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Thread: Climate Change

  1. #11
    Forums Member Olderon's Avatar
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    philg: "With extremists like Putin, Trump, May and others in charge there is very little chance that anything constructive will be done in the time scale left to us. As Buddhists we can just accept the end of life as we know it as part of the process of continual change, or try to actively participate in attempts to educate the world, or move to less low lying areas, or build ourselves shelters against the huge storms that will appear as the atmosphere warms, or any combination of these."

    If you live in an area prone to inclement weather (floods, hurricanes, tornados, monsoons, and etc.) you should have already taken appropriate actions to keep from ending up on the mortality list. One of the big frustrations for me is folks not building appropriate structures in such areas and insurance companies paying for rebuilding the same vulnerable structures, only to see them destroyed during the next weather event.


    If you are concerned about CO2 levels, plant some trees and foliage every chance you get. Rid yourself of the lawns and plant "plants" that require more carbon to build their living matrices.


    If you are concerned about C02 and toxic emissions from various modes of internal combustion engines, walk, ride your bicycle, or buy an electric vehicle. The same for your sources of electricity. Solar panels are not all that pretty, but neither are deserts.


    If you are concerned about CO2 and CH4 emissions, stop buying and eating animal protein and change your diet to vegetation, or at least become a scavenger, collecting preparing and eating the thousands of road-kill left on our highways every day. Cattle and dairy cattle contribute as much or more global warming gases as our Autos.


    Don't blame global warming on Trump, and the other politicians. We vote them in. The problem is us, not them.

  2. #12
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    No, Olderon. You may have voted those people into power, but I didn't. They have the power to limit damage, or, as they are at the moment, to promote damage. They turn us away from limiting CO2 and other emissions. They stop the trend towards low carbon energy. They support the meat industry and keep us eating high on the food chain instead of low. They are the gatekeepers determined that the flow of money stays as it is, whatever the consequences for the planet.

    We can play our part as individuals, but we all get caught up in the same catastrophic event that is global warming. For my part I've been taking groups of children to the Center For Alternative Technology in Wales for around 30 years, following it up in the classroom for all those years. They have a great website here: http://www.cat.org.uk/index.html and, if you are in the UK, are well worth a visit.

  3. #13
    Forums Member Olderon's Avatar
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    No, Olderon. You may have voted those people into power, but I didn't. They have the power to limit damage, or, as they are at the moment, to promote damage. They turn us away from limiting CO2 and other emissions.
    There is an old Buddhist saying: "Is it better to cover the world with leather, or to wear sandles?"

    My point as well as the saying's is that we "each" have a responsibility "individually" to act to correct a wrong or to effectively solve any given problem.

    So long as we blame the world's problems on someone else, someone we didn't vote for , spend our energy protesting instead of acting responsibly and beneficially, then the problems will progress unattended and unabated.

    I think it is wonderful that you are educating children about the climatological issues. You also need to teach them how to choose appropriate leaders if you want someone in offices of power and leadership, who will join with other leaders to make the Macro-changes necessary to abate global issues. However, even if you do vote, there is the chance that your party of choice will not win. That is the nature of democratic government. This does not negate your personal obligations to act responsibly.

    This is why it is up to us as individuals to act personally and responsibly on those issues that will make a difference in anthropogenic global warming reversal:

    Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. (Are we doing everything we can?)

    Eliminate (ban) our personal use of internal combustion engines. ( Don't patronize the auto dealerships, the bus systems, the airlines, the energy suppliers, which use energy sources, which produce decomposition products of combustion, which are global warming gases, a.k.a. green house gases.)

    Plant trees in every open space to sequester CO2.

    Build your houses from stone or clay bricks instead of wood and plastics and save a tree.

    Use "reusable" shopping bags instead of paper or plastic.

    Stop eating meats (animal flesh). Instead eat vegetables and fruits.

    There is a lot we can do to educate our children as you may be in fact be doing, but what are "you" teaching them by personal example?

    We are at a point now where the process of global warming may not in fact be reversible in human time frames, even if we all immediately do the right things. Should we throw our hands up in the air and blame Trump and Putin and let it go at that? Or, should we personally act effectively and responsibly and set the example for our children so that future generations know how to survive and have even a small chance at reversing the process of global warming?

    Should we teach them who to vote for and why we should vote for them when they become of voting age?.....or what?
    Last edited by Olderon; 27 Jul 18 at 10:41.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Olderon

    There is an old Buddhist saying: "Is it better to cover the world with leather, or to wear sandles?"

    The real version is part of an 8th century Mahayana text called "A Guide to the Bodhisattva's Way of Life" by Shantideva (I have a copy myself) - and is in the chapter "Guarding Alertness".



    13.

    Where would I possibly find enough leather
    With which to cover the surface of the earth?
    But (wearing) leather just on the soles of my shoes
    Is equivalent to covering the earth with it.

    Here's an online translation:

    https://www.tibethouse.jp/about/budd...ay_English.pdf


  5. #15
    Forums Member Olderon's Avatar
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    Thanks, Aloka.

    I have never seen the book which you just cited. My memory of that quote comes from two sources: Śāntideva > Quotes : source: https://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/29132._ntideva. I should have noted that it was paraphrased. My error.

    And, my vague memory of a conversation between a Tibetan Master sharing his wisdom with a novice in a movie about novices collecting the necessary equipment to watch a soccer match while they were growing up in a Buddhist monastery. I am not sure of the title, but I remember the plot as well as the quote. The quote must have come from the very book you cited.

  6. #16
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    My point is that we are way past the time when the effect of individual action can reverse global warming. Within a year or two the major oceanic streams will stop or change pattern, with huge effects on the weather we experience. We may see catastrophic melting of the ice caps this decade and billions of lives cut short by the resulting flooding, with subsequent global break down of law and order. It is only top-level action now that could possibly have any effect. There simply isn't time to build up an effective individual response, however well meaning.

  7. #17
    Forums Member Olderon's Avatar
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    Hi, philg.

    I understand your reasoning, but I could not disagree more. Leaders, especially those who are elected, tend to respect and follow the values of their constituents. They also tend to speak the same language as their constituents.

    Secondly, while our sun has been heating up since its formation from its predecessor, a super nova, and continues to heat up till it evolves into a Red Giant, which will eventually consume all of the rocky planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars) within our solar system, we intelligent life forms must continue to do what we can to preserve the life on this planet, which we as cognizant members of all life on this planet will have to eventually abandon taking only that life with us to our next planet, which our life-preserving ships can hold. These ships we can call our future arks. No (G)od is ordering these arks this time. It is human reason generated by our evolved minds, which commands this action. Our elected leaders will only do this if our collective individual values demand it. After all, this is survival of the species, which has dictated the behavior of survival worthy life-forms since life began . Those life-forms, which did not follow this behavioral pattern, or didn't have the capacity to follow it have since gone extinct.

    We individual life-forms are the parts, which form the whole. Leaders don't dictate the nature of the whole, despite what their egos invent.

    We collectively can either act in the modality expressing the survival capabilities that we genetically possess, or die. It is our choice, it is our human nature, not the choice of our leaders. Leaders are in fact expendable. Individuals collectively are not, for when all the individuals are extinct, life is extinct.

    If life can survive the cataclysm of super-novas and worse over galactic periods of some fifteen billions of years since The Big Bang, then life can survive the few decades stupidity of a few expendable political leaders. Proof of this: The preponderance of the horrible leaders from the two million years of human existence are now dead. We as individuals are still here and will continue to be here until our sun turns this planet into a cinder.

    Should we as individuals and as a species give up our struggle for the survival of all life-forms on our planet, because our planet's demise in four billion years is a certainty?

    Or, should we continue the struggle in behalf of all life and teach our progeny to do the same?
    Last edited by Olderon; 30 Jul 18 at 09:48.

  8. #18
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    I can't believe you still think our leaders are representing us. They don't. They represent themselves and those funding them, and are leading us to the environmental disaster that is the choice of our leaders at the moment. The timescale is such that action has to be taken now. Action which can only be undertaken at the highest levels.

    My personal opinion is that neither they nor anyone else is intelligent enough to do anything about it and we will die off pretty soon. Good job I'm a Buddhist eh?

  9. #19
    Forums Member Olderon's Avatar
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    philg: "My personal opinion is that neither they nor anyone else is intelligent enough to do anything about it and we will die off pretty soon."
    Well if really bad leaders, I mean horrific leaders, were a good reason to give up, lay down, and die, then just imagine how many folks would have given up under Stalin, Mao, all the North Korean leaders, Po Pot, Gengis Khan, Kublai Khan and etc..

    Let me know where to send flowers and I will send some to you so that you can begin your funeral early.

  10. #20
    An article worth reading from today's Guardian newspaper:


    It's 50 years since climate change was first seen. Now time is running out

    By Richard Wiles


    https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...-change-denial

    .

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