Calling for a Global Ceasefire 

Recently, the UN Secretary-General urged warring parties across the world to lay down their weapons in support of the bigger battle against COVID-19.  "The fury of the virus illustrates the folly of war," he said.  "That is why today, I am calling for an immediate global ceasefire in all corners of the world.  It is time to put armed conflict on lockdown and focus together on the true fight of our lives." 
Calling for immediate global ceasefire - UN chief on COVID-19
Calling for immediate global ceasefire - UN chief on COVID-19

With the pandemic ravaging the entire world, creating incomprehensible numbers of deaths, severe financial hardships for individuals, businesses and the world economy, today we are faced with profound challenges. I n times like these I personally take solace from our interfaith and spiritual leaders;  their wisdom and compassion sustains me to hope for a better world to be born out of all this chaos and suffering. Please see my blog: Transformation as a Spiritual Practice.   In this context, I have been drawn to the interview with Matthew Fox in The Interfaith Observer, January 2019, where he links compassion with interfaith action:

 " being able to be courageous together, to stand up to forces of injustice and denial - I mean look what we're facing as a species. We have ... to radically change our ways so that the planet as we know it can survive and flourish. Well, that is where interfaith should be..."
So let us all take the Secretary-General's appeal to heart, and bring compassion and action into our daily lives. The world will be better for it. Matthew Fox likes to quote David Bohm, a Jewish physicist, "It is not enough for one person to wake up. But there is an exponential benefit of groups of people waking up."

Faith Leaders Strongly Support Call for Global Ceasefire  
Photo credit: Religions for Peace

Religions for Peace has published a statement from Faith Leaders from around the world strongly supporting the Secretary-General's call for a global ceasefire:
"Together, we are leaders from all faith traditions...Together, we strongly support, and hereby echo, far and wide, the call of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr. Antonio Guterres, for an immediate global ceasefire... Previously, we have stated that the United Nations represents all of us as peoples, and expresses our shared values. When its leader makes a critical call for the wellbeing of all, there is wisdom in echoing this call for peace...All of our communities are facing a virus that knows no politics, recognizes no borders, and will not be stopped by any of our old or modern weapons..."

Join the Temple of Understanding in signing the petition for a Global Ceasefire. 
Faith Climate Action Week

#Stand with the Mashpee Wampanoag 

The Temple of Understanding supports UU Mass Action's call to "Join with our Mashpee Wampanoag Neighbors."

"On Friday, March 27, Vice Chairwoman Jessie Little Doe Baird and Chairman Cendric Cromwell of the Mashpee Nation spoke with the Bureau of Indian Affairs. They were informed that the Mashpee Nation people are being terminated, meaning the government is ending their right to govern themselves on their land and is stripping them of their reservation."

UN Women Shares the #HeForSheAtHome Campaign

"As a consequence of the global COVID-19 pandemic, millions of people now find themselves indoors. Gender inequalities, particularly of women in the home, are becoming increasingly apparent when it comes to housework, cleaning and caring for children, the sick or the elderly.

In responding to the outbreak, women make up 70 percent of workers in the health and social sector and do three times as much unpaid care work at home as men. Women are in the lead across the world as front-line responders, health care professionals, scientists, doctors and more. The  #HeForSheAtHome campaign aims to highlight this unfair burden on women and encourage men to do their equal share."
Read full blog here >>
Earth Day's 50th Anniversary

Wednesday April 22nd, 2020 marks the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day.  During these unprecedented times, activist are coming together online for Earth Day Live, a 3 day live stream  for climate action.
Click here to find out more about Earth Day Live and take part in one of the biggest days of digital action the climate movement has ever seen!

"The coronavirus has laid bare the brutality and injustice of our current system. Millions of people have lost their jobs, are no longer able to pay their rent, student loans, credit card bills, utilities, or healthcare costs. That's why we're coming together for online action at a scale the climate movement has never done before.
We are leaning into healing and togetherness to provide comfort and inspiration during this time of anxiety and the unknown.  On all the three days we are centering the stories and voices of frontline, indigenous, and POC leaders."
Here is an overview of what is planned for each day:

April 22- STRIKE: The 50th anniversary of Earth Day is about demonstrating collective power in the face of today's multiple crises. There will be performances, conversations, trainings and more.

April 23 - DIVEST: The world's largest banks have pumped $1.9 trillion into fossil fuels since the 2015 Paris Agreement. Led by the Stop the Money Pipeline Coalition, the day will focus on the role of money in driving the climate crisis.

April 24 - VOTE: Led by the US Youth Strike Coalition, the day will focus on voter registration and feature a digital challenge to see which region of the country can register the most voters.
Closing Words from TOU
Please stay safe and together let us vision a new world of compassion and action. From all of us at Temple of Understanding, we pray for your safety and the safety world wide of hospital staff, firefighters, EMT workers, government workers, store personnel and ordinary citizens who are practicing courage and compassion in the face of this crisis.

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