IEF International Conference, de Poort, The Netherlands, 14-17 April 2017
The Wilmette Institute will again be offering an 8 week online course on Climate Change starting 15 April 2017. This is the seventh repeat of the course developed by IEF member Christine Muller (Rhode Island, USA), with Arthur Dahl (Geneva, Switzerland) and Laurent Mesbah (Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina) as supporting faculty.
Social Conditions and Economics
A summary and commentary by Arthur Lyon Dahl
on the Message of 1 March 2017 from the Universal House of Justice
A significant new message from the international governing body of the Bahá’í Faith, the Universal House of Justice, dated 1 March 2017, contains many perspectives relevant to the work of the International Environment Forum. The following summary and commentary extract some points that are of general relevance, apart from sections addressed specifically to the Baha’is of the world.
The Story of Stuff for Baha'i Youth
from Christine Muller
We are excited to share with you new study materials for Baha'i Junior Youth on the popular video The Story of Stuff.
From 1-19 March is the 19 day period of fasting for the Baha'i community during which we avoid eating and drinking etc. between sunrise and sunset. The mild discomfort this produces can be thought of as a little companion running alongside you through the day as a reminder to attend to spiritual attitudes and habits and to make the appropriate adjustments (you can't manage what you don't measure).
The Myth Gap: What Happens When Evidence and Arguments Aren't Enough?
by Alex Evans. London: Eden Project Books, Transworld (Penguin), 2017. 152 p.
Book review by Arthur Lyon Dahl
In a world in which science and technology built through rational processes have transformed our economy and lifestyle and created wealth unimaginable in the recent past, it is ironic that rational arguments and scientific evidence are not enough to influence political decisions or to change individual behaviour. This book by Alex Evans, former political advisor to the British government and the United Nations, explores why the rational approaches of climate scientists and others addressing the environmental challenges of a society hitting planetary boundaries have failed to produce the necessary change. It has important lessons for anyone working at the science-policy interface or in public education on environmental issues.
Ms. Bita Correa, a member of the Baha'i International Community’s delegation to the 55th UN Commission for Social Development, New York, described a youth environmental project at a side event organized by the BIC on the topic “Rising Generations: Youth as Drivers of Prospering Communities.” on 3 February 2017 [Video link]
UN Environment publishes a Perspectives series that presents views from Major Groups and Stakeholders of Civil Society or about issues that are relevant for them. IEF President Arthur Dahl was invited to prepare a Perspective on "Why should the UN and in particular UN Environment Engage More with Faith-based Organizations?". This has now been published as No. 23 in the series and is available at http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11822/14497 or http://wedocs.unep.org/bitstream/handle/20.500.11822/14497/PERSPECTIVE%2023%20002.pdf, or read the text on line. PERSPECTIVES is coordinated by UN Environment’s Major Groups and Stakeholders Branch.
From Deficit to Abundance: Seeing Capacity for Meaningful Contribution in all Populations and People
A statement of the Bahá’í International Community to the
55th Session of the Commission for Social Development
United Nations — 25 January 2017