Some say the deepest insights come during tsunami-sized personal crisis. My wife’s cancer provided that opportunity. A thread of hope pulled a boulder of fear at each step, the suspicious mammogram, the confirming biopsy, the hope-we-get-it-all surgery, waiting in oncology with a room full of dark-eyed women all wearing pull-down caps. We are but small specks in something very immense and mysterious. I wondered how others experienced their pilgrimage through the big unknown.
Inspired, I decided to take a different kind of biopsy. I wanted to take a core sample of humanity from one hundred vineyard workers, winemakers, and winery owners around the world. I hoped this sample could provide an X-ray snapshot of what it means to be human at this moment in history.
Thus every contributor becomes a collective hero, reflecting on his/her personal navigation in minute increments the course of life on spaceship Earth. Vineyard light is a metaphor for the light that shines from the wisdom of travelers who have worked in the vineyard.
But why choose a view from the vineyard? Perhaps rows of vines are to me what Walden Pond was for Henry David Thoreau, a park bench from which to watch life and the universe. Perhaps it’s the same reason that Noah planted a vineyard as soon as the flood subsided. Perhaps the same reason Jesus and Mohammed used the vineyard in their parables. Vineyard roots wander down through at least 7,500 years of human history. What a better perspective on human existence on our planet.
The day is waiting to happen.