My brother-in-law is an avid fly fisherman. As we were hiking the other day, he began to wax eloquent on the art and mystique of fly fishing. "As a fly fisherman," he said, "I'm not trying to catch fish... I'm trying to get caught."
I've been thinking about that. That may seem to be a subtle difference at first pass, but with a little more consideration it becomes evident that the difference between the two mind-sets is profound.
And, what an apt metaphor for the juxtaposition of conventional beekeeping to bee-centric beekeeping.
What my brother-in-law was saying is that there is a very real difference between trying to catch fish and trying to get caught. Instead of bringing his own world and worldview to bear upon his efforts to catch a fish, he is, in trying to get caught, entering the world of the fish - seeking to understand how the fish is designed to live, what it needs, and how it interacts with its own world.
As bee-centric beekeepers, we need to do exactly the same thing in regards to our relationship with honey bees. Conventional beekeeping brings the human world, worldview, and mind-set to bear upon the bees. Bee-centric beekeeping lays all of that down and seeks to see the bees themselves; to enter their world in order to understand how they're designed to live, what they need, and how they interact with the larger world, so that we can better steward the earth in ways that will bring wholeness and healing to the earth, to the bees, and to us.
An example of the difference between these two mind-sets can be found in the difference between these two questions:
How can I control Varroa mites in my colonies?
What do the bees need in order to successfully reach symbiosis with Varroa mites?