Tag: memorial

Plant A Tree For Wangari

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Plant a Tree for Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathai Dead at 71

Spiritual Environmentalism: Healing Ourselves by Replenishing the Earth

by Wangari Maathai

I didn’t think digging holes and mobilizing communities to protect or restore the trees, forests, watersheds, soil, or habitats for wildlife that surrounded them was spiritual work.

During my more than three decades as an environmentalist and campaigner for democratic rights, people have often asked me whether spirituality, different religious traditions, and the Bible in particular had inspired me, and influenced my activism and the work of the Green Belt Movement (GBM). Did I conceive conservation of the environment and empowerment of ordinary people as a kind of religious vocation? Were there spiritual lessons to be learned and applied to their own environmental efforts, or in their lives as a whole?

When I began this work in 1977, I wasn’t motivated by my faith or by religion in general. Instead, I was thinking literally and practically about solving problems on the ground. I wanted to help rural populations, especially women, with the basic needs they described to me during seminars and workshops. They said that they needed clean drinking water, adequate and nutritious food, income, and energy for cooking and heating. So, when I was asked these questions during the early days, I’d answer that I didn’t think digging holes and mobilizing communities to protect or restore the trees, forests, watersheds, soil, or habitats for wildlife that surrounded them was spiritual work.

exmearden archives

In Memoriam: Kris Froland 1958 – 2010

exmearden (Kris Froland) was one of the original editors here (uid #15).  A standout in an impressive group of writers buhdy invited to be part of Docudharma.  So I decided to compile all of the essays she wrote here to preserve and distribute her work to friends, family and the blog community.    It’s truly a blast from the past to revisit these posts.

Here is a link to all of the essays exmearden posted on our blog – comments included:  

Collected works of exmearden

This will take you to Google Docs where you can download a PDF (6 MB) version to your computer. Look for the File menu and then select “Download Original”.  Or read it there but it looks much better in Adobe.  

HONORING THE FALLEN: US Military KIA, Iraq & Afghanistan/Pakistan – March 2010

October 29 2009

Honoring the Fallen: Casualties from Afghanistan.

Yesterday’s Memorial for the Triangle Factory Fire Victims

Cross-posted at DailyKos.

At 11:30 yesterday morning on the corner of Greene St. and Washington Pl. I met Firefighter James M. Sorokac for the first time. I’d never met him before but being the keeper of “The Last Alarm” and a member of the of the FDNY ceremonial unit, his face was far too familiar to me.

In the shadow of the Asch Building he explained that the bell that is rang for the fallen dates back to a time when there was one bell at every NYC fire house. He told me the story of the four fives. When firehouses would communicate to each other across the city by ringing five times in a series of four the message that “a brother has fallen in the line of duty.”

Today that bell is rang once by a white gloved firefighter at funerals and memorial services.

Yesterday Firefighter James M. Sorokac rang that bell 146 times.  

Wednesday Music; for Jill and for Adam

Jill Richardson runs La Vida Locavore, a blog about food. Jill writes her heart out about the politics of food safety, and her blog has attracted gardeners and farmers and people like me, who write there too sometimes.

Jill’s brother died last year. He was in his 20’s. Jill posted an essay late this evening about Adam, about how this would have been his birthday. “What can I give him?” she wrote.

Jill’s essay is here:  http://www.lavidalocavore.org/…

Adam died when he was 23. Jill’s essay is painful and beautiful.

I went to a concert the other day and I couldn’t stop thinking about him. He was so into music and he knew so much about it. He would have been happy I was going to a concert.

Below the jump is the music I posted over there. A moment of silence for a fellow blogger, please.

Army Sgt. Richard Yarosh: Portrait in Smithsonian

Justified Honor and Remembrance for not only Sgt. Yarosh but all who served and are serving in these two theaters, burned soldier portrait to show at Smithsonian!

This is and will be for a long time a great tribute to this soldier, and all the Fallen and Maimed of these two continuing occupations. And like “The Wall”, until we can build a Memorial for the Fallen of both these conflicts, it should be a Reminder to this Nation of what We Allowed “In Our Names!”!!

For Jane

This past Tuesday I was called upon to deliver some words about my colleague, Hui-Chuan (Jane) Cheng.  The following are the final text of my words, which I promised some people I would make available.

Besides being a full professor in Computer Information Systems at Bloomfield College, Dr. Cheng also taught at the Chinese School in Livingston, NJ.  Besides teaching Chinese heritage there, I have no doubt that she created their web site.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Jane’s death hit many of us hard.  It is difficult to imagine…it has been difficult to cope…with her not being here anymore.  I mean it is possible that a day could go by that we don’t discover that something that Jane always took care of didn’t happen.  Hasn’t seemed to happen yet, but I suppose it could happen.

Ted Kennedy Was My Neighbor

There’s been rumblings lately among some on the other side of the health care debate that neighbors should take care of each other, and I couldn’t agree more.

You see, Ted Kennedy was my neighbor. He was your neighbor, too.

When my two children were born with autism, a developmental disability, Ted Kennedy was there speaking out about the need for head start, a program that my son used to help him make eye contact and understand that he could communicate his needs with words, and not just with crying: http://www.tedkennedy.com/jour…

Dead Civilian Day

I’m not really very impressed by arguments that one group of ‘warrior’ should be remembered, or another one –currently honored– should really not be.  

In fact the last thing I personally would want if I had died in some Smedly Butler-esq American war, is a politician tossing a wreath my way–along with say 100,000 other  dead and buried young men.   Especially not when the very same politician is ramping up one war, and paying lip service to ending another.  Better to stop creating more deaths.

More to the point though, and entirely — I mean entirely missing from the discussion is the dead civilians.  

Anyone remember those folks?  

You know–the one’s most likely cooking breakfast for their children at 8.15 one morning long ago:

One year ago today.

Carry on.

Arlington West – March 2008 – Honoring The Fallen

Before dawn every Sunday morning, at the foot of the Santa Monica Pier, volunteers set up crosses in memory of American service members killed in Iraq.

The Video was produced for the New York Times and can be also seen At Their Site

I saved a flag, Iraq and video tribute to IGTNT I can’t use

Cross posted at Daily KOS

A while back I got the urge to visit Goodwill, I rarely do because the days of bargains are long gone around here. But I also know even if I’m not shopping for anything when I get that urge I will find something I didn’t know I needed until I get there. I also found a parking spot close to the door, another sign I was going home with something. I hit the furniture section and didn’t see anything and then headed down the back wall something I never do, when I spotted it hanging on a hanger amidst some curtains. A flag. Not just any flag mind you, but a special flag, the creases from it’s unmistakable triangular fold still visible. It was a interment flag, used to drape the coffin of a veteran or soldier who died in action.  

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