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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Nonviolence is a philosophy and strategy for social change that rejects the use of physical violence. As such, nonviolence is an alternative to passive acceptance of oppression and armed struggle against it. Practitioners of nonviolence may use diverse methods in their campaigns for social change, including critical forms of education and persuasion, civil disobedience and nonviolent direct action, and targeted communication via mass media.

In modern times, nonviolence has been a powerful tool for social protest. Mahatma Gandhi led a decades-long nonviolent struggle against British rule in India, which eventually helped India win its independence in 1947. About 10 years later, Martin Luther King adopted Gandhi’s nonviolent methods in his struggle to win civil rights for African Americans. Then in the 1960s César Chávez organized a campaign of nonviolence to protest the treatment of farm workers in California. As Chavez once explained, “Nonviolence is not inaction. It is not for the timid or the weak. It is hard work, it is the patience to win.”[1] Another recent nonviolent movement was the “Velvet Revolution“, a nonviolent revolution in Czechoslovakia that saw the overthrow of the Communist government in 1989.[2] It is seen as one of the most important of the Revolutions of 1989.

The 14th and current Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso. Dalai Lama said nonviolence is the only way progress can be made with China.[3][4]

The term “nonviolence” is often linked with or even used as a synonym for pacifism; however, the two concepts are fundamentally different. Pacifism denotes the rejection of the use of violence as a personal decision on moral or spiritual grounds, but does not inherently imply any inclination toward change on a sociopolitical level. Nonviolence on the other hand, presupposes the intent of (but does not limit it to) social or political change as a reason for the rejection of violence. Also, a person may advocate nonviolence in a specific context while advocating violence in other contexts.

Forms

Advocates of nonviolence believe cooperation and consent are the roots of political power: all regimes, including bureaucratic institutions, financial institutions, and the armed segments of society (such as the military and police); depend on compliance from citizens.[5] On a national level, the strategy of nonviolence seeks to undermine the power of rulers by encouraging people to withdraw their consent and cooperation. The forms of nonviolence draw inspiration from both religious or ethical beliefs and political analysis. Religious or ethically based nonviolence is sometimes referred to as principled, philosophical, or ethical nonviolence, while nonviolence based on political analysis is often referred to as tactical, strategic, or pragmatic nonviolence. Commonly, both of these dimensions may be present within the thinking of particular movements or individuals.[6]

Philosophical

Buddha, known for his theory of nonviolence

Mahavira,To liberate one’s self, Mahavira taught the necessity of right faith, right knowledge and right conduct. Right conduct includes five great vows out of which first is Nonviolence (Ahimsa) – to cause no harm to any living being in any manner

Love of the enemy, or the realization of the humanity of all people, is a fundamental concept of philosophical nonviolence. The goal of this type of nonviolence is not to defeat the enemy, but to win them over and create love and understanding between all.[7] It is this principle which is most closely associated with spiritual or religious justifications of nonviolence, the central tenets of which can be found in each of the major Abrahamic religious traditions (Islam, Judaism and Christianity) as well as in the major Dharmic religious traditions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism). It is also found in many pagan religious traditions. Nonviolent movements, leaders, and advocates have at times referred to, drawn from and utilised many diverse religious basis for nonviolence within their respective struggles. Examples of nonviolence found in religion and spirituality include the Sermon on the Mount when Jesus urges his followers to “love thine enemy,” in the Taoist concept of wu-wei, or effortless action, in the philosophy of the martial art Aikido, in the Buddhist principle of metta, or loving-kindness towards all beings; and in the principle of ahimsa, or nonviolence toward any being, shared by Buddhism, Jainism and some forms of Hinduism. Additionally, focus on both nonviolence and forgiveness of sin can be found in the story of Abel in the Qur’an; Liberal movements within Islam have consequently used this story to promote Jewish ideals of nonviolence.

Respect or love for opponents also has a pragmatic justification, in that the technique of separating the deeds from the doers allows for the possibility of the doers changing their behaviour, and perhaps their beliefs. Martin Luther King said, “Nonviolence means avoiding not only external physical violence but also internal violence of spirit. You not only refuse to shoot a man, but you refuse to hate him.”

Pragmatic

The fundamental concept of pragmatic nonviolence is to create a social dynamic or political movement that can effect social change without necessarily winning over those who wish to maintain the status quo.[7] In modern industrial democracies, nonviolence has been used extensively by political sectors without mainstream political power such as labor, peace, environment and women’s movements. Lesser known is the role that nonviolence has played and continues to play in undermining the power of repressive political regimes in the developing world and the former eastern bloc. Susan Ives emphasized this point with a quote from Walter Wink, “In 1989, thirteen nations comprising 1,695,000,000 people experienced nonviolent revolutions that succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest expectations… If we add all the countries touched by major nonviolent actions in our century (the Philippines, South Africa… the independence movement in India…) the figure reaches 3,337,400,000, a staggering 65% of humanity! All this in the teeth of the assertion, endlessly repeated, that nonviolence doesn’t work in the ‘real’ world.”[8]

As a technique for social struggle, nonviolence has been described as “the politics of ordinary people”, reflecting its historically mass-based use by populations throughout the world and history. Struggles most often associated with nonviolence are the non co-operation campaign for Indian independence led by Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the struggle to attain civil rights for African Americans, led by Martin Luther King, and People Power in the Philippines.

Also of primary significance is the notion that just means are the most likely to lead to just ends. When Gandhi said that “the means may be likened to the seed, the end to a tree,” he expressed the philosophical kernel of what some refer to as prefigurative politics. Martin Luther King, a student of Gandhian non-violent resistance, concurred with this tenet of the method, concluding that “…nonviolence demands that the means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek.” Proponents of nonviolence reason that the actions taken in the present inevitably re-shape the social order in like form. They would argue, for instance, that it is fundamentally irrational to use violence to achieve a peaceful society. People have come to use nonviolent methods of struggle from a wide range of perspectives and traditions. A landless peasant in Brazil may nonviolently occupy a parcel of land for purely practical motivations. If they don’t, the family will starve. A Buddhist monk in Thailand may “ordain” trees in a threatened forest, drawing on the teachings of Buddha to resist its destruction. A waterside worker in England may go on strike in socialist and union political traditions. All the above are using nonviolent methods but from different standpoints. Likewise, secular political movements have utilised nonviolence, either as a tactical tool or as a strategic program on purely pragmatic and strategic levels, relying on its political effectiveness rather than a claim to any religious, moral, or ethical worthiness.

Gandhi used the weapon of non-violence against British Raj

Finally, the notion of Satya, or truth, is central to the Gandhian conception of nonviolence. Gandhi saw truth as something that is multifaceted and unable to be grasped in its entirety by any one individual. All carry pieces of the truth, he believed, but all need the pieces of others’ truths in order to pursue the greater truth. This led him to believe in the inherent worth of dialogue with opponents, in order to understand motivations. On a practical level, the willingness to listen to another’s point of view is largely dependent on reciprocity. In order to be heard by one’s opponents, one must also be prepared to listen.[citation needed]

Nonviolence has even obtained a level of institutional recognition and endorsement at the global level. On November 10, 1998, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed the first decade of the 21st century and the third millennium, the years 2001 to 2010, as the International Decade for the Promotion of a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World.

Living

The violence embedded in most of the world’s societies causes many to consider it an inherent part of human nature, but others (Riane Eisler, Walter Wink, Daniel Quinn) have suggested that violence – or at least the arsenal of violent strategies we take for granted – is a phenomenon of the last five to ten thousand years, and was not present in pre-domestication and early post-domestication human societies. This view shares several characteristics with the Victorian ideal of the Noble savage.

For many, practicing nonviolence goes deeper than withholding from violent behavior or words. It means caring in one’s heart for everyone, even those one strongly disagrees with, that is who are antithetical or opposed. For some, this principle entails a commitment to restorative or transformative justice and prison abolition. By extrapolation comes the necessity of caring for those who are not practicing nonviolence, who are violent. Of course no one can simply will themselves to have such care, and this is one of the great personal challenges posed by nonviolence – once one believes in nonviolence in theory, how can the person live it?

Animal rights

Nonviolence, for some, involves extending it to animals, usually through vegetarianism or veganism.

Methods

Martin Luther King

Nonviolent action generally comprises three categories: Acts of Protest and Persuasion, Noncooperation, and Nonviolent Intervention. [9]

Acts of protest

Nonviolent acts of protest and persuasion are symbolic actions performed by a group of people to show their support or disapproval of something. The goal of this kind of action is to bring public awareness to an issue, persuade or influence a particular group of people, or to facilitate future nonviolent action. The message can be directed toward the public, opponents, or people affected by the issue. Methods of protest and persuasion include speeches, public communications, petitions, symbolic acts, art, processions (marches), and other public assemblies.[10]

Noncooperation

Noncooperation involves the purposeful withholding of cooperation or the unwillingness to initiate in cooperation with an opponent. The goal of noncooperation is to halt or hinder an industry, political system, or economic process. Methods of noncooperation include labor strikes, economic boycotts, civil disobedience, tax refusal, and general disobedience.[10]

Nonviolent intervention

Nonviolent intervention, compared to protest and noncooperation, is a more direct method of nonviolent action. Nonviolent intervention can be used defensively—for example to maintain an institution or independent initiative—or offensively- for example to drastically forward a nonviolent struggle into the opponent’s territory. Intervention is often more immediate and effective than the other two methods, but is also harder to maintain and more taxing to the participants involved. Methods of intervention includes occupations (sit-ins), blockades, fasting (hunger strikes), truck cavalcades, and dual sovereignty/parallel government. [10]

Tactics must be carefully chosen, taking into account political and cultural circumstances, and form part of a larger plan or strategy. Gene Sharp, a political scientist and nonviolence activist, has written extensively about methods of nonviolence including a list of 198 methods of nonviolent action.[11] In early Greece, AristophanesLysistrata gives the fictional example of women withholding sexual favors from their husbands until war was abandoned. The deterrence of violent attack and promotion peaceful resolution of conflicts, as a method of intervention across borders, has occurred throughout history with some failures (at least on the level of deterring attack) such as the Human Shields in Iraq because it failed to ascertain the value of the goal compared with the value of human life in its context of war; but also many successes, such as the work of the Guatemala Accompaniment Project[12]. Several non-governmental organizations, including Peace Brigades International and Christian Peacemaker Teams, are working in this area . Their primary tactics are unarmed accompaniment, human rights observation, and reporting.[13][14]

Einstein was a strong supporter of nonviolence

Another powerful tactic of nonviolent intervention invokes public scrutiny of the oppressors as a result of the resisters remaining nonviolent in the face of violent repression. If the military or police attempt to violently repress nonviolent resisters, the power to act shifts from the hands of the oppressors to those of the resisters. If the resisters are persistent, the military or police will be forced to accept the fact that they no longer have any power over the resisters. Often, the willingness of the resisters to suffer has a profound effect on the mind and emotions of the oppressor, leaving them unable to commit such a violent act again. [15][16].

There are also many other leaders and theorists of nonviolence who have thought deeply about the spiritual and practical aspects of nonviolence, including: Leo Tolstoy, Lech Wałęsa, Petra Kelly, Nhat Hanh, Dorothy Day, Ammon Hennacy, Albert Einstein, John Howard Yoder, Stanley Hauerwas, David McReynolds, Johan Galtung, Martin Luther King, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Daniel Berrigan, Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan, Mario Rodríguez Cobos (pen name Silo) and César Chávez.

We will wear you down by our capacity to suffer.
— Martin Luther King, 1963[17]

Green politics

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Nonviolence has been a central concept in green political philosophy. It is included in the Global Greens Charter. Greens believe that society should reject the current patterns of violence and embrace nonviolence. Green Philosophy draws heavily on both Gandhi and the Quaker traditions, which advocate measures by which the escalation of violence can be avoided, while not cooperating with those who commit violence. These greens believe that the current patterns of violence are incompatible with a sustainable society because it uses up limited resources and many forms of violence, especially nuclear weapons, are damaging for the environment. Violence also diminishes one and the group.

Some green political parties, like the Dutch GroenLinks, evolved out of the cooperation of the peace movement with the environmental movement in their resistance to nuclear weapons and nuclear energy.

As Green Parties have moved from the fringes of society towards becoming more and more influential in government circles, this commitment to nonviolence has had to be more clearly defined. In many cases, this has meant that the party has had to articulate a position on non-violence that differentiates itself from classic pacifism. The leader of the German Greens, for example, was instrumental in the NATO intervention in Serbia, arguing that being in favor of nonviolence should never lead to passive acceptance of genocide. Similarly, Elizabeth May of the Green Party of Canada has stated that the Canadian intervention in Afghanistan is justified as a means of supporting women’s rights.

This movement by Green leadership has caused some internal dissension, as the traditional pacifist position is that there is no justification ever for committing violence.

Revolution

Certain individuals (Barbara Deming, Danilo Dolci, Devere Allen etc.) and party groups (eg. Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism, Democratic Socialists of America, Socialist Party USA, Socialist Resistance or War Resisters League) have advocated nonviolent revolution as an alternative to violence as well as elitist reformism. This perspective is usually connected to militant anti-capitalism.

Many leftist and socialist movements have hoped to mount a “peaceful revolution” by organizing enough strikers to completely paralyze it. With the state and corporate apparatus thus crippled, the workers would be able to re-organize society along radically different lines.[citation needed] Some have argued that a relatively nonviolent revolution would require fraternisation with military forces.[18]

Criticism

Leon Trotsky, Frantz Fanon, Reinhold Niebuhr, Subhash Chandra Bose, George Orwell, Ward Churchill[19] and Malcolm X were fervent critics of nonviolence, arguing variously that nonviolence and pacifism are an attempt to impose the morals of the bourgeoisie upon the proletariat, that violence is a necessary accompaniment to revolutionary change, or that the right to self-defense is fundamental.

Malcolm X criticised nonviolence

In the midst of violent repression of radical African Americans in the United States during the 1960s, Black Panther member George Jackson said of the nonviolent tactics of Martin Luther King, Jr.:

“The concept of nonviolence is a false ideal. It presupposes the existence of compassion and a sense of justice on the part of one’s adversary. When this adversary has everything to lose and nothing to gain by exercising justice and compassion, his reaction can only be negative.”[20][21]

Malcolm X also clashed with civil rights leaders over the issue of nonviolence, arguing that violence should not be ruled out where no option remained:

“I believe it’s a crime for anyone being brutalized to continue to accept that brutality without doing something to defend himself.”[22]

Lance Hill criticizes nonviolence as a failed strategy and argues that black armed self-defense and civil violence motivated civil rights reforms more than peaceful appeals to morality and reason (see Lance Hill’s “Deacons for Defense”)[23].

In his book How Nonviolence Protects the State, anarchist Peter Gelderloos criticizes nonviolence as being ineffective, racist, statist, patriarchal, tactically and strategical inferior to militant activism, and deluded.[24] Gelderloos claims that traditional histories whitewash the impact of nonviolence, ignoring the involvement of militants in such movements as the Indian independence movement and the Civil Rights movement and falsely showing Gandhi and King as being their respective movements’ most successful activists.[25] He further argues that nonviolence is generally advocated by privileged white people who expect “oppressed people, many of whom are people of color, to suffer patiently under an inconceivably greater violence, until such time as the Great White Father is swayed by the movement’s demands or the pacifists achieve that legendary ‘critical mass.'”[26]

The efficacy of nonviolence was also challenged by some anti-capitalist protesters advocating a “diversity of tactics” during street demonstrations across Europe and the US following the anti-World Trade Organization protests in Seattle, Washington in 1999. American feminist writer D. A. Clarke, in her essay “A Woman With A Sword,” suggests that for nonviolence to be effective, it must be “practiced by those who could easily resort to force if they chose.” This argument reasons that nonviolent tactics will be of little or no use to groups that are traditionally considered incapable of violence, since nonviolence will be in keeping with people’s expectations for them and thus go unnoticed. Such is the principle of dunamis (from the Greek: δύνάμις or, restrained power).

Niebuhr’s criticism of nonviolence, expressed most clearly in Moral Man and Immoral Society (1932) is based on his view of human nature as innately selfish, an updated version of the Christian doctrine of original sin. Advocates of nonviolence generally do not accept the doctrine of original sin (though Martin Luther King, Jr., did accept a modified version of Niebuhr’s teachings on the subject).[citation needed]

Property damage

One minor, but commonly debated issue is whether the destruction of or damage to non-living objects, as opposed to people is actual “violence”. In much nonviolence literature, including Sharp, various forms of sabotage and damage to property are included within the scope of nonviolent action, while other authors consider destruction or destructive acts of any kind as potentially or actually a form of violence in that it might generate fear or hardship upon the owner or person dependent on that object.

Other authors or activists argue that property destruction can be strategically ineffective if the act provides a pretext for further repression or reinforces state power. Lakey, for instance, argues that the burning of cars during the Paris uprising of 1968 only served to undermine the growing working and middle-class support for the uprising and undermined its political potential.[citation needed]

Sabotage of machinery used in war, either during its production or after, complicates the issue further. Is saving a life by destroying property that will later be used for violence a violent act, or is passively allowing weapons to be used later the violent act (i.e. non-violence that leads to violence)? At a less abstract level, if someone is being beaten with a stick, it is usually not considered an act of violence to take the stick away, but if the stick falls to the ground and you break it, is that still considered a violent action?

In all of these debates it is relevant to consider the question of whether the perpetrator or victim of violence determines what is “violent”. Also, relative power of parties and the type of “weapon” being applied is relevant to the issue. Palestinian children throwing rocks at Israeli tanks as an example cited. Force itself here becomes a relative measure of power and petty violence by the disenfranchised may be violence, but ultimately is not the same as overarching “power” to destroy.

Differing views

The term nonviolence is sometimes used to define different sets of limitations or features, as different actions are considered violent or not violent. In a Wikipedia article on the 2008 Tibetan unrest, a quotation from Dawa Tsering, an Additional Secretary in the Department of Information and International Relations of the Tibetan government-in-exile claims that actions of beating people and setting fire to a building with people holed up inside who end up being burnt to death are both scenarios of nonviolence; though, some Western definitions would clearly clash with their definition of nonviolence which appears to include everything but intentional causing of fatal harm. In an interview with Radio France International Tsering said[27]:

First of all, I must make it clear that the Tibetan (rioters) has been non-violent throughout (the incident). …the Tibetans rioters were beating Han Chinese, but only beating took place. After the beating the Han Chinese were free to flee. Therefore [there were] only beating, no life was harmed. Those who were killed were all results of accidents. …the Han Chinese all went into hiding upstairs. When the Tibetan [rioters] set fire to the buildings, the Han Chinese remained in hiding instead of escaping, the result is that these Han Chinese were all accidentally burnt to death. Those who set and spread the fire, on the other hand, had no idea whatsoever that there were Han Chinese hiding upstairs. Therefore not only were Han Chinese burnt to death, some Tibetans were burnt to death too. Therefore all these incidents were accidents, not murder.

Organizations

See also

E Deus Criou a Mulher…

Publicado: junho 6, 2009 por Yogi em Nature, Non Sense, Philosophy, Psy, Tudo
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E Deus Criou a Mulher - NiniHumor

E Deus Criou a Mulher - NiniHumor

Charas

Publicado: maio 31, 2009 por Yogi em Capital, Culture, History, Psy, Tudo
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Charas 

Balls and sticks

Tosh Valley charas

Contents

History of charas

Charas has been used across the Indian sub-continent for its medicinal and religious properties for thousands of years[1] and was sold in government shops (along with opium) in the early days of the British Empire[2]. Charas plays an important and often integral role in the culture and ritual of the Hindu religion, especially among the Shaivs – the sub-division of Hinduism holding Lord Shiva to be the supreme god (in contrast to Vaishnavs who worship Lord Vishnu) and it is venerated as being one of the aspects of Lord Shiva.

Despite this long history, in India charas was made illegal in the 1980s and draconian sentences were introduced. Even the mere possession had a mandatory ten year prison sentence. These laws have now been somewhat relaxed, however Charas has been known to be a popular medium for police to extort bribes from consumers of the drug.

Even at the peak of the crackdown, charas was still popular and it remains so today, especially amongst Indian sadhus. The Naga Sadhus, Aghoris and Tantric Bhairav sects smoke it freely because they claim its use as being an integral part of their daily life. Many smoke it in clay pipes called chillums, using a cotton cloth to cover the smoking end of the chillum or by inserting a tightly packed pebble sized ball of cannabis as filter for the chillum. Before lighting the chillum they will chant the many names of Shiva in veneration. The government even provides its supply in huge quantity to meet the demand during the largest gathering of sadhus of all sects during the Kumbh mela, or festival of the holy men.[citation needed]

Local cultivation

The best charas grown in India comes from the mountains. The variety from Manaliand Malana in Himachal Pradesh is considered to be of the highest quality throughout both Pakistan and India. For this reason, the Indian subcontinent has become very popular with backpackers and those involved in drug smuggling. The best charas is made very high up away from the police and is known as ‘cream’.

The resin sticks to one’s palms and by the end of the day one has harvested perhaps 8 or 9 grams of charas. The faster one works, the lower the quality of charas. Hence, to make ‘Malana cream’ it is necessary to go very slowly and it is only possible to make a few grams a day. Nowadays production of cannabis in the Himalayas has increased as growing demand for the Malana cream named after the village it has been made. This ancient art is disappearing under the pressure to capitalize on the domestic and international market for charas.

[edit]Gardaa

Gardaa is a type of Charas made in Pakistan using dried cannabis of high potency. It is a very pure form of Charas; free from any additive chemicals. It is a very pliable substance which can take any shape. Usually sold in the shape of balls, Gardaa starts dissolving into smaller particles even with the heat of the palm. Gardaa is an Urdu word which means “Dust”. It is named Gardaa due to its similarity in colour to mud or brown thick dust. Charas is mostly consumed after it is heated. After it is heated, the “brown powder” changes into a smooth “greenish mass”. The term gardaa is also some times used to describe the greenish powder-form of charas. Gardaa has two types mainly, one is soft, solid, smooth structure known as pakka garda and the other one is kacha gardaa, kacha gardaa is a soft powder which is green (or lightly green brown sometimes).

Although gardaa is available throughout Pakistan, but it is made in northern tribal areas of Pakistan and in Afghanistan. it is mainly available in Peshawer, and even though the smell may linger in bazaars, it is not sold openly – though with a help of a guide one can find it. In N-W.F.P., It can mostly be found in those areas which lie on the border with Khyber Agency and Kurram Agency. One such place is Shah Kass which is part of Khyber Agency and borders with the Hayatabad neighborhood of Peshawar city. One “tola” averagely costs 170-210 Pakistani Rupees. Its price has increased due to the tension in the Tribal Areas. Gardaa is smoked, usually mixed with cigarette tobacco and rolled back into the cigarette blank. Cigarettes that burn longer due to cigarette paper/tobacco qualities are preferred for mixing and smoking Gardaa. To smoke Gardaa in a Cigarette, Cigarette tobacco is taken out and refined using hands to make it into smaller particles. Tobacco leaves with less moisture are easier to crush. Gardaa is than heated to make it soft; this is often referred to as ‘cooking’. The objective is to dissolve the Gardaa in the tobacco to make a mix while wasting minimum smoke value (meaning heated only enough to make it soft without burning it into smoke). Once mixed with the tobacco using hands it is filled back into the cigarette blank. The cigarette is tightly filled back to ensure maximum smoke in each puff.

Rolling paper is also used to smoke Gardaa. Gardaa with tobacco mixture is filled into the rolling paper to make a joint.

In the Indian administered part of Kashmir, Gardaa is made from dried cannabis leaves of low quality. They put the material into a cornleaf, by twisting the leaf the material is being pressed in the shape of a corkscrew. After some weeks or months of fermentation the unwrapped product is sold in its typical twisted shape but now in strong consistence for only half the price of charas. The colour is depending on the quality ranging from green to brown. In the seventies and eighties it was also available in Germany sometimes.[citation needed] What my prededessor describes is the most common way of producing Hashish in Morocco, Lebanon and Turkey.[citation needed] This method was introduced by western backpackers to the himalayan countries and was adopted by the local people.[citation needed] Traditionally they only produce Charas, Garda, Ganja andBhang from cannabis.

is the name given to hand-made hashish in AfghanistanPakistanNepal and India. It is made from the extract of the cannabis plant (Cannabis sativa). The plant grows wild throughout Northern India, Pakistan and the Himalayas (its putative origin) and is an important cash crop for the local people.

See also

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

A tornado in central Oklahoma. Weather control researchers aspire to eliminate or control dangerous types of weather such as this.

Weather control is the act of manipulating or altering certain aspects of the environment to produce desirable changes in weather.

Contents

 

History of weather control

Witches concoct a brew to summon a hailstorm.

Some American Indians had rituals which they believed could induce rain. The Finnish people, on the other hand, were believed by others to be able to control weather. As a result, Vikings refused to take Finns on their oceangoing raids. Remnants of this superstition lasted into the twentieth century, with some ship crews being reluctant to accept Finnish sailors. The early modern era saw people observe that during battles the firing of cannons and other firearms often initiated precipitation. Magical and religiouspractices to control the weather are attested in a variety of cultures. In Greek mythologyIphigenia was sacrificed as a human sacrifice to appease the wrath of the goddessArtemis, who had caused the Achaean fleet to be becalmed at Aulis at the beginning of the Trojan War. In Homer‘s OdysseyAeolus, keeper of the winds, bestowedOdysseus and his crew with a gift of the four winds in a bag. However, the sailors open the bag while Odysseus slept, looking for booty, and as a result are blown off course by the resulting gale.[1] In ancient Rome, the lapis manalis was a sacred stone kept outside the walls of Rome in a temple of Mars. When Rome suffered from drought, the stone was dragged into the city.[2] The Berwick witches of Scotland were found guilty of using black magic to summon storms to murder King James VI of Scotland by seeking to sink the ship upon which he travelled.[3] Scandinavian witches allegedly claimed to sell the wind in bags or magically confined into wooden staves; they sold the bags to seamen who could release them when becalmed.[4] In various towns of Navarreprayers petitioned Saint Peter to grant rain in time of drought. If the rain was not forthcoming, the statue of St Peter was removed from the church and tossed into a river.[5] In the Middle AgesAbbas Ibn Firnas invented an artificial weather simulation room in which spectators saw and were astonished by starsclouds, artificial thunder, and lightning which were produced by mechanisms hidden in his basement laboratory.[6]

Perhaps the first example of practical weather control is the lightning rod. In the 1950s, computer scientist John von Neumann, an early theorizer on weather control, surmised that if Earth were to enter another Ice Age, a preventative solution would be to dump dirt (or spray soot from cropdusting planes) on the surface of the planet’s glaciers. He noted that this would significantly change their reflectivity (albedo), and thus increase the solar energy retained by the planet. Such a strategy would require repeated applications, as storms would cover some portion of the soot with new snow until their frequency and range abated. The theoretical efficacy of von Neumann’s proposal remains to be examined. Wilhelm Reichperformed cloudbusting experiments in the 1950s to 1960s, the results of which are controversial and not widely accepted by mainstream science. Dr Walter Russell wrote of weather control in Atomic Suicide 1956. Jack Toyer in the 1970s built a rainmaker on Palmers Island near Grafton using a solar mirror, electromagnetic static charge, and infra red frequencies of light to induce weather in regional areas within Australia. His work was continued by his successor, Peter Stevens.

Cloud seeding for rain

Cloud seeding is a common technique intended to trigger rain, but evidence on its effectiveness is mixed. The most daunting problem in the study of weather modification is the lack of scientific knowledge on the natural atmospheric processes. Because these natural processes are beyond man’s current comprehension, there is simply no controllable medium to conduct relative studies known as of yet. And because of the public’s ever growing need for more water, there has also been a rapid development of corporations that perform unregulated operational cloud seeding. Critics generally contend that claimed successes occur in conditions which were going to rain anyway. It is used in several different countries, including the United States, the People’s Republic of China, and Russia. In the People’s Republic of China there is a perceived dependency upon it in dry regions, which believe they are increasing annual rainfall by firing silver iodide rockets into the sky where rain is desired. In the United States, dry ice or silver iodide may be injected into a cloud by aircraft, or from the ground, in an attempt to increase rainfall; some companies are dedicated to this form of weather modification.

Storm prevention

Project Stormfury was an attempt to weaken tropical cyclones by flying aircraft into storms and seeding the eyewall with silver iodide. The project was run by the United States Government from 1962 to 1983. A similar project using soot was run in 1958, with inconclusive results.[7] Various methods have been proposed to reduce the harmful effects of hurricanes. Moshe Alamaro of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology[8] proposed using barges with upward-pointing jet engines to trigger smaller storms to disrupt the progress of an incoming hurricane; critics doubt the jets would be powerful enough to make any noticeable difference.[7]

Alexandre Chorin of the University of California at Berkeley proposed dropping large amounts of environmentally friendly oils on the sea surface to prevent droplet formation.[9] Experiments by Kerry Emanuel[10] of MIT in 2002 suggested that hurricane-force winds would disrupt the oil slick, making it ineffective.[11] Other scientists disputed the factual basis of the theoretical mechanism assumed by this approach.[12] The Florida company Dyn-O-Mat proposes the use of a product it has developed, called Dyn-O-Gel, to reduce the strength of hurricanes. The substance is a polymer in powder form which reportedly has the ability to absorb 1,500 times its own weight in water. The theory is that the polymer is dropped into clouds to remove their moisture and force the storm to use more energy to move the heavier water drops, thus helping to dissipate the storm. When the gel reaches the ocean surface, it is reportedly dissolved. The company has tested the substance on a thunderstorm, but there has not been any scientific consensus established as to its effectiveness.[13] Hail cannons are used by some farmers in an attempt to ward off hail, but there is no reliable scientific evidence to confirm or deny their effectiveness. Another new anti-hurricane technology [1] is a method for the reduction of tropical cyclones’ destructive force – pumping sea water into and diffusing it in the wind at the bottom of such tropical cyclone in its eyewall.

2008 Olympic games

In the largest rain dispersal operation on record in China, and the first time that such technology was used in conjunction with the Olympics, the Beijing Municipal Meteorological Bureau fired a total of 1,104rain dispersal rockets within an eight-hour period prior to and during the opening ceremonies of the Games of the XXIX Olympiad on August 8, 2008. The rockets were launched from twenty-one sites and may have prevented the ceremonies from receiving rainfall in the range of 25 to 100 millimeters of rain.

With a rainy weather forecast for the Olympic night, and 90% humidity, the attempt “successfully intercepted a stretch of rain belt from moving towards the stadium…” said Guo Hu, head of the Beijing Municipal Meteorological Bureau. “…”Under such a weather condition, a small bubble in the rain cloud would have triggered rainfall, let alone a lightning…” said Guo, according to Xinhua News’ 2008 Olympics website.In the subsequent days that followed torrential rain nearly washed the games out.

Ionospheric experiments

The High-frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) is a congressionally initiated program jointly managed by the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy. The HAARP complex is situated within a 23-acre lot in a relatively isolated region near the town of Gakona. When the final phase of the project is completed in 1997, the military will have erected 180 towers, 72 feet in height, forming a “high-power, high frequency phased array radio transmitter” capable of beaming in the 2.5-10 megahertz frequency range, at more than 3 gigawatts of power (3 billion watts). http://www.haarp.alaska.edu/haarp/prpeis.html

HIPAS has several diverse experimental facilities: a 1-megawatt rf transmitter to produce ELF/VLF (Extremely Low Frequency and Very Low Frequency) electromagnetic (EM) generation by the absorption ofradio frequency (rf) power in the arctic ionosphere including ion cyclotron excitation; a 100 kW rf plasma torch used in research on the destruction of hazardous waste; a 2.7 m liquid mirror telescope used with one of several lasers for ionospheric stimulation and measurement; an Incoherent Scatter Radar (a new project using 88 ft. diameter antenna at NOAA Gilmore Creek site 34 km SW of HIPAS as the receiving antenna with the transmitter at HIPAS). HIPAS is in the process of adding a very high power (terawatt) laser (recently obtained from LLNL) to perform laser breakdown experiments in the ionosphere. Two Diesel electric generators (1500 HP 4160 V, 3-phase, 1.2 MVA each) are used to power the experiments. There are a number of computers (PC’s ) on site, and a high-speed data line to UAF is available. While these experiments are useful in measuring the properties of the ionosphere, they produce insufficient amounts of energy to modify it in any significant way. however hotspots can be created within the ionospehere where this radiation is focused, temperatures can be elevated by up to 1600`k causing expansion of the ionosphere and subsequent changes in pressure and temperature, which in turn lead to changes in the global meteorology.

Weather control and law

1977 Environmental Modification Convention

Weather control, as well as “weather tampering”, for hostile or military purposes is expressly forbidden dating from at least December 10, 1976, when the “United Nations General Assembly Resolution 31/72, TIAS 9614 Convention[14] on the Prohibition of Military or Any Other Hostile Use of Environmental Modification Techniques” was adopted. The Convention was: Signed in Geneva May 18, 1977; Entered into force October 5, 1978; Ratification by U.S. President December 13, 1979; U.S. ratification deposited at New York January 17, 1980.[15]

Space Preservation Act Title: To preserve the cooperative, peaceful uses of space for the benefit of all humankind by permanently prohibiting the basing of weapons in space by the United States, and to require the President to take action to adopt and implement a world treaty banning space-based weapons. Sponsor: Rep Kucinich, Dennis J. http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c107:H.R.2977.IH: The bill originally mentioned chemtrails and H.A.A.R.P.,but was modified and resubmitted as H.R.3616 and H.R.2440. H.R. 2977 Space Preservation Act of 2001 introduced October 2, 2001, 107th Congress, 1st Session. The bill was referred to committee and no further action ensued. H.R. 3616 Space Preservation Act of 2002 introduced January 23, 2002, 107th Congress, 2d Session. The bill was referred to committee and no further action ensued. H.R. 2420 Space Preservation Act of 2005 introduced May 18, 2005, 109th Congress, 1st Session, with 34 co-sponsors (see accompanying list). The bill was referred to committee and no further action ensued. http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Space_Preservation_Act

2005 U.S. Senate Bill 517 and U.S. House Bill 2995

U.S. Senate Bill 517[16] and U.S. House Bill 2995[17] were two laws proposed in 2005 that would have allowed experimental weather modification by artificial methods, attempted to establish a Weather Modification Operations and Research Board, and implemented a national weather modification policy. Neither ever became law.

U.S. Senate Bill 1807 & U.S. House Bill 3445 Senate Bill 1807 and House Bill 3445, identical bills introduced July 17, 2007, propose to establish a Weather Mitigation Advisory and Research Board to federally fund weather modification research http://tlp.law.pitt.edu/SP_DiLorenzo_Weather%20Modification.htm sponsored by Kay Bailey Hutcheson and Mark Udall. http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=s110-1807

Future aspirations

Climatologist Ross Hoffman has simulated hurricane control based on selective heating and cooling (or prevention of evaporation).[18] Futurist John Smart has discussed the potential for weather control via space-based solar power networks. One proposal involves the gentle heating via microwave of portions of large hurricanes. Such chaotic systems may be susceptible to “side steering” with a few degrees of increased temperature/pressure at critical points. A sufficient network might keep the largest and most potentially damaging hurricanes from landfall, at the request of host nations. Blizzards, monsoons, and other extreme weather are also potential candidates for space-based amelioration.[citations needed] If large-scale weather control were to become feasible, potential implications may include:

  • Unintended side effects, especially given the chaotic nature of weather development
  • Damage to existing ecosystems
  • Health risks to humans
  • Equipment malfunction or accidents
  • Non-democratic control or use as a weapon

For the 2008 Olympics, China had 30 airplanes, 4,000 rocket launchers, and 7,000 anti-aircraft guns to stop rain. Each system would shoot various chemicals into any threatening clouds to shrink rain drops before they reach the stadium.[19]

Weather control in popular culture

In popular culture, weather control technology can be encountered in the realms of public speculation, science fiction, and fantasy. The concept of weather control is often portrayed as a part of terraforming.

Film and television

Star Trek

  • In the Star Trek universe, most advanced planets and colonies utilize weather control, often referred to as weather modification grids or weather modification nets. A small, but long-established TNG-era (ca2369) colony was a weather control facility for approximately a hundred years. Most advanced civilizations apparently employ weather control standard equipment.
  • Weather control technology in 2270s required special facilities, modern TNG– and DS9-era technology consists of multiple mid-size devices positioned strategically, networked and controlled from more-or-less arbitrary places.
  • For example, the planet Risa has its climate controlled to be a tropical paradise. Perhaps one of the few modern exceptions of planets apparently without weather control technology is Ferenginar with continuous rain.

Other films or shows

  • In the Sci Fi Channel original series, Stargate SG1, Episode 214, “Touchstone“, aired on October 30, 1998, the Stargate SG1 team discovers a weather control device on an alien planet, which is subsequently stolen and brought to earth, where experimenting with it wreaked havoc with the local weather. The device was later recaptured and returned to its original planet which had suffered phenomenal storms since it had been stolen.
  • In the Disney Channel Original MovieThe Ultimate Christmas Present, two girls find a weather machine and make it snow in Los Angeles.
  • In the live action Justice League of America film, the villain is a terrorist who has a weather control device.
  • In Aliens, a colony sent to LV-426 by the Company utilized a fusion-powered terraforming atmosphere processor. In the first film, the planet’s climate was not yet suitable for human life.
  • In The Arrival, a race of aliens is found to be terraforming the Earth using hidden factories producing huge volumes of highly potent, engineered “super-greenhouse gases”.
  • In the 1987 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon series, the episode “Hot Rodding Teenagers from Dimension X” includes Stone Warriors using a “weather satellite“, with one difference: while other weather satellite gives weather prognosis, this one “makes weather”. The “weather satellite” creates a storm to level New York City, but the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles destroy it. The episode “Take Me to Your Leader” of the same series include Krang and the Shredder using a machine to reduce the Sun, creating cold weather on the Earth.
  • Storm (played by Halle Berry in the 2000 film and subsequent sequels), a member of the X-Men, can control the weather with her mind.
  • In Superman IIIGus Gorman (Richard Pryor) changes the weather by hacking into a weather satellite.
  • In a Family Guy episode, Stewie builds a machine that can control the weather using only a satellite dish and a See ‘n Say.
  • In the film The Avengers Sir August de Wynter (Sean Connery) creates a satellite capable of controlling the weather.
  • Our Man Flint is a 1966 sci-fi action film which stars James Coburn as Derek Flint where a trio of mad scientists attempt to blackmail the world with a weather-control machine.
  • Kaijûtô no kessen: Gojira no musuko is a 1967 film from Japan. Scientists, on a tropical island, conduct weather control experiments then encounter gigantic praying mantises and a giant spider that attack the son of Godzilla. Godzilla arrives and saves his offspring.
  • The cartoon miniseries G.I. Joe: The Revenge of Cobra, showed the terrorist group Cobra in possession of a device called the Weather Dominator.
  • American Daytime soap opera General Hospital featured a storyline where mad genius Mikkos Cassadine used a substance called Carbonic Snow to create a blizzard in the show’s locale Port Charles in the middle of what had been a long hot summer in order to blackmail world leaders into accepting his new world order. Luke Spencer managed to thwart the plan.
  • In WALL-E, the Megacorporation known as Buy N Large, had established a Global Weather Control System, the system was made of satellites that would change and control the weather in the areas that they were in. The system worked so well that soon Buy N Large even launched a program in which citizens can book certain weather in the areas where they live. Such as, scheduling a Thunderstorm during a parade so that it will literally “rain on their parade.”
  • In the sci-fi drama series Heroes, Angela Petrelli’s long-lost sister, Alice Shaw, was revealed to be able to control weather.

Computer games

  • In Master Of Orion, it is possible to build a weather control building to change the planet’s environment.
  • In Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 and Command & Conquer: Yuri’s Revenge Expansion Pack, the Allies can build the weather control device superweapon, and direct thunderstorms to strike a selected location of the map every 10 minutes.
  • In Tribunal, an expansion pack to The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, the player finds a machine under the city of Almalexia that can change the weather of the city at the will of its user.
  • In Phantasy Star II, a weather, irrigation and dam control system known as Climatrol has been constructed by Mother Brain to make the barren planet Motavia habitable for Palman occupation.
  • In the game Spore by Will Wright, players are able to use a spacecraft to modify planetary atmospheres – creating volcanoes to generate carbon dioxide, seeding plant life to create breathable air, or even using a “Genesis device” to make a planet habitable in one go. There is no actual controlling of weather, however.[20]
  • In “Earth 2150“, the Lunar Corporation are capable of building a weather control station for tactical weather control. The structure can be charged to cause storms, fog, and/or wind at targeted areas on the map.
  • In Fable 2 Knothole island Expansion, the player can control weather by obtaining weather crystals and using them in a weather chamber, 3 crystals represent sun,rain and snow.
  • in The Sims 2 seasons Expansion, players can use a season changing device to make a certain season permanent or prolong a desired season for a number of in-game days.

Prose

  • Ben Bova‘s The Weathermakers is the story of a government agency that controls the weather.
  • Sidney Sheldon‘s Are You Afraid of the Dark is the story of a think tank that builds technology powerful enough to create hurricanes, tornadoes, and tsunamis.
  • In Michael Crichton‘s State of Fear, ecoterrorists plan to create a tsunami, calve an iceberg, and induce flash flooding and hurricanes.
  • In Normand Lester’s science thriller Verglas, the 1998 icestorm that struck the Montréal area is an experiment by the Pentagon in the development of a climatic weapon that went wrong. The book speculate that ULF waves generated by a transmitter at Siple Station, a US base in Antarctica, caused the icestorm by affecting the ionosphere over Québec.
  • In Lois Lowry‘s The Giver, the government controls the weather and keeps it from snowing, and confine rain to the farmland.
  • In the book series Weather Warden by Rachel Caine, the Wardens are an association of people who have the ability to control the elements – earth, fire and weather. They manipulate these elements to stop natural disasters from devastating mankind. The main character herself is a Weather Warden, so weather manipulation plays a large role throughout the series.
  • In Roger Zelazny‘s The Chronicles of Amber an openly known quality of the Jewel of Judgment is the ability to control the local weather.
  • In Frank Herbert‘s Dune series, weather control is widespread, and is achieved with specialized satellites in orbit around a planet.

Music

Other fictional weather controllers

  • DC Comics villain Weather Wizard could control the weather with a special kind of technology in the shape of a wand.
  • Marvel Comics heroes Thor and Storm could control weather; the former because he is the Norse god of thunder, the latter because she is a mutant whose powers specifically center around weather control.
  • Digimon character Wizardmon could manipulate thunderstorms.
  • When the Muppet Count von Count of Sesame Street laughs, it often invokes thunder.
  • In some of the Asterix comics, when the village bard Cacofonix sings, it starts to rain.
  • In the 2000 AD world of Judge Dredd the weather in Mega City One is controlled by a weather control station positioned above the populous and is used to spread a chemical which causes Block War by the city of East Meg One
  • In the Nintendo Gameboy Advance Video Game Pokemon Sapphire, The Pokemon “Kyogre” controlled the rain and the tides in Hoenn.
  • In the BIONICLE Saga, weather control is one of the many powers the Makuta species have.

Conspiracy theories

Conspiracy theorists have suggested that certain governments use or seek to use weather control as a weapon (eg via HAARP and/or chemtrails), but such allegations have not been proven. At a counterterrorism conference in 1997, United States Secretary of Defense William Cohen referred to the writings of futurist Alvin Toffler, specifically regarding concerns about “eco-terrorism” and intentionally caused natural disasters.[21]

See also