Earth Guardians began as an accredited high school in Maui, Hawaii in 1992, focusing on environmental awareness and action in its core curriculum. Students studied the history of social movements and took action to restore sandalwood forests and shut down the toxic practice of burning sugar cane. The school became recognized throughout the Hawaiian Islands and beyond, with the Dalai Lama presenting the Children's Torch of Hope to twenty-five Earth Guardian students.
Seeing the need to empower and give voice to a wider audience prompted Earth Guardians to relocate to Colorado in 1997 and engage more young people in programs to empower and amplify their voice. Earth Guardians began teaching youth about the involvement in political action and activism, working to stop the spraying of pesticides in public parks, establishing an environmental fee on plastic bags, advocating for municipalizing Boulder's energy grid, and helping to achieve a moratorium on fracking. Earth Guardians received a great deal of press and attention for local actions, allowing the organization to expand into national and international work.
Now with thousands of engaged youth on six continents, Earth Guardians has given youth a voice and direction worldwide in order to become effective leaders and make measurable change in their communities. Earth Guardians is developing the resources to build a stronger collaborative network and cultivate this large wave of youth engagement.
Often when struggling with the daunting and discouraging environmental issues confronting humanity, I reflect on the strategy of the Jains and its central teaching of nonviolence. While this religious approach may not suit all, I believe there are some principles which could be shared more broadly to become part of the foundation of a sustainable future built on principles of respect, compassion, and discipline. This week, I consider the Jain Festivals of Paryushan and Das-Lakshan.
I’m sitting cross-legged, yogi-like, meditating next to a small pond in an endless forest under an endless sky, bathing in the brilliant light of the moon and a smattering of stars, letting my brain, mind, and soul wander in and out of conscious thought, body chilled, but stilled, by the night’s crisp breeze. The hour is unknown, the date forgotten, all responsibilities of my daily life nothing but a wrinkle in a seemingly long ago time. As I slowly, slowly, lift my gaze across the fallen night, I begin to have what can only be described as a spiritual, organic, out-of-body experience; taking in tree, grass, earth, water, feeling every pore and molecule of my body pulsing to the rhythm of nature, my eyes fix straight across the moonlit twilight, and, as if by forces of magic, or perhaps just the totality of inner serenity, I see a face. An ancient, chillingly familiar, yet unknown visage, that I immediately, without thinking, or comprehending, perhaps from the deepest nodes of my mammalian mind, connect as my hominid ancestor. I know this without knowing, believe it without reasoning, and sense that really, it, and I, are looking deeply into myself. We regard each other attentively… wistfully. A few seconds pass… or perhaps a span of eons. A shiver is sent down my spine. The wind blows its soft breath. I close my eyes. It disappears. I feel changed. Bettered. At peace.
Often when struggling with the daunting and discouraging environmental issues confronting humanity, I reflect on the strategy of the Jains and its central teaching of nonviolence. While this religious approach may not suit all, I believe there are some principles which could be shared more broadly to become part of the foundation of a sustainable future built on principles of respect, compassion, and discipline. This week, Maneka Sanjay Gandhi introduces ahimsa –the central, non-violence duty of Jainism.
– Dr. Sulekh C. Jain
Is humanity nothing more than a cancer on the planet, consuming its host until it is gone, guaranteeing its own destruction in the process? A quick glance at the effects of our behavior might lead us to say yes. But looks can be deceiving. Nature shows us that what is destructive on one level can also be part of a larger process of change that creates new forms of value at another level... To check the facts in the video, please go to http://www.climatehealers.org/facts Learn more at http://www.climatehealers.org/booksRead more
by William Ophuls
Specialists without spirit, sensualists without heart; this nullity imagines that it has attained a level of civilization never before achieved. Max Weber(1)
Tracing the history of the human race over the past 15,000 years, historian Ian Morris concludes that humanity faces a stark choice between “Singularity” or “Nightfall”—that is, between total technological mastery or utter apocalyptic ruin.(2) In short, between utopia or oblivion, as anticipated half a century ago by Buckminster Fuller.(3)
The path to oblivion is well marked. If a sufficiently large asteroid hits the earth, a remote possibility in the short term, the human race will go the way of the dinosaurs in a mass extinction event. If madmen in charge of nations decide to launch thermonuclear war, unfortunately not such a remote possibility, a nuclear winter could accomplish roughly the same end. And if current ecological trends are allowed to run their course, a lethal cocktail of pollution, disease, depletion, degradation, and destruction accompanied by economic collapse, social turmoil, and political violence will produce almost the same outcome.
Watch Rev. Michael Curry from North Carolina give a powerful sermon at the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.