Sustainable Development Goals & Climate Change
During International Days and major international conferences there is a special opportunity to serve in
the creation of a more unified and compassionate world.
As meditators we can symbolically stand together with all actively working in the spirit of the Charter of Compassion, and invoke the aid of the Forces of Light in support of these events.
These International Days and events reflect important themes in the mobilization of energies to:
- End poverty, inequality and climate change by 2030 through practical actions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals
- engaging people of goodwill all over the world in a common movement.
2019 United Nations International Years
Silence at the United Nations
The Spiritual Caucus at the United Nations gathers in the vicinity of UN Headquarters in New York (September - June) on the third Thursday every month for 30 minutes of silence followed by 30 minutes of dialogue, sharing insights and exploring ways to use an inner focus in service of the work of the UN. On the 1st Thursday of the month the Caucus invites friends to sit in silence for 30 minutes in the newly renovated Meditation Room at UN Headquarters in New York.
Please link in from wherever you are. More information at: http://www.spiritualcaucusun.org/
In March the Spiritual Caucus will gather for silence in the UN Meditation Room at UN Headquarters, New York on March 7 from 12.45 - 1.15 PM and for silence and discussion at the Bahai UN Mission offices, 866 UN Plaza, New York on March 21 from 1.30 - 2.45 PM.
March Please Hold These Events in the Light
World Day of Prayer
2019 theme: Come — Everything is Ready.
World Day of Prayer is a global Christian ecumenical movement of 'Informed Prayer and Prayerful Action'. This is a movement initiated and carried out by women in over 170 countries. Throughout the entire day, we collectively pray all over the world, beginning with the first sunrise and ending at the last sunset. Our prayers follow the sun's path around the globe.
Every year a fresh service is prepared by women from a different country. In 2019 the Service has been prepared by women of Slovenia.
World Wildlife Day
2019 Theme: Life below water: for people and planet
This Day is an opportunity to celebrate the many beautiful and varied forms of wildlife; to raise awareness of the multitude of benefits that conservation provides to people; and to remember the urgent need to step up the fight against wildlife crime. This year is the first time the Day has focused on wildlife in the water.
The ocean contains nearly 200,000 identified species, but actual numbers may be in the millions. Globally, the market value of marine and coastal resources and industries is estimated at US$3 trillion per year, about 5% of global GDP. Over three billion people depend on marine and coastal biodiversity for their livelihoods. Marine wildlife has sustained human civilization and development for millennia, from providing food and nourishment, to material for handicraft and construction. It has also enriched our lives culturally, spiritually, and recreationally in different ways.
January 5 - 7
World Ocean Summit, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Hosted by The Economist, this Sixth World Ocean Summit will be attended by several hundred invited participants (leaders in their field) from a wide range of countries, to grapple with some of the ocean's most intractable problems — and explore new possibilities.
International Women's Day
2019 UN Theme: Think equal, build smart, innovate for change.
The Feminine is on the rise in human consciousness and this key festival is widely celebrated around the world. In our time the rights of women, and the rights of children nourished by women, are key issues in every modern society.
The UN document declaring the Sustainable Development Goals notes that: The achievement of full human potential and of sustainable development is not possible if one half of humanity continues to be denied its full human rights and opportunities. In addition to Goal 5 on gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls, 11 of the 16 other goals include gender-sensitive targets.
The day also highlights the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, a historic roadmap signed by 189 governments 20 years ago that sets the agenda for realizing women's rights. While there have been many achievements since then, many serious gaps remain.
March 11 - 22
UN Commission on the Status of Women, UN Headquarters, New York, USA
2019 Priority Theme: Social protection systems, access to public services and sustainable infrastructure for gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls
Every year, representatives of Member States gather at United Nations Headquarters in New York to evaluate progress on gender equality, identify challenges, set global standards and formulate concrete policies to promote gender equality and advancement of women worldwide. Representatives of civil society groups also gather at the UN for the annual NGO CSW Forum. During these annual gatherings there is a concentration of thinking and energy on issues of gender equality.
Together with the policy making deliberations the Commission acts as a focal point for a vast number of gatherings at UN HQ, organised by governments, international agencies and NGO's. It is always a joy to be at UN Headquarters during the CSW sessions when there are so many women present from every part of the world.
2019 Theme:A Connected Commonwealth
The Commonwealth is made up of 53 independent countries that work together to pursue common goals which promote development, democracy and peace. With a combined population of 2.4 billion, the Commonwealth includes industrialised and developing economies in Asia, Africa, the Americas, Europe and the Pacific. Commonwealth Day is an occasion for people throughout this unique family of nations to host a wide variety of events celebrating the vast diversity, strong unity and uplifting values that define the Commonwealth. 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the Commonwealth in its current form.
International Day of Happiness
International Day of Happiness is a United Nations Day honoring the work on national happiness by the Kingdom of Bhutan. In resolving to observe the Day the UN General Assembly highlighted the relevance of happiness and well-being as universal goals ... and the importance of their recognition in public policy objectives. The world needs a new economic paradigm that recognizes the parity between the three pillars of sustainable development. Social, economic and environmental well-being are indivisible. Together they define gross global happiness. Ban Ki-moon
March 20 - 22
UN Second High Level Conference on South-South Cooperation, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Conference Theme: Role of SouthSouth cooperation and the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: challenges and opportunities”
South-South cooperation is a broad framework of collaboration among countries of the South in the political, economic, social, cultural, environmental and technical domains. Developing countries share knowledge, skills, expertise and resources to meet their development goals.
International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
2019 theme: Mitigating and countering rising nationalist populism and extreme supremacist ideologies
On March 21 1960, police opened fire and killed 69 people at a peaceful demonstration in Sharpeville, South Africa, against the apartheid "pass laws". In 1966 it was agreed to observe this day as a reminder of the deep commitment needed to end racial discrimination in all its forms in all parts of the world. The challenge of our time is to foster the ethics of human unity.
UNESCO sponsors an International Coalition of Inclusive and Sustainable Cities, linking over 500 cities commited to ending racism. A report features more than 50 good practices developed by over 38 cities in the network.
International Day of Forestry
2019 theme: Forests and Education: Learn to Love Forests
This United Nations Day dedicated to forests affirms the degree to which human beings are struggling to develop a new and more responsible relationship with the natural world.
Forests cover one third of the Earth's land mass, performing vital functions around the world. Around 1.6 billion people - including more than 2,000 indigenous cultures - depend on forests for their livelihoods, medicines, fuel, food and shelter. Yet deforestation continues at an alarming rate ...
World Poetry Day
World Poetry Day, sponsored by UNESCO, aims to support linguistic diversity through poetic expression and to offer endangered languages the opportunity to be heard within their communities. Moreover, this Day is meant to support poetry, return to the oral tradition of poetry recitals, promote teaching poetry, restore a dialogue between poetry and the other arts such as theater, dance, music, painting and so on, support small publishers and create an attractive image of poetry in the media so that the art of poetry will no longer be considered an outdated form of art.
Full Moon — Aries, Easter Festival
Since ancient times human beings have honored the full moon as a time when the sacred is most accesible. It is a time of light - the moon reflects the light of the sun onto the face of the earth. In astrology this is a time when the qualities and potentials of the zodiacal sign of the sun are especially available to humanity for use in service.
During the full moon religious and esoteric groups around the world vizualize light and love and spiritual power flowing into humanity and strengthening all that is being done to help prepare the way for a world of unity, justice and peace; a world which is increasingly concentrated on the work of implementing the Sustainable Development Goals.
2019 theme: Leaving No One Behind
Sustainable Development Goal 6 is crystal clear: water for all by 2030. By definition, this means leaving no one behind. But today, billions of people are still living without safe water — their households, schools, workplaces, farms and factories struggling to survive and thrive.
Explore the work of visionary water advocate Maude Barlow and the Blue Planet Project, a global movement struggling to achieve the Right for Water as a fundamental human right.
World Meteorological Day
2019 Theme: The Sun, the Earth and the Weather
Climate affects the thinking, and the moods of people - and, many spiritual traditions suggest, the thinking of people en masse affects the climate. For the first time on a global level, it is now recognized that there is a need to alter the way we think and behave in order to offset the serious affects of climate change.
The Sun delivers the energy that powers all life on Earth. It drives the weather, ocean currents and hydrological cycle. It shapes our moods and daily activities. It is the inspiration for music, photography and art.
International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims
This UN Day marks the anniversary of the death of Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero, of El Salvador, who was assasinated on 24 March 1980, after denouncing
violations of the human rights of the most vulnerable populations and defending the principles of protecting lives, promoting human dignity and opposition to all forms of violence.
The Day affirms an important principle in international law: all peoples have a right to know the truth about gross human rights violations and the right to know what happened to loved ones. States have an obligation to investigate cases of enforced disappearance and let any interested person know the concrete steps taken to clarify the fate and whereabouts of the disappeared persons.
International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade
2019 Theme: Remember Slavery: Power of the Arts for Justice
Recognizing how little is known about the 400-year-long transatlantic slave trade and its lasting consequences, March 25 has been designated as an annual day of remembrance of the trade and its victims. The intention is to raise awareness among future generations of the causes, consequences and lessons of the transatlantic slave trade and to communicate the dangers of racism and prejudice.
The Earth Hour Movement began in 2007 in Sydney, Australia, under the sponsorship of WWF, when 2.2 million homes and businesses turned their lights off for an hour as a symbol of their stand for the Earth and their willingness to act against climate change.
Today it has become what WWF describe as the world’s largest grassroots movement for the environment. Every year hundreds of millions of people from 172 countries take part in the lights off campaign, turning their lights off for one hour at 8:30 pm local time.