Sacred Seed

Whatever happens to seed affects the web of life ~Dr. Vandana Shiva

In collaboration with Vandana Shiva and the Golden Sufi Center, the Global Peace Initiative of Women recently released SACRED SEED, a global collection of essays by preeminent spiritual and religious leaders on the importance of seed preservation and seed integrity in our times.


Sacred Seed, Edited by Global Peace Initiative of Women, Introduction by Dr. Vandana Shiva, Published by The Golden Sufi Center, November 2014, 144 pgs.

Essential to survival, seeds have profound spiritual implications. For centuries the planting of seed in the Earth not only nourished humanity, but also symbolized the mystery of life and the journey of the soul. In our current supermarket lifestyle of pre-packaged products, far removed from the cycles of planting, we have nearly forgotten this mystery. Now as the integrity of the seed is threatened, so is its primal meaning.

Sacred Seed Book Trailer 2014, Music by Kesang Marstrand.

Inspired by physicist and environmental leader Dr. Vandana Shiva, each essay draws on the wisdom of ancient and modern traditions. Mystics, shamans, monastics and priests remind us of the profound sacredness of the seed -how in its purity, it is the source and renewal of all of life. Composed of beautiful original writings and photos, this book bears witness that the Earth is alive, and establishes that only by working together with the Earth -with its wonder and mystery, can we help in its healing and regeneration and once again bring meaning back into the world.

Edited and compiled by the Global Peace Initiative of Women, the book includes contributions from His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, H.H. the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje, Sister Joan Chittister, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Pir Zia Inayat-Khan, Swami Veda Bharati, Rabbi Arthur Waskow, Chief Tamale Bwoya, Blu Greenberg & others.

A New Year Message from Dr. Vandana Shiva Founder of Navdanya for 2015.


Vandana Shiva was born in 1952 to a Brahmin family in the foothills of the Himalayas. In the 1970s, she attended university in Canada and wrote a thesis on ‘Hidden Variables and Non-locality in Quantum Theory’ and earned her PhD in the philosophy of science. She later shifted to inter-disciplinary research in science, technology and environmental policy, which she carried out in India. As an activist focused on biodiversity and biotechnology, Shiva has been called the Gandhi of grain.

As Shiva sees it, seeds are sacred. We have a duty to share and save them. Inspired to prevent private control of genetic material and encourage sustainable, nonindustrial agriculture, she founded a network of seed keepers and organic producers across 17 states in India called NavdanyaNavdanya means “nine seeds” -symbolizing protection of biological and cultural diversity, and also the “new gift” -for seed as commons, based on the right to save and share seeds. In today’s context of biological and ecological destruction, seed savers are the true givers of seed. This gift or “dana” of Navadhanyas (nine seeds) is the ultimate gift -it is a gift of life, of heritage and continuity. Conserving seed is conserving biodiversity, conserving knowledge of the seed and its utilization, conserving culture, conserving sustainability.