Temple of Understanding celebrating our 61st Anniversary in 2021
FORUM2021 Sacred Food ~ Blessed Earth explored the ancient, respectful and regenerative ways of farming practices and our spiritual relationship to food by focusing on the Earth as an interconnected web of life.
A moral and spiritual voice is essential in the transition away from the industrialized, fossil fuel and chemical intensive, global agriculture system which is degrading our Earth, contributing to the climate crisis and to the extinction of species, as well as creating severe health issues for all living beings.
FORUM2021 was a call to all spiritual and religious leaders and activists for a return to local, biodiverse organic food systems which regenerate soil, water and biodiversity while providing healthy sustenance for all.
In solidarity with other NGO’s offering a strong critique of the fall UN Food Summit, FORUM2021 explored the potential of local regenerative agriculture, highlights the growing organic farming movement and offers an interfaith moral call to redressing the harm caused by agribusiness, the industrialization of the world’s food production system.
#Support local farmers, support your health, protect the Earth
FREE REGISTRATION ~ Donations welcome!
Prayers, affirmations and contemplations offered by Indigenous and world religious leaders and sacred music by renown international artists on the themes of food, farming and Earth stewardship.
Your support will help us get the word out, please consider making a donation now!
The Temple of Understanding is a 501(c)(3) public charity (EIN 13-1935186) and all donations are tax deductible.
Proudly presented by the Temple of Understanding
in collaboration with Marble Collegiate Church, New York City
Jim Antal is a denominational leader, climate activist, author and public theologian. He serves as Special Advisor on Climate Justice to the General Minister and President of the United Church of Christ. Antal’s book, CLIMATE CHURCH, CLIMATE WORLD, was featured on Earth Day in the Chicago Tribune (2018) and in Christian Century Magazine (2019). An environmental activist from the first Earth Day in 1970, Antal wrote and championed three groundbreaking national UCC resolutions. More on Jim Antal
Tyrone B. Hayes, PhD, is Professor of Integrative Biology, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, Endocrinology, Molecular Toxicology, and the Energy and Resources Group. Hayes was born and raised in Columbia, South Carolina where he developed his love for biology. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Harvard University in 1989 and his PhD from the Department of Integrative Biology at the University of California, Berkeley in 1993.
More on Tyrone B. Hayes, PhD
Lyla June is an Indigenous musician, scholar and community organizer of Diné (Navajo), Tsétsêhéstâhese (Cheyenne) and European lineages. . She blends studies in Human Ecology at Stanford, graduate work in Indigenous Pedagogy, and the traditional worldview she grew up with to inform her music, perspectives and solutions. She is currently pursuing her doctoral degree, focusing on Indigenous food systems revitalization. More on Lyla June
Chief Arvol Looking Horse was born on the Cheyenne River Reservation in South Dakota. At the age of 12, he was given the responsibility of becoming the 19th Generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe, the youngest ever. He is widely recognized as a chief and the spiritual leader of all three branches of the Sioux tribe.
He is the author of White Buffalo Teachings and a guest columnist for Indian Country Today. A tireless advocate of maintaining traditional spiritual practices, Chief Looking Horse is the founder of Big Foot Riders which memorializes the massacre of Big Foot's band at Wounded Knee.
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Chief Oren Lyons is a Faithkeeper of the Turtle Clan and serves as a Member Chief of the Onondaga Council of Chiefs and the Grand Council of the Iroquois Confederacy, the Haudenosaunee Peoples. Oren holds the title of Professor Emeritus at SUNY Buffalo, has a Doctor of Law Degree from his Alma Mater, Syracuse University and Lyons Hall at SU is named in his honor. Chief Lyons is an All-American Lacrosse Hall of Famer and Honorary Chairman of the Iroquois Nationals Lacrosse Team. He is an accomplished artist, environmentalist, and author.
More on Chief Oren Lyons
Daphne Miller, MD is a family physician, science writer, Clinical Professor at the University of California San Francisco, and Research Scientist at the University of California Berkeley School of Public Health. As founder of the Health from the Soil Up Initiative, she studies the connections among health, culture, and agriculture, with the goal of building a healthier and more resilient food system from the soil up. Daphne is a regular health and science contributor to the Washington Post. She has two books about food, agriculture and health: The Jungle Effect, The Science and Wisdom of Traditional Diets and Farmacology, Total Health from the Soil
More on Daphne Miller, MD
Grandmother Mona Polacca is a Hopi/Havasupai/Tewa elder. She is the Chair of the International Council of the 13 Indigenous Grandmothers. Mona is representative of the Indigenous World Forum on Water and Peace, a coalition of Indigenous leaders and organizations and others who wish to protect water for future generations. This is a vision from the elders and has the support of 60 organizations globally at the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. She is the President/CEO of the Turtle Island Project, a non-profit program founded in 1986 by Western practitioners and Native American healers to blend the science of psychoneuroimmunology with indigenous wisdom and practices. Mona also serves as a member of the World Council of Religious and Spiritual Leaders due to her international justice work.
Vandana Shiva, a world-renowned environmental thinker, activist, feminist, philosopher of science, writer and science policy advocat, is the founder of Navdanya Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology (India) and President of Navdanya International. Trained as a Physicist at the University of Punjab, she completed her Ph.D. on the ‘Hidden Variables and Non-locality in Quantum Theory’ from the University of Western Ontario, Canada. In 2011 she founded Navdanya International in Italy and is Chairman of the International Commission on the Future of Food and Agriculture, co-founded with the then President of the Region of Tuscany. Recipient of many awards, including in 1993 the Right Livelihood Award, also known as the ‘Alternative Nobel Prize’, and named among the top five “Most Important People in Asia” by AsiaWeek in 2001. Shes is a prolific writer and author of numerous books and serves on the board of the International Forum on Globalization, and member of the executive committee of the World Future Council.
More on Vandana Shiva
Mary Evelyn Tucker teaches at Yale University at the School of the Environment and the Divinity School. She is co-director with John Grim of the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology. With Grim she organized 10 conferences on World Religions and Ecology at Harvard. They were series editors for the 10 resulting volumes from Harvard. She co-edited Confucianism and Ecology, Buddhism and Ecology, and Hinduism and Ecology. She has authored with Grim, Ecology and Religion (Island Press, 2014). They also edited Thomas Berry’s books, including Selected Writings (Orbis 2014). Tucker and Grim published Thomas Berry: A Biography (Columbia University Press, 2019). With Brian Thomas Swimme, Tucker and Grim created a multi-media project Journey of the Universe that includes a book (Yale, 2011), an Emmy Award winning film, a series of podcast Conversations, and free online courses from Yale/Coursera. Tucker was a member of the Earth Charter Drafting committee and the International Earth Charter Council.
More on Mary Evelyn Tucker
Indigenous Wisdom Regarding the Future
Faithkeeper of the Turtle Clan and serves as a Member Chief of the Onondaga Council of Chiefs and the Grand Council of the Iroquois Confederacy, the Haudenosaunee Peoples.
Reclaiming Ancient Wisdom
to Protect Our Future
Founder, Navdanya Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology (India) and President of Navdanya International. World-renowned environmental thinker, activist, feminist, philosopher of science, writer and science policy advocate.
Reclaiming Ancient Wisdom
to Protect Our Future
Indigenous musician, scholar and community organizer of Diné (Navajo), Tsétsêhéstâhese (Cheyenne) and European lineages.
The Sacred Way
Hopi/Havasupai/Tewa elder. She is the Chair of the International Council of the 13 Indigenous Grandmothers
Watch the beautiful interfaith service of prayers, affirmations and contemplations offered by Indigenous and world religious leaders and sacred music by renown international artists, including the Universal Prayer for the Earth that was creatively written by all of our speakers and prayer contributors this year.
Rev. J. Elise Brown, PhD
Imam Saffet Catovic
Chief Arvol Looking Horse
Prof. Ephraim Isaac
Eda Zavala Lopez
Dame Prof. Meher Master Moos
Grandmother Mona Polacca
HE Trungram Gyalwa Rinpoche
Pandit Shukla Ji
Rev. Dr. John H. Vaughn
Samir Chatterjee & Steve Gorn
The Marble Choir
Marble Community Gospel Choir
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