Sunday, May 26, 2019

Tubman on the $20 Bill Nixed

The petty and prejudiced Trump administration nixed the picture of Harriet Tubman for the $20 bill. Postponing it until 2028 citing security concerns. What bull. This is purely a political and petty action. Shame on you Donnie.

Harriet Tubman is an American hero. Known for her courageous work as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. She was also an ardent Women's Rights Activist and patron for Senior citizens building a Senior's home in Auburn, NY.

Harriet's home is located down the street from the William Seward home in Auburn, NY. Both contain Fields of Consciousness and are listed as sacred sites in my book Sacred Sites in North Star Country: Places in Greater New York State (PA,OH,NJ,CT,MA,VT,ONT) That Changed the World

The three objects mark the high points of a a Field of Consciousness in the front yard of Harriet Tubman's home.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

The Robins Eggs Finally Hatched

Robins have returned to nest above the floodlight of the patio in my backyard. I believe that this is the fourth year this has happened. You can see some of the pictures, I did not take pictures every year, by clicking ROBINS.

I will post an article with a link to the article I wrote for Life in Finger Lakes about this in few days.

This more I was happy to learn that the eggs did hatch. I was concerned because the mother Robin has been nesting for three years.

The question is whether the Robins are the same pair, part of an extended family of the first pair or were drawn by an imprint forged over years. We leave an impression of all that we think and do at a place. If we feed with the same pattern of behavior the influence of the imprint becomes stronger.




Some pictures from Sunday.




Friday, May 10, 2019

Letter on Violence

My friend and spiritual leader Ralph Singh who has been leading prayers and talking at our vigils at the Peacemaker's Sanctuary after mass shootings had a Letter to the Editor published today in the Syracuse Post Standard.

We must vaccinate our children against hate (Commentary)


Ralph Singh, of Elbridge, is chair of Wisdom Thinkers Network. The nonprofit creates training workshops for schools, religious educators and corporations to use stories in developing a more compassionate, inclusive and ethical culture. 
In this Oct. 3, 2017, file photo, Ralph Singh speaks at a sunset candlelight vigil held along Onondaga Lake's West Shore for victims of a mass shooting in Las Vegas. Singh writes in response to recent shootings at schools and houses of worship. (Michael Greenlar | mgreenlar@syracuse.com)

By Ralph Singh | Special to Syracuse.com
Following 9/11, people came together in solidarity, not simply to stand together, but to pledge that hatred and fear could not tear this nation apart. No doubt the focus was that the fabric and resiliency of our great Union was stronger than any external terrorist threat – existential or real. But what we didn’t recognize and are still not willing to come to grips with, is the enemy from within. The hatred and fear that continues to gain momentum, not just in our country but around the world. For once given air, once allowed to see the light of day, its power grows exponentially. Even more basic, is the need to control the anger and hatred that lies within each of us.
I spoke as part of the post-9/11 memorial in Clinton Square, and at another in Fulton, calling forth the light in each of us to overcome the darkness, and I was among the first group of spiritual leaders who prayed together on the wooden “bridge” that was extended next to Trinity Church overlooking the gaping hole that had been the World Trade Center. The air was heavy not simply with the dust which still clogged the streets and fogged the night air, but with the souls of the martyrs.
They were crying out: “Is it enough? Was our martyrdom enough to stop the hatred and war?”
The answer came “Yes!” But there was a condition: that we, the living, not forget – and stand against hatred. It seems we are not living up to our part.
But the attack also triggered a string of hate crimes, killings and arsons, which continue to today. Sikhs with our distinguishing turbans and beards were made the first visible target. Gobind Sadan, USA, our spiritual center in Palermo, N.Y., was the first victim of an arson attack on a house of worship in the country following 9/11. Four teens got drunk and torched the place, but instead of hatred, we responded with a powerful prayer of forgiveness from H.H. Baba Virsa Singh ji and embraced the teens as part of our family. They wrote to us from prison, “If only we’d known your story, we never would have done this.” To this day, some say that our response transformed their lives. And it brought the broader community together in love to transcend the darkness. Strangers were calling, “This is not the America I fought for.” We are with you.
It is out of that attack that the seeds of Wisdom Thinkers were sown.

Hate and its derivative, fear, have always smoldered beneath the surface. It erupts from time to time whenever and wherever it gets air. So while spiritually we can forgive and embrace others, we cannot allow hatred in whatever form to be given free reign. We have created the climate for hatred to breed and it has become rampant.
The hatred and intolerance contained in what is termed the white supremacy movement is undeniable. It cannot be ignored. And it is incumbent on our leaders from the top down – not only to condemn it, but to take the necessary steps to curtail it. All people should be welcome, as long as they leave their hatred at the door.
While the measles outbreak has garnered well-deserved attention as a major threat to public health, how do we vaccinate our children and others against hate? It is my firm conviction, that sharing each other’s stories and gathering to love our neighbors, no matter where they are from or what they look like, provides some simple first steps.
Wisdom Thinkers and wisdom thinkers of all ages have always called on humanity to rise above our baser instincts and forge a path to peace. Let us all follow that story.

Monday, May 6, 2019

IPBES--One Million Species Face Extinction

Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES)

Nature’s Dangerous Decline ‘Unprecedented’
Species Extinction Rates ‘Accelerating’

Current global response insufficient;
‘Transformative changes’ needed to restore and protect nature;
Opposition from vested interests can be overcome for public good

Most comprehensive assessment of its kind;
1,000,000 species threatened with extinction



The Report notes that, since 1980, greenhouse gas emissions have doubled, raising average global temperatures by at least 0.7 degrees Celsius – with climate change already impacting nature from the level of ecosystems to that of genetics – impacts expected to increase over the coming decades, in some cases surpassing the impact of land and sea use change and other drivers.

Despite progress to conserve nature and implement policies, the Report also finds that global goals for conserving and sustainably using nature and achieving sustainability cannot be met by current trajectories, and goals for 2030 and beyond may only be achieved through transformative changes across economic, social, political and technological factors. With good progress on components of only four of the 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets, it is likely that most will be missed by the 2020 deadline. Current negative trends in biodiversity and ecosystems will undermine progress towards 80% (35 out of 44) of the assessed targets of the Sustainable Development Goals, related to poverty, hunger, health, water, cities, climate, oceans and land (SDGs 1, 2, 3, 6, 11, 13, 14 and 15). Loss of biodiversity is therefore shown to be not only an environmental issue, but also a developmental, economic, security, social and moral issue as well.

“To better understand and, more importantly, to address the main causes of damage to biodiversity and nature’s contributions to people, we need to understand the history and global interconnection of complex demographic and economic indirect drivers of change, as well as the social values that underpin them,” said Prof. Brondízio. “Key indirect drivers include increased population and per capita consumption; technological innovation, which in some cases has lowered and in other cases increased the damage to nature; and, critically, issues of governance and accountability. A pattern that emerges is one of global interconnectivity and ‘telecoupling’ – with resource extraction and production often occurring in one part of the world to satisfy the needs of distant consumers in other regions.”


Three-quarters of the land-based environment and about 66% of the marine environment have been significantly altered by human actions. On average these trends have been less severe or avoided in areas held or managed by Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities.
More than a third of the world’s land surface and nearly 75% of freshwater resources are now devoted to crop or livestock production.
The value of agricultural crop production has increased by about 300% since 1970, raw timber harvest has risen by 45% and approximately 60 billion tons of renewable and nonrenewable resources are now extracted globally every year – having nearly doubled since 1980.
Land degradation has reduced the productivity of 23% of the global land surface, up to US$577 billion in annual global crops are at risk from pollinator loss and 100-300 million people are at increased risk of floods and hurricanes because of loss of coastal habitats and protection.
In 2015, 33% of marine fish stocks were being harvested at unsustainable levels; 60% were maximally sustainably fished, with just 7% harvested at levels lower than what can be sustainably fished.
Urban areas have more than doubled since 1992.
Plastic pollution has increased tenfold since 1980, 300-400 million tons of heavy metals, solvents, toxic sludge and other wastes from industrial facilities are dumped annually into the world’s waters, and fertilizers entering coastal ecosystems have produced more than 400 ocean ‘dead zones’, totalling more than 245,000 km2 (591-595) - a combined area greater than that of the United Kingdom.
Negative trends in nature will continue to 2050 and beyond in all of the policy scenarios explored in the Report, except those that include transformative change – due to the projected impacts of increasing land-use change, exploitation of organisms and climate change, although with significant differences between regions.



Monday, April 22, 2019

Go Out Today and Hug Your Mother and say THANKS

Today is Earth Day. Take a hike. Do some gardening. Find a way to connect with our Mother. Most of all give  THANKS to Her.

Below is an article from Seattle based Grist on how Earth Day has been co-opted by corporations and other special interests. Two years ago I wrote about how science and technology, two of the biggest perpetrators of damage to our Mother, were co-opting Earth Day March for Science--Co-opts Earth Day Love for our Mother should not be platform to sell.

Fortunately as the article notes kids are beginning to take over..

Blessings,
madis




BACK IN MY EARTH DAY

Love it or hate it, Earth Day’s just not what it used to be. What happened?

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Tap Water Better Than Bottled Water--Consumer Reports

Consumer Reports just reported that several brands of bottled water contained high levels of arsenic and other harmful chemicals and recommended drinking tap water. It also found federal water purity standards deficient and recommended increasing standards.

Arsenic in Some Bottled Water Brands at Unsafe Levels, Consumer Reports Says

Drink Living Water


Monday, April 15, 2019

Technology Kills---Rising Cell Phone/Social Media Use Creates a Loss of Empathy and a Rise in Loneliness and Anger

I found this sponsored link on Bloomberg this AM Decline in Human Empathy Creates Global Risks in the 'Age of Anger' on the damage to humanity from the use of cell phones and other new technologies. Basically they are  making us less empathetic and more  lonely and angry. It is a summary of the 'World Economic Forum: Global Risks Report 2019. It does appear to refer to some new research that I will try and access.

As I have been saying for over a decade TECHNOLOGY KILLS. Click on the Labels Section below to read some of my posts on this. Cell phones, social media and other technologies are hollowing out our souls. My upcoming book due out in September Everything Has Karma, Learning to Embrace Our Interconnectedness goes into much more detail on this.

Below are a few quotes from the article.

 Decline in Human Empathy Creates Global Risks in the 'Age of Anger'

Our interconnected world has never had more lonely, angry people. Is technology responsible for a decline in human empathy?

As today’s economy grows more interconnected, a new global phenomenon has emerged: the growing number of people who feel disconnected and isolated.

Technology is a complex factor in rising levels of anger and loneliness. The Global Risk Report notes that in a recent study, technology was cited as a major cause of loneliness and social isolation by 58 percent of survey respondents in the United States and 50 percent in the United Kingdom. But the same survey found that social media makes it easier for people to “connect with others in a meaningful way” and that lonely people were no more likely to use social media.  


ervasive digital technology has also blurred the boundary between the workplace and home. Work-related emails often start before office hours and continue long after close of business. A 2016 study by Pew Research Center found that nearly one-third of American adults never turn off their smartphones.
Even as professional pressures increasingly encroach upon private life, people often don’t have traditional support networks at home. The percentage of single-person households in the U.K. has almost doubled over the last 50 years, with similar increases in the U.S., Germany and Japan. In urban capitals, the number of “solitaries” is even higher: 50 percent in Paris, 60 percent in Stockholm. In Midtown Manhattan, 94 percent of households are single-person.
Urbanization weakens social bonds not just in cities, but also in the communities and households that migrant workers leave behind, and growing social isolation is a trend in established and emerging economies alike. The proportion of people feeling lonely in the U.K. climbed to 22 percent in 2017 from an average of 17 percent in 2014-2016, with a sharp drop in the number of people who reported never feeling lonely, according to a survey published by the Cabinet Office.
These results mirror those of a study in American Sociological Review that looked at the number of close friends that people have. In 1985, the average number of close friends was 2.9; by 2004 it was 2.1. The percentage of people who responded that they had no close friends at all tripled over the same period.
“Emotionally, people are quite lonely. We’re seeing in many societies a kind of breakdown of family, or connection with family,” Scott says. “I think it’s also a demographic thing; younger people are more tuned into using technology and social media, and to live in a world talking to machines through chatbots. That can create all sorts of emotions of fear and frustration, and in some cases that frustration can get expressed as anger.”
Individual psychological and emotional problems can become collective concerns when loneliness and frustration meet populist and identity politics—an emerging reality in what is becoming known as the “age of anger.” According to the Global Risks Report, these trends may pose a significant threat to geopolitical stability.
“Individual harms matter in themselves, but they can also feed into wider systemic risks—for example, potential political, societal, technological and environmental disruptions,” Scott says. “A world of increasingly divided and angry people would be likely to generate volatile electoral results and decrease the chance of solving complex multi-stakeholder global risks. If empathy were to continue to decline, the risks might be even starker.”
The decline in empathy is not just anecdotal. One study of American students published in Personality and Social Psychology Review revealed that levels of empathy in this demographic fell by 48 percent between 1979 and 2009. Possible causes of the growing empathy gap include increasing materialism, changing parenting methods and the digital echo chamber, in which people anchor themselves in close-knit groups of like-minded people. Such echo-chamber effects aren’t always as obvious as those seen on social media. For example, researchers have found that the matching processes used on dating platforms can also weaken social bonds.