Global Climate Strike: Shepparton

Global Climate StrikeShepparton Interfaith Network supports the climate strike on Friday, 20 September 2019, in Maude Street Mall. As people of spirit and faith, we are joining the youth climate strikers to call for sweeping, urgent climate action and to make sure that our response is grounded in the core values shared by all our traditions: love, justice, and compassion.
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First Do No Harm

First, do no harm

Sometimes it seems like Buddhism doesn’t have much relevance to environmental problems. Can Buddhist philosophy solve climate change? Can meditation bring back lost species? I think about these things much of the time, trying to find my way in a world of plummeting ecosystem health. Every semester my students say, “But what can one person do?” If I don’t have some good answers, they won’t be able to move forward with the important work of saving the planet.

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With hajj under threat, it’s time Muslims joined the climate movement

kaaba at MeccaAccording to research published last week by US scientists, hajj is set to become a danger zone. As soon as next year, they say, summer days in Mecca could exceed the “extreme danger” heat-stress threshold. The news comes just weeks after over 2 million people completed their journey of a lifetime. The environmental threat to the holy pilgrimage is a panic button for British Muslims like me, signaling that the climate crisis is endangering an age-old sacred rite.
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UN International Day of Peace

UN International Day of Peace LogoUN International Day of Peace this year occurs on Saturday 21 September 2019. This year’s theme draws attention to the importance of combating climate change as a way to protect and promote peace throughout the world. In the lead up to the International Day of Peace on 21 September, the United Nations calls upon all to take action to tackle climate change. Every human is part of the solution – from turning off the lights to taking public transport, to organising an awareness raising campaign in your community. The Theme is Climate Action for World Peace
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Creating inclusive multi-faith workplaces

Steps to creating multifaith inclusive workplacesCreating inclusive multi-faith workplaces is a new resource for DCA members to help workplaces move away from simply ‘accommodating’ the needs of their multi-faith employees, towards making workplaces inclusive for everyone in Australia’s increasingly religiously diverse workplaces.
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Lay community key to reforming Catholicism

Book Cover - Getting Back on MissionOne of the most extraordinary recent examples of commitment is the loyalty shown by many post-Vatican II Catholics to the church. Despite their steadfast support for the emphases of that Council, these lay Catholics, supported by many priests, are often seen as a ‘nuisance’ by senior church leaders whose real focus has been protecting their own positions and clericalist ideology. Their commitment has been further tested by the sexual abuse scandals and the abject failure of many bishops in dealing with them.
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Faith Based Urban Thinkers Campus

Urban Shalom Society LogoUN Habitat invites you to join in UN Habitat’s World Urban Campaign’s faith initiative, Faith and the Path Towards a Better Quality of City Life. UN Habitat together with World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), the Urban Shalom Society (USS) and a number of local partners are running a series of faith based Urban Thinkers Campuses, aimed at encouraging faith communities to work together on the creation of cities and urban environments where all can flourish.
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What is it Like to be a Childless Woman?

Woman in reflection - in a playground

Only I knew my unborn child, she lived inside me, in my mind, in my heart, in my dreams. I can still see her. I remember the decades of longing for her to grow inside my belly and the yearning to experience that powerful initiation of giving birth into mother-hood, the desire to feed her from my breasts, sheltering her beneath the curtain of my long hair as she fed. I remember my dream child’s full heavy limbed body lying satiated in my arms, one of her own plump little arms flung out in complete acceptance of the safety of my embrace. Her tiny hand closing and unclosing, her eyes moving beneath her eyelids as she dreamed. Her small moist mouth, milk dribbling from one corner down her smooth velvet cheek. Her soft curls glinting in the moonlight … her father stroking those tiny silken springs of hair and smiling at me.

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Season of Creation

Global support continues to grow for the Season of Creation, an annual celebration of prayer and action to protect creation that is celebrated by tens of thousands of Christians of all traditions around the world. Running from 1 September to 4 October, the Season of Creation’s beginning and end dates are linked with the concern for creation in the Eastern and the Western traditions of Christianity, respectively.
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What Is Vipassana Meditation and How Do You Practice It?

Line of Buddha imagesWhat is Vipassana?

Vipassana, or insight meditation, is the practice of continued close attention to sensation, through which one ultimately sees the true nature of existence. It is believed to be the form of meditation practice taught by the Buddha himself, and although the specific form of the practice may vary, it is the basis of all traditions of Buddhist meditation.

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Golden Rule Day

Golden Rule Dayu ImageThe Golden Rule is ancient and modern, secular and religious, personal and common. Golden Rule Day is an opportunity for all of us to reflect on and celebrate the universal principle of treating others the way that we want to be treated. It is a powerful tool for all of our relationships – with ourselves, others, animals, and the planet.

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New survey reveals which religions New Zealanders trust most – and least – after Christchurch shootings

al-noor Mosque Christchurch

In a survey of 1000 New Zealanders, taken a month after the Christchurch mosque shootings of 15 March 2019, respondents were asked how much they trusted people from different religious groups living in New Zealand.

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Laughing Matters: Laughter Yoga

people laughingIf you have ever spotted a group of people in a park standing in a circle clapping and laughing “ho, ho, ha-ha-ha”, you’ve stumbled across a Laughter Yoga Club in progress. Growing in popularity around the world, this wellbeing practice that comprises laughter, pranayama (breath work), Yoga Nidra (deep relaxation) and meditation was founded just 16 years ago by Dr Madan Kataria, a physician in India.
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My New Neighbour: a way to bring refugees safely to Australia

my new neighbourThe My New Neighbour campaign is a neighbourhood-led solution to help refugees – people who are seeking to rebuild their lives somewhere safe. It’s all about people power and giving communities the opportunity to lead the change from within. Amnestyu International will present a Community Conversation in Shepparton on August 27. Hosted by Goulburn Valley Libraries, this story telling evening taking place at the Shepparton Library, involves the Ethnic Community Council of Victoria, Amnesty International and Erfan Daliri, author of Raising Humanity. 
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Breaking Down Stigma in Mental Health

University of Melbourne logoThe University of Melbourne, Department of Rural Health and Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences invite you to attend a Public Lecture Panel ‘Breaking Down Stigma in Mental Health’ – What can we do to eradicate cultural, social and gender barriers? at Westside Centre on  Thursday 12 September 2019
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How should Buddhists respond to the gun violence epidemic?

gun with knotThe Buddha was one of the first great teachers to recognise that in the human realm things happen for a reason. Even the most heinous perpetrators of violent acts are still human beings, acting out of desperation, rage, ideological fervor, or mental illness. While we cannot and should not excuse them, as Buddhists we should avoid dehumanizing or vilifying them to the point that we respond in kind.
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