Help transform underutilized schoolyards into farms from now until Dec. 6th by donating to Schoolyard Farms’ Indiegogo campaign. Together we can bring back the basics of how to grow food and cook nutritious meals. In turn, we’ll nourish our kids and our communities. Schoolyard Farms is working to create farms from underused schoolyard space to feed cafeterias and educate students about healthy food-systems. Schoolyard Farms has spent the last two years laying the groundwork to make this vision a reality in Milwaukie, Oregon: They have cultivated their first three-quarter acre farm at Candy Lane Elementary, sold thousands of pounds of produce to our community, designed and taught garden-based curriculum to over 300 students, built their community’s support and a board of directors. Now they need our help to grow from a grassroots, volunteer project to a sustainable organization that can expand to other schools and make a profound impact.
Click here to make a donation before Dec. 6th.
The world generates about a billion tons of garbage a year. Those who live with it and from it are the poor – like the people of Cateura, Paraguay. And here they are transforming it into beauty. Landfill Harmonic follows the orchestra as it takes its inspiring spectacle of trash-into-music around the world. Follow the lives of a garbage picker, a music teacher and a group of children from a Paraguayan slum that out of necessity started creating instruments entirely out of garbage. Landfill Harmonic is a beautiful story about the trans-formative power of music, which also highlights two vital issues of our times: poverty and waste pollution.
Click here to learn more.
Switzerland will hold a vote on whether to introduce a basic income for all adults, in a further sign of growing public activism over pay inequality since the financial crisis.
A grassroots committee is calling for all adults in Switzerland to receive an unconditional income of 2,500 Swiss francs — about $2,800 — per month from the state, with the aim of providing a financial safety net for the population.
Organizers submitted more than the 100,000 signatures needed to call a referendum on Friday and tipped a truckload of 8 million five-cent coins outside the parliament building in Bern, one for each person living in Switzerland.
Under Swiss law, citizens can organize popular initiatives that allow the channeling of public anger into direct political action. The country usually holds several referenda a year.
Afsana is a female professional driver in Bangladesh trained by BRAC as part of its “Women Steering Forward” program. Despite opposition from family members, Afsana’s husband supported her career path. “For me, it’s like going out for battle in the street every morning, fighting this patriarchal monopoly,” says Afsana, who faces verbal abuse but remains undeterred. “I like the fact that things are changing and the next batch of drivers who are women can work freely in this society.”
Beijing’s subway authorities have introduced reverse vending machines which allow travelers to offset their transit costs by recycling. Passengers insert a plastic bottle, wait twenty seconds until the bottle is crushed to a third of its original size. Donors then receive one jiao (1.6 cents) on their commuter passes for each empty bottle. The machines have been installed in two stations Jinsong and Shaoyaoju.
“The longest journey is the journey inwards of him who has chosen his destiny, who has started upon his quest for the source of his being.” – Dag Hammarskjold
We spend our lives gathering knowledge, integrating facts, figures and techniques into our view of the world. By the time we reach our mid-twenties we’ve accumulated a significant body of knowledge that we can use to solve a wide range of problems. We’ve also accumulated our own predilections and prejudices, based on our genetic heritage: deep seated knowledge that is virtually impossible to shift. Some are based on the cultural traditions from the environment which we were raised, others on our personal history.
Anytime we’re attempting to learn something new, this new thing is measured against what we already know. If we put more weight on what we already know, on tradition and our inherited past, then it will be harder to learn the new. The standard which new learning is measured against will be tougher, and we’ll be less willing to set aside our existing assumptions and accept new knowledge if it contradicts what we already know. If we put more weight on what we’re seeing today – on new data – then learning something that conflicts with our assumptions will be comparatively easier, as we will place more weight on what we see than what we remember and we’ll be more willing to change our assumptions.
Our nature – our bias towards an inward focus based on tradition and the past, or an external focus on what we’re seeing around us – cuts across age. Those of us who are willing to question our assumptions will find that we can unlearn (and relearn) at any age. Those who put more weight on what they already know will struggle to change at any age. Today’s digital native will be tomorrow’s digital dinosaur if they are unable to unlearn.
Taking in information on all levels, mind, body and spirit. Not resisting, not expecting, not judging, but allowing; removing previous ideas about who you are. One will come to realize that true learning is unlearning.
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“The real you is not a puppet which life pushes around. The real, deep down you is the whole universe.”
In this brief video, ‘The Real You’, Alan Watts teaches us to wake up from our self-created, self-centered world view, and see that not only are we a part of the whole, but we ARE the universe itself. His teachings give us an insight into our irrational fears and hesitance towards death. Through these concepts we can grasp with deeper understanding our own impermanence, and learn to live more fully.
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The central moral challenge of our time is reaching a tipping point. Just as slavery was the defining struggle of the 19th century and totalitarianism of the 20th, the fight to end the oppression of women and girls worldwide defines our current century.
Hidden in the overlapping problems of sex trafficking and forced prostitution, gender-based violence, and maternal mortality is the single most vital opportunity of our time — and women are seizing it. From Somaliland to Cambodia to Afghanistan, women’s oppression is being confronted head on and real, meaningful solutions are being fashioned. Change is happening, and it’s happening now.
Journalists Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn took on this urgent moral challenge in 2009 with their acclaimed best-selling book, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide (already in its 25th printing in hardback). They encouraged readers all over the world to do the same.
Now, a landmark movement — inspired by Kristof and WuDunn’s work and also entitled Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide — is working to amplify the book’s impact. Ignited by a high-profile national television event and fueled by innovative multi-platform initiatives, Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide is galvanizing even more people to join the burgeoning movement for change.
Find out more at http://www.halftheskymovement.org
363 Days No Shootings No Killings.
This week one year ago, an East NY Brooklyn neighborhood development organization, Man Up!, began to send people into the streets to figure out where the violence was going next so they could hit the pause button. Mediate. Listen. Talk.
Some workers in the project had been street criminals themselves; others had been victims of violent crime, losing partners and children to it.
“You get tired of going to people’s funeral that you grew up with, or their kids’ funerals, from gun violence in the street,” a member of the group, Athena Collins, 43, said. The father of her five children was murdered.
By JIM DWYER, NY TIMES
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