Yukon, Canada, Alaska, Beaufort Sea and caribous

Each spring for at least the past 23,000 years, members of the Porcupine caribou herd as they move in concert near the end of their approximately 1,500-mile trek, dispersed across the wide expanses of their wintering grounds in Canada’s Yukon, have gathered together like water flowing along branched tributaries toward a single confluence. That confluence is a 1.5 million-acre area of boggy coastal tundra plain, nestled between the north slope of the Brooks Range in Alaska and the Beaufort Sea. The caribou know this place as their summer calving and feeding ground. We know it as Area 1002 within the larger 19.2 million-acre Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).

Estimates indicate that 10 to 20 pounds of carbon per square foot resides within the uppermost 10 feet of the permafrost.

In the renewed debate over drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, one troubling impact of oil development has been overlooked: Disrupting the annual caribou migration will have a profound effect on the soil and release even more greenhouse gas into the atmosphere.

Currently, the exact social cost of carbon taking into account the potency and lifespan of methane released to the atmosphere remains uncertain. That is because environmental risk assessments have not evaluated how widespread the thawing of permafrost in Area 1002 will be as a consequence of shifting caribou movement, nor have they determined the rate at which the thawing top 10-foot-layer of permafrost will be decomposed. Still, decades-old preliminary exploration activity in Area 1002 would suggest, at the very least, that the spectacular wilderness vista will be altered for generations to come.

Beyond the analyses, the ultimate question remains: Will this economically questionable 30-year venture be worth the lasting environmental consequences to a wilderness that took tens to hundreds of thousands of years to develop, for the sake of extracting what amounts to meeting one year’s worth of the nation’s oil demand?

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As West Bank Settlers Try to Take More Palestinian Land

Rabbi Arik Ascherman lets us know

As West Bank Settlers Try to Take More Palestinian Land

I am actually in a bit of pain. I have barely felt most of the blows I have received in recent days from settler youth sent by their elders to accompany cows and sheep on a rampage of theft in the fields of the Taibe junction we had planted with Bedouin shepherds. These are mere children trying to be tough. However, a week ago Tuesday one of them managed to hit me in the back with the stick he was brandishing. I am trying to avoid overuse of pain killers, except for the adrenalin every day when I return to keep the cows and sheep out of the fields.

In addition to the physical pain, there is the great sadness that adults are corrupting these children in this way. I have been oscillating between telling them that they are thieves, and we have nothing to talk about, and telling them that I pray they will find an uncorrupted corner of their souls that will inspire them to return to what God asks of them. Almost every day I ask them if they wish to act like the descendants of Abraham and Sarah, or like Amalek, summarizing the words of Rabbi Shimshon Rafael Hirsch I cited on my Times of Israel blog two weeks ago on the reading for the Shabbat before Purim, Deuteronomy 25: 17 – 19:

Don’t Forget:

Don’t forget a thing if the day will come when you will want to be like Amalek, and like Amalek you won’t want to remember your obligations or to know God, but will look for the opportunity in small or big matters to exploit your advantage to harm other human beings. Don’t forget this when the day will come, and you will want to rid yourself of your role and mission as the Jewish people that you accepted among humanity.

This week I have been suggesting to some of these troubled youth that we set up a “Reish Lakish club.” Reish Lakish was a thief who changed his ways and became a scholar frequently cited in the Talmud.

Last Thursday night, immediately after the reading of the Purim Megillah, we had an emergency meeting postponed from the previous night with a representative of the Taibe Municipality, a leading Palestinian activist, and legal counsel. As I will explain, the Book of Esther came to life for me.

For much of the past three years the struggle has primarily been that of Torat Tzedek and the Bedouin shepherds, with some support from the Municipality. Landowners have taken action when settlers tried to set up additional outposts on their lands. However, from the additional outpost Neriya Ben Pazi successfully set up on “State Land,” the settlers have taken their incursions, intimidation and theft of everything the shepherds plant for their flocks, to a new level. Our successes in 2019 to significantly cut down the level of theft were reversed in 2020 both because of this outpost, and because of incredibly heightened State support for settler aggression this past year. In 2020 settlers forced many Bedouin off the land, and now have begun to plow some of it themselves. Between fear of what the State can do to those who raise their heads, and tensions between the landowners and the Bedouin working and living on the lands, the landowners have been overly slow to take the steps necessary to save their lands.

Day after day, we have literally been holding them off. We stood guard as those shepherds who have not been totally intimidated planted. In areas where the fear was too great, we did the planting as well. We have been in constant conversation with the legal authorities, demanding that they do their job. Because last year’s losses have left family’s financially strapped, we helped secure financing for seed and tractors and contributed ourselves. Settlers have savagely responded by intensifying their attempts to ensure that their flocks eat everything that has been planted just as it is beginning to grow. They want the shepherds who dare to resist to believe that they will not benefit from even one stalk of the barley that was to feed their flocks from May through September. They call or “visit” the shepherds to warn them that they will pay a price for any connection with us. We call the security forces, who say they will do nothing until they see ownership papers, but have taken no action when owners have lodged complaints and even discouraged owners from doing so. They usually refuse to identify suspects, but last year froze a case by claiming that the perpetrators were not known. When there are enough of us, we can successfully keep the settler flocks out of the planted areas. I admit there have been days when I have broken the rules and been there alone, because I can’t bear to watch what happens otherwise. Expelling flocks alone is physically more challenging, and we are less likely to be attacked when the settlers know that we are filming them from several angles. I was alone when hit in the back on Tuesday.

Then, there have been the days I have just walked away and expelled flocks when the police have refused to do anything, and then had the audacity to order me not to do anything.

At the meeting, the lawyer explained the hard facts. With the settlers acting as if the land is theirs, and even plowing some of it, the next step will be to claim that it is theirs legally. They are already smirking and crowing that the Bedouin have fled, and won’t be coming back. On Friday, one of them scoffed at the idea that the ownership papers of “goyim” mean anything. At the meeting the Palestinian activist assured that many would support the Municipality and the owners and the Bedouin if they take the decisive legal and other steps that must now be taken.

For me the meeting was a Megillah moment. The most dramatic scene for me in Megillat Esther is the back and forth messages between Mordechai and Esther that transform her from a passive woman doing what she is told to a bold and brave leader:

Esther told Hathach to take back to Mordecai the following reply:

“All the king’s courtiers and the people of the king’s provinces know that if any person, man or woman, enters the king’s presence in the inner court without having been summoned, there is but one law for him—that he be put to death. Only if the king extends the golden scepter to him may he live. Now I have not been summoned to visit the king for the last thirty days.”

When Mordecai was told what Esther had said, Mordecai had this message delivered to Esther:

“Do not imagine that you, of all the Jews, will escape with your life by being in the king’s palace. On the contrary, if you keep silent in this crisis, relief and deliverance will come to the Jews from another quarter, while you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows, perhaps you have attained to royal position for just such a crisis.”

Then Esther sent back this answer to Mordecai:

“Go, assemble all the Jews who live in Shushan, and fast in my behalf; do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maidens will observe the same fast. Then I shall go to the king, though it is contrary to the law; and if I am to perish, I shall perish!”

So Mordecai went about [the city] and did just as Esther had commanded him. (Esther 4: 10 -17)

Like Mordechai, I as a privileged Israeli Jew can paternalistically instruct Palestinians or Israelis in need of public housing, or whoever, what to do. Or, there can be a magic moment when the oppressed become empowered to be partners in fighting for their rights and dignity. We may have reached such a moment on Thursday – a moment in which we all realized that there is a reason why we are here. I use the word “partners.” Mordechai speaks of the salvation that can come from another quarter if Esther does not act. We spoke of all the aid that would come from other quarters if the villagers do act.

Ken Yehi Ratzon May it be the Will of God, Who is never mentioned in the Book of Esther, but was present. Together –– the privileged, the oppressed and God –– in partnership for a better world.

B’Vrakha (In Blessing),

Arik

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Na vallen weer opstaan om je ultieme levensdoel weer op te nemen

De nieuwe filosoof van Oudenburg op zijn blog “Denken over waarden voor een betere wereld aan de hand van oude en nieuwe zinvolle geschriften” schreef in december 2010:

Na het vallen kan je weer opstaan en je ultieme levensdoel weer opnemen. Zelfs uit de slavernij van het bezit, eten, roesmiddelen, drank, drugs, lust en luiheid kan God je verlossen. gebonden door verslaving.jpgOok de verblindende woede en afgunst, die je helemaal opslorpen kan Hij ontrekken aan je.

Het zit in je, ontdek het! God wil ook jou, net als de Israëlieten, graag bevrijden van alle slavernij, verslavingen, knechting, onderwerping ­ook van de slavernij van de zonde – het jammer zijn -, het gebrek aan oriëntatie naar je levensopdracht. Net als de Israëlieten, kom jij ook vaak in de verleiding terug te kijken, verlangend naar het genot van de zonde, terwijl je daarbij vergeet hoe ellendig je leven was, hoe je bergaf ging, toen je nog leefde als verslaafde aan de zonde.

Laat het boek Exodus je herinneren aan je bevrijding. Na vallen is opstaan mogelijk hoewel soms enorm moeilijk en wees niet hardleers, eigenzinnig, halsstarrig of kortzichtig. Dit is een van de lessen uit Exodus. Het is je gegeven om beter te worden. Kijk naar de toekomst en blijf niet hangen in het verleden. {Exodus [uittocht] Inleiding Exodus vervolg}

 

 

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We Are Loved

It is Jehovah God, the Creator of the universe Who had a Plan with His creation and shall fulfil it.

He accepted the sacrificial offering of His only begotten beloved son, Jesus Christ, the son of man and son of God. It is that human being born in Bethlehem which we should accept as the sent one from God, who put his own will aside to do the Will of God. By offering himself as a Lamb of God, he brought salvation unto mankind. His love for us was accepted by his heavenly Father Who by His love allowed grace coming over all people.

To remember:

  • God loves you + will never stop loving you.
  • We can’t earn God’s love
  • up to us to accept God’s love
  • time for us to take God at His Word
  • God wants to save sinners from their sins
  • God’s Word set you free
  • Heavenly Father desires to have relationship with His people
  • Jesus breaks bondage in our life.

Overcoming The Times

Whoever you are, Wherever you are from, No matter what you have done…I want to let you know that God loves you, and He will never stop loving you. Neither your accomplishments nor your failures, Your victories nor your defeats qualify you nor disqualify you from God’s love.

Let the truth of God’s Word set you free. When God looked at us, He doesn’t think paying with the most precious thing He had in all of eternity, that’s Jesus Christ, was too high a price for you and I. God displayed for all of creation and eternity, His immeasurable and untouchable love for us. This kind of love is hard to comprehend by the natural man. Afterall, prior to us accepting salvation we had no understanding of spiritual things. Yet even inspite of us doing mischievous things, God still loved us: And when we ask Him to save us, The…

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Devotions by Christine Caine: Salt of the earth

Christine Caine looks in her devotion to Jesus who states that our role as Christians on the earth is a transformational one and that we are called the “salt of the earth”.

To remember

  • be personally transformed from the inside out.
  • the Church never created to remain insular = to be a caring, gracious, & inclusive community > our mandate = to love others = love ourselves.
  • Church (as God’s hands & feet on the earth) = called to operate in the realm for which she was created > a lost + broken world.
  • The Church = vehicle that God has created to fulfill his mission on the earth.
  • people =  object of this mission > found outside four walls of the church building. => “go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).
  • not afford to simply do church on Sunday => church seven days a week.

 

From The Darkness Into The Light

Duration: 365 days

ReadMatthew 5:13

Jesus says that his followers are to be the salt that brings out the God-flavors of this earth.

SALT OF THE EARTH

Jesus clearly states that our role as Christians on the earth is a transformational one. We are called the “salt of the earth” and salt essentially does three things: It adds flavor, it preserves, and it heals. So our task is to bring flavor, preservation, and healing to the world around us. This is why it is imperative that we ourselves be personally transformed from the inside out. If we have not been changed, we cannot bring out the “God flavors” of this earth.

In the same way that salt was never designed to remain in the shaker, the Church was never created to remain insular. We are called to live from the inside out both personally and corporately. God’s love flows…

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Gevangen in vrijwilligheid

In heel wat landen wordt het werk van vrijwilligers onderschat. Men moet ook beseffen dat heel wat werk indien het niet zou gedaan worden door mensen die zich vrijwillig en onbetaald inzetten, een heel kostelijke grap zou worden voor de maatschappij en zelfs nog meerdere mensen in problemen brengen dan er nu al zijn.

Groot gevaar is natuurlijk hoe ver men het laat komen bij en voor vrijwilligheid, want een staat of gemeenschap kan zich makkelijk van haar taken onttrekken met het besef dat het dan wel zou gedaan worden door vrijwilligers of naastenliefde hebbende burgers. En daar staat dan de deur open voor de profiteurs en groepen die genoeg geld hebben maar het niet willen uit geven, liever profiterend van hen die zij ‘naïevelingen’ noemen.

Onze welvaartsstaat moet beseffen dat iedereen haar verantwoordelijkheid moet nemen en dat iedereen naar werken hoort gerespecteerd en betaald te worden. Een eerlijke verdeling gaat armoede en uitsluiting vermijden en uiteindelijk de economie ten goede komen en de cultuur verrijken.

Ontmoetingen~Encounters

Ervaring als vrijwilliger werkt nieuwe Nederlanders bij sollicitaties juist tégen.

Gepubliceerd in de Volkskrant 4 januari 2021 door Razan Damlakhi & Esseline van de Sande

Je vrijwillig inzetten voor de samenleving is een groot goed in Nederland. Van nieuwkomers wordt dat ook verwacht. Maar hen betalen, zou veel beter zijn. Nederland is wereldwijd koploper in vrijwilligerswerk. Wat wordt vergeten is dat vrijwilligheid ongelijkheid in de hand werkt en vele getalenteerde personen aan het lijntje houdt. Vooral nieuwe Nederlanders worden uitgesloten door onze cultuur van vrijwilligheid.

Nederland is terecht trots op zijn vrijwilligers. Jarenlang onbetaald vrijwilligerswerk is vaak de solide basis van van een voordracht voor een stadsprijs of een koninklijk lintje. Er wordt wel gezegd dat vrijwilligers het cement van onze samenleving vormen. Het CBS berekende over 2017 dat bijna de helft van de Nederlanders boven de 15 jaar zich minimaal één keer per jaar vrijwillig inzet.

Uit onderzoek…

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Thuis

Onderweg dit bedenkseltje tegen gekomen dat werd opgeroepen door een scheurblaadje. Maar zo moet elke dag een nieuw blaadje zijn op onze levensloop kalender, waar wij alle dagen er aan moeten herinnerd worden Wie dit alles ons gegeven heeft en hoe wij ons hier in zijn universum willen gedragen.

Laat ons hopen dat meerdere mensen zich zullen keren om in Zijn wereld te mogen vertoeven en samen Hem te prijzen voor alles wat Hij voor ons doet.

verweven

God bezoekt ons vaak, maar meestal zijn we niet thuis

Visje

Ik doe al jaren met dezelfde maandkalender van Visje. Ik weet best dat de weken en dagen niet meer overeenkomen met de werkelijkheid, maar de spreuken die elke maand opnieuw voorbijkomen zetten me toch steeds weer aan het denken.



Zo ook de spreuk voor deze maand die me tijdens de eerste keer lezen vooral aan het lachen maakte.

Meestal zijn we niet thuis. Nou God, ik geloof dat U ons nu juist precies hebt waar U ons hebben wil: thuis. We kunnen niet veel anders. Normaal gesproken trekken we er maar al te graag op uit, maar nu zitten we noodgedwongen de hele dag binnen. Wanneer komt U op bezoek?

Waar we hem eerst probeerden te ontlopen door telkens weer nieuwe afspraken in te plannen, smachten we nu juist naar Zijn aanwezigheid. Kom alstublieft op bezoek!

We worden geconfronteerd…

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Friendly February

Although we may be kept apart, we can still stay socially connected. This month we’re helping people to focus on their relationships. So let’s stay in touch, show friendship and be kind in these challenging times.
Campaign Graphic - Friendly February

We need each other more than ever right now! This month let’s focus on reaching out to connect with others and doing our best to be a good friend. Our acts of kindness and connection ripple out and impact so many more people than we realise – and they also boost our own happy hormones too! In stressful times people around us may be feeling the strain, so let’s try to keep calm, take time to listen and show compassion.

Green Line

February 2021 Small

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In corona tijden niet elke dag een bericht

Ook al brengen wij in deze Coronatijden niet elke dag een bericht op dit platform
en blijven wij wachtende en zoekende naar meer mensen
die mee met ons zouden willen samenwerken om hier positieve gedachten te brengen,
blijven wij hopen dat je dag steeds gevuld wordt met positieve energie.

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2020 Talking Points – Stuck with polemics, histrionics, and ad hominem denunciation

Continually the world turns around and time goes on. But it will not go on for ever with man being able to bring bad things to others.
There shall come a time that with a roar and fire, believers and non-believers still alive shall come to see the beginning of the Day of the Lord. The Great Tribulation will come bringing great sufferings, but it shall bring us our waiting to an end, making our hope coming into fulfilment, Jesus, the Prince of Peace and the great Reconciler of humanity with the Creator, coming back to judge the living and the dead, to allow the righteous to enter the gates of God’s Kingdom to live there forever without pain or sorrows.

*

The retired High School teacher and an ordained Christian minister in Ontario, Canada, Vincent finds that

No one who has lived through and is old enough to remember it will forget 2020 – the “Plague Year” of a century. We tend to forget that there have been many plague years in human history, and many far worse both in absolute numbers of victims and in proportion. {2020-2021 and Hope}

He was not without hope as we ended 2020 and began 2021 and writes:

Even in dark times like 2020, and there have been many much darker in many ways over the centuries, the Creator has not departed. He remains anchored among us through the presence of a living Redeemer, a presence shared far and wide wherever those who know Him bring His light. {2020-2021 and Hope}

He is also aware that we might be coming closer to the prophesised days of the end.

It may prove true that we are quite close to or even in the last, Last Days and on the verge of the Great Tribulation. I am aware that quite a few believe that we are now seeing such signs, and they may be right. My generation thought this back in 1973. People thought it in World War 1, and in WW2 called Hitler the Antichrist.

World.V.You

Like many I know, I have been paying less attention to the swirling morass of the news these days. Most of it is glum and discouraging anyway, and, here in the “Great White North”, summer is all too brief to waste on keeping up with the latest blasts in the present mockery of “discussion and dialogue” in uber-confused Western culture. Besides, between true news (??) and the boundless volume of the less reliable variety, it is often hard to draw a firm line in the midst of all the spin and vehement opinion masquerading as considered point of view.

Everyone has a point of view, of course. But the problem is that it is now uncommon to find any serious attempt to talk about an issue. Most of what passes for commentary consists of dismissing the writer-commentator’s submission as mere strong bias or even some sort of incipient “Communism”…

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