“If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live.”

-Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein was not a naturalist, but he certainly knew how closely human beings were tied to the bee. The ecosystems of the planet are so tightly integrated, yet most of the so-called civilized world still has not seemed to grasp this fact. Native Americans and other indigenous cultures around the world not only were aware of the importance of our interconnectedness between all species, they honored all beings on this planet as sentient and part of the universal community. The white man showed up and decided that the "Indians" (a misnomer in itself) were the uncivilized ones and nearly destroyed these people who should have been our ancestors’ teachers.

All these many years later, we are paying the price. It has been estimated that nearly 90% of the bee population has vanished from the planet and many that remain are unhealthy. Bees are not finding their way home back to the hive. When they do they are often not recognized by the other members of the colony. The Queen might be found in the hive with only a few young worker bees, not the thriving community of days past.

Why are the bees becoming extinct? The first culprit is a threatening mite that has been attaching itself to the throat of bees. Like a fictional vampire, it sucks the blood, leaving many bees dead. However, the main cause for the destruction of our bee colonies is, of course, man-made. Our agricultural practices of the 20th and 21st centuries are all about making a buck. Unfortunately, we are not taking into account the needs of our ecosystems.

Instead of rotating crops on an annual basis, giving the earth an opportunity to breathe and re-nourish itself, we are using and reusing the same land over and over again. This process simply depletes the food and thereby us and all the other animals of proper nutritional value. An apple of thirty years ago is not the apple of today.

Furthermore, instead of creating small farms with seasonal fruits and vegetables, we are planting mono-agricultural farms, meaning one plant spread out until the eye can't see it any longer. This goes against nature and causes problems that short-sighted farming practitioners don't acknowledge. Because of this mass agriculture that only provides food for the pollinators for a mere few months a year, species such as butterflies, hummingbirds and even more so, the honeybee starve. So, the bees are taken out of thier natural environment and trucked all over the country and the world at large to pollinate other areas—again, only causing confusion for the poor bee.

To further add fuel to the fire, because the bees are moving so much and there isn't a whole lot of food for them, they are being fed with man-made syrups. With each generation of bee, this unhealthy diet is causing problems for the health of the bee population. Imagine eating McDonald's every meal of your life and then feeding the same thing to your children. How would you all feel? Not very well. Poor nutrition effects the mind, as well as the body.

Plus, quite often the Queen bee is taken out of her own hive and injected with semen to produce more bees instead of mating naturally with the drones. They are then placed in other hives that are not their own, causing, once again, a befuddled group of bees. That's like being taken out of your own home, against your will, while some scientist performs a surgical procedure on you and then places you in a home of strangers to live for a short time until they do it to you again. When we think about it from that perspective, it is truly disturbing.

In addition, we are utilizing chemicals to kill as many pests as possible. The suffix ‘-icide’ literally means the act of killing. Pesticides are essentially the same product used in bio-chemical warfare during World War I. These chemicals used are not only killing off unwanted pests, they are killing off bees, not to mention the fact that poison is poison and it is not good for us either. Has it occurred to anyone why we have so many allergies, massive outbreaks of illness, various cancers and a plethora of cases of autism in recent years that have suddenly showed up? Could it be that it is correlated with these unhealthy practices? Of course it is.

Let's face it, the bees and Mother Nature at large are not happy and this is their way of saying, "Hey you, wake up and smell the foul farming practices!" Unfortunately, the EPA who are the guys in charge of our environmental protection are not doing their job. They only look at reports from the manufacturer of these detrimental products, primarily from Bayer, and not from a team of experts that don't have a stake in the money making game of pesticidal use.

The French had these same issues a decade ago and have since changed their laws and their bee population began to thrive after a mere one year. One year was all it took. When I lived there a few years ago, I was told that the French won't buy vegetation from the U.S. because our practices are not biologique—translation, we are going against biology.

With that being said, why are bees so important to us? Most obviously, they provide honey, a natural food source for humans. Honey is not only used to sweeten your morning cup of tea, it has natural healing properties used in many holistic remedies; and the connection doesn’t stop there.

Bees are the number one pollinators on the planet. Simply by landing on a flower, the bee starts the pollination process. Tiny dense hairs on the legs of the bee collect the necessary pollen. The bee then takes the succulent nectar from a flower and moves on to its next destination dropping pollen on the stigma of the new plant, giving it the ability to reproduce.

Let’s say for a moment that the bees are all gone. How would that affect us? If bees did not exist to aid in the pollination process many of the crops would become extinct. We don’t just need farmers to keep the crops alive. We absolutely and categorically need the pollinators. Taking this a step further, without bees we not only won't have the crops, but without the crops, many animal species would die off as well, eliminating more of our food sources. Without one link in the chain, many links will die off—and we will be the ones ultimately paying the price.

Bee extinction is not just a problem of our food supply. Plants and trees are fundamental to our breathing. We take in a breath of oxygen and exhale the carbon dioxide. The vegetation on the planet breathes in the carbon dioxide and breathes out the oxygen which we need to survive. Without the bees to pollinate our flora, we will not have enough trees and plants to keep us breathing.

There are nearly seven billion people living on this planet. We are sucking out every last bit of our natural resources leaving a depleted world. Managing the way we treat the Earth and all its inhabitants should be top priority in our way of thinking, not the earning of the ubiquitous dollar. Without life, what does the meaning of the dollar mean anyway?

Next time you are enjoying a picnic with friends on a hot summer day, remember how important the bee is to us before swatting it away. They are our friends. Next time you are at the grocery store, think to yourself, should I save a few cents and buy the food that is not good for me or the planet at large or should I spend a teensy bit more and do what is right for the body and Mother Earth. The choice, as always, is yours. Which route will you choose? Remember, when the consumer changes his or her purchasing practices the farmer will have to get in line and follow suit.

Thank you for reading about my Organic Bliss!

To read my sources or to see all my postings on organic living, please visit my blog Organic Bliss at http://organic-bliss.blogspot.com/

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Author's Bio: 

Lisa Tunney is a metaphysician
with an accessible approach. She has been described as “Sex and the City meets the Dalai Lama”. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree from U.C. Berkeley and a Master’s Degree in Metaphysics from the American Institute of Holistic Theology. Additionally, she teaches Shamanism, Reiki, Intuition Development, Meditation and is a Philosopher and author of the upcoming inspirational books, Blossoming Butterfly and The Seed Planter. Through the various avenues of teaching she pursues, she integrates laughter, intuition, storytelling, and most importantly, it is her goal to help guide others to listen to their own Inner Wisdom.