Swarms, Hives, Colonies and The Return of the HoneyBees



A (bee) Colony is made up of: 

Males (drone), Female (queen), Workers (forger)

1. Queen (lays eggs)

2. Forger (gathers food and pollinates)

3. Drone (male bees that mate with the queens)


Colonies are collapsing and bees are dying as a result!

A third of all fruit and vegetables are pollinated by honeybees and a third of honey bees have vanished

The honey bee is the only insect known to produce a food source for humans. Aside from creating Honey, the only food produced by an insect that humans consume willingly, they also pollinate a wide array of plants and flowers. There are ramifications on the ongoing plight of bees and how it effects us. Here’s just a few notable foods humans stand to lose in substantial quantities if they continue dying.

Alfalfa, Almonds, Apples, Apricot, Blackberry, Blueberry, Bok Choy, Brazil Nuts, Cherry, Clovers, Cucumbers, Grapes, Mangoes, Muskmelon, Nectarine, Papaya, Peach, Pear, Persimmon, native Plum, Prunes, Pumpkin, Raspberry, Squash, Sunflower, Tamarind, Tomatoes, Trefoil, Watermelon and Vanilla.


How can we Save the Honey Bees?

‘In light of the mass deaths of whole colonies, it has eerily reminded me of something that Albert Einstein obscurely remarked, “If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live?” What is more disturbing then Einstein’s concise predictions, is his certainty in the matter. Whether we will lose the battle to help honey bees remains to be seen […] If trends continue, they’re in real danger of becoming an endangered species. With the loss of honey bees, so will the pollination of one third of the planet’s food production. It will no doubt, effect this planet and its human inhabitants profoundly. Imagine an increasingly hungry world faced with even more hunger, is it a future you want to see?’ (Source of This Material)

Throughout Europe and the Western World whole Kingdom Colonies have collapsed and Travelling Workers (drone bees) have almost completely dissapeared becoming an endangered species. The ways of our Creator (pollen); how he patterned this world (hives) have largely been lost or neglected and we’ve forgotten how to live together in harmony with the Creator, each other and His creation (colonies). People are getting very hungry…

The Four Years to Live prediction of Einstein reminds me of the 4 Year Cycle Jesus described in his intriguing story of The Fruitless Tree. A man who planted a garden came to a tree to get some fruit- and for 3 years running- not a single piece of fruit was produced. So he said to the gardener- chop it down- why should it waste and use up the soil? The gardener said to the owner- give it one more year, I will apply special fertiliser to the tree- and then if it produces no fruit after a year- then chop it down…


A stagnant pool is a place not flowing or moving, often foul-smelling or stale; stagnant pools and stagnant air. Showing little to no activity or vitality; inactive, sluggish, dull; as in a stagnant economy or a stagnant mind. Not flowing or running, as in water or air. Characterised by lack of development, advancement, or progressive movement. Dormant, lifeless, dead, inert, lazy…

This is in stark contrast to living water flowing through a pulsating, life-giving river whose trees provide fruit for food and leaves for the healing of nations, whose fruit yields every month and where swarms are found…fish of every kind abound in it’s fresh waters, life flourishes wherever the river flows and fishermen stand along the shores with their nets drying in the sun…


What’s the cause of stagnation (as in a stagnant pool) versus a swarming river? 

One word:


As an Individual– do you have freshness flowing in and are you flowing out to others so that out of you are flowing rivers of living waters

As Communities– do you have fresh people flowing in and are you as a community flowing out to others

As Organizations– do we welcome ‘foreign elements’ to speak into what we are doing and are we sending our people out to new situations, people groups, places…or are we simply operating a ‘protection racket?’


The drone bees are returning. They have to. We need them. The reason why so many of our churches and organisations (both new forms and old) are in a place of stagnation is because of the lack of cross-pollination of people and ideas carried from one place to another…

Although the disciple ‘closest to Jesus’ warns us not to flow with every idea and person who comes from outside of our sign-system, group or network, church or organisation but to ‘test what they bring’ (2 John) He also speaks of the blessing that ‘Travelling Workers’ bring to movements and so we are to welcome them, provide for them, and support them so that we can become their partners in a collaborative and expansive work. 

He speaks strongly against ‘local leadership’ that refuses to welcome these pollen carriers, and not only that, but those who actually go on to speak against them, bringing accusations against them and telling others not to help them…the motivation for this ought to be perfectly clear- the reason a local leader would do this, is because they ‘desire to be first’, they ‘love to be the leader’ and feel threatened when ‘outsiders come in’ to disturb the status quo (3 John) 

The irony is, by preventing outside influence coming in, no cross-pollination occurs, so the very thing that one tries to protect and keep alive from outside influence- is the very thing that then stagnates and dies yielding little to no fruit and little to no reproduction

In comparison, an over-achieving and highly productive worker (bee) may visit up to 2,000 flowers per day. The honey bee knows sacrifice, they are the only bees that die after they use their stingers. As Jesus pointed out, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies it remains only single (single leader syndrome). But if it dies it multiplies. We have a saying in the movement- We Die to Multiply

Is it no wonder then that in the history of ground-swelling movements, thousands of travellers have flowed across lands, circuiting from place to place. This happened with St Patrick and the early monastic founders, it happened with John Wycliffe and his Lollards (poor preachers), it happened with George Fox and the Quakers, John Wesley, Francis Asbury and the Methodist Circuit Riders, William and Catherine Booth and the Salvation Army who travelled the land like a circus and the Early Pentecostals with their healing spectaculars…They were welcomed by locals and sent out to the next places and peoples where they were received. Where they were not welcomed, they ‘shook the dust of their feet’ and moved on as Jesus and his disciples had done (see Matt 10, Luke 10)


And so the time has come to rediscover, recognise and welcome the vital role the ‘travelling bees‘ play in our ecosystem and economy. The 21st Century needs a whole new breed of drones. We need;

Pioneer Prophets like the Early Quakers. Who sat in circles in silence and were only moved when the Spirit spoke through them and went wherever the wind blew them…as soon as they were moved, they spoke and went, immediately. Like the activists of today, they put themselves in harms way as they spoke out against injustice and spoke up for those whose voice had been crushed by systems of oppression. 

We need;

Pioneer Preachers
like the Early Salvation Army, who reclaimed old army uniforms from the scrap heap to create a whole new form of fashion, utilised the marketing genius of the Victorian travelling circus and bare-knuckle street fighters, picked up the sounds of the underground and noise of the masses and invaded new towns with astonishing spectacular

We dare not go without…

Pioneer Planters
like the Early Methodists who fashioned whole new forms of organisation made up of a pic’n’mix array of communities of all shapes and sizes that could gather and scatter, collapse and expand, and rearrange and reorder themselves like Lego bricks or a game of Tetris 

We see on the horizon the A Whole New World of hives and colonies of makers, independent record labels that create A THOUSAND NEW SONGS, collectives of musicians who send out travelling bands across the landscape, artists and activists who Space Invade to transform abandoned places into creative spaces, stagnant pools into life giving rivers

I speak to those whose hearts burn as they read these words…whose strings vibrate to the same resonance because you’ve already seen it, you’ve already heard it…whether you have any knowledge of the practices or teachings of Jesus or not…this already makes sense to you….
If that’s you

Let’s go…

And let’s go together


Why Do Honey Bees Swarm?

A swarm is the natural way for bees to multiply and produce new colonies. Swarming is the process where a bee colony is formed. 

Collectively we are currently swarming the 12 Regions of Britain and Ireland, the 50 Countries of Europe 

A Swarm is where Travelling Trainers, Prophets, Preachers, Planters or even Inventors, Pioneers and Entrepreneurs all engage a certain people group or place at the same time and for a specific period of time until a new colony emerges

There are opportunities to ‘swarm with us‘ in locations across the continent as we join existing hubs or form new ones that creatively colonise their region

When we swarm together, there’s such a buzz… 


‘Our aim is to create a mesh network of smart colonies, generating data to share openly on smart citizen platforms’


‘Can a smart beehive network of open source hives help stop the bee apocalypse?’ – biju.co.uk

The answer is YES!

Although some hives (hubs) are man made, whilst others are natural, either way- hives (hubs) help colonies to thrive

Hubs (hardware) are connected through Networks of Innovation (tribal flows of people’s and ideas- travelling drone bees), with Open Source Operating Systems (software)

There is an opportunity to architect hubs across Europe, that each create part of the software (training and gaming packages) that through Networks of Innovation collectively and collaborately Build An Ark that mobilises Generations XYZ to literally create new forms that change the world. When the archetypes and avatars, life forms and new forms emerge out of the ark from the flood, a Whole New World is born 

(Note to those ‘architecting hubs’ -Hives (Hubs) should be fitted with automated alert systems that send out and receivnew people and ideas before things get stale and flows stop, colonies collapse and bees die out)


Jazz is fundamentally the cross-pollination of individual musicians playing together and against each other in small groups‘ – Ralph de Toledans

I like the sound of that…All sorts of crops are pollinated by honey bees. Pollination is a vital part of creating the diversity in the environment we enjoy

How diverse is your world?


THE COMPLEX DANCE:: Dance the Salsa
Honey bees perform the most complex symbolic language/dance of any insect on the planet. 

But many colonies have simply forgotten to dance, they’ve abandoned the creative tension that comes from dancing the salsa (incidentally, the name “salsa” means ‘mixture’ and was created by record labels to better market their music. They chose the word “salsa” because of its spicy and hot connotations, the term came about because salsa dancing and music is a mixture of different styles, just like salsa or “sauce” in Latin American countries is a mixture of different ingredient)

Cross-pollination is the transfer of pollen from the male reproductive organ of one plant to the female reproductive organ of another plant. Insects, like bees, and the wind are the main agents of cross-pollination. Likewise, one might anticipate, the result of a hot and spicy salsa dance between male and female counterparts and the creative tension that releases. The word Jazz was a colloquial expression for sex

Of course

Bees Make Honey

Travelling Workers Cross-Pollinate

Salsa Reproduces 

Collaborative Colonies Emerge

Networks of Innovation Connect

And all that Jazz…

(Thanks to Nick Duffy and Alan Taylor)


{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: