Engineless Abundance

I had a engineless rant brewing in my mind for the last couple of days. All about how impossible it is to sail engineless. Or at least that is what I often hear. I will mention that I don't have an engine and someone will say "oh, that's great but you can't do X". If I explain how I can do X something else comes up. The cycle is endless.

Well I was already to come out a ranting when I stumbled across a new, to me, blog proafile and a post by Michael titled Power vs. Sail, Takers vs. Leavers. I really, really enjoyed reading this post and I highly recommend it. It is inspired by Daniel Quinn's book Ismael (which I also highly recommend) and the idea of the society of Takers and Leavers.
Quinn categorizes cultures into two distinct types: the "Leavers" and the "Takers". Leavers are cultures that take from the environment only what they need to survive, and leave the rest. Takers do just that - they take it all - whether they really need it or not.
Michael relates these concepts to powerboats and sailboats. First powerboats:
Powerboats represent the Taker personality. A powerboat stores up (hoards) energy in the form of diesel before a voyage. A voyage under power is all about planning - time, distance, fuel. You can know before you leave how it will turn out as long as you plan carefully. Wind and tide may not be in your favor, but if you have enough fuel and enough power, even the forces of nature will not dramatically effect the outcome. Of course, given the fracking big forces nature may throw at a boat, a powerboat can never really have "enough" range, speed or power, so there in a nutshell is the Taker dilemma: always wanting more.
And sailboats:
Sailboats are Leavers. A sailboat, by its very nature, cannot store up its motive power. It's a rare example of forced "Leaverhood". It catches the wind, and then lets it go. A wind powered vessel heads to sea carrying only the faith that the wind will be sufficient to make the passage. It doesn't know exactly how long it will take or how difficult, but it trusts that it will eventually get to where its going. That is a profound difference in attitude. A sailboat doesn't focus on limits, but on abundance. The amount of power available in the atmosphere at any time is always far, far greater than any boat can possibly use. A sailboat doesn't worry about "wasting" the wind. It doesn't parse out a meager ration, no, it only tries to catch a tiny fraction of the immense power available to meet its needs. It DOES need to be alert, or "present in the moment", if it hopes to take best advantage of the wind, but it absolutely never need worry about running out.
The line that really struck me was "A sailboat doesn't focus on limits, but on abundance". This really nailed my experience of sailing without an engine and why it is so futile to try and argue why one does it. It just isn't about what you can't do, it is about the abundance of what you can do.

Michael goes on to speak about a story of the Australian Aborigines:
I once read about the Australian Aborigines and their attitude toward the land that sustains them. They speak of the remarkable abundance of their land, and their deep felt appreciation for its bounty. This is from a people who live on the most barren continent on earth (save Antarctica).
Which is exactly how I feel about the abundance of sailing in the Pacific Northwest, an area considered by many to be barren of wind. Perhaps in our our rush to "hoard" we miss the abundance all around us.