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Richard Schiffman
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Richard Schiffman is the author of two books and is a poet based in New York City, as well as a former freelance journalist. His work has appeared in the New York Times,, The Christian Science Monitor and leading literary journals. His radio stories have been heard on "Morning Edition," "All Things Considered," Weekend Edition and Monitor Radio. His “Spiritual Poetry Portal” can be found here.

Entries by Richard Schiffman

Efforts to End Deforestation Brings Together Strange Bedfellows

(0) Comments | Posted November 21, 2014 | 4:13 PM

September brought good news for the world's forests with the unveiling of the New York Declaration on Forests at the UN Climate Summit. The Declaration, which pledges to end global deforestation by 2030, was signed by 130 governments, including the US, Germany, Indonesia, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo....

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Ancient India's 5 Words for Love (And Why Knowing Them Can Heighten Your Happiness)

(3) Comments | Posted September 12, 2014 | 3:17 PM


Hinduism has a beautiful myth about the origins of love. In the beginning, there was a superbeing called Purusha. This being was without desire, craving, fear, or indeed the impulse to do anything at all--since the universe was already perfect and complete.


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African Wildlife Is in Trouble, and Only Africans Can Save It

(1) Comments | Posted July 25, 2014 | 11:53 AM

Entering Kenya's Maasai Mara Reserve, as I did last March, is like driving up the loading ramp of Noah's Ark. Within minutes, you'll see zebras, giraffes, wildebeest, and herds of antelope. There will be a pride of lions lounging yards away from your safari vehicle. Conga lines of elephants will...

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We Need a Marshall Plan for Clean Energy in the Caribbean

(1) Comments | Posted July 16, 2014 | 12:54 PM

Children in Georgetown, Guyana learn about solar energy during an exhibition. Credit: CREDP

In June, Lefties Food Stall, a pint sized eatery serving Barbados's signature flying-fish sandwiches, became the first snack shack on the island to be fitted with a solar panel. The...

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Why Tiny Barbados Is Beating Us on the Road to Green Energy

(8) Comments | Posted July 2, 2014 | 6:35 PM


Oil prices are soaring again -- this time due to uncertainty over the fate of major producers like Russia and Iraq. Expect to pay more at the gas pump and the grocery store in the months ahead, since everything from transportation...

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BP Gets an Anniversary Gift From the Obama Administration

(10) Comments | Posted April 18, 2014 | 4:15 PM

April 20 is the fourth anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon explosion, which killed 11 workers and dumped over 4.9 million barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico over a three month period in 2010.

You wouldn't think that the London-based company that spilled the oil would get an...

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We Need to End Antibiotics Use in Meat Production Now

(9) Comments | Posted September 23, 2013 | 12:08 PM

Remember pink slime -- that Dayglo-bright mash of ground up meat scraps and cow connective tissues larded with industrial strength ammonia that was being served up in school lunch programs in the United States last year?

More ominously, there was mad cow disease, which has killed scores of people in...

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FBI's Smoking Gun on UFOs Has Just Gone Off

(136) Comments | Posted June 10, 2013 | 3:47 PM

Some years back my friend Alan Steinfeld and I had dinner with Edgar Mitchell. Mitchell, as those of us who are old enough to remember, was the lunar module pilot of Apollo 14 in 1971, and the sixth person to walk on the Moon.

For Alan and myself, Mitchell...

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Georgia Bus Driver Fired for Complaint About School Lunch Program

(1) Comments | Posted June 6, 2013 | 4:03 PM

Johnny Cook has been driving for Haralson County Middle School in suburban Atlanta for years. But no longer. Cook was fired for making the following post on Facebook.

A lil flustered this evening.

A middle schooler got on my bus this evening and...

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As Cicadas Invade, Entomologists Have a Field Day

(1) Comments | Posted May 28, 2013 | 4:44 PM

As I wrote in Salon recently, a large part of the Eastern Seaboard is preparing for an invasion. Not from a foreign military power, but by Cicadas -- in the billions!

Cicadas have black bodies, blood-red eyes and legs, delicately veined gossamer wings and oddly ridged faces...

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Congressman Quotes Jesus in Bid to Gut Food Stamps

(75) Comments | Posted May 28, 2013 | 2:43 PM

GOP Congressman Stephen Fincher is on a mission from God. He wants to drastically cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, otherwise known as food stamps, for 47 million of our poorest citizens. He supports a rider on the farm bill that would effectively eliminate 2 million people from the program,...

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New Yorkers Reject Fracking One Town at a Time

(5) Comments | Posted May 15, 2013 | 3:57 PM

Readers of the New York Daily News were treated to a little unsolicited advice from Ed Rendell recently. The former Pennsylvania governor, a Democrat, who presided over much of the fracking boom in his state from 2003 to 2011, invited his neighboring governor -- who's been sitting on the fence...

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Meditation Makes You More Liberal, Study Says

(25) Comments | Posted March 5, 2013 | 12:06 PM

There have been some fascinating studies about the effects of meditation in recent years. Buddhist monks and Trappist friars have been hooked up to EEG machines to record subtle changes in their brainwaves during their spiritual practices. Scores of clinical trials have also been conducted to assess the impact of...

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Can Artificial Trees Help Take Carbon Dioxide Out of the Air?

(16) Comments | Posted February 21, 2013 | 12:10 PM

In the wake of the hottest and driest summer in memory throughout much of North America -- and Superstorm Sandy, which flooded cities and ravaged large swaths of the Mid-Atlantic coast -- many now recognize that the climate change isn't just real, but already at our doorstep.

As this realization...

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Scientists Prove That Internet Trolls Are Wicked

(5) Comments | Posted January 25, 2013 | 3:38 PM

Prior to my life on the internet, a troll was some kind of mischievous, typically ugly, but not altogether sinister creature, who dwelled in mountain caves and other remote natural places. I envisioned them as a cross between an ill-tempered leprechaun and my late uncle Harry. I now realize that...

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Is Religion Giving Morality a Bad Name?

(55) Comments | Posted January 15, 2013 | 3:34 PM

You know the story: Adam and Eve were naked, innocent and blissfully free until a certain snake came along and goaded Eve to eat the forbidden fruit. She gave in to temptation. The first couple was kicked out of paradise. And it has been down hill ever since.

The apple,...

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To Save the Earth, We Must Change What We Eat

(84) Comments | Posted January 3, 2013 | 5:25 PM

What will we be eating in the future? If the past is any guide, we won't be eating the same foods that we are eating today. The history of food has been one long, changeable feast, as we humans have introduced new foods into our diet and learned how to...

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Rush Limbaugh's War on Christmas

(24) Comments | Posted December 21, 2012 | 10:27 AM

OK, maybe not on Christmas, but on Jesus, the one whose birthday we are about to celebrate. Rush routinely rejects the teachings of the Christian savior even as he gives lip service to the religion that Christ founded.

America's most popular talk show host has spoken the word "Jesus" approximately...

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My Pre-Christmas Interview With God

(6) Comments | Posted December 14, 2012 | 3:30 PM

Mrs. God looked somehow ageless in her sequined pink taffeta evening gown, posing for paparazzi and kissing babies. Her husband was sitting on the sidelines, a wallflower at his own party. I sidled over to the bar to cheer him up.

"You'd think she was running for president of the...

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America's Perfect Storm

(0) Comments | Posted December 10, 2012 | 12:10 PM

Toss a frog in a pan of boiling water and it will jump right out. Put the same frog in cool water, then slowly turn up the flame and it may not notice that it is gradually boiling to death.

The frog, according to Edward Luce, the chief U.S....

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