Over the past 10 years more than 2.6 billion (yes, billion with a "B") have been affected by natural catastrophes, compared with 1.6 billion in the previous decade. Why the drastic increase?
Religion unites us in times of trouble, it helps us persevere in difficult circumstances, and it gives us hope. But we need to go further and seriously ask, does God use nature to punish?
The usual emphasis on panic in disasters implies that, in a crisis, we're all sheep wheeling around idiotically and selfishly trampling those around us. But those who study the subject confirm that most of us behave beautifully.
Thyroid cancer? While few people devoted much thought to it before, this disease has been thrust into public consciousness by the tragic news about Japan's recent nuclear catastrophe.
What we often forget, or perhaps were never taught, is that the happiness we seek can only be found when we reach outside of ourselves and help someone.
Since 1945, the UN has been the vehicle through which we ensure national sovereignty, democracy and human rights. Yet, the GOP seems determined to withdraw the U.S. from its obligations to the UN.
People around the world have marveled at the lack of mass-looting in Japan. Is it the presence of "wa" that prevents people from looting, or the power of the individual that allows them to loot?
It may comfort you to know that our government has plans to keep America's nuclear waste safe for a million years. What a relief! Good to know that America's rulers have thought this stuff through.
Friends in Japan, we are looking today and we are so moved by who you are -- your instinct to help others through these difficult hours and days.
When faced with catastrophe on the scale of Japan's current plight abiding questions get asked... How does a nation recover from such tragedy? How does an individual rise from the ashes of calamity on such a biblical scale?
Watching the devastation first unfold in northern Japan from the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear facility meltdown, I was sad beyond belief. I reached out immediately to see if my friends in Tokyo were OK.
Governments and agencies too often rush to enter the third or Reconstruction Phase that follows a disaster of this magnitude without understanding the consequences of ignoring the deeply held emotional traumas of the local population.
If we survey the landscape of nuclear development across the planet, we see that the destructive impacts of the technology are often paired with the dehumanizing impacts of environmental racism.
Japan's Fukushima disaster, stoking fears we've tried to bury since James Bridges's 1971 epic "The China Syndrome," is a sobering reminder of the frag...
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We need to learn skills for coping with our feelings of sadness, anger and terror evoked by tragedies like those in Fukushima, Katrina and Haiti, so that we rise to these occasions rather than collapse into them.