Climate change impacts the most vulnerable atolls on our planet first and the future of the islanders is a global responsibility, says Climate Envoy Tina Stege.

Jaluit Atoll Lagoon, The Marshall Islands ©Keith Polya | Flickr

Stege is working on securing a future for her kids and her people, as she writes in her Twitter profile. Her people are the people of the Marshall Islands, an independent island country near the equator in the Pacific Ocean. Her job title is Climate Envoy, which is a political position as a representative of the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) on the topic of climate change.

Tina is one of the expert speakers in the Reporting on Climate Change program organized by the Thomson Reuters Foundation and the Asian Development Bank. …

Check out Bette Dam’s TED Talk “Why Western media promotes war”.

President Joe Biden announced the withdrawal of the US in Afghanistan with a deadline on the twenty-year anniversary of 9/11 this year. “It’s time to end America’s longest forever war and it’s time for American troops to come home”, as he put it.
Dutch investigative journalist Bette Dam has lived in Afghanistan for four years and covers the country already for fifteen years. She wrote two books about Afghanistan, publishes in various Dutch and international media and is a lecturer about the country at Sciences Po in Paris. …

“She just ignited my curiosity in a way that I had not experienced before” — Craig Foster

Before I press the play button to watch the documentary “My Octopus Teacher’’ I read that filmmaker Craig Foster just recovered from burnout when he decided to go into the ocean every day for a year. At the beginning of the documentary, he tells about “The Great Dance: A Hunter’s Story” he’d filmed years earlier with his brother where they followed the lives of trackers in the Kalahari Desert in Southern Africa. …

“Vipassana is the art of living, not the art of escaping” — S.N. Goenka

The world is at a standstill waiting for the vaccines to roll out and the travel restrictions to be lifted. When we’re watching the late-night talk shows it seems that the same exact topics with the same exact guests could have been broadcasted a year ago. And most of our lives haven’t changed a lot except maybe for the extra kilos we gained by staying at home, feeling tired and not being able to go to the gym. Obviously, I’m generalizing and there are people whose life did change hugely due to the loss of family members and friends or because they’re made unemployed. But in general, the situation is far from what we’re normally used to.

Vipassana meditation teaches about the constant motion in your body

In Vipassana meditation one of the core concepts is the fact that everything changes constantly. And the meditation technique teaches you to deal with change within the framework of your own body. While being comfortably seated, you observe the sensations in your body and train the mind not to respond to everything you feel. When you’re getting more experienced in the technique, your mind becomes subtler and you’ll become aware of the fact that everything in your body is moving. …

Racism isn’t a new construct in this world for people of colour — Michelle Obama

Screenshot from the interview with Michelle Obama in The Today Show by Jenna Bush Hager.

The American news and talk morning television program The Today Show broadcasted an interview with attorney and author Michelle Obama and part of the conversation was the response of the former first lady to the interview Oprah Winfrey had with Meghan and Harry.

Although the whole interview with Mrs. Obama is worth watching, particularly this part (from 11:36) is important to understand the tactics she uses in talking about racism and what we can learn from that.

Interviewer Jenna Bush Hager remembers Michelle Obama telling…

Have the maturity to know sometimes silence is more powerful than having the last word — Dr. Thema Bryant-Davis

Kristina Flour for Unsplash

The Balinese tradition of Nyepi should be exported

There is a beautiful Hindu celebration on the tropical island of Bali in Indonesia that’s comparable to what we in The West call New Year’s Day. The Balinese Nyepi is a public holiday on the island and a day of silence. Nobody is leaving the house, there is no internet, no entertainment, no travelling, no activities and even the airport closes down. Complete silence for twenty-four hours, from six in the morning till the next day at the same time.

If recent years have taught black journalists anything, it’s that public embarrassment appears to make our bosses better hear us. — Wesley Lowery

Couldn’t find the copyright to this image.

I was about to share an image on Instagram of a group of women protesting and holding up the sign with the text ‘We’ll be less activist if you are less shit’. Before pressing the publish button doubt came to my mind, I asked myself: do I actually identify as an activist? Even though I’d definitely say I’m a journalist?

A few months ago I interviewed Malaysian journalist Kuek Ser Kuang Keng and asked him about this…

On a very rainy Saturday in Ubud, Bali, my friend Janie organised the final presentation of her ayurvedic course that had lasted for a year and invited 20 of her closest friends to attend. She is educated as an architect and worked in that field for ten years. On the side, for her own personal development, she has developed a yoga and holistic health practice. And even though it was strange at first to tell people she was an architect and a yoga teacher, the two seemingly different professions actually worked together perfectly. …

I was having a call with my mother this week and she shared with me how depressed she gets from reading the news all day. There is so much negativity going on in the world, combined with the fact that the lockdown keeps us inside our homes, glued to our phones and with unlimited access to other news sources like newspapers and television.

I hear myself offering a solution to my mother, but like most people, she just wants a sympathetic ear. Our conversation made me think about how I myself perceive the daily news. I definitely understand my mother’s…

(Photocredit: Mevrouw Hatseflats for Unsplash)

It must be the full moon that brings up so much emotion this week, I caught myself thinking at my home in Bali where the calendar is based on the lunar cycle. Balinese spirituality attracts lots of Westerners looking for healing themselves in some sort of way. There are different communities of foreigners on the island, those who believe in detox but not in masks, those who enjoy the Bali life without realizing their privilege, those who organize parties to increase their Instagram following without complying to the COVID-19 rules and together with all that, people who have opinions about all those people, from a ‘morally charged Western point of view’, including me myself and I.

Tired of my own opinion

I found myself writing in a direct message to one of my Twitter colleagues that ‘I’m tired of all the opinions, including my own’. It is easy to judge each other from behind our laptop, it’s much more courageous to start a conversation with people who aren’t aligned with our opinion. The outcome of those conversations can be surprising, that’s what I discovered a few months ago when I decided to address someone’s behaviour at a beach club in Sanur in Bali. The man was celebrating his birthday with his family when something in their food and drink order went…

Sanne Breimer

Exploring the solutions to the lack of inclusion in journalism, focusing on decolonising journalism and discussing whiteness, Eurocentrism and objectivity.

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