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Philippines Super Typhoon No Act of God! PDF Print E-mail
Earth News
Wednesday, 06 December 2006 09:37
Philippines Super Typhoon No Act of God!

PREDA Information Office
- Fr. Shay - Another devastating super typhoon has roared through the central Philippines leaving an estimated thousand people dead, many of them buried in gigantic mud slides like what we saw here in the Philippines only a year ago. There is perhaps nothing more terrifying than being buried alive and waiting to die. The typhoons are growing in intensity year by year as a result of climate change and are destroying the infrastructure, the crops and the peoples' lives month by month. During my 35 years in the Philippines, I cannot recall such a typhoon at this time of year.



The great typhoon is not an act of God's wrath but of man's greed

Father Shay

December 6, 2006

This was heightened by the recent eruption of the Mayon Volcano that left tons of sand and ash on its slopes that turned to a slimly sludge that surged down the mountain side engulfing villages, homes and people in minutes. In other places, one placid hillside began to move so great was the deluge of rain that emptied from the sky it undermined the treeless but grassy covered slopes.
Rivers and swamps had been dredged for industrial use disrupting the mangroves and the natural barriers allowing great unstoppable floods to rush unimpeded through the coastal towns and swamp the villages carrying away dozens of flimsy disintegrating homes on a powerful wave of death and destruction.
The suffering, devastation and destruction caused the lost of 66,500 homes, dozens of bridges, power lines and roads were ripped up and cast aside like straw. The bodies are buried so deep it is impossible to dig them out. Many will remain beneath the hundreds of tons of debris and dirt.
Is this another act of punishment of an angry God for the sins of the world as some religious extremists would say or the result of a greedy, irresponsible generation of fossil fuel junkies and profit gouging addicts causing climate change? Is not the greatest sin against the environment to be laid at the door of us who pollute, waste and abuse the environment and never plant a flower, a bush or a tree? Or the sins against the rain forest to be laid at the door of teak loving tycoons that own the chain saws and lumber mills, the wood paneled palaces, fitted with lavish mahogany furniture and teak floors.
The deforestation of the planet's rain forests is almost complete. The giants of the forest that have regenerated themselves for millions of years and survived volcanoes, storms, earthquakes and provided a habitat to millions of species have been almost 80% destroyed in a mere hundred years or less. Thousands of species of creatures are now extinct. Gone forever an abundance of diverse life forms that will never be seen by human kind. We, the species with intelligence, are destroying our own habitat. We are on a suicidal path of self destruction by destroying the environment and the ecosystems that gives us life. How many have died in the great smog, in the toxic fumes, in the aftermath of chemical and oil spills and the great man made droughts, floods, landslides and famines and irresponsible disease transmitting sexual behavior? Humans have done it, not God and not nature. We can all do something to make the earth greener, healthier and cleaner. Here in our province, our small PREDA organization plants a thousand trees a year. A small token but a valuable one never-the-less.
Let us not blame anyone's God for the evils in this world. Let us put our trust and belief in a Higher Power that is the essence of eternal goodness and infinite love, best represented by the compassion of Jesus Christ. We know then that there is no vengeful God dispensing vindictive punishment, destruction and the wrathful condemnation of people. It is us humans, the ones with the big brains that is doing that or allowing it to happen, or turning blind eyes as it happens. Look at the savage genocide of Darfur and Chad and a world that hardly cares. It ought to be our collective mission in life to change destructive, death-dealing human behavior and transform it to a life giving sacred respect for all life. End.

(Fr. Shay's columns are published in The Universe, The Voice,
Local News and other magazines in the UK & Ireland,
Sunday Examiner in HK, The Manila Times, Philnews USA
and Worldwide on Internet and Web sites,
Archives: www.preda.org - Copy free with permission)

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 December 2006 09:37

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