a condition of such total insecurity in relation to their present habitat that the whole rabbit population would quit the area in panic. To achieve this end he was utilising those organs from the buck rabbit which in his opinion we the physiological basis for the instinct of survival within the species. The homeopathic potency would transform this instinct into its very opposite. Spread on the wind and absorbed through respiration, he conceived that the concoction would have a functional effect on the rabbits similar to that condition which Nature induces in Lemmings when, their numbers greater that the environment can withstand, they gather in their thousands bend of self-destruction.

Dr Steiner carried his concoction in a bucket to the paddock near the house. He held in his other hand the type of brush normally used to sweep crumbs into a dustpan. He dipped the brush into the liquid and flicked it like rain into the wind. Young assistants carried similar buckets up wind to the borders of the estate and also spread the homeopathic potency like fine spray.

During the following two days nothing happened. The rabbit population were very much in evidence guzzling the spring vegetables and apparently quite oblivious of their fate. The peasants and farm labourers breathed a sigh of relief. The 'Wizard' was apparently an ordinary mortal after all. Count Keyserlingk would have to permit shooting once more!

Dr Steiner pointed out to the members of the conference that homoeopathic treatments were unlike their allopathic counterparts which induced an immediate physical reaction. His homoeopathic concoction would take three days to penetrate the life organism of the rabbits. By dusk the following night there would not be a single rabbit in the whole area. He described how vermin throughout the world would slowly build up a resistance to the allopathic poisons at present in use. And he predicted correctly that science would be hard put to it in the second half of the century to devise poisons which had any effect on vermin. The type of pest control which he was now demonstrating would, by necessity, be recognised by future generations as the only possible answer to the problem.

When dawn broke the following morning thousands of rabbits were to be seen in a huge cluster round an old ash tree in the paddock. They appeared to be in a state of intense excitement, restless, quivering, running up and down and sniffing the air with obvious perturbation. From all directions they were joined by more and more rabbits that came dashing across the fields, running across farmyards and stables, and even scampering down garden paths, apparently oblivious of the dangers of human contact.

Reports came from all parts of the vast estate and neigbourhood farm lands. Throughout the entire area rabbits were quitting thier burrows and warrens as though the natural habitat was now a threat to their very survival, forming other huge clusters in a condition of frantic agitation. By late afternoon the separate clusters had joined together in a single mass in a far corner of the estate. Shortly before dusk the entire rabbit population disappeared in one panic stricken swarm heading in a north-easterly direction towards the distant wastelands and marshes. No rabbit would be seen not rabbit spoor discovered on the Keyserlingk land from many years to come.
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Re: Rabbits by Ravenscroft

Post by Harybald »

Meditating on this question can lead to the following answers. Although the near planets Mercury and Venus do not orbit the earth like the moon does, they do pass between the earth and the sun and therefore, like the moon, go through a complete cycle of phases. Hence with these planets it makes sense that the right time for seed ashing is when they too are waning.
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