They say the Buddha is infinitely compassionate. It's times like these that make me wonder whether compassion is enough. Japanese people are suffering from the after-effects of one of the most powerful earthquakes in recorded history, a tsunami of almost unimaginable proportions, and a potential nuclear meltdown nightmare. Beyond our prayers, here's one way we all can help:
"The best way for local residents to help these people, according to relief organizations, is to donate cash to organizations such as the American Red Cross or the Salvation Army.In our world, sometimes money means compassion. How broken is your heart? May the Buddha's compassion never be exhausted.
Representatives from both organizations said Monday that money is the biggest need and donating supplies is not an efficient solution.
“Logistically, it becomes too difficult to store, sort and then ship the items,” said Randall Thomas, spokesman for the Salvation Army of Greater Philadelphia. “We can be much more efficient with cash donations.”
For many people, the easiest way to donate is by text messaging. To make a one-time, $10 donation to the Salvation Army, people can text “Japan” to 80888. The donation will be added to the person’s cell phone bill.
The American Red Cross is doing likewise, allowing people to make $10 donations by texting “redcross” to 9099."
One does not need to be a genius at inductive reasoning to recognize the obvious: the risks/costs entailed by continuing to rely on our traditional forms of energy production outweigh the rewards/benefits. To wit:
- Nuclear energy can never be perfectly safe. E.g., Fukushima, Japan, Chernobyl, Three Mile Island.
- Fossil fuel energy production is not without enormous societal costs. E.g., Iraq, Deepwater Horizon Gulf of Mexico.
- Coal is dirty and dangerous. E.g., Upper Big Branch and Sago, West Virginia, strip mining, mountain-top removal.
- Natural gas extraction, i.e., frac'ing, is not without it own set of perils. E.g., Arkansas earthquakes.
Fact is, we're running out of energy. It's the ultimate root cause of our lackluster global economies. This is the age of exhaustion.
To read about how some really smart, imaginative people have proposed solutions that seek to preserve not only humanity and civilization but our planetary environment, I urge you to read my series of posts entitled "Parameters of the Last Ark" on this issue.