Beautiful Healing

“Sometime prior to (a workshop at the Farm of Peace) I had been quite ill with an upper respiratory problem. After a round of antibiotics, I was left with a prolonged inability to speak normally. At times I could not speak at all. As the doctor suspected allergies, and I suspected gluten, I had begun, and continue, a gluten-free diet. However, when I arrived at (the Farm), I still could not speak reliably or, often, audibly.

…My voice kind of came back at (the workshop). Though I’d begun the diet prior thereto, it was at (the workshop) that my healing really began to take off. Progression was no longer slow, linear. No longer mathematical, but exponential.  I do not feel adequate to the tasks of understanding or explaining what happened, but something very important to me, did happen. I credit Salima, (I think of her as, in that context, God’s engine) the food, all of the people, the surroundings, Sidi and of course, Allah. My voice has continued to gain strength (who knew i could chant for a 1/2 hour straight with gusto!) and I have never lost it again, (thanks be to Allah), though it has had its briefly challenged moments.

This is a huge healing for me. That was July; this is the next January. In the past, in the pre-workshop natural progression of things, within that span of time I might well have lost my voice at least two more times. And yet, since then, not even once.  I still long for silence sometimes, but the longing is different.  Maybe it’s the chanting, which I learned at (the workshop), that helps to quench that need; I don’t know.  But I do know that my body has experienced a healing I had no right to expect and could not have imagined prior to (the workshop). The subtle yet enormously powerful and seemingly perfectly- personally- calibrated- to- me quality of the healing–healing that came full, immediate, like the gift of a warm soft cape on the coldest of nights–makes me enormously grateful.

The above is a description of only one of the many gifts with which I have been blessed since (the workshop at the Farm of Peace). This path often leaves me weeping–grateful tears.”  E.R.

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We hope you are enjoying the winter months and finding some rest in the shorter days.  I find that farming has given me a deep appreciation for the ebb and flow of the seasons, and I am glad to receive the time to rest my body.  At the same time, I am dreaming of green, and ready to go!  Jesse is working on some renovations to the seed starting house, and intending to begin planting seeds in the next couple weeks.  Onion seed will be the first to sow inside, followed by beets and carrots under tunnels in the field.

Before all of our energy shifts to planting seeds, caring for them and life back outdoors, we are using the gift of winter to spread the word about the coming season, educate ourselves, and build our team.

There are so many facets to my love of the CSA model, one of which is it’s ability to bring together a team of those supporting a common cause.  It is so inspiring to me that we can support each other in creating local and healthy food systems with such ease.  It is so simple!  Local farms growing food and delivering to local communities, on porches and at community centers.  This is really knowing where your food comes from and reforging an ancient connection that I believe nurtures not only our bodies, but our hearts and souls.

We don’t each need to grow our own food.  But we all eat, and receiving food that is grown chemical free, and knowing where it came from is such a gift.  Especially in a world where the food production system can be somewhat dysfunctional.  We do not need to consume the gasoline it takes to get a tomato from California, when they are growing all around us, in season of course.

In joining this team, you not only receive an abundance of produce you beets can trust was picked fresh and grown locally, but you support the livelihood of a small farm and continue diversified and sustainable agriculture into the future, alive and well.

We hope you can join us for the 2013 CSA!  As the winter allows us more time indoors to prepare for the season, we appreciate your early enrollment and reservation for spring deliveries.  We hope in the coming weeks to be off the computer and in the greenhouse, planting the seeds to fill your share.

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We Have Lamb!

Dec. 5, 2012. Do you enjoy tender, tasty lamb? We have good news — there are 5 lambs left for purchase here at the Farm. They are cut and frozen and available for on-farm pickup only. Prices range from $250 to $300 depending on the size of the lamb. If you can’t eat a whole lamb, get some friends together and share! Contact: Rifqa Parrino at 240 498 2949.

Recent customers have commented:

“We had lamb chops for dinner – it was delicious!”
— 2012 customer, Virginia

“[The lamb was] all very much to our liking. … One neighbor called after they had finished off a leg to say how wonderful it was and thank me for letting them know about it. We had chops and rib chops for dinner …. even out youngest (who can be picky) was raving about them…. Thanks for all your work to grow the lambs…..”
— 2012 customers, Takoma Park, Md

“Please call me when your lambs are available next year!”
— 2012, former restaurant chef, West Virginia

“My mom cooked a dish … today and it was just so delicious. The lamb meat is exquisite…. Maybe I’ll buy another lamb!”
— 2012 customer, Silver Spring, Md

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Our lambing season came and went in a whirlwind 8 days – leaving us with 33 new lambs.  All but two are frisking out in the field with their relieved and much slimmer moms, while two are being bottle fed after being rejected by their mothers. We have 50% more lambs than last year and most will be for sale for freezer lamb or eid sacrifices this fall.  Contact us if interested in reserving your lamb – leave a message for Rifqa Parrino at  717-573-4722.

Tunis Ewe Nuzzles Her Days-Old Lamb, April 2012

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I feel so blessed and grateful to be a new adventurer and volunteer at the children’s school!  I am primarily helping the younger children learn math and reading but find that they are so excited to teach me everything and include me in their learning which is so rewarding.  I am overflowing with joy and wonderful things to share!  This is the first in what I hope to be many posts to share snapshots of a day at school here on the Farm of Peace.  Next time, more pictures!!

Last week we trudged down to the stream on the North edge of the Farm to look for aquatic insects.  The children are learning that certain insects cannot survive in water that it not clean.  After finding insects mostly in class two and even some in class one, they know the water is very clean because  class one insects can only survive in the cleanest of water.  Praise God!  We turned over rocks to find black fly larvae, caddisflies, mayfly larvae, leeches, and more.  The children then came back to the classroom and drew what they remembered.  Not just in the river, but all along the way to and from the river, Eddie, their teacher reminded them that they are scientists!  Who is dining at this tree stump and leaving acorn husks behind?  Squirrels!  Who has made a home under this log?  No visible residents today.  Can you feel the great and wondrous expansion in the life of a child…?

Besides weaving science and art with nature, music is also a big part of their week.  Application of patterns and rhythms is important when knowing how to apply math, (Imagine: Counting out loud, making movements with your body, taking turns and staying in rhythm all at once!!!)  but it also comes into play with music and in the instrument they are learning, the ukulele.  Three weeks ago they sang a special performance of the two songs that they themselves had written:  “Coming to America” and “Speaking Japanese.”  Here is a clip of “Speaking Japanese:”

Song: “Speaking Japanese”

A special thank you to all the people who have supported the Farm of Peace and our children’s school, The September School.  You are truly helping to create a precious jewel.

With love,

Rifqa Rebecca Zaban-Boylan

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“Come and be in the Love! Open your heart to receive the deep Love, Peace and Mercy” —  Salaam P., participant


Are you curious about the teachings of the Sufi Way or are you seeking to experience those teachings more deeply?

Join Salima Adelstein for Gardens of Truth, a monthly Sufi School at the Farm of Peace.  You will learn from the lives of Sufi masters, study the secrets of the Divine Names and letters, receive deep healing and teachings that allow your heart to open to living a life of greater love with more mercy and peace.


There will be a Sufi healing circle (Dhikr circle) on Thursday evening at 7 PM.  The class takes place on Friday and Saturday from 9:30 AM to 5 PM, and on Sunday from 9:30 AM to 1 PM. This month’s class happens on Feb. 9-12.  Come and taste the beauty of your own heart.


Call the Farm of Peace at 717-573-4722 or contact us for information and to register!


“The Love Salima carries is beyond words! Thank you, thank you, thank you! ” — Halima C

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