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Archive for March, 2011

From Crisis to Peace (Dari Krisis menjadi Damai)


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(Foreword, for English Scroll Down)

Kata Pengantar

Dalam berbagai konferensi video, wawancara dengan para jurnalis, dan pertemuan dengan para siswa di tahun-tahun terakhir ini, Maha Guru Ching Hai telah berbicara tentang keadaan darurat yang terus meningkat tentang krisis iklim di Bumi saat ini. Sebagaimana yang beliau nyatakan, “Planet kita adalah sebuah rumah yang sedang terbakar. Jika kita tidak bekerja sama dengan semangat kesatuan untuk memadamkan api itu, kita tidak akan memiliki rumah ini lagi.” Tetapi beliau juga memberikan solusi yang mengangkat bagi umat manusia, solusi yang dengan mudah dapat dilakukan oleh setiap individu: “Jadilah vegan untuk menyelamatkan Bumi.”

Ketika krisis meningkat, bencana-bencana alam merenggut puluhan ribu jiwa dan mengusir jutaan dari rumah-rumah mereka, dengan kerugian finansial hingga miliaran dolar. Meningkatnya permukaan air laut telah menenggelamkan 18 negara-negara kepulauan dan mengancam banyak lainnya. Selain itu, pola curah hujan yang tidak menentu dan meningkatnya kekeringan telah mempengaruhi banyak wilayah, karenanya hal ini memperparah kekurangan pangan dan air. Dan para ahli iklim memperingatkan akan datangnya kondisi cuaca yang jauh lebih ekstrem, dengan kemungkinan adanya “pemanasan global tak terkendali.”

Dalam buku ini Maha Guru Ching Hai menyajikan faktor-faktor utama yang terkait dengan pemanasan global, dan yang lebih penting, akar penyebabnya: industri peternakan.

Faktanya, banyak penelitian ilmiah yang mendukung pandangan Maha Guru Ching Hai, yang telah beliau jabarkan selama lebih dari dua puluh tahun. Pemeliharaan hewan untuk makanan tidak hanya memboroskan jumlah air yang berharga, tanah, dan energi yang tak terhingga, tetapi juga menyumbang bagi 51% emisi gas rumah kaca di planet ini secara mengejutkan.

Karena itu, seperti yang Maha Guru Ching Hai katakan, adalah hal yang logis bahwa menghentikan produksi daging dan “menjadi vegan” atau menerapkan pola makan nabati akan segera mengurangi suhu global, memulihkan kerusakan lingkungan yang disebabkan oleh peternakan dan mengurangi biaya-biaya untuk meredam perubahan iklim sampai triliunan dolar. Juga, peralihan itu mampu mencapai hasil-hasil tersebut hampir sepenuhnya tanpa dampak negatif bagi planet ini dan masyarakat. Kebalikannya, memangkas karbon dioksida yang dihasilkan oleh industri dan sektor transportasi dapat menimbulkan dampak kehancuran ekonomi. Lebih jauh lagi, sebagian besar teknologi hijau membutuhkan waktu tahunan untuk berkembang, sementara pemotongan emisi metana dapat dicapai seketika dengan setiap hidangan vegan. Jadi menerapkan cara hidup vegan adalah solusi termudah, tercepat, dan termurah bagi krisis iklim, dan juga merupakan satu-satunya penyelamat kita karena kita tidak punya banyak waktu.

Banyak ahli iklim, aktivis lingkungan, dan pejabat pemerintah mulai mendukung pendekatan ini untuk menyelamatkan Bumi dari dampak perubahan iklim yang terburuk. Suara-suara mereka terangkum dalam laporan Perserikatan Bangsa Bangsa Juni 2010 yang mendorong transisi global dari pola makan hewani ke nabati, menggaungkan permohonan genting Maha Guru Ching Hai: Siapa pun yang memiliki kekuasaan untuk mengambil keputusan harus mengambil langkah berani untuk memberlakukan hukum yang segera memfasilitasi peralihan ini.

Mungkin yang bahkan jauh lebih merusak dibandingkan jejak-jejak karbon kita yang telah menyebabkan krisis iklim ini adalah jejak-jejak berdarah yang kita ciptakan dalam penjagalan miliaran hewan ternak tak berdosa setiap tahunnya. Maha Guru Ching Hai memperingatkan bahwa kejahatan moral ini telah mencapai proporsi global, dimana tindakan kekerasan kita kembali kepada kita dalam bentuk bencana-bencana alam: “Apa yang kau tabur, itulah yang kau tuai.” Hal ini adalah ajaran universal yang ditemukan dalam seluruh kitab suci agung di dunia.

Memang, umat manusia sedang menghadapi titik balik krusial. Kita hanya punya satu kesempatan untuk menyelamatkan planet ini dan sekaranglah saatnya. Hanya dengan menerapkan pola makan nabati yang penuh kasih, menyelamatkan hidup maka kita dapat mengusir kegelapan yang menyelimuti kita. Dan langkah kecil ini nantinya akan memacu umat manusia ke tingkat kesadaran yang lebih tinggi. Kita akan memulihkan keharmonisan di planet Bumi sehingga menuntun kita menuju Zaman Keemasan yang damai, indah, dan penuh kasih. Sebagaimana yang dijanjikan oleh Maha Guru Ching Hai, kita akan menikmati Surga di Bumi.

Marilah kita semua meraih kesempatan ini dan melakukan perubahan hari ini. Marilah kita semua memilih untuk berevolusi dan mengangkat peradaban dan planet kita.

Staf Editorial

Foreword

At video conferences, in interviews with journalists and at gatherings with disciples in recent years, Supreme Master Ching Hai has spoken with increasing urgency about Earth’s current climate crisis.  As she states, “Our planet is a house that is burning. If we don’t work together with a united spirit to put out the fire, we will not have a home anymore.” But she also offers humankind an uplifting solution, one that every individual can easily achieve:  “Be veg to save the planet.”

As the crisis escalates, natural disasters are claiming tens of thousands of lives and displacing millions from their homes, with financial losses amounting to billions of dollars.  Rising sea levels have already submerged 18 island nations and are threatening many others.  In addition, irregular rainfall patterns and intensifying droughts are affecting many regions, thus worsening food and water shortages.  And climate experts warn of even more extreme weather conditions to come, with the possibility of “runaway global warming.”

In this book Supreme Master Ching Hai presents the major factors associated with global warming, and more importantly, its root cause: the livestock industry.

In fact, many scientific studies support Supreme Master Ching Hai’s view, which she has expounded for over twenty years. The raising of animals for food not only wastes massive amounts of precious water, land and energy, but also contributes to a staggering 51% of the planet’s greenhouse gas emissions.  Livestock farming is also the greatest single source of atmospheric methane, a much more powerful greenhouse gas than CO2, but one with a shorter lifespan.

Thus, as Supreme Master Ching Hai says, it is only logical that halting meat production and “becoming veg” or adopting a plant-based diet will immediately reduce global temperatures, heal the environmental ills caused by livestock and reduce the costs of mitigating climate change by trillions of dollars.  Also, such a shift can achieve these results with virtually no negative impact on the planet and society.  In contrast, similar cuts in the carbon dioxide produced by industry and the transport sector could have devastating economic effects.  Furthermore, most green technologies take years to develop, while cuts in methane emissions can be achieved immediately with every vegan meal.  So adopting the vegan lifestyle is the easiest, quickest and least costly solution to the climate crisis, and it is also our only salvation because we are running out of time.

Many climate experts, environmentalists and government officials have already begun advocating this approach to saving the earth from the worst effects of climate change.  Their voices culminated in the June 2010 United Nations report urging a global transition to a meat- and dairy-free diet, echoing Supreme Master Ching Hai’s urgent plea:  Everyone who has decision-making power should take the courageous step to enact laws that immediately facilitate this shift.

Perhaps even more devastating than our carbon footprints that have caused the climate crisis are the bloody footprints we leave behind in slaughtering billions of innocent farm animals each year.  Supreme Master warns that this moral crime has reached global proportions, as our violent acts come back to us in the form of natural disasters: “As you sow, so shall you reap.” Such is the universal teaching found in all the world’s great scriptures.

Indeed, humankind is facing a crucial turning point.  We have only one chance to save the planet and the time is now.  Simply by adopting the benevolent, life-saving, plant-based diet we can dispel the darkness engulfing us. And this small step will in turn propel humankind into a higher level of consciousness.  We will restore harmony to planet Earth and thus usher in the Golden Era of peace, beauty and love.  As Supreme Master Ching Hai promises, we will then have Heaven on Earth.

Let us all seize the opportunity and make the change today.  Let us all choose to evolve and elevate our civilization and the planet.

The Editorial Staff

Bali Deklarasikan Hari Vegan Organik Dunia dan Hari Jumat Tanpa Produk Hewani (Bali Governor declared Vegan Organic Day and Meat Free Friday)


Bali Deklarasikan Hari Vegan Organik Dunia

Minggu, 27 Maret 2011 15:01 WIB | 800 Views

Made Mangku Pastika. (ANTARA/Widodo S. Jusuf)

Denpasar (ANTARA News) – Bali mendeklrasikan kepada masyarakat dunia bahwa pada Minggu, 27 Maret 2011, sebagai hari Vegan Organik Dunia (World Vegan Organic Day) dan hari Jumat sebagai hari tanpa produk hewani (Friday – Free Animal Product Day).

Deklarasi tersebut dilakukan Gubernur Bali, Made Mangku Pastika, didampingi Pimpinan Ashram Telaga Emas, Ratu Bagus Ida Pandita Empu Nabe Prama Daksa Nata Ratu Bagus di Desa Muncan, Kecamatan Selat, Kabupaten Karangasem,90 km timur Denpasar, Minggu.

Saat membuka “Festival Penyelamatan Bumi” yang digelar Bali Green Community (BGC), Gubernur yang didampingi Nyonya Ayu Pastika berharap, deklarasi yang ditujukan kepada masyarakat dunia itu mampu menyelamatkam bumi dari bahaya ancaman pemanasan global (global warning).

Berita selengkapnya di

http://www.antaranews.com/berita/251595/bali-deklrasikan-hari-vegan-organik-dunia

 

Switch Off Your Lights to Support Positive Action of Earth HOUR


A Vegan and switching off lights will have more positive points, support this positive action of EARTH HOUR, switch off your lights

This Saturday turn your lights off for one hour in support of Earth Hour

Daelyn Fortney on 3/23/2011 02:43:00 PM |

With just a few days until this year’s Earth Hour, the WWF initiative that asks individuals, businesses, governments, and communities to turn out their lights for one hour, it has been announced that the 2011 event will see a record amount of participation.

One hundred thirty one countries and territories on all seven continents and numerous iconic landmarks will join millions of individuals across the globe in order to show solidarity in the fight against climate change.

“Earth Hour is a chance for people and communities across the globe to join together with the common purpose of a sustainable future for our planet,” said Andy Ridley, co-founder and executive director of Earth Hour. “This year Earth Hour asks people to commit to an action, big or small, for the coming year, taking Earth Hour beyond the hour.”

In addition to landmarks such as the Empire State Building in New York, Christ the Redeemer statue in Brazil, Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and Sydney’s Opera House, various celebrities have shown their support for Earth Hour since its inception in 2007 including Miranda Kerr, Cate Blanchett, Nicole Kidman, Kylie Minogue, Yoko Ono, Ashton Kutcher, Giselle Bundchen, Kevin Bacon, Chris Martin, and Edward Norton.

“This year I will be going beyond the hour by continuing to recycle and by buying organic produce from local farmers markets thereby cutting down on the pesticides and insecticides used on our planet and reducing food miles,” said Victoria’s Secret model and Earth Hour 2011 global ambassador Miranda Kerr.

Participation in the event is simple—on Saturday, March 26 at 8:30 p.m. local time, simply turn off all non-essential lights and electronics for one single hour.

Obama Demands Vegan Meals in Brazil


March 19, 2011

Obama Demands Vegan Meals in Brazil.

vegan obama

It’s been reported in the Brazilian press that President Obama has asked that he and his delegation be served a 100% vegan menu while he travels through Brazil this week.

Reportedly, Obama will bring his 200-person entourage of journalists, politicians, business people, and security staff to Brazil on a goodwill tour and all 200+ will be eating delicious catered vegan food.

Vegan food will also be served at stops along the tour.  The head chef in charge of food management estimates that the events will serve over 2,000 people in all.  That’s a lot of vegan food served and a lot of animals saved.

Eating vegan in Brazil would definitely help send the goodwill message to the country. It would just be rude to show up and destroy their entire rainforest by demanding meat and dairy meals.

http://theinformedvegan.com/post/3963592587/obama-demands-vegan-food-in-brazil

Food Activism: Third Annual WVBS and an Interview with Gary Loewenthal


Food Activism: Third Annual WVBS and an Interview with Gary Loewenthal

March 9, 2011

by Deb

A few years ago when Gary first mentioned a Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale, I admit I was skeptical. Maybe I was just in an extra-cynical funk at that time. Maybe I had temporarily forgotten that people will eagerly rally around a bake sale in a way they won’t when you’re asking them to write difficult letters about difficult issues.

I didn’t fully grasp the potential of these bake sales until after I attended my first one. I’d wanted to help somehow and Gary asked me to take pictures. “I’ll pay you in baked goods,” he promised, just to sweeten the deal.

The bake sale is as much about the conversation as it is about the baked goods and the fundraising. Pamphlets and cookbooks are available, and the volunteers working the event are likely to spend as much time fielding questions as they are boxing up baked goods.

The customers included many people who were not vegan. People on their way to or from the farmers market set up a couple hundred feet away, and who were by turns suspicious of and interested in these vegan baked goods. One woman was thrilled to realize that her young daughter, allergic to almost everything in the average baked good, could actually eat a gluten-free vegan muffin. I captured an image of her daughter blissing out as she bit into that rare-for-her treat.

A long-ago friend once stated that the worst time to talk to someone about animal exploitation was while they were engaging in it, and that the best time was while they were enjoying vegan food. This is the essence of food activism, and it’s easy to see it in action when you’re at a vegan bake sale.

Even in it’s first year, the WVBS grew beyond what Gary and his co-conspirators imagined. Last year there was a CNN article about the phenomenon! Now in it’s third year and going stronger than ever, it will be interesting to see what happens next. Can a CNN feature be topped?

Interview with Gary:

1. What led up to the start of the WVBS?
When Compassion for Animals started in late 2008, we were thinking of activities to do. Someone said “How about a bake sale?” I loved the idea and probably would have never thought of it myself. Since I knew nothing about bake sales other than how to buy stuff at one, I went online and researched bake sales, and came across The Great American Bake Sale, which is a nationwide year-round network of bake sales, sponsored by Domino Sugar and a couple of other companies, that donates proceeds to anti-hunger efforts. I thought, “Wouldn’t it be great if we could have a nationwide network of vegan bake sales? That might generate positive publicity for veganism – at least the food part – in a fun way.” I wondered if we could pull it off. I decided that if participating groups could use their proceeds however they wanted to, that would make it easier to manage and might be an attractive feature. As I pondered the idea, it grew into a North American vegan bake sale, and when I discussed the idea with my colleagues a day or two later, we decided it should be worldwide. I built a roughhewn web site and started emailing invitations.

2. What were your expectations for the first year?

Low. I would have been elated to have fifteen groups sign up. But a few things happened almost immediately that gave me hope that the event might exceed my expectations. One of the first groups I emailed was the Toronto Vegetarian Association. A couple days later I got an email from them saying that they mentioned the WVBS in their latest podcast. When I posted about the WVBS on the Post Punk Kitchen forum, several people replied right away that they were interested, and a couple of actual signups followed shortly thereafter, including one from New Zealand. In no time at all the event was worldwide.

As it turned out, the TVA not only publicized the WVBS but participated and also interviewed me on a later podcast, and PPK forum collaborations resulted in many WVBS bake sales. The first year, ninety groups participated, and in 2010 we had 140 groups.

3. What surprised/excited you the most about the participation?

Lots of things. One was the awesome help of so many groups and individuals. I’ll never be able to thank them enough or fully articulate the contributions they made toward the success of the WVBS. In addition to the groups mentioned above…

– Farm Sanctuary held three bake sales in 2009 and two last year.

– Other farm sanctuaries participated. As you and I – especially you – know, running a farm sanctuary is time-consuming. Where is there time to organize and hold a bake sale??

– An LA City Council member participated the first year, complete with an official press release and a statement about the bake sale on the local news.

– Compassion Over Killing, one of the first groups that signed on in 2009, participated in three different cities last year, and the mayor of DC came to one of their bake sales.

– All kinds of advocacy groups, bloggers, podcasters, and others helped to promote the WVBS. Even if they couldn’t participate, they spread the word. VegFund.org offered to fund “bake-ins” that were part of the WVBS.

– We had no idea that bake sale volunteers would make these amazing creative posters. Some highlights are at http://www.veganbakesale.org/veganbakesale/vbs-2009-posters.html and http://www.veganbakesale.org/veganbakesale/vbs-2010-posters.html

– Winning VegNews Magazine’s “Veg Event of the Year” award was a total shock.

– The participation of Loving Hut restaurants around the world helped the WVBS grow to 6 continents in 2010.

– Herbivore designed a WVBS tee shirt in 2010 – is that not the coolest thing?

– The pre-WVBS video by Our Hen House and Kind Green Planet was awesome: http://www.vimeo.com/10914418. Other groups made wonderful videos also.

– Getting an email from a CNN.com editor who wanted to do a story on the WVBS was an exciting surprise.

– Noted vegan cookbook authors Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Sara Kramer participated last year, as did a chef from the Sea Shepherd.

– It’s impossible to pick a favorite aspect of the WVBS. But right up there would be the palpable sense of community from all the groups and individuals holding bake sales across the globe, including those in areas that are not vegan-friendly and that have little or no vegan support network.

This is only the tip of the iceberg. I could go on for another two pages about memorable and praiseworthy efforts by participants and supporters of the WVBS. It’s really been heartwarming, impressive, and encouraging.

4. You’ve been interviewed by CNN for this event – did you see any impact from that interview, did the interest in the bakesales increase?

The CNN.com story — http://www.cnn.com/2010/LIVING/04/30/vegan.bake.sale/ — had a big impact, not so much due to the interview, I think, but because of the wonderful photo-essay in the story. The article came out after the first of the two main weekends of the WVBS. Participants who held bake sales that first weekend emailed pictures to the author, which conveyed the breadth and the energy of the event. The story went viral on twitter and generated a surge of last-minute signups.

5. Have you had the chance to see something come of the seeds planted during these events? Do people contact you afterward, or have you heard from other bakesale organizers of concrete impacts?

We encourage participants to let us know how their bake sales went, and the feedback is fantastic. There are so many accounts of customers expressing that they had no idea that vegan baked goods could be so delicious. There are many reports of productive conversations with the public about vegan food and ethics. Several groups that had their first bake sale as part of the WVBS now hold them regularly because they really like that form of outreach. Close to home, I’ve found out that some of the businesses that donated baked goods had customers who said that they found out about the business – or at least about the business’ vegan products – at our bake sales.

6. Anything else you’d like to say?

Think about joining. More than anything, the power and global camaraderie of the WVBS depends on the number of bake sales. Holding a vegan bake sale may be easier than you think. A vegan bake sale doesn’t have to be a big affair; it can be one table with six types of items. You can hold it in your office lobby or cafeteria if that’s allowed. Many colleges let groups reserve kiosks for free; that may be a perfect location for a bake sale. We have tons of tips on every aspect of vegan bake sales at http://www.veganbakesale.org/veganbakesale/vbs-links-bake-sale-tips.html. If you’re not up to organizing your own bake sale, check our ever-expanding list of groups that have signed up so far — http://www.veganbakesale.org/veganbakesale/vbs-where.html – they can always use more bakers. If baking’s not your thing, there is one more very important – in fact, essential – contribution you can make. Find out the location and time of the nearest vegan bake sale and support your local, talented, hard-working bakers who put their hearts and creativity into a delicious and fun way to change the world.

Details about the WWVBS:

Dates: April 23 through May 1 (two weekends and the weekdays in between)
Links:

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