During the United Nations Climate Conference in Marrakech, Morocco in November, we saw many renewable energy initiatives - like the solar energy tree pictured here.

In a major speech on climate change this week, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called on all on world leaders, business & civil society to take ambitious climate action and implement the Paris Agreement on climate change.

“Every month, more countries are translating their Paris pledges into national climate action plans. Yes, not everyone will move at the same pace or with equal vigour. But if any government doubts the global will and need for this accord, that is reason for all others to unite even stronger and stay the course”.

Asked how individuals can take climate action, the Secretary-General responded:

“When you vote, think of your grandchildren. They can’t vote but your decisions are going to affect their lives. One thing we know: if we don’t deal with climate change now, we are going to ruin many of their chances to have a positive life. So think about your grandchildren is my advice”.

📷: UN Social Media Team / Karin Orantes


On day one there were two people with it, and then there were four, and then it was sixteen and you think you’ve got it in front of you. But next it’s two hundred and fifty six and then it’s sixty five thousand and it’s behind you and above you and all around you. In thirty steps, it’s a billion sick. Three months. It’s a math problem you can do on napkin. And that’s where we’re headed! And that’s why you won’t even tell us the number of the dead, will you, Dr. Cheever? But you tell your friends when to get out of Chicago before anyone else has a chance.

Contagion [2011] dir. Steven Soderbergh


So while doing some research for my book I have been studying and researching the mythologies and beliefs of our neighbors in Indonesia and Malaysia, particularly at the moment of Kaharingan, the indigenous religion of the Dayak of Borneo. While doing so I noticed the very similar creation myth, deity names, and the overall beliefs among the Dayak to that of various groups in the Philippines. I also stumbled upon their symbol of their tree of life, or the Batang Garing. The tree, which represents their cosmology and the 3 worlds, the Upperworld, the Middle world (where we live), and the Underworld. This concept is also shared throughout the Philippines. When I first saw the image of the tree I was surprised as I have seen the very same tree before but not from the Dayak but from the Philippines.

Looking back at my photos of the gold artifacts in the Philippine gold exhibit in New York last year I looked closely at the them and saw how in many of them they have the same exact tree of life marked in the them. I remember reading in the descriptions of a few of the artifacts of symbols that were in them, one being the tree of life, but upon seeing the Batang Garing the similarity between the two is uncanny. 

In the Dayak creation myth, where as there were two birds, there was only one in the Bisayan and Tagalog creation myth. Also while the first humans were born from the devastation of the tree that grew from their god Ranying Mahatala Langit through the fighting between the two hornbills of the sky and sea, in the mythology from the Philippines it was a bamboo that was pecked open by only one bird. That bird was believed to have caused the fight between the two primeval deities, Kaptan and Magwayen, who were again the representation of the sky and sea.

So ya the the similarities are very noticeable and it is no wonder considering the Bisayans at the very least have always claimed that they were originally from Borneo through their myths, through historical accounts, and even today. 

But I just found this absolutely fascinating. Makes me wonder, is the tree of life depicted in many of the gold artifacts similar to that of the Dayak as well and represents the cosmology and precolonial beliefs of various groups such as the Bisayans and Tagalogs? Or does it represent something else? From various artifacts you can see the religious beliefs and spiritualism etched in them such as human figures in an orant position with their hands raised, birds upon birds, images of Buddhist deities and figures such as the Garuda. But it really makes you wonder what this tree meant to our ancestors for it to be important enough to be etched and hammered into these artifacts.

starter callORANTE DI CINTO. 」

orante is the quiet guy with his hands always full with a book, avoiding everyone like they have the plague and barely smiling, killing with a look anyone who tries to come close. bear with him—he’s a tormented werewolf who actually feels weak and vulnerable. deep down, very deep down, he’s pretty nice! so

like this post for a starter from jasper!

La relación del místico con Dios es descrita a menudo como la de dos amigos que pasan largas horas conversando y compartiendo mutuamente su intimidad.

El lugar de tales encuentros es la alfombra del orante, que se convierte en su templo, en su tienda del encuentro, en su tierra sagrada.

Por ello el creyente se descalza como Moisés ante la zarza ardiente.

En ella, el místico pasa mucho más tiempo que el estricto de las cinco oraciones diarias.

Dedica largas horas de la noche a esa conversación íntima.

La noche no significa sólo la quietud, la paz y la soledad, sino también la trascendencia de todo lo creado, de todo lo que “aparece” durante el día.

Por eso, en San Juan de la Cruz, es la noche la que junta al amado con su amada y, por eso también, Mahoma realiza su ascensión mística celeste de noche, hasta encontrarse con la fuente de toda luz.

Esta ascensión del Profeta es el camino que todo peregrino debe realizar.

Sin embargo, este viaje no consiste en ningún desplazamiento exterior sino en un viaje hasta el centro mismo de nosotros mismos, allá donde se descubre -con San Agustín- que “Dios es más íntimo que mi propia intimidad”.

“Tengo un amigo que visito en las soledades, presente, aunque escape a las miradas.

Me verás prestarle oído para percibir su lenguaje sin rumor de palabras.

Sus palabras no tienen vocales ni elocución, ni nada de melodía de sonidos.

Es como si me hubiera hecho interlocutor de mí mismo, comunicando con mi inspiración, con mi esencia, en mi esencia, presente, ausente, cercano, alejado, inaferrable a descripción por cualidades.

Está más próximo que la conciencia a la imaginación.

Es más íntimo que la centella de la inspiración.”

(HALLÂJ, ss. IX-X)

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