Earth Charter Network meeting held in Amsterdam
On January 11, the yearly Earth Charter meeting in the Netherlands took place. Active members of the Earth Charter network gathered in Amsterdam, facilitated by ECI Affiliate NCDO. Alide Roerink, coordinator of the NCDO Earth Charter programme and ECI Council member interviewed Commissioners Ruud Lubbers and Awraham Soetendorp, who were the key inspirational speakers. The relevance of the Earth Charter for Rio+20 was the topical issue.Read more...
Rabbi Soetendorp quoted the interreligious statement "Towards Rio + 20 and beyond - A turning point in Earth History". He then facilitated a moment of silent prayer and reflection and shared his dream that the Rio + 20 summit itself would start with such a moment of silence, in which the assembled heads of state would meditate about their essential role of shaping a sustainable future for many generations to come.
Please watch a video about the event here:
Rabbi Soetendorp signs MoU with Eco Schools Network on behalf of Earth Charter International
In his role as Earth Charter Commissioner, Rabbi Soetendorp spoke at the Eco Schools National Operator meeting held in Krakow, Poland that was organized by the Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE) and signed a Memorandum of Understanding and Collaboration between Earth Charter International and FEE. In this meeting, which took place from 27-30 October, representatives from over 47 countries heard about the Earth Charter and how compassion can be the driver for working together to ensure a sustainable world for the coming generations.
Rabbi Soetendorp spoke passionately about the Earth Charter background and purpose; about what we have in common and how our shared values, as expressed in the Earth Charter's 16 ethical principles, can underpin any organizations vision and planning. He then shared about the diverse educational projects he is involved in, especially the Day of Respect that is celebrated annually in over 3.000 primary schools all over the Netherlands, as well as the intergenerational Feather Project.
The main purpose of the MoU signed by ECI and FEE is to spread information and knowledge about the Earth Charter across the Eco-Schools network, providing Eco-Schools with another theme or project through which they can implement their activities.
To find out more about the eco schools network please visit their website here.
A Tribute to Wangari Maathai - A Princess of Peace and an Angel of Mercy
It is Martin Buber who describes in I and Thou the unique relationship to a tree. The tree in its encounter is not as an object but the embodiment of our deepest emotions and dreams. Wangari has planted these trees in Kenya and all over the continent of Africa.Read more...
They sustain life now and will continue to carry her dream of a peaceful and just future for the whole human family and Earth community for ever and ever. I met her for the first time in 1988 in Oxford at the formative meeting of the Global Forum of Spiritual and Parliamentary Leaders for Human Survival. She was a power of strength, so full of joy that no adversary could quench.
Interfaith Student Conference on the Earth Charter held in The Hague
On 27 November, 2010, the International Student Chaplaincy as well as Islam & Dialogue hosted the one day international student conference “From Crisis to Hope – the Challenges of the Earth Charter” in the Institute for Social Studies in The Hague. The event brought together some 100 students from different universities, nationalities, and faith traditions. After last year’s conference focused on the Charter for Compassion, this year’s theme centered on the Earth Charter as a shared ethical framework that inspires and challenges people from different cultural, religious and spiritual traditions.
Soetendorp Institute launches the Earth Charter Guide to Religion and Climate Change
The Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values gladly presents the second, revised edition of the Earth Charter Guide to Religion and Climate Change that has been produced by Earth Charter Program Coordinator Michael Slaby in a two-year process of research and consultation with scientists and experts in the Earth Charter Initative and the larger interfaith community.
The Guide presents some core facts about climate change and its interrelated social, environmental, political, economic and ethical challenges; provides an overview of good practice examples of religious engagement on global warming, and suggests a methodology for integrated ethical reflection on climate change.
Earth Charter Network Meeting held in Amsterdam, 1 - 2 December, 2008
An International Earth Charter Network Meeting has taken place on 1 and 2 December, 2008, in Amsterdam at the Royal Tropical Institute. The event that was chaired by Former Dutch Prime Minister and Earth Charter Commissioner Ruud Lubbers and was being hosted by NCDO and Earth Charter International. Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp welcomed the international guests on behalf of Green Cross Netherlands.
The read the transcript of his speech click here...
Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp Addresses International Interfaith Climate Summit in Uppsala, Sweden, 28 - 29 November, 2008
More than 1.000 people attended the Uppsalla Interfaith Climate Conference that was held in Uppsala, Sweden, on 28 - 29 November, 2008. Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp was among a selected group of 30 internationally recognized policy makers invited to sign the inspiring manifesto which was done at an interfaith ceremony in conducted in the Uppsala Cathedral led by The Most revd. Anders Wejryd, Archbishop of the Church of Sweden. Rabbi Soetendorp addressed the Conference at the opening seminar panel with EU Commission Vice Chair Margot Wallström and NASA’s leading climatologist James Hansen.
The Earth Charter is a declaration of fundamental principles for building a just, sustainable and peaceful global society in the 21st century. It was drafted in an unprecedented international consultation process involving thousands of experts and citizens from all walks of life.
Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp was part of the Earth Charter Commission that was formed in 1997 to oversee the drafting process. In the year 2000, the final version of the Earth Charter was launched at the Peace Palace in The Hague. Since then, the Charter and its integrated ethical framework for sustainable development has been endorsed by around 5.000 NGOs, educational institutions, religious communities, businesses and governments including UNESCO and the World Conservation Union IUCN. Rabbi Soetendorp promotes the Earth Charter wherever he can. All activities of the Institute are geared to putting the Earth Charter into action and make its inspiring vision a felt reality in the Netherlands and throughout the world.
Since January 2009, Rabbi Soetendorp co-chairs the Earth Charter Task Force on Religion, Spirituality, and Ethics that engages a broad range of individuals, institutions, and organizations concerned with religion, spirituality, ethics, to use the Earth Charter in their efforts toward creating a just, peaceful, and sustainable future and coordinates a network of around 600 religious and spiritual communities that have endorsed the Earth Charter.
Read more about the Global Earth Charter Initiative and its programs: www.earthcharter.org
Rabbi Soetendorp has served on the Earth Charter Commission that oversaw the unprecedented global consultation process on shared values and common goals for a sustainable way of life that generated the Earth Charter. The Soetendorp Institute helps coordinate the Earth Charter Task Force on Religion, Spirituality, and Ethics that is co-chaired by Prof. Mary Evelyn Tucker, founder of the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology and Rabbi Soetendorp. Please find out more about our activities in this field below, and visit the Earth Charter International website for more information on the work of the Task Force.