After Da Vote, It's Time for Devotions
World Food Day and the Plight of Women
Green Ethnic Restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area
October 29, 2004
After Da Vote, It's Time for Devotions
By Swami Beyondananda
By the time you read this, the 2004 election will be history. There'll be dancing in the streets ... or there'll be no joy in Mudville. Or, maybe the Undecideds will have carried the day after all, and the election will still be up for grabs. No matter whose buns are warming the seat of power come January, we the people must continue to provide the leadership to make sure our leaders never again mislead us into the Bewilderness.
As my guru Harry Cohen Baba used to say, "Life is like photography. You use the negative to develop." And if we look back on the past four years, there has been plenty of negativity -- and plenty of development.
In the wake of 9/11, a worldwide blisskrieg was launched to raise the laugh-force on the planet enough to change our course from Armageddon to Disarmaggedon. Millions have been struck by enlightening, realizing that now is the time to live our spiritual ideals -- because it is too late to do it sooner.
To counteract the fear-based "Code Orange" and the "State of Emergency" perpetuated by the Department of Homeland Insecurity, millions of American Evolutionaries and spiritual Fundamentalists (accent on fun) have declared "Code Green" and a "State of Emerge 'n see." That is where we emerge from our fearful hiding places and see that we must be the evolutionary changes we seek.
Instead of waiting for the hundredth monkey, people every day are waking up and declaring, "Well, I'll be a hundredth monkey's uncle, I am the hundredth monkey!"
So what is the best way to keep the blisskrieg going so that the planetary karma shifts into higher gear -- instead of the downshift we have seen the past few years? I say it is time we get back to fundamentals of FUNdamentalism: "All for fun ... and fun for all!"
This is not to be confused with un-fun fundaMENTALism, which has left the planet with plenty of toxic dogma-doo to clean up. Actually, fun-based FUNdamentalism may be the only way left to teach these old dogmas some new tricks. Humorological studies show that when laughter is applied to a petrified Belief System (BS), the toxic BS is released as harmless bubbles of laughter that actually improve the atmosphere. And what we are left with is pure gold. I am, of course, talking about the Golden Rule.
Yes, when all the BS is boiled off and evaporates into thin air, the undertruthing foundation for all religions is some version of the Golden Rule. That is why we FUNdamentalists say it's time to start practicing what all the major religions preach. Guaranteed, if we make the Golden Rule our golden ruler we will have chosen a new precedent indeed.
The key to voluntarily human evolution is to make a shift -- individually and as a world community -- from "doo-doo unto others" to "do unto others."
What if we enrolled in a One-Step Program to experience our Oneness? Step One: Actually practice all for One, and One for all. This will surely increase happiness on the planet, raise the laugh-force -- and maybe even restore the Bozone Layer.
And once we've enrolled ourselves in this FUNdamental practice, let's become enrolling stones and enroll all of our government and public institutions to follow the Golden Rule: No killing, no stealing and no perjury.
What if each corporation had to hire an ombuddhasman to make sure they're doing everything by the Golden Rulebook?
What do we have to lose? In other words, why not go for heaven on Earth -- just for the hell of it?
© Copyright 2004 by Steve Bhaerman. All rights reserved. To find out more about Swami's new book, Swami for Precedent: A 7-Step Plan to Heal the Body Politic, his latest stand-up karmic CD, or other Swami swag, please go to:
www.wakeuplaughing.com or call toll free (866) 525-0778.
World Food Day and the Plight of Women
|Thimmakka, the inspiration for Ritu Primlani's Earth-saving crusades.|
HEIDELBERG, GERMANY -- The International human rights organization FIAN International launched a Global Action Day on World Food Day on October 16, 2004 to publicize the man-made causes of hunger and to whip up public indignation with this scourge -- in particular, the plight of women, who suffer disproportionately from malnutrition although they produce up to 80% of food in some world regions.
In the run-up to World Food Day, FIAN organized activities in 15 countries in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe. One of the Global Action Day campaigns centered around a community of 200 peasant women on the Atlantic coast of Honduras. Their struggle for land became the subject of a world-wide letter campaign organized by FIAN. The case of the Honduran women shows how injustice and failed politics -- rather than natural disasters -- are the main causes of hunger.
Since June 2001, these landless peasant families headed by women had occupied land of the so-called "Jardín Clonal" territory at the National Agrarian Institute (NAI). This plot was given in 1992 to the Regional University Centre of the Atlantic Coast to be used for educationa; and experimental purposes. However, as this institution never used the land, various landless women's peasant groups claimed this territory.
This claim had been decided upon positively by the NAI. The INA passed a resolution ordering the University to return a 69-hectare plot to INA in order to hand it over to the women and their families. The University appealed this INA resolution and won the case in court rulings by the National Agrarian Council and the High Court of Justice.
The female-led community had been promised idle state land as part of the Honduran government's land-distribution program. But they are now facing eviction because a court has declared the women's claims to the land invalid. If the court order is implemented, the women will be thrown into lives of hunger and misery.
The women's struggle has attracted international attention. Over the past 40 years, only 20% of all land distributed to poor peasants in Honduras has been handed over to women. Land titles are still issued in the name of "household heads,'" naturally assumed to be men. Spouses and children are often left penniless when families break up.
As one local woman put it: "First he gets the land then he goes off with a younger woman and leaves his wife and children standing in the rain." The women's capacity to organize and publicize their resistance to eviction has won over public support at home and abroad. A European tour of Latin American women headed by Pedrina Santiago, one of the leading figures of the community, has served to put further pressure on the Honduran authorities to recognize and enforce the land rights of these women.
"We have suffered a lot but we will win," says Maria Inés de Dios, who has been involved in the struggle from the very beginning, "but many millions of women throughout the world are still discriminated against. The struggle must continue."
Action: Please write the President of the Republic of Honduras at the following address.
Lic. Ricardo Maduro Joest
Presidente de la República
Boulevard Juan Pablo II
Edificio "José Cecilio del Valle"
223 6031 Tegucigalpa CA
Or sign an online petition to President Maduro by going to the following website:
Green Ethnic Restaurants
(Berkeley and Oakland)
Restaurant Address City Phone Cuisine
Ajanta, 1888 Solano Ave., Berkeley, (510) 526-4373 (Indian)
Bombay Cuisine, 2006 9th St., Berkeley, (510) 843-9601(Indian)
Breads of India, 2448 Sacramento St., Berkeley (510) 848-7684 (Indian)
Café Tibet, 2020 University, Berkeley (510) 841-2002 (Tibetan)
Kamal Palace, 2175 Allston Way, Berkeley (510) 848-9906 (Indian)
Khana-Peena, 1889 Solano Ave., Berkeley (510) 528-2519 (Indian)
Lalime's, 1329 Gilman St., Berkeley (510) 527-9838 (Mediterranean)
India Chaat and Sweets, 824 University Ave., Berkeley (510) 704-1200/(510) 549-9997 (Indian)
Bosphorus (Ahlishan), 1025 University Ave., Berkeley (510) 549-9997 (Indian)
Organic Café, 1050 40th St., Oakland (510) 653-6510 (Organic)
Papa's Persian, 2026 University Ave., Berkeley (510) 841- 0884 (Persian)
Razan's Organic Kitchen, 2110 Kitteredge St., Berkeley (510)486-2674 (Mediterranean)
Thai Delight Cuisine, 1700 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley (510) 549-0611 (Thai)
Zaika, 1700 Shatuck Ave., Berkeley (510) 849-2452 (Indian)
Boran Thai, 1892 Solano Ave., Berkeley (510) 525-3625 (Thai)
Alcatel Bottle Shop, 6363 Telegraph Ave., Oakland (510) 653-6418 (Liquor Store)
Nabolom Bakery, 2708 Russell St., Berkeley (510) 845-2253 (Bakery)
Vanni's Innovative Cuisine, 1096 Dwight Way, Berkeley (510) 843-3646 (Thai)
Café Colucci, 6427 Telegraph Ave., Oakland (510) 601-7999 (Ethiopian)
Gregoire, 2109 Cedar St., Berkeley (510) 883-1893 (French)
Dara Thai/ Lao Cuisine, 1549 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley (510) 841-2002 (Thai)
Racha Café, 2516 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley (510) 644-3583 (Thai)
Berkeley Thai House, 2511 Channing Way, Berkeley (510) 843-7352 (Thai)
Ethiopia Restaurant, 2955 Telegraph Ave., Berkeley (510) 843-1992 (Ethiopian)
Black Muslim Bakery 1, 5832 San Pablo Ave., Oakland (510) 658-7080 (African-American)
Black Muslim Bakery 2, 365 17th St., Oakland (510) 839-1313 (African-American)
Black Muslim Bakery 3, 4915 Telegraph Ave., Oakland (510) 652-1738 (African-American)
Chaam, 1543 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley (510) 848-9664 (Thai)
Athithi Restaurant, 2525 Dwight Way, Berkeley (510) 647-5100 (Indian)
Fonda, 1501 Solano Ave., Albany (510) 526-4373 (Latin American)
Nomad Café, 6500 Shattuck Ave., Oakland (510) 595-5344 (Café)
Café de la Paz, 1600 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley (510) 843-0662 (Mexican)
Das Café, 2115 Milvia St., Berkeley (510) 843-2060 (Ethiopian)
Bella Mia, 58 South First St., San Jose (408) 280-1993 (Italian)
Chacho's, 18 S. Almaden Ave., San Jose (408) 293-1387 (Mexican)
Chinese Gourmet Express, 150 S. First Street, #111, San Jose (408) 998-4878
Chow Ciao Café, 20 N. Almaden Ave., San Jose (408) 292-7096 (Café)
Emma's, 177 North Santa Clara St., San Jose (408) 279-3662 (Mexican)
Gordon Biersch, 33 E. San Fernando St., San Jose (408) 294-6785
La Taqueria, 15 S. First St., San Jose (408) 280-1993 (Mexican)
Laurel's Delights, 60 N First St., San Jose (408) 292-5211 (Vietnamese)
Peggy Sue's, 29 N. San Pedro St., San Jose (408) 298-6750
Sonoma Chicken Coop, 31 N. Market St., San Jose (408) 287-4098
For more information contact: