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The Prophet’s Golden Rule: Ethics of Reciprocity in Islam – MuslimMatters

In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful

The ethics of reciprocity, known as the golden rule, is any moral dictum that encourages people to treat others the way they would like to be treated. Although the term was originally coined by Anglican ministers such as George Boraston, the principle can be found in the sacred texts of the worlds great religions, as well as the writings of secular philosophers. Due to its ubiquity in many contexts, it has become an important focal point for interfaith dialogue and the development of international human rights norms.

The rule often appears as a summarizing principle of good conduct, the supreme moral principle of right action between human beings. Though not always understood literally, as it is often qualified by competing moral imperatives, it generally functions as an intuitive method of moral reasoning. Despite the different formulations, wordings, and contexts in which the rule appears across religions and traditions, Jeffery Wattles argues that there is enough continuity in meaning and application to justify describing the ethics of reciprocity as the golden rule.

Some philosophers have scoffed at the rule, noting that a crude, literal adherence to the outward phrasing can lead to moral absurdities. Harry J. Gensler reponds to this criticism by formulating the rule in these terms: Treat others only as you consent to being treated in the same situation. Context matters in the process of moral reasoning; what the rule demands is not rudimentary application as much as it is ethical consistency vis--vis human beings, as the first principle from which the morality of an action is analyzed. It is the locus of ones conscience, a guide for everyday behavior.

Moreover, application of the rule ought to be informed by a balanced collection of principles and values that manifest the rule in action. For this reason, writers throughout history have used the rule as a hub around which to gather great themes. Notions of justice, love, compassion, and other virtues have all been related to the rule by various religious traditions. Accounting for all of these considerations and responding to common objections, both Wattles and Gensler have convincingly defended the golden rule from its detractors and have presented it as a viable principle for a modern moral philosophy.

Islam, as a world religion with over one billion followers, has an important role to play in facilitating dialogue and cooperation with other groups in the modern world. The golden rule in Islamic traditions has been explicitly invoked by numerous Muslim leaders and organizations towards this end. Recently, hundreds of Muslim scholars and leaders have signed the A Common Word interfaith letter, asserting that the Abrahamic faiths share the twin golden commandments of the paramount importance of loving God and loving ones neighbor. The initiative grew into several publications and conferences, including the important and high-profile Marrakesh Declaration in early 2016, which cited A Common Word in its text as evidence of the compatibility between Islamic tradition and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Quran ascribes a number of beautiful names (asma al-husna) to God conveying virtues that Muslims, by implication, should practice, The most excellent names belong to Him. Among the relevant names of God are Al-Rahman (the Merciful), Al-Wadud (the Loving), Al-Ghafur (the Forgiving), Al-Rauf (the Kind), Al-Adl (the Just), Al-Karim (the Generous), and so on. Embedded in this description of God are many of the moral themes traditionally associated with the golden rule.

The distinguished Muslim scholar and mystic, Ab mid al-Ghazzl (d.1111), locates the golden rule within Gods loving nature as expressed in the verses, My Lord is merciful and most loving, and again, He is the Most Forgiving, the Most Loving. He authored a treatise on the names of God in Islamic tradition, discussing their theological meanings and his understanding of the proper way in which Muslims should enact those names. God, in his view, benefits all creatures without desiring any advantage or benefit in return:

Al-Wadud The Loving-kind is one who wishes all creatures well and accordingly favors them and praises them. In fact, love and mercy are only intended for the benefit and advantage of those who receive mercy or are loved; they do not find their cause in the sensitivities or natural inclination of the Loving-kind One. For anothers benefit is the heart and soul of mercy and love and that is how the case of God may He be praised and exalted is to be conceived: absent those features which human experience associates with mercy and love, yet which do not contribute to the benefit they bring.

In other words, God should be understood as entirely and selflessly benevolent towards His creatures, without any need or desire for repayment. God does not benefit from the worship of His servants, nor does He take pleasure in punishing the wicked. Rather, God only prescribes worship and righteous deeds for the benefit of believers. By reflecting this divine nature in action, believers should unconditionally want for others the same as they want for themselves:

One is loving-kind among Gods servants who desires for Gods creatures whatever he desires for himself; and whoever prefers them to himself is even higher than that. Like one of them who said, I would like to be a bridge over the fire [of hell] so that creatures might pass over me and not be harmed by it. The perfection of that virtue occurs when not even anger, hatred, and the harm he might receive can keep him from altruism and goodness.

Commentators of the Quran often found the rule implied in several verses. When righteousness (taqw) is first mentioned in Quran (when reading cover-to-cover), classical exegetes typically define it by appealing to traditional wisdom-sayings. Abu Ishaq al-Thalabi (d. 1035) narrates several exegetical traditions to define and explicate the meaning of righteousness. The early authorities Sufyan al-Thawri (d. 778) and Al-Fudayl ibn Iyad (d. 803) say that the righteous man (al-muttaqi) is he who loves for people what he loves for himself. Al-Junayd ibn Muhammad (d. 910), on the other hand, disagreed with them and took it a step further, The righteous man is not he who loves for people what he loves for himself. Rather, the righteous man is only he who loves for people greater than he loves for himself. In Al-Junayds telling, true righteousness is not simply the equality implied in the golden rule, but rather a definite preference to benefit others that amounts to altruism (al-ithar).

In contrast, the Quran severely rebukes cheaters in weights and measurements, Woe to those who give short measure, who demand of other people full measure for themselves, but give less than they should when it is they who weigh or measure for others! That is, they demand full payment for themselves while they give short-change to others. The golden rule was understood by Fakhr al-Dn al-Razi (d. 1209) to be the clear implication of this passage, as he reports the saying of the early authority Qatadah, Fulfil the measure, O son of Adam, as you would love it fulfilled for yourself, and be just as you would love justice for yourself.

Most of the explicit golden rule statements in Islamic tradition are found in the Hadith corpus, the sayings and deeds of Prophet Muammad . According to Anas ibn Mlik (d. 712), the Prophet said:

This is the most prominent golden rule statement in the Hadith corpus. The two leading Sunni Hadith scholars, Muhammad ibn Isml al-Bukhari (d. 870) and Muslim ibn al-ajjj (d. 875), both placed this tradition in their book of faith, near the introductions of their respective collections. The implication is that the lesson in the tradition is essential to true faith itself, not simply a recommended or value-added practice.

Commentators sometimes mention that all good manners are derived from this tradition and three others, Whoever believes in God and the Last Day, let him speak goodness or be silent, and, It is from a mans excellence in Islam that he leaves what does not concern him, and, Do not be angry. Like many religious writers and philosophers, Muslim scholars took note of the summarizing function of the golden rule as a broad principle for good conduct.

A key question for the commentators was the meaning of brother in the tradition of Anas . It is generally agreed upon that brother refers to Muslims, but several commentators expanded the meaning to include non-Muslims or unbelievers. Prolific author and Shafii jurist, Muy al-Dn al-Nawaw (d. 1277), explained the tradition this way:

Firstly, that [tradition] is interpreted as general brotherhood, such that it includes the unbeliever and the Muslim. Thus, he loves for his brother the unbeliever what he loves for himself of embracing Islam, as he would love for his brother Muslim to always remain upon Islam. For this reason, to pray for guidance for the unbeliever is recommended The meaning of love is to intend good and benefit, hence, the meaning is religious love and not human love.

Al-Nawaws concept of religious love (al-mahabbat al-diniyah) parallels the distinction Christian writers made between agape () and eros (). The highest form of love, according to him, is that which is purely benevolent for Gods sake, in opposition to sinful passions, caprice, or ordinary types of love.

Although inclusion of non-Muslims in a broader brotherhood of humanity was not universally accepted, proponents of this interpretation found a strong case for their position in all of the permutations of the golden rule in the Hadith corpus. Even from the traditions of Anas alone, inclusive language was used by the Prophet often enough to justify a universal golden rule:

None of you has faith until he loves for the people what he loves for himself, and only until he loves a person for the sake of God, the Great and Almighty.

The servant does not reach the reality of faith until he loves for the people what he loves for himself of the good.

In particular, a variant in Sahih Muslim reads, until he loves for his brother or he said his neighbour what he loves for himself. In this version, Anas is unsure if the Prophet said brother or neighbor. If neighbors are included, the term would certainly apply to non-Muslims as well.

Muammad ibn Isml al-ann (d. 1768), a Yemeni reformer in the Salafi tradition, includes in his legal commentary a chapter on the rights of the neighbor, in which he employs some of the broadest language of the late classical to early modern period. Based upon the word neighbor in the version of Sahih Muslim, he concludes:

The narration of the neighbor is general for the Muslim, the unbeliever, and the sinner, the friend and the enemy, the relative and the foreigner, the near neighbour and the far neighbour. Whoever acquires in this regard the obligatory attributes of loving good for him, he is at the highest of levels.

Perhaps most significant is Al-anns inclusion of enemies (al-aduw) in the list of people covered by the golden rule. In this case, the rule has at least some kind of application to every single human being.

Abd Allh ibn Amr (d. 685), who is said to have been one of the first to write down the statements of the Prophet , narrates his version of the golden rule, Whoever would love to be delivered from Hell and admitted into Paradise, let him meet his end believing in God and the Last Day, and let him treat people as he would love to be treated. The rule here is a means of salvation and is expressed in terms of good behavior, rather than religious love.

Ab Hurayrah (d. 679), the most prolific narrator of Hadith, also shares what he heard from the Prophet , Love for people what you love for yourself, you will be a believer. Be good to your neighbour, you will be a Muslim. Like the tradition of Anas, the rule is associated with both true faith and good treatment of neighbors.

Sometimes Hadith traditions do not explicitly state the golden rule, but it is drawn out by the commentators. Tamim al-Dari (d. 661) reports that the Prophet said three times, Religion is sincerity. The companions said, To whom? The Prophet replied, To God, to His book, to His messenger, and to the leader of the Muslims and their commoners. Ibn Daqq al-d (d. 1302) explains at length the meaning of sincerity or good will (naah) in each context. As it relates to common people, he writes that sincerity is to take care of them with beautiful preaching, to abandon ill will and envy for them, and to love for them what he loves for himself of good and to hate for them what he hates for himself of evil.

Al-Numn ibn Bashr (d. 684) relates the Prophets parable of the faith community as a single body, You see the believers in their mercy, affection, and compassion for one another as if they were a body. When a limb aches, the rest of the body responds with sleeplessness and fever. A variant of this tradition reads, The Muslims are like a single man. If the eye is afflicted, the whole body is afflicted. If the head is afflicted, the whole body is afflicted. The idea is that Muslims should have empathy for one another by sharing the burden of each others pain, as stated in another tradition, The believer feels pain for the people of faith, just as the body feels pain in its head. Abu Abd Allh al-Halm (d. 1012) inferred the golden rule from this parable:

They should be like that, as one hand would not love but what the other loves, and one eye or one leg or one ear would not love but what the other loves. Likewise, he should not love for his Muslim brother but what he loves for himself.

Later commentators would develop this idea further. Ibn Daqq draws upon the parable of the faith community in his commentary on the tradition of Anas, writing, Some scholars said in this tradition is the understanding that the believer is with another believer like a single soul. Thus, he should love for him what he loves for himself, as if they were a single soul. Ibn ajar al-Haytham (d. 1567) makes the same connection, saying that to love one another means that he will be with him as one soul (al-nafs al-wahidah).

Yazid ibn Asad, another one of the Prophets companions, recalls that he said to him, O Yazid ibn Asad! Love for people what you love for yourself! In a variant of this tradition, the Prophet (s) asks him, Do you love Paradise? Yazid says yes, so the Prophet replies, Then love for your brother what you love for yourself. In yet another variant, Yazids grandson quotes the sermon of Prophet upon the pulpit, Do not treat people but in the way you would love to be treated by them.

Failure to live up to the golden rule could result in dreadful consequences in the Hereafter, especially for Imams and authorities. Maqil ibn Yasr, while on his deathbed, recounted what he learned from the Prophet , No one is appointed over the affairs of the Muslims and then he does not strive for them or show them good will but that he will never enter Paradise with them. In another wording, the Prophet said, He does not protect them as he would protect himself and his family but that Allah will cast him into the fire of Hell. In this regard, a Muslim leader must necessarily treat their followers as they would treat themselves and their own families, if such a terrible fate is to be avoided.

Ab Ummah al-Bhil (d. 705) tells the story of a young man who came to the Prophet (s) to ask for permission to indulge in adulterous intercourse. The Prophet engages him in an imaginative role-reversal, asking a series of Socratic questions and appealing to the young mans conscience to convince him against it, Would you like that for your mother? Would you like that for your sister? The young man, naturally, expresses his disapproval had someone else committed adultery with the women of his household. The logical conclusion, as stated by the Prophet, is to consider the golden rule, Then hate what God has hated, and love for your brother what you love for yourself.

Hatred for the sake of God is a fine line to walk, between righteous indignation and unjustified malice. At least some of the earliest Muslims adopted the familiar refrain: love the sinner, hate the sin. According to Mudh ibn Anas, this is how the Prophet defined hatred for the sake of God, The best faith is to love for the sake of God, to hate for the sake of God, and to work your tongue in the remembrance of God. Mudh said, How is it done, O Messenger of God? The Prophet said, That you love for people what you love for yourself, hate for them what you hate for yourself, and to speak goodness or be silent. The noble form of hatred is simply the inverse of the golden rule; if one sees another sinning, hatred should be for the evil deed because it harms its doer. At the same time, one loves good for the sinner by hoping for their repentance and divine forgiveness.

Ibrahim Adham (d. 782) remembers during his travels that he overheard a pair of Muslim ascetics discussing the love of God amongst themselves. Intrigued, he interjects himself into the conversation to ask, How can anyone have compassion for people who contradict their Beloved [God]?

The unnamed ascetic turns to him, saying:

They abhor their sinful deeds and have compassion for them, [pray] that by preaching to them they might leave their deeds. They feel pity that their bodies might be burned in hellfire. The believer is not truly a believer until he is pleased for people to have what is pleasing to himself.

The commentator Abd al-Ramn ibn Rajab (d. 1393) corroborates this interpretation, which he ascribes to the righteous predecessors (al-salaf al-li). Hence, it not correct for a Muslim to carry malicious hatred in the sense of desiring to harm others. A believer ought to love for sinners to repent, to be guided, and to be forgiven. In this regard, the Prophet admonished us, Do not hate each other, do not envy each other, do not turn away from each other, but rather be servants of God as brothers.

The irreversible march of globalization is producing an urgent need for people of different backgrounds and beliefs to find common ground. As the world grows closer together, with it grows the imperative to recognize each other as members of one human family. The ethics of reciprocity the golden rule is the best conceptual vehicle to advance this necessary intercultural dialogue and cooperation.

Islam is one of the worlds great religions, with over one billion followers living on every continent and speaking hundreds of languages. If peace on earth is to be actualized, Islam and Muslims must be a partner in it. Muslims need an entry point for understanding non-Muslims, just as non-Muslims need a way to begin understanding Muslims. Islams golden rule can provide a bridge between these worlds.

It is not reasonable to expect that the golden rule by itself can solve all the conflicts of the modern world, but what it can do is activate the innate conscience of human beings in a process of collective, intercultural moral reasoning. By accepting at the outset the premise of human equality and the obligation of moral consistency, we can work together to develop the mutual understanding and respect needed for people of different beliefs to live together in harmony. The golden rule itself is not the answer per se, rather it is the right question at the start; it is the first step in a journey we must take together, the first conversation in a dialogue we must have.

Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.

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The Prophet's Golden Rule: Ethics of Reciprocity in Islam - MuslimMatters

How to report fraud related to the coronavirus – WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Scammers might see a time like the coronavirus crisis as a prime opportunity to prey on people. The United States Department of Justice announced Monday it's making it a top priority to crack down on scams related to the coronavirus.

U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Louisiana Brandon Fremin says innocent people have already become victims.

"We expect the worst of the worst to show themselves and take advantage of vulnerable populations, and we've already seen it," he said.

Criminals are attempting to exploit COVID-19 through a variety of scams, which come in many forms. They include phone calls, text messages, websites, and phishing emails from entities posing as the World Health Organization or CDC. Other forms include ads or downloadable apps that appear to share downloadable information that can gain access to your devices or non-existent charities seeking donations.

"What we've been seeing so far is fake testing kits, attempting sale and sale of fake cures. And we expect to see some health care fraud," Fremin said.

The golden rule stands true here, if it's too good to be true then it probably isn't.

The attorney general announced that the Department of Justice is going to prioritize any fraudulent criminal behavior related to the coronavirus. Steps have been made to ensure it's a priority here in Louisiana.

The complaints made to the National Center for Disaster Fraud are forwarded to the most appropriate investigating agencies. Please report those scams or fraud to 866-720-5721 or email disaster@leo.gov.

You can learn more here.

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How to report fraud related to the coronavirus - WBRZ

Postscripts: Venture to honor anti-nuclear legacy runs aground on coronavirus fears – The Westerly Sun

For years, several rather conventional, if not pleasant, acrylic paintings of sailboats on loan from Mystic Seaport Museum were displayed among the heroic studies of clipper ships hanging on the walls in the palatial marble lobby of what long was the Savings Bank of New London and in more recent years the Citizens Bank on Eugene ONeill Drive in downtown New London.

The artist was Albert Smith Bigelow. His name lives on, though Citizens Bank, like its predecessor, no longer occupies the building. Presumably the paintings are back in the confines of the Seaports vast collection. A sailor and marine painter since his 20s, Bigelow, in 1965, executed the seascapes. That same year, he gave eight paintings to Mystic Seaport, expressing, in a letter, a great fondness for the Seaport. He also complained that hed received only a form letter of thanks, not a personal note. The Seaport loaned three of the paintings to the bank.

Bigelow did not make his name as painter, but rather a confrontational pacifist protesting nuclear proliferation after World War II and as a Freedom Rider in the Civil Rights years. Unfortunately, he was known, as well, as the betrayed husband in a scandal that captured New York and Boston headlines in late 1929.

In June 1929, the weekend of the annual Harvard-Yale Regatta on the Thames River, Bigelow, a graduate of Harvard and scion of a Boston Brahmin family, married Josephine Noyes Rotch, also of Boston and Bryn Mawr, in a grand ceremony attended by 400 at the Congregational Church in Old Lyme.

Some six months later, Josephine, just 21, was found dead beside her lover, the poet Harry Crosby, a nephew of financier J. P. Morgan, in the Hotel des Artistes in New York. It was deemed a murder-suicide. Crosby shot Josephine and, hours later, killed himself. Society in New York and Boston was properly shocked, though the Boston papers, in deference to the patrician families, made less of the sensational details. Josephines tombstone, in Duck River Cemetery in Old Lyme, bears the curious epitaph: In Death Is Victory.

Bigelow, who studied architecture at MIT after Harvard, moved on. He joined a New York architectural firm and helped design buildings for the 1939 Worlds Fair. During World War II, he served in the Navy aboard submarine-chasers and later as a lieutenant commander on destroyer escorts in the Atlantic and Pacific.

The war transformed Bigelow. As he wrote in his book, Voyage of the Golden Rule: An Experiment with Truth, published by Doubleday in 1959, the bombing of Hiroshima on Aug. 6, 1945: forced me to see that I had no choice but to make the commitment to live, as best I could, a life of nonviolence.

He married again. His second wife, Sylvia Weld, belonged to another patrician family in Boston. She appeared in the original Broadway productions of the plays Ethan Frome and American Landscape, and later became a nurse.

In the 1950s, the Bigelows, living in Greenwich, Conn., became active in the Religious Society of Friends, the Quakers. Bigelows religious convictions led him to participate in a 1954 protest of chemical weapons at Fort Dietrich, Md., and later to take in, with his wife, two women known as Hiroshima Maidens who survived the 1945 atomic bombings and came to the U.S. for reconstructive surgery.

In February 1958, Bigelow and three other men attempted to sail Bigelows 30-foot ketch, the Golden Rule, into the Eniwetok Proving Grounds, a U.S. nuclear test site in the Marshall Islands. Their boat was detained by court order in Honolulu before they could sail in defiance of the Atomic Energy Commission. They tried again, but were arrested and jailed for 60 days.

Bigelow was a Freedom Rider alongside John Lewis, today the esteemed congressman from Georgia, in the early days of the civil rights movement, beaten with chains at a bus stop in Rock Hill, S.C. The bus Bigelow was on was bombed in Anniston, Ala., in May 1961.

He died in 1993 at age 87 in Walpole, Mass.

Since his death, Veterans for Peace, a national organization with a membership of some 8,000 spanning World War II through the Korean and Vietnam wars and current conflicts, has continued Bigelows protest of nuclear proliferation and U.S. military interventions.

The group also found Bigelows ketch Golden Rule derelict in a California marina, raised funds to restore it and now sails it as a symbol of the organizations convictions. A crew intended to make its way aboard the Golden Rule across the Pacific to be in Japan from July through late August or September to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the U.S. bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the civilians in those cities. However, the global coronavirus outbreak has forced the crew to postpone departing Hawaii until November or December.

The Golden Rule itinerary still includes the Marshall Islands, Guam, the Marianas and Okinawa.

Hawaii was the first stop on our Peace in the Pacific mission to stop the possibility of nuclear war, the group says. We are also bringing attention to the environmental and human cost of nuclear and military activity on Pacific Islands, as well as how Island communities are challenging nuclear madness and militarism.

Steven Slosberg lives in Stonington and was a longtime reporter and columnist. He may be reached at maayan72@aol.com.

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Postscripts: Venture to honor anti-nuclear legacy runs aground on coronavirus fears - The Westerly Sun

Arsenal: The golden rule of transfer recruitment – Pain In The Arsenal

Arsenal are set to embark recruiting new players for head coach Mikel Arteta. But given the makeup of the squad, there is a golden rule they must not break.

Mikel Arteta has made a very positive start to life as Arsenal head coach. He has proven his coaching skill, implemented a well-defined and concise system that has improved individual and collective performances, and displayed enough progress that suggests he can build a competitive team.

The next step along the Arteta rebuild is recruitment. While positive steps have been made to bed tactical processes and systems into the players, ultimately, there is only so much a coach can do. You need the players to execute your gameplans, and at present, Arteta is working with blunt tools.

The upcoming summer transfer window, then, will be critical for the future Arsenal football club. And for the Arteta project especially. If the former Manchester City assistant is to make true progress at the helm of the team, he must be given new and improved players over what he is currently hamstring with. Centre-back, central midfield, and attacking midfield are all positions that are in need of investment, and that is without considering the potential departures of players like Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.

However, while there are plenty of positions in need of lavish spending, given the current make-up of the squad, there is one golden rule that the club must not break if they want to have a successful recruitment strategy: quality, not quantity.

Without any players bought or sold and assuming full fitness, this is the expected starting XI next season:

Bernd Leno; Hector Bellerin, David Luiz; William Saliba, Kieran Tierney; Granit Xhaka, Lucas Torreira, Mesut Ozil; Nicolas Pepe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette

And this leaves the following for the reserve XI:

Emiliano Martinez; Sokratis, Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers, Sead Kolasinac; Matteo Guendouzi, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Joe Willock; Reiss Nelson, Gabriel Martinelli, Eddie Nketiah

And all this is to not include Rob Holding, Sokratis, Emile Smith Rowe, as well as Cedric, Dani Ceballos and Pablo Mari, all of which could be signed at the expiration of their respective deals at the end of the season.

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You can quibble about the names here and there, but the point is this: the Arsenal squad is deep, varied, plentiful and young. They do not need to add numbers at any position other than perhaps attacking midfield, and that is not the case if Arteta believes in Smith Rowe as some others do.

You will notice that the difference between the starting XI and second XI is not that great, especially in defence and midfield. And in the front three, Nelson, Martinelli and Nketiah are all taking giant leaps forward every time they take to the pitch. There are two simultaneous reasons for this: the starting XI is not very good and the second XI is pretty decent.

Where Arteta needs help is in finding truly elite players. He needs a world-class centre-half, a Premier League-leading defensive midfielder, and a replacement for Ozil. He only needs one of each and signing any old name is not helpful. He needs elite, elite quality. Anything less is not worth the investment.

So, when Arsenal come to the summer transfer window and look to provide Arteta with the squad he requires, they must not break the golden rule: quality, not quantity.

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Five Things To Know About Daniil Medvedev – ATP Tour

Daniil Medvedev is the No. 5 player in the FedEx ATP Rankings, and he has won seven ATP Tour titles, lifting each of those trophies since the beginning of 2018.

ATPTour.com looks at five things you should know about the 24-year-old.

1) 2019 Was The Best Season Of His CareerDaniil Medvedev won the first three ATP Tour titles of his career in 2018. But the Russian didnt slow his momentum, ascending into the Top 10 and the Top 5 in 2019.

Medvedev became the fifth active player joining Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Andy Murray to reach six consecutive tour-level finals, achieving the feat at Washington, Montreal, Cincinnati, the US Open, St. Petersburg and Shanghai. The 2017 Next Gen ATP Finals competitor reached more finals last season, with nine, than anyone on the ATP Tour.

Before 2019, Medvedev was only 8-14 at ATP Masters 1000 events. But he reached his first final at that level in Montreal and won his first two Masters 1000 titles in Cincinnati and Shanghai. Medvedev used those efforts to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time, just two years on from finishing year-end World No. 65 in 2018.

2) Medvedevs Switch: Fewer Croissants, More PorridgeMedvedev never shied away from admitting that before his rise, he did not do everything as professionally as possible. He competed hard and did his work on the practice court, but his diet and recovery routines were not as sharp as he knew they could be.

Sweets and even croissants were not off limits. If a long match went late, he would skip the ice bath.

I thought it was going to be the best rest, to just lay on the bed and watch some TV. And in fact, it's not, Medvedev said.

But Medvedev slowly began trading some of those croissants for porridge, and giving everything he had in all facets of his career. That paid dividends.

Medvedev's New Plan: Fewer Croissants, More Porridge

3) He Has A Golden RuleMedvedev remembers the coach he had from ages six to 10, who taught him to, "fight like crazy".

Her Golden Rule was, The one who wins the match is the one who made more balls over the net, which is easy to understand, Medvedev said last year.

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The 66 Russian moves well for his size, and he precisely manouevres his flat groundstrokes seemingly anywhere on the court he desires while making few errors, frustrating opponents.

4) Medvedev Speaks Fluent French, Resides In Monte-CarloMedvedev moved to Cannes, France as a teen, looking for high-quality coaching and facilities. He chose Cannes, since his sister lived there. Gilles Cervara, the Coach Of The Year in the 2019 ATP Awards, was not his full-time coach at first, but he accompanied Medvedev to Marseille in 2015 and a handful of events the following year, becoming the Russians permanent coach in late 2017.

Its normal to hear the duo conversing in French. Medvedev, who also speaks Russian and English, now resides in nearby Monte-Carlo.

5) He Loves Video Games, But Doesn't Bring Them To TournamentsMedvedev has long enjoyed video games, and he enjoys thinking back to the times he has beaten his coach, Cervara, at them.

"It was in Basel, they had PlayStations there. I'm quite good in FIFA, so when you have a different level in the game, it's not funny," Medvedev recalled in Cincinnati last year. "NHL we never played in our life. So we started playing. I beat him silly because I'm good at games. And then he was practising all the week, and after I lost to Roger, [I was] 2-0 down [against my coach], and I won in overtime."

As much as Medvedev has fun playing video games, he doesn't let them take away from his focus on court.

"I love video games, and I basically don't take them to the tournaments because I know otherwise I wouldn't be having all these results, because I go crazy and I play too much," Medvedev said. "But when I'm at home, don't take my PlayStation. It's not going to end well."

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People are sharing their bad DIY haircuts as coronavirus self-isolation prevents visits to the hairdressers – Yahoo Style

Social distancing amid the coronavirus outbreak has put many a routine appointment on hold including the likes of nails and haircuts.

In lieu of being able to visit the hairdressers, people are sharing their weird and wacky home haircuts with the nation.

The self-cut styles are offering up a moment of laughter in difficult times with more and more people sharing their haircuts-gone-wrong each day.

Josh went for a full-on bowl. (SWNS)

Perfecting a decent fade isnt easy, yet without their usual barber appointments, many people are attempting this difficult to master trick at home.

Read more: The best comfortable bras to wear while working from home

The trim usually sees the hairdresser use a razor to create a seamless line from the bottom of the hair (where its at its shortest) to the top - where its longer.

Despite the years of practice it takes to add the perfect fade to your arsenal, desperate DIY hairdressers are trying to recreate the look at home.

Perfecting the fade is no easy feat. (SWNS)

This fade didn't quite work out as planned. (SWNS)

Its one of those styles that might seem like a good idea until you start trying it - at which point its too late to turn back.

Luckily, many hairdressers who are unable to help due to social distancing are still on hand to talk you through some of the trickier styles.

Hairdresser Jordanne Barnard has offered her top tips on how to do a fade at home before you can get to a real hairdresser to perfect your attempt.

Start by picking the largest number you want to achieve on the clippers. Lets say youve chosen number three.

Choose where you want the fade to start from and clipper up to that point using the half guard (three and a half). The trick here is to reach that point and the flick your wrist on the way out of the hair.

Go over the same sections but a centimetre lower than the starting point on the hair. This time, though, use a number two.

Finally, repeat again a centimetre lower, but this time with a number one paying extra attention to around the ears. Be careful.

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Explained: Symptoms, latest advice and how it compares to the flu

If you notice any areas where it hasnt blended properly, go back over it using the half guard and the number that corresponds with that part of the hair.

To finish, take the guard off entirely and neatly follow the hairline and square off the nape of the neck using bare clippers.

If you dont happen to have a half guard on your clippers, you can always use a comb at a 45 degree angle where the two sections meet to create the same effect.

Story continues

If you need a little trim on top, Barnard recommends: Use the back fade as a guideline and pull the hair 90 degrees from the head and trim with the scissors in a point like angle. This will texturise it, hide any lines and take away the weight.

Read more: The unexpected benefits of social distancing

Its not the only haircut causing issues, though in fact, they all are.

Weve all noticed hairdressers wet our hair ahead of cutting it, so when Lara decided to start by wetting her fringe, she had the best intentions.

Somehow, though, the 22-year-old cut off a little too much than she meant to and ended up taking a huge triangle chunk out of her fringe.

Lara had the best intentions. (SWNS)

She started by wetting her hair. (SWNS)

The problem she faced is that by pulling the hair down too much, she inadvertently cut off way more than she needed to.

If you dont know what youre doing the golden rule has to be less is more. Its better to do a little regular trim than cutting it all off. If that does happen, though, there are plenty of hair growth shampoos and conditioners to help it grow back quickly.

Live: Follow all the latest updates from the UK and around the world

Fact-checker: The number of COVID-19 cases in your local area

Explained: Symptoms, latest advice and how it compares to the flu

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People are sharing their bad DIY haircuts as coronavirus self-isolation prevents visits to the hairdressers - Yahoo Style

Benefiting From The Majesty Of Divine Will | Thirteen Points In Making The Best Of The Situation – MuslimMatters

In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful

The ethics of reciprocity, known as the golden rule, is any moral dictum that encourages people to treat others the way they would like to be treated. Although the term was originally coined by Anglican ministers such as George Boraston, the principle can be found in the sacred texts of the worlds great religions, as well as the writings of secular philosophers. Due to its ubiquity in many contexts, it has become an important focal point for interfaith dialogue and the development of international human rights norms.

The rule often appears as a summarizing principle of good conduct, the supreme moral principle of right action between human beings. Though not always understood literally, as it is often qualified by competing moral imperatives, it generally functions as an intuitive method of moral reasoning. Despite the different formulations, wordings, and contexts in which the rule appears across religions and traditions, Jeffery Wattles argues that there is enough continuity in meaning and application to justify describing the ethics of reciprocity as the golden rule.

Some philosophers have scoffed at the rule, noting that a crude, literal adherence to the outward phrasing can lead to moral absurdities. Harry J. Gensler reponds to this criticism by formulating the rule in these terms: Treat others only as you consent to being treated in the same situation. Context matters in the process of moral reasoning; what the rule demands is not rudimentary application as much as it is ethical consistency vis--vis human beings, as the first principle from which the morality of an action is analyzed. It is the locus of ones conscience, a guide for everyday behavior.

Moreover, application of the rule ought to be informed by a balanced collection of principles and values that manifest the rule in action. For this reason, writers throughout history have used the rule as a hub around which to gather great themes. Notions of justice, love, compassion, and other virtues have all been related to the rule by various religious traditions. Accounting for all of these considerations and responding to common objections, both Wattles and Gensler have convincingly defended the golden rule from its detractors and have presented it as a viable principle for a modern moral philosophy.

Islam, as a world religion with over one billion followers, has an important role to play in facilitating dialogue and cooperation with other groups in the modern world. The golden rule in Islamic traditions has been explicitly invoked by numerous Muslim leaders and organizations towards this end. Recently, hundreds of Muslim scholars and leaders have signed the A Common Word interfaith letter, asserting that the Abrahamic faiths share the twin golden commandments of the paramount importance of loving God and loving ones neighbor. The initiative grew into several publications and conferences, including the important and high-profile Marrakesh Declaration in early 2016, which cited A Common Word in its text as evidence of the compatibility between Islamic tradition and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The Quran ascribes a number of beautiful names (asma al-husna) to God conveying virtues that Muslims, by implication, should practice, The most excellent names belong to Him. Among the relevant names of God are Al-Rahman (the Merciful), Al-Wadud (the Loving), Al-Ghafur (the Forgiving), Al-Rauf (the Kind), Al-Adl (the Just), Al-Karim (the Generous), and so on. Embedded in this description of God are many of the moral themes traditionally associated with the golden rule.

The distinguished Muslim scholar and mystic, Ab mid al-Ghazzl (d.1111), locates the golden rule within Gods loving nature as expressed in the verses, My Lord is merciful and most loving, and again, He is the Most Forgiving, the Most Loving. He authored a treatise on the names of God in Islamic tradition, discussing their theological meanings and his understanding of the proper way in which Muslims should enact those names. God, in his view, benefits all creatures without desiring any advantage or benefit in return:

Al-Wadud The Loving-kind is one who wishes all creatures well and accordingly favors them and praises them. In fact, love and mercy are only intended for the benefit and advantage of those who receive mercy or are loved; they do not find their cause in the sensitivities or natural inclination of the Loving-kind One. For anothers benefit is the heart and soul of mercy and love and that is how the case of God may He be praised and exalted is to be conceived: absent those features which human experience associates with mercy and love, yet which do not contribute to the benefit they bring.

In other words, God should be understood as entirely and selflessly benevolent towards His creatures, without any need or desire for repayment. God does not benefit from the worship of His servants, nor does He take pleasure in punishing the wicked. Rather, God only prescribes worship and righteous deeds for the benefit of believers. By reflecting this divine nature in action, believers should unconditionally want for others the same as they want for themselves:

One is loving-kind among Gods servants who desires for Gods creatures whatever he desires for himself; and whoever prefers them to himself is even higher than that. Like one of them who said, I would like to be a bridge over the fire [of hell] so that creatures might pass over me and not be harmed by it. The perfection of that virtue occurs when not even anger, hatred, and the harm he might receive can keep him from altruism and goodness.

Commentators of the Quran often found the rule implied in several verses. When righteousness (taqw) is first mentioned in Quran (when reading cover-to-cover), classical exegetes typically define it by appealing to traditional wisdom-sayings. Abu Ishaq al-Thalabi (d. 1035) narrates several exegetical traditions to define and explicate the meaning of righteousness. The early authorities Sufyan al-Thawri (d. 778) and Al-Fudayl ibn Iyad (d. 803) say that the righteous man (al-muttaqi) is he who loves for people what he loves for himself. Al-Junayd ibn Muhammad (d. 910), on the other hand, disagreed with them and took it a step further, The righteous man is not he who loves for people what he loves for himself. Rather, the righteous man is only he who loves for people greater than he loves for himself. In Al-Junayds telling, true righteousness is not simply the equality implied in the golden rule, but rather a definite preference to benefit others that amounts to altruism (al-ithar).

In contrast, the Quran severely rebukes cheaters in weights and measurements, Woe to those who give short measure, who demand of other people full measure for themselves, but give less than they should when it is they who weigh or measure for others! That is, they demand full payment for themselves while they give short-change to others. The golden rule was understood by Fakhr al-Dn al-Razi (d. 1209) to be the clear implication of this passage, as he reports the saying of the early authority Qatadah, Fulfil the measure, O son of Adam, as you would love it fulfilled for yourself, and be just as you would love justice for yourself.

Most of the explicit golden rule statements in Islamic tradition are found in the Hadith corpus, the sayings and deeds of Prophet Muammad . According to Anas ibn Mlik (d. 712), the Prophet said:

This is the most prominent golden rule statement in the Hadith corpus. The two leading Sunni Hadith scholars, Muhammad ibn Isml al-Bukhari (d. 870) and Muslim ibn al-ajjj (d. 875), both placed this tradition in their book of faith, near the introductions of their respective collections. The implication is that the lesson in the tradition is essential to true faith itself, not simply a recommended or value-added practice.

Commentators sometimes mention that all good manners are derived from this tradition and three others, Whoever believes in God and the Last Day, let him speak goodness or be silent, and, It is from a mans excellence in Islam that he leaves what does not concern him, and, Do not be angry. Like many religious writers and philosophers, Muslim scholars took note of the summarizing function of the golden rule as a broad principle for good conduct.

A key question for the commentators was the meaning of brother in the tradition of Anas . It is generally agreed upon that brother refers to Muslims, but several commentators expanded the meaning to include non-Muslims or unbelievers. Prolific author and Shafii jurist, Muy al-Dn al-Nawaw (d. 1277), explained the tradition this way:

Firstly, that [tradition] is interpreted as general brotherhood, such that it includes the unbeliever and the Muslim. Thus, he loves for his brother the unbeliever what he loves for himself of embracing Islam, as he would love for his brother Muslim to always remain upon Islam. For this reason, to pray for guidance for the unbeliever is recommended The meaning of love is to intend good and benefit, hence, the meaning is religious love and not human love.

Al-Nawaws concept of religious love (al-mahabbat al-diniyah) parallels the distinction Christian writers made between agape () and eros (). The highest form of love, according to him, is that which is purely benevolent for Gods sake, in opposition to sinful passions, caprice, or ordinary types of love.

Although inclusion of non-Muslims in a broader brotherhood of humanity was not universally accepted, proponents of this interpretation found a strong case for their position in all of the permutations of the golden rule in the Hadith corpus. Even from the traditions of Anas alone, inclusive language was used by the Prophet often enough to justify a universal golden rule:

None of you has faith until he loves for the people what he loves for himself, and only until he loves a person for the sake of God, the Great and Almighty.

The servant does not reach the reality of faith until he loves for the people what he loves for himself of the good.

In particular, a variant in Sahih Muslim reads, until he loves for his brother or he said his neighbour what he loves for himself. In this version, Anas is unsure if the Prophet said brother or neighbor. If neighbors are included, the term would certainly apply to non-Muslims as well.

Muammad ibn Isml al-ann (d. 1768), a Yemeni reformer in the Salafi tradition, includes in his legal commentary a chapter on the rights of the neighbor, in which he employs some of the broadest language of the late classical to early modern period. Based upon the word neighbor in the version of Sahih Muslim, he concludes:

The narration of the neighbor is general for the Muslim, the unbeliever, and the sinner, the friend and the enemy, the relative and the foreigner, the near neighbour and the far neighbour. Whoever acquires in this regard the obligatory attributes of loving good for him, he is at the highest of levels.

Perhaps most significant is Al-anns inclusion of enemies (al-aduw) in the list of people covered by the golden rule. In this case, the rule has at least some kind of application to every single human being.

Abd Allh ibn Amr (d. 685), who is said to have been one of the first to write down the statements of the Prophet , narrates his version of the golden rule, Whoever would love to be delivered from Hell and admitted into Paradise, let him meet his end believing in God and the Last Day, and let him treat people as he would love to be treated. The rule here is a means of salvation and is expressed in terms of good behavior, rather than religious love.

Ab Hurayrah (d. 679), the most prolific narrator of Hadith, also shares what he heard from the Prophet , Love for people what you love for yourself, you will be a believer. Be good to your neighbour, you will be a Muslim. Like the tradition of Anas, the rule is associated with both true faith and good treatment of neighbors.

Sometimes Hadith traditions do not explicitly state the golden rule, but it is drawn out by the commentators. Tamim al-Dari (d. 661) reports that the Prophet said three times, Religion is sincerity. The companions said, To whom? The Prophet replied, To God, to His book, to His messenger, and to the leader of the Muslims and their commoners. Ibn Daqq al-d (d. 1302) explains at length the meaning of sincerity or good will (naah) in each context. As it relates to common people, he writes that sincerity is to take care of them with beautiful preaching, to abandon ill will and envy for them, and to love for them what he loves for himself of good and to hate for them what he hates for himself of evil.

Al-Numn ibn Bashr (d. 684) relates the Prophets parable of the faith community as a single body, You see the believers in their mercy, affection, and compassion for one another as if they were a body. When a limb aches, the rest of the body responds with sleeplessness and fever. A variant of this tradition reads, The Muslims are like a single man. If the eye is afflicted, the whole body is afflicted. If the head is afflicted, the whole body is afflicted. The idea is that Muslims should have empathy for one another by sharing the burden of each others pain, as stated in another tradition, The believer feels pain for the people of faith, just as the body feels pain in its head. Abu Abd Allh al-Halm (d. 1012) inferred the golden rule from this parable:

They should be like that, as one hand would not love but what the other loves, and one eye or one leg or one ear would not love but what the other loves. Likewise, he should not love for his Muslim brother but what he loves for himself.

Later commentators would develop this idea further. Ibn Daqq draws upon the parable of the faith community in his commentary on the tradition of Anas, writing, Some scholars said in this tradition is the understanding that the believer is with another believer like a single soul. Thus, he should love for him what he loves for himself, as if they were a single soul. Ibn ajar al-Haytham (d. 1567) makes the same connection, saying that to love one another means that he will be with him as one soul (al-nafs al-wahidah).

Yazid ibn Asad, another one of the Prophets companions, recalls that he said to him, O Yazid ibn Asad! Love for people what you love for yourself! In a variant of this tradition, the Prophet (s) asks him, Do you love Paradise? Yazid says yes, so the Prophet replies, Then love for your brother what you love for yourself. In yet another variant, Yazids grandson quotes the sermon of Prophet upon the pulpit, Do not treat people but in the way you would love to be treated by them.

Failure to live up to the golden rule could result in dreadful consequences in the Hereafter, especially for Imams and authorities. Maqil ibn Yasr, while on his deathbed, recounted what he learned from the Prophet , No one is appointed over the affairs of the Muslims and then he does not strive for them or show them good will but that he will never enter Paradise with them. In another wording, the Prophet said, He does not protect them as he would protect himself and his family but that Allah will cast him into the fire of Hell. In this regard, a Muslim leader must necessarily treat their followers as they would treat themselves and their own families, if such a terrible fate is to be avoided.

Ab Ummah al-Bhil (d. 705) tells the story of a young man who came to the Prophet (s) to ask for permission to indulge in adulterous intercourse. The Prophet engages him in an imaginative role-reversal, asking a series of Socratic questions and appealing to the young mans conscience to convince him against it, Would you like that for your mother? Would you like that for your sister? The young man, naturally, expresses his disapproval had someone else committed adultery with the women of his household. The logical conclusion, as stated by the Prophet, is to consider the golden rule, Then hate what God has hated, and love for your brother what you love for yourself.

Hatred for the sake of God is a fine line to walk, between righteous indignation and unjustified malice. At least some of the earliest Muslims adopted the familiar refrain: love the sinner, hate the sin. According to Mudh ibn Anas, this is how the Prophet defined hatred for the sake of God, The best faith is to love for the sake of God, to hate for the sake of God, and to work your tongue in the remembrance of God. Mudh said, How is it done, O Messenger of God? The Prophet said, That you love for people what you love for yourself, hate for them what you hate for yourself, and to speak goodness or be silent. The noble form of hatred is simply the inverse of the golden rule; if one sees another sinning, hatred should be for the evil deed because it harms its doer. At the same time, one loves good for the sinner by hoping for their repentance and divine forgiveness.

Ibrahim Adham (d. 782) remembers during his travels that he overheard a pair of Muslim ascetics discussing the love of God amongst themselves. Intrigued, he interjects himself into the conversation to ask, How can anyone have compassion for people who contradict their Beloved [God]?

The unnamed ascetic turns to him, saying:

They abhor their sinful deeds and have compassion for them, [pray] that by preaching to them they might leave their deeds. They feel pity that their bodies might be burned in hellfire. The believer is not truly a believer until he is pleased for people to have what is pleasing to himself.

The commentator Abd al-Ramn ibn Rajab (d. 1393) corroborates this interpretation, which he ascribes to the righteous predecessors (al-salaf al-li). Hence, it not correct for a Muslim to carry malicious hatred in the sense of desiring to harm others. A believer ought to love for sinners to repent, to be guided, and to be forgiven. In this regard, the Prophet admonished us, Do not hate each other, do not envy each other, do not turn away from each other, but rather be servants of God as brothers.

The irreversible march of globalization is producing an urgent need for people of different backgrounds and beliefs to find common ground. As the world grows closer together, with it grows the imperative to recognize each other as members of one human family. The ethics of reciprocity the golden rule is the best conceptual vehicle to advance this necessary intercultural dialogue and cooperation.

Islam is one of the worlds great religions, with over one billion followers living on every continent and speaking hundreds of languages. If peace on earth is to be actualized, Islam and Muslims must be a partner in it. Muslims need an entry point for understanding non-Muslims, just as non-Muslims need a way to begin understanding Muslims. Islams golden rule can provide a bridge between these worlds.

It is not reasonable to expect that the golden rule by itself can solve all the conflicts of the modern world, but what it can do is activate the innate conscience of human beings in a process of collective, intercultural moral reasoning. By accepting at the outset the premise of human equality and the obligation of moral consistency, we can work together to develop the mutual understanding and respect needed for people of different beliefs to live together in harmony. The golden rule itself is not the answer per se, rather it is the right question at the start; it is the first step in a journey we must take together, the first conversation in a dialogue we must have.

Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.

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Benefiting From The Majesty Of Divine Will | Thirteen Points In Making The Best Of The Situation - MuslimMatters

What is the Golden Rule? – Biblical Meaning, Importance …

The Golden Rule is the ethical principle of treating other people as one's self would prefer to be treated. One of Jesus' most famous and impactful teachings, the Golden Rule can be found in the Bible verses Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31:

So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets. Matthew 7:12

Do to others as you would have them do to you. Luke 6:31

A simple notion about the ethical treatment of others that was profound in its origin and resonates through the ages.

"Golden Rule" is not explicitly found in Scripture, this became the popular way of referring to the words of Jesus in Matthew 7:12 and Luke 6:31. In summary, the Golden Rule encompasses the empathic essence of morality. It is a simple yet powerful way of saying that we should recognize the respective dignity of our fellow man and not forget we all are capable of inflicting immoral actions. This is vital in following the commandments of God and creating a more virtuous world.

Jesus declares, "Do to others as you would have them do to you." With regard to the Old Testament, two main points prevail. Matthew's reference presents the Golden Rule as encapsulating the teachings of the law and the prophets. Matthew 7:12 reads, "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets." Second, even though the Golden Rule addresses human interpersonal relationships, its message is additionally theological. That is, the very character of God guides how we should interact and relate to one another.

We are to follow and exercise the Golden Rule because God's heavenly wisdom teaches self-control, and his virtue teaches kindness. This proverb is appropriately called the Golden Rule, for it encompasses in its few words the underlying and guiding principle of all morality. It comprises all the rules of the law with regard to man and all the amplification of those precepts given by the prophets. It instructs us to put ourselves in our neighbor's place, and guide our behavior accordingly. It assumes, of course, that when we put ourselves in our neighbor's place, we are wise enough not to make any foolish wishes and good enough not to make any evil ones. The Golden Rule was a vital emphasis on empathy and the reciprocity of morality.

The Golden Rule has inspired several subsequent sayings and ethical declarations since its revelation by Jesus. Listed below are some examples of such inspirations:

Put yourself in their shoes - Another call to empathy and understanding anothers situation and point of view, this phrase calls upon us to picture ourselves as our fellow human and recognize the sovereignty and emotions of each individual.

Do not do unto others as you would not want done to you. - Also known as the Silver Rule, this inversion of the Golden Rule reminds us to not do what we would prefer not to happen to ourselves. Essentially this is the negative version of the Golden Rule.

Act only in accordance with that maxim through which you can at the same time will that it become a universal law." - Kants Categorical Imperative is the primary philosophical concept in the moral philosophy of Immanuel Kant. This imperative basically dictates to follow the rules that apply to everyone. In other words, Dont create rules for yourself that you wouldnt apply to others.

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What is the Golden Rule? - Biblical Meaning, Importance ...

Rozeman: Working together against the coronavirus – Bossier Press-Tribune Online

With all the information about the Coronavirus pandemic provided from so many sources, it is often difficult to know what is credible and what is not. As a physician, I had the opportunity to attend a briefing given by credible local experts on the Coronavirus epidemic this past Friday. The briefing was excellent and I thought it would be helpful to share some key messages with the community as a whole.

As a community working together, there are things we need to do to slow down the transmission of the virus. We need to make individual efforts to wash hands frequently; clean surfaces; use fist and elbow bumps; keep 3 to 6 foot distance from others; and cover your mouth when coughing.

We need to be prudent. We need to stay at home with flu-like symptoms 85% of Coronavirus infections have only mild flu-like symptoms and dont need to see a doctor. We need to work together to protect our family, friends, and community as a whole by staying at home with mild symptoms just like we do for the flu and other respiratory viruses.

We need to be cognizant of the importance of flattening the curve in order to prevent overwhelming the healthcare system. Our system needs to function for all health concerns not just issues related to the Coronavirus.

On the other hand, there are things we should avoid. We dont need a situation where worry spreads faster than the virus. We dont need to let worry and anxiety and panic consume us. We shouldnt forget the golden rule to treat others like we want to be treated.

We dont need to complain. We dont need to make this a political issue. President Trump is a Republican. Governor Edwards is a Democrat. Both leaders are using credible sources to make decisions. The virus has no idea about political parties or demographics.

I have lots of faith in this country and its ability to overcome crisis. I have the same faith in the people of this community and I know our healthcare system can be flexible and overcome during difficult times. I saw it in Katrina.

With that said, this pandemic will be a real strain on the healthcare system in our community, nation, and across the globe for much longer than Katrina. It will impact everyone.

Please consider the fact that people serving you in healthcare are human too. They have the same fears and concerns as anyone else maybe more so. Despite those concerns, they will do the best they can to care for others.

There are so many reasons for all of us to do our part. Of course, we do our part for ourselves and our family and friends. Beyond that, we do our part to prevent overwhelming the healthcare system. People working in doctor offices, hospitals, and nursing homes cant run and hide from the virus. Everyday they get up and go to work to take care of whoever requires their help. If they are overwhelmed, there is no one to take their place.

Wash your hands. Use elbow and fist bumps. Stay at home when sick. Clean surfaces. Cover your mouth when you cough. Dont panic. Dont make this a political issue. Keep informed of changes. Care for others. Pray for others. That can be our 10 commandments for the Coronavirus pandemic.

Dr. Phillip Rozeman is past Chief of Staff of Willis-Knighton Health System and current Chief of Staff of Minden Medical Center.

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Rozeman: Working together against the coronavirus - Bossier Press-Tribune Online

Should You Buy The Panic? – Forbes

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If anyone has the right to say I told you so, its Bill Gates.

Two years ago, the co-founder, former CEO and now former board member of Microsoft urged governments to step up their preparedness in the event of a modern global pandemic. Such an event, Gates warned, could conceivably be more dangerous than any other threat facing humanity today, including nuclear proliferation, due mainly to the fact that weve become so interconnected.

Because new vaccines take time to develop and deploy, the U.S. in particular needed to invest in antiviral drugs and antibody therapies that can be stockpiled or rapidly manufactured to stop the spread of pandemic diseases or treat people who have been exposed, Gates said in a speech at the time.

And in a 2018 interview with STAT, he said he found it strange that the world isnt doing more to brace itself for a potential pandemic. We think the idea of spending what would be a tiny part of the budget to be ready for a pandemic makes sense, he added.

The 10 Percent Golden Rule Remains Prudent

This last comment reminds me why its so important to allocate 10 percent of your portfolio in gold and gold mining stocks. It makes sense to be ready for a market crash such as the one were seeing now as a result of the spread of COVID-19, which the World Health Organization (WHO) recently declared a pandemic and, on Friday, President Donald Trump declared a national emergency.

Gold bullion went negative for the year as of Friday, as investors liquidated their holdings to ride out the volatility. And although they havent sold off as deeply as the rest of the market, gold mining stocks look cheap now, meaning it may be time to consider adding to your exposure.

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As of Friday, gold prices were up about 3.5 percent for the three-month period and up 18 percent from a year earlier. What this means is that we could see very attractive revenue and cash flow from gold mining stocks this quarter.

The yellow metal could also continue to benefit with additional monetary accommodation. In a surprise move Sunday evening, the Federal Reserve slashed interest rates to near-zero. This follows its announcement last Thursday that it would be making as much as $1.5 trillion in capital injections to calm liquidity issues. How much extra liquidity will be needed to calm markets before all is said and done? Five trillion dollars? Ten trillion? Ive discussed the relationship between excessive money printing and the price of gold before, and suggested it could easily surge to $10,000 an ounce, especially with government bonds around the world still offering negative yields.

Silver Coins Sell Out

Meanwhile, 2020 American Silver Eagle coins temporarily sold out, the U.S. Mint announced last week.

Our rate of sale in just the first part of March exceeds 300 percent of what was sold last month, the Mint said in a press release.

Weve long known that silver has antibacterial and antiviral properties, which may have prompted at least some of the heavy buying. Having said that, it hasnt been proven that the white metal is effective in preventing or curing the coronavirus, and in fact a couple of public figuresradio host Alex Jones and televangelist Jim Bakkerare currently being investigated by state attorneys general for claiming as much.

Despite investor demand, silver prices have tumbled along with other precious metals that have industrial applications, palladium included. As a result, the gold/silver ratio, which tells you how many ounces of silver it takes to buy one ounce of gold, rose to its highest level on record last week. As of March 8, the ratio was nearly 103, beating the previous record of 101.8 in February 1991.

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A New Definition to March Madness

Is COVID-19 what Gates had in mind a couple of years ago? Ive heard more than a few times, as Im sure you have, that the media has overblown the risk the coronavirus poses. After all, the seasonal flu kills tens of thousands of people every year, and yet we generally dont close schools, cancel music festivals or quarantine entire cities during flu season. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) has cancelled March Madness, joining major league basketball, hockey, soccer, baseball and more in suspending play.

Compared to past viral outbreaksSARS, MERS and certainly EbolaCOVID-19 appears to be less fatal, and yet has received far more media coverage.

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Perhaps paradoxically, thats part of the reason why COVID-19 has had a much bigger impact on public health and the economy relative to those other diseases. Its spread is promoted by the combination of a less abrupt onset of symptoms and the viruss ability to replicate rapidly in the upper respiratory tract at the early onset of the illness when individuals are asymptomatic, according to a research report by the National Bank of Canada. People, therefore, carry on with their usual activities while unknowingly infecting others.

This, in turn, has the potential to put sudden and tremendous pressure on our health systems. Just look at Italy, which is currently on lockdown with over 24,700 confirmed cases, the most of any country outside China. Hospitals there are completely overwhelmed, with some doctors reportedly having to make tough decisions about who does and does not get treatment.

To make matters worse, we dont fully know just how contagious and deadly COVID-19 is yet. Its a novel, as in new, coronavirus. I have no doubt in my mind that well eventually demystify the virus and develop new treatments and vaccines, but for now, the uncertainty can be paralyzing for some.

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The 9/11 attacks ushered in the creation of the Department of Homeland Security, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and more. What will this pandemic bring in? My guess is that it may lead to better innovations to detect if people are running high temperatures in airports, schools and other public places, not to mention stronger border controls for right of entry to prevent the spread of disease.

The Virus of Fear

You may believe the fear over COVID-19 is unwarranted, but you cant deny that there have been some serious ramifications, not least of which is the end of the historic U.S. stock bull market. In as little as 20 days, major averages fell more than 20 percent off their highs, wiping out nearly all of the gains since January 2019.

U.S. Global Investors

The U.S. wasnt alone, of course. The world aggregate exchange market cap has lost a mind-boggling $16.1 trillion. Meanwhile, CLSA reported an all-time record correlation in the degree to which global stocks sold off, even surpassing that of 2008, reflecting that global selloffs are taking place together with an unprecedented synchrony.

This has created some very attractive buying opportunities, as I mentioned last week. Global airline stocks were most oversold since September 2001, following the attacks on 9/11, and with Brent crude oil trading at around $30 a barrel, carriers have received a substantial cut to their fuel costs. According to JPMorgan, North American airlines produce 21 percent of global capacity and 65 percent of global profitability, so they are well equipped to weather this downturn.

For full disclosures pertaining to this post click here.

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Should You Buy The Panic? - Forbes

Nation’s Top Doc: Don’t Be Complacent, Get Ready to ‘Hunker Down’ – TheStreet

America's top immunologist told the nation on Sunday it should get ready to "hunker down," keep distance from others and work together to help prevent a further explosion is cases of Covid-19, the disease caused by the newly discovered coronavirus.

"Everybody has got to get involved in distancing themselves socially. If you are in an area where there is clearer community spread, you have to be much, much more intense about how you do that. That is where you get things (like) school closings," said Anthony Fauci, directorof the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases,to Chuck Todd on NBC News' "Meet the Press," according to a transcript of the interview.

The interview came on a day when the U.S. discovered -- after belatedly ramping up testing in the days prior -- that virtually every state had cases of Covid-19, more than 60 people across the country had died from it, and known infections climbed toward 3,300 -- with nearly 730 in New York alone. Worldwide, nearly 160,000 were believed to have been infected by the virus, with about half of those in China.

It also came after a volatile week in which events big and small got canceled, offices started work-from-home programs, stores were closing, and schools in many districts announced closings. But much of the cancellations and no-live-audience policies for sporting and political events came only after earlier word that there would be no cancellations and that risk of contracting the disease was low -- even in places it was clearly not.

The refrain "this is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation" was repeated throughout the week by local government officials and others, and by Friday, after the president announced a national emergency, panicked shoppers had emptied shelves in grocery stores in major cities and beyond.

"You dont want to be complacent. You always want to be ahead of the curve," warned Fauci on Sunday -- even as America proved it has been far behind other nations and lagging in response to the coronavirus when compared to prepared places such as Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan -- all of which were hit by SARS, another deadly coronavirus disease, nearly two decades earlier.

"People have had two months to pay attention and learn from places that shut this down -- Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore -- and places that have been tragic -- Italy, Iran, likely Spain and France to follow," saidDr. David N. Fisman, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Toronto, in an exchange by email with TheStreet earlier in the weekend, before Fauci's appearance on "Meet the Press."Dr. Fisman's university is currently working on a model for Covid-19 for Canadian populations and is now sharing the code with other nations such as Ireland. The project's aim is to help people make "good choices" about how to slow the epidemic.

As businesses quickly responded by cancelling events and changing policies and as schools closed in some districts and governors and mayors restricted gatherings, Dr. Fisman said "states and localities are leading by default."

"The business community gets this," he said, noting that major corporations appear to see the value in disease control -- "and god help us, I hope for investment in vaccines and prevention in the future."

By Friday, Walgreens(WBA) - Get Reportsaid it wouldoffer space outside of some stores such as in parking lots where health professionals will offer coronavirus testing and Apple(AAPL) - Get Reportsaid itwas closing all retail stores outside of China until March 27. By Saturday, Alphabet (GOOGLE) said it was partnering with the U.S. government to create an online site to answer questions about Covid-19 symptoms and testing, according to Reuters. On Sunday,Nike announced two-week closures of stores.

But many have criticized the federal government's tardiness to act.

"I think in the U.S. there's been a degree of 'decapitation' of the public health response, because the CDC seems to be hamstrung by the Trump administration. As I said to a friend today: The lack of testing could be either intentional incompetence, or the old fashioned regular kind of incompetence. But it's incompetence, and it's going to kill a lot of people."

Also on "Meet the Press" hospital leaders warned of the battle ahead to treat patients and prevent a national crisis as seen in China earlier and Italy and elsewhere now.

"Well, my concerns are I think we need to think about this in almost a war-like stance. My concern is that we have millions of healthcare workers around this country who are prepared to do battle against this virus, but I'm concerned that there are at least a couple of areas of supplies that they need in order to fight that virus as effectively as possible," said Dr. Peter Slavin, president of Massachusetts General Hospital to Todd. Slavin was concerned about the lack of testing and expressed hopes that private labs would step up testing.

The next week or two are going to be critical," added Slavin. "We've begun to see cases in this area, but we expect them to rise dramatically in the coming weeks.

Reports are even beginning to emerge of staff at some health care centers testing positive for the disease in the U.S., with at least two cases in Boston area hospitals reported over the weekend. In China, many thousands of health care workers ended up getting infected by the coronavirus, and in some cases sickening other patients.

Now, as the U.S. works to uncover just how far and wide the coronavirus has already spread here, many are looking for leadership on how they can stay safe.

"I think Americans should be prepared that they are going to have to hunker down significantly more than we as a country are doing," said Fauci, adding that "the golden rule that I say is that, when you think you are doing too much, you are probably doing enough or not enough. Aright, that is the thing you got to do. Dont want to be complacent. You always want to be ahead of the curve. But it depends on how far ahead of the curve you want to be. Dont even, for a second, think that I am saying we shouldnt -- I like to be criticized. When I say oh, you are being too overactive, that is good for me."

This story has been updated.

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Nation's Top Doc: Don't Be Complacent, Get Ready to 'Hunker Down' - TheStreet

Business Advice from Tom Golisano on Building a Billion Dollar Company – Small Business Trends

Financial success stories are what business legends are made of; entrepreneurs starting their own companies with a few thousand dollars from their life savings and their credit cards. Most of founders fail, but there are the rare ones that succeed to become billionaires.

On the Small Business Radio Show this week, billionaire Tom Golisano, founder and chairman of the Board of Paychex, talks about his keys to success and what he looks for in companies he currently invests. His new book is called Built, Not Born: A Self-Made Billionaires No-Nonsense Guide for Entrepreneurs. Tom discusses how much he loves entrepreneurs and how important they are to the economic success of the United States.

Tom started his career as a salesperson for a payroll processing company that serviced large companies. At the time, no one was offering the same service targeting small businesses. It took him four years to get his first 300 clients! As a result, Tom preaches patience to entrepreneurs. He believes they get overly enthusiastic about their ability to attract new customers and over anticipate their companys growth. Getting customers to switch from whatever their current solution is harder than they think. In Toms case, they had never even considered outsourcing their payroll.

Entrepreneurs need to ask themselves how much money they will need to start their business. As a result they need to make it sustainable. Tom suggests simply writing on one page. Record what sales will be for the next period of time. And include the profit margin on each customer. This helps the entrepreneur. You can determine how much cash flow they will need in the short run.

Toms entire corporate philosophy translates into a good deal for everyone. As a result, he explains if they are not getting a good deal from you, they will not stay with you. For example, he originally combined 17 companies together to create Paychex. All former owners received equity. As a result, they eventually really profited.

He adds only one golden rule to becoming a good manager. Treat people the way you want to be treated. If you have honesty and integrity, they will follow you.

Listen to the entire interview on the Small Business Radio Show.

Image: tomgolisano.com

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Business Advice from Tom Golisano on Building a Billion Dollar Company - Small Business Trends

4 Sure Signs That Say You Are Meant to Lead Others – Inc.

No good leader ever won overtheirpeople's hearts and minds (but especially their hearts) by exerting power and control over them.

Top-down bossesthat squash people kill intrinsic motivation. The more good employees turn into order-takers, the less they'll self-start. In the post-industrial age, what they want is to make decisions on their own, give input, get feedback, and grow as people with a purpose.

This means managers must learn to become leaders, get out of the way of people doing the work, and create the human and humane conditions necessary for them to thrive as people.

Here are four ways to do it.

1. Share stories to create memorable emotional connections

It's no secret that humans are social creatures. Our brains are programmed to crave connection with pretty much everything we do and everyone we interact with, and stories are how we make those connections. Even more compelling are stories that are highly emotional and personal.

Dan Roberts, the CEO & co-founder of Scout Alarm says, "I've seen firsthand the power of storytelling in building my company from the ground up and have found that prioritizing storytelling is crucial to the entrepreneurial journey."

Research has shown that these types of stories increase oxytocin production in our brains -- the hormone that helps us bond with others. Roberts says, "The more emotional and personal you can make your story, the more memorable it will become.

2. Motivate others through recognition

The companies in Gallup's extensive research with the highest engagement levels use recognition as a powerful means to get their commitment. It's such a powerful motivator. In fact, they recommend that praise should be given once per week.

Truth is, any respected leader will acknowledge his/her successes as a team effort and express deep gratitude for everyone involved in pulling together a project, no matter how big or small the role.

These leaders understand human nature and will make it a priority to recognize people for their hard work, both in public and private. They don't need the glory; they understand what they've achieved. They stand back and celebrate their accomplishments byletting others shine, which helps boost the confidence of others.

A person that sees this leader in action not seeking self-glory, but building up others insteadwill typically be more willing to follow that leader. That's a realcompetitive advantage.

3. Listen before speaking

Want to hear an ineffective leader at work? Listen to how they take credit for something other people did, or how defensive they get when confronted with something out of their comfort zone.

Well-respected leaders are unassuming and know what they think; they want to know what you think. This works brilliantly in meetings to tap into the strengths of others. These leaders realize they know a lot, and seek to know even more, and they know the way to do that is tolisten more.

4. Put empathy into action

Empathy is one of the five tenets of emotional intelligence. Leaders who practice empathy effectivelyunderstand it's a critical skill that's no longer "soft," but an incredibly hard skill necessary to connect with otherhuman beings.

These leaders imagine being in the other person's shoes and will ask themselves, "how would this person want to be treated?"

This is the Platinum Rule. It's taking the familiar Golden Rule up a notch from "Treat others as you would like to be treated" to "Treat others the waythey wantto be treated."

Published on: Mar 12, 2020

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

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4 Sure Signs That Say You Are Meant to Lead Others - Inc.

Don’t dare take that handicapped space | Opinion | times-news.com – Cumberland Times-News

If youve never seen someone park in a handicapped spot, and then watched the driver exit the vehicle with no noticeable handicap, then you can skip this column.

But if youve ever wondered how any human being can abuse the privilege of parking close to the store just because of laziness, then read on.

I am slightly handicapped (I walk with a cane) so I can legitimately use my handicapped placard, but Id wager that for every person using a handicapped sign for good reason there are at least six or seven nefarious individuals (mild language used on purpose) throwing that blue sign up on their mirrors illegally.

Just because they take grandma to the doctors every three months they think that entitles them to use the permit every day.

Ive been observing this phenomenon for decades, but it seems like it is becoming more prevalent.

And since my wife and I do a lot of traveling, I can say with some authority that Allegany County residents are way overrepresented in this sociological sampling. Which means you, your neighbors, or your neighbors friends may very well be lazy cows!

Come on people, are you really that uncaring that you cant park three spaces farther from the door? And just for the record, youre breaking the law.

As the placards clearly state The use of an issued permit by anyone other than the disabled individual is illegal. That seems pretty plain to me, and the translation is if you aint broken, you aint parkin.

My wife says I should be less critical in my assessment of these abusers, since some of them may have unseen medical conditions, like lung problems, heart conditions, phobias, etc. To which I say balderdash.

All right, Im sorry, I do admit that some folks might have legitimate rights to the use of these signs, but if that many people have that many health problems, maybe the Mayo clinic should re-locate here!

I think, honestly, that many handicapped sign abusers really dont think theyre lawbreakers. After all, its just parking in a space in a huge parking lot, so whats the big deal?

Well, I guess its not a big deal; unless you have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or asthma, or use a walker, or have severe cardiac problems, or have blood clots in your legs, or foot problems, or I could go on and on for a long time.

Ive been noticing there are more and more handicapped spaces being reserved around town, and Im not completely sure what is driving it. Is it because we Baby Boomers are all becoming invalids and were all walking with walkers and using wheelchairs?

Or is it simply a matter of more and more people, legal or illegal, are using handicapped placards, ergo, more spaces are needed?

Im not sure, but Im pretty cynical about this issue so Im going with more abusers equals more new spaces.

Heres my plea: Start putting others feelings ahead of your own.

Practice the Golden Rule of doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. Give an old man or a woman a break by leaving a handicapped space open for them. Pay it forward.

And your reward? You wont come out of the store to find an ice pick in your tire!

Bill Crawford is a Cumberland freelance writer. His column appears in the Times-News on the third Sunday of each month.

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Don't dare take that handicapped space | Opinion | times-news.com - Cumberland Times-News

Covid-19: What does self-isolation mean in practice? – The Spinoff

Under new, sweeping travel restrictions, pretty much everyone arriving in New Zealand from Monday must undertake a fortnight of self-isolation. Heres what that involves.

The Spinoffs coverage of the Covid-19 outbreak is funded by Spinoff Members. To support this work,join Spinoff Members here.

Who needs to self-isolate?

When the clock strikes 12 on Sunday night, the new restrictions on travel come into force, which mean that any arrival at the New Zealand border must go into self-isolation or staying at home, as the Ministry of Health has started describing it for 14 days, with the exception of people coming from the Pacific islands.

Is anyone in isolation already?

To date more than 10,000 people have registered for self-isolation in New Zealand with Healthline. Around two-thirds of those have completed the fortnight.

Who are they? Those new rules dont come into force until midnight Sunday!

Anyone returning from mainland China, Iran, Italy or South Korea is already required to complete self-isolation. As is anyone displaying symptoms of illness coming from a clutch of other countries. And then theres the close contacts of anyone confirmed as having Covid-19.

How is self-isolation defined?

The Ministry of Health defines self-isolation as staying away from situations where you could infect other people. Specifically, it means any situation where you may come in close contact with others.

And how is close contact defined?

Thats face-to-face contact with another person who is within two metres for more than 15 minutes. The ministry offers the following scenarios to avoid: social gatherings, work, school, childcare/pre-school centres, university, polytechnic and other education providers, faith-based gatherings, aged care and health care facilities, prisons, sports gatherings, restaurants and all public gatherings.

Dont share beds, linen or food

Can I open the window?

Yes of course you can open the window. Aim to stay in a well-ventilated room with a window that can be opened. Try to keep the window open as much as possible to enable ventilation and airflow as this will help to keep clean air moving through your room.

What about going outside and exercise?

You can go outside. You can even go for a walk. Just avoid public spaces, and people generally. Dont join a mosh pit or parade.

What about getting food or medicine?

The Ministry of Health advises, where possible, contact a friend, family member or delivery services to carry out errands like supermarket shopping on your behalf.

Some people just dont have those networks. For others the whole idea of self-isolating will look financially ruinous. Still others have dependents they need to attend to. Anything to help them?

Nothing concrete, but the prime minister did promise that shed announce early next week a bunch of measures to help people in such situations. We will also increase community support to those unable to support themselves in isolation, she said.

What if you live with children?

Heres the ministry advice: If your children didnt travel overseas with you, they can continue to attend school and other normal activities. You should reduce your close contact with them; however, that may not be possible with children, particularly young children. Try to explain to your children what is happening in a way that is easy to understand. Tell them you are staying at home to protect other people. Try to avoid worrying children. Remind them you are not sick, and its unlikely you will become sick, but you are being very safe to protect them and other New Zealanders.

What we have seen so far is that children with Covid-19 appear to be less severely affected. It is nevertheless important to do your best to follow this guidance. If a child develops symptoms, you should contact Healthline. They will also need to stay at home for 14 days from the onset of their symptoms.

Breastfeeding?

Again, lets cross direct to the official guidance: There is currently no clinical evidence to suggest that the virus can be transmitted through breast milk. Infection can be spread to the baby in the same way as to anyone in close contact with you. The benefits of breastfeeding outweigh any potential risks of transmission of the virus through breast milk or by being in close contact with your child, however, this will be an individual decision and can be discussed with your midwife, health visitor or GP by telephone.

If you wish to breastfeed, take precautions to limit the potential spread of Covid-19 to the baby by: washing your hands before touching the baby, breast pump or bottles; avoiding coughing or sneezing on the baby while feeding at the breast; cleaning any breast pump as recommended by the manufacturer after each use; considering asking someone who is well to feed your expressed breast milk to the baby.

If you are feeding with formula or expressed milk, sterilise the equipment carefully before each use. You should not share bottles or a breast pump with someone else.

What about the mental strain?

It is normal to feel stressed or lonely when self-isolating, but there are some things you can do to feel better, says the advice. Reach out to your usual supports, like family and friends, and talk about how you feel. We also recommend sticking to a routine such as having regular mealtimes, bedtimes and exercising.

If you feel you are not coping, it is important to talk with a health professional. For support with grief, anxiety, distress or mental wellbeing, you can call or text 1737 free, anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to talk with a trained counsellor.

What if you start to feel sick?

Call Healthline on 0800 358 5453 or your GP. Do not just bowl on down to your local doctor.

How is this self-quarantine thing policed?

Its not policed per se. This is not internment. you wont be assigned a parole office

Ardern says that all incoming passengers will fill in a form with their personal details, and receive a briefing from a nurse on self-isolation requirements. That information will then be provided to Healthline (0800 358 5453 or +64 9 358 5453), who will call to check on your status. Officials have been asked to step up enforcement of self isolation through measures such as spot checks.

What if people arent abiding by the requirements?

If you dont self-isolate there are quarantine powers available to us, Ardern said onQ+A. We can put you in a medical facility and monitor your movements We can put someone on the door to make sure you dont leave. Those are powers we havent had to use and I do not anticipate having to use, but they do exist.

Why 14 days?

Because thats plenty enough time for any symptoms to present.

Can you stay in the same house as others?

Yes, with a whole bunch of buts. Keep contact with other people to a minimum, and certainly under the two metres for 15 minutes threshold. Dont share anything you use for eating or drinking, or towels, or pillows. Wash everything you use thoroughly with soap and water, is the official advice, then put them in the dishwasher or washing machine. You can probably work out which goes where.

What about visitors?

The ministry says: You should avoid having visitors to your home, but it is okay for friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food.

How are you supposed to head home for self-isolation from the airport? Taxi? Bus?

A private car is ideal. The official advice is that if you must, you can use public transport to get home (try to sit in a row alone), but not again across the fortnight. Whatever you do, the golden rule is no face-to-face for 15 or more minutes with anyone within two metres. Avoid taxis or ride-share.

But: You can use your own transport means (car, bike etc) whenever you wish.

What about people arriving in NZ who have to fly domestic to their destination or other transport connections?

Thats OK, if necessary. Where possible, sit in a window seat in a row by yourself. The ministry says: While travelling make sure you use hand sanitiser regularly. If you need to cough or sneeze, cover your mouth or nose, or you can cough and sneeze into your sleeve.

As ever, if you are unwell you should seek advice from Healthline before you travel.

What about all the people at airports, and what about people who just ignore the rules, and what about and what about (etc)?

Again, the critical thing to remember is this is not internment and you wont be assigned a parole officer. It will be imperfect. But combined with hand-washing, social distancing, an uptick in testing and generally staying the hell away from other people if youre ill, the border measures are about about throttling the spread flattening the curve and stopping the spread.

Any tips on a good book to read in self-isolation?

As it happens, yes. Scroll to the end of this.

Primary source: Ministry of Health guidelines. This article was updated on March 15 to incorporate remarks by the prime minister on TVNZs Q+A, to update the close contact measure from one to two metres, in line with a ministry decision announced on Sunday afternoon and incorporate new ministry guidelines.

Read more:Flatten the curveStop the spread

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Covid-19: What does self-isolation mean in practice? - The Spinoff

Gov. Abbott Asks Insurers to Waive Costs of Coronavirus Testing – NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is asking health insurance providers to waive co-pays and testing costs associated with the new coronavirus.

Abbott on Tuesday asked providers to waive co-payments, deductibles and other costs of testing for COVID-19, which has been confirmed in more than two dozen people across the state.

"We must ensure no Texan is denied access to testing resources relating to coronavirus," Abbott said in a statement.

Full coverage of the COVID-19 outbreak and how it impacts you

Abbott encouraged people who suspect they have symptoms of COVID-19 to use telemedicine for help.

"Consulting a physician from home is a practical way to avoid getting sick, prevent the spread of the virus, and help ensure that emergency rooms are available for those who truly need them," Abbott said.

Several providers have already begun waiving costs for medically necessary coronavirus testing, Abbott said. Those organizations include:

Aetna (CVS)Blue Cross and Blue Shield of TexasCigna Health of Texas, Inc. Community Health Choice, Inc. Golden Rule Insurance (UHC)Humana Health Plan of Texas, Inc.Molina Healthcare Insurance Company of TexasOscar Insurance CompanyScott & White Health PlanSuperior Health Plan (Centene)United Healthcare Insurance Company

People who receive benefits through Medicaid and CHIP will be able to receive free testing at no cost, Abbott said.

Anyone with questions about the costs of care should contact their plan administrator to confirm their benefits.

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Gov. Abbott Asks Insurers to Waive Costs of Coronavirus Testing - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Barry Hearn thinks coronavirus pandemic is toughest challenge hes faced in four-decade career – The Sun

OVER the past 40 years Barry Hearn has pretty much seen everything and defeated most contenders at the top of his game.

Yet one of Britains most famous and successful sports promoters reckons the Covid-19 pandemic is becoming the biggest challenge he has faced.

2

Hearn told SunSport: Its worst thing Ive come across in 40 years of promoting sport around the world.

Yet Hearn, 71, could be the man to help fix our thirst for sport by looking outside of the box and upping plans to stream more snooker and darts events behind closed doors.

His Matchroom organisation promotes sports like boxing, darts, snooker, golf, gymnastics, pool, fishing and ping pong.

Hearn says Anthony Joshuas planned heavyweight title fight with Kubrat Pulev will take place at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday, June 20.

However if the Governments strategy to ban mass gatherings continues until this summer, the fight will NOT go ahead.

Anybody who has a ticket can apply for a refund if the fight is subsequently postponed.

Otherwise punters should keep hold of their tickets because they will be valid for when the event is rescheduled.

Premier League Darts will go ahead in Newcastle on Thursday assuming mass gatherings are still permitted then although the double-header in Rotterdam has been shifted to September on local advice.

Hearn also says the World Snooker Championship at the Crucible will start on April 18 unless, again, Government rules change.

Yet he maintains there would be no appeal to staging snooker without fans present at the iconic venue in Sheffield.

In an exclusive interview, Hearn revealed his golden rule is delay not cancel and acknowledges he has a responsibility to thousands of people who earn a living through sport.

So behind the scenes he will create alternative ways to put on sporting tournaments.

Hearn, whose company look after 650 event days globally, said: We are operating under Government guidelines.

Were monitoring this daily because it can change at any time.

Its so difficult because you dont know if were in this situation for months or a year. Weve no idea.

Im fire-fighting on a daily basis. The danger is you destroy the whole infrastructure of sport.

Less well-known players, smaller football clubs, smaller sports, they might not be necessarily funded well enough to survive a long-term lay-off.

The knock-on effects for society are disastrous.

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Sportsmen and women are self-employed. If they dont play they dont get paid. They have mortgages and children.

While I want everyone to be healthy, I do understand people have to go to work and earn their living.

I am mindful we are responsible for the livelihoods of thousands of sportspeople around the world.

Thats something I have to look at when I make decisions about behind closed doors or cancelling. This is not the rainy-day fund this is a disaster day.

Itll cost us money, but thats the last thing on my mind. We want to continue to provide entertainment and provide a livelihood for our players.

But everyone will have to be prepared for a change in circumstances. We dont cancel. We delay.

Our primary objective is to keep the show on the road, provided peoples health is not at risk.

Where possible we will provide playing opportunities for our players and in some cases, thinking outside the box.

We are looking at contingency plans to create new events.

Of course were always thinking of ideas whatever the circumstances and the question is can you create a workable financial model?

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Ratings in China, for instance, are going through the roof. So is there something else we can come up with?

At the moment we can carry on with snooker and darts, though there will be some cancellations. But, obviously it is better if you have a live audience.

The only way our players get paid is if they are playing in tournaments so they will be keen for us to come up with ideas.

Is there something we can do for the pay TV audience when there is no other sport on?

We wont be making any knee-jerk decisions, but there is a lot you can do with darts, snooker, ping pong and fishing.

Hearn says nobody at Matchroom has shown signs or been tested positive for coronavirus.

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Barry Hearn thinks coronavirus pandemic is toughest challenge hes faced in four-decade career - The Sun

Now’s the time to start planning for business recovery – TravelMole

Published on Monday, March 16, 2020

Debbie Hindle, chief executive of travel at Four Communications says there are three phrases for recovery communications

A golden rule in any crisis is to start planning for recovery as soon as that crisis starts.

It is easy to be overwhelmed by the pure fury of the initial onslaught of problems and the unprecedented challenges now being faced worldwide. Countries throughout the world are closing borders and are temporarily unable to accept travellers from their key source markets. However, taking stock and planning forward for recovery will be time well spent to keep potential travellers and industry partners engaged for the future recovery.

Phase one - Pre-recovery phase - keep continuing customer conversations and innovateCovid19 has stopped the ability to carry out many traditional marketing and communications activities. In many countries we now can't visit agents to train them, hold consumer events, or send media or influencers on press trips. However, those industry partners still need our help and information. Our travellers and customers will still be dreaming of places that they want to travel to, when they can. So do keep your customer and industry conversations going and innovate with ideas such as:

Training: Invest in training time for industry partners, consider webinar, livestreaming training sessions or creating new digital training services

Timely ideas: Check what information the media can use during this time. They may be focusing on supporting people through the crisis like this lovely example from Conde Nast Italy.They may need news for round-ups, picture galleries, or longer-lead stories for events or activities later in the year. Consider profile, q&a slots or opinion opportunities throughout media sections.

Set up online briefings or interviews: Consider setting up phone or skype briefing meetings with your leaders to explain major initiatives so the media or trade hear from you personally at this time, not just through email.

Make new connections: If a freelance journalist has taken a press trip with you recently could you introduce them to other UK or international titles as someone with recent relevant experience of your holiday. This helps freelancers to get more commissions and helps commissioning editors to find quality writers with fresh content. In addition, do also consider working with freelancers based in the destinations you are promoting.

Broadcast focus: This is good time to do a really deep dive on potential new TV programmes which could feature your destination or organisation, but which can take months of negotiations. Also think about broadcast news opportunities for travel. Shout, a broadcast agency we've worked with for several clients has highlighted that broadcast media will still need alternative news stories to Covid19 to break up the news agenda pressure. These interviews can be done by remotely so there's no limit to where your spokesperson is anywhere in the world.

Consider long-lead needs: Consider longer-lead print titles which need to plan three months ahead, but may be going to press during the peak of Covid19 uncertainty. What stories such as major events or launches in 2021 can you give them now that they will be confident using in an autumn 2020 editions?

Keep talking: Keep your social media conversations running. People may not be able to travel but they don't want to be ignored. In China social media platforms like Douyin (the Chinese version of Tik Tok) and Kuaishou reported social media use increased by 30 per cent during January and February. Listen to your audience concerns and questions and answer them in the social channels where they are being asked. Consider Throwback Thursday discussions to thank them and ask them to share their memories.

Amplify local voices: Reassure future travellers by highlighting people from source markets who are working in a particular destination. For example if you're the Namibian Tourism Organisation and you have a superb German chef working in Namibia include their tips and guidance on your German social media channels.

Fight fear with facts: Keep reassuring your audiences with the facts. If you represent a destination, be clear about recovered cases as well as live cases. Ensure you are communicating all the taskforce cross government action, which is going into a country's recovery plans.

Share yourself: One of the common google searches in Wuhan during the lockdown was looking for things to do to overcome boredom. Give your global audiences something that will help them if you cannot welcome them now. Put museums online, do live q&as with gallery directors. If festivals have been cancelled can you create a mini online version instead with live-streamed or recorded sessions with musicians, artists or chefs. Showcase a new hotel, or attraction with a personal digital walk through by the general manager, or director.

Phase two - Emerging recovery phase - targeting those most likely to travelTo have the fastest recovery phase possible it is always important to prioritise the people who are most likely to respond and travel first. Do put social and google search monitoring in place to understand when people start thinking about travel planning and booking again so you're ahead of the curve. Don't assume those audiences are the same as in the past. Understand who they might be and their barriers and motivations with digital research such as four's Mapper360 audience insights which build high-value personas from live digital responses. As ever, test and learn digitally.

In order of priority, audiences to address after a crisis typically follow this pattern:

Domestic audiences - local people as well as expatriates from your primary source markets who may be sharing images of a destination, hotel or attraction back to their friends and family

Neighbouring audiences - people who know and are familiar with your destination are more likely to return first and fastest.

Repeat visitors - in uncertain times people often feel safer in known locations. A big push on encouraging repeat visitors to return to places they've been to before can be an important first step in driving recovery bookings

Resilient visitors - track the guests who are most likely to return faster. Do you have a special interest niche which has loyal and dedicated travellers? This could be bird watching or adventure seekers, or fans of a major event held in a particular country. It might also be demographic - a younger or older target audience rather than family audiences.

Phase three - full recovery, a hard fight for audiencesOnce the crisis is clearly over there will be a full recovery period where all travellers are being targeted by brands and countries eager to open their doors.

This period will be the most competitive the travel industry has ever known as countries and brands look to build back their economies and cashflows. But it will also undoubtedly be a different industry. While some businesses will fail, the full recovery period will see the emergence of new nimble players looking for take advantage of the changes.

Do spending time now preparing in detail for phase three even when you don't know the timing of your recovery plans. What events might you create, what marketing will you implement. Have creative campaigns at the ready which can be trialled digitally and switched on quickly. Also use this time to review how to build a sustainable recovery strategy which builds back audiences but mitigates negative impacts. Tourist boards which spend time planning destination management recovery strategies rather than destination marketing strategies in isolation will deliver genuine long-term results to their nations.

Countries and travel organisations that work fast and smart in all three recovery phases - pre-recovery, emerging recovery and the full recovery phase will lead the field.

Continued here:

Now's the time to start planning for business recovery - TravelMole

Carol Williams: The disrepair of the two party system – Charleston Gazette-Mail

To understand the history, perversion and inversion of the two-party system we use in this country, youd need to know what it meant to be a Democrat in Illinois in the 1960s. The Machine nickname came from the political monopoly over the city of Chicago, which kept its royal family of Irish Catholics as its ruling party for decades.

Few Illinoisans actually believed that being a Democrat meant you were supporting social programs or equal justice for all. Mayor Daley the Elder was not one to explain the philosophy or platform of his party; he only needed to know he was the boss, with total control over it. The Civil Rights movement, anti-war resistance, school desegregation and womens rights groups did not thrive with the mid-century Democrats of Chicago. Rather, they survived in spite of people like Daley.

Last month, the incarcerated former Democratic governor of Illinois was given a presidential commutation for the rest of his 14-year sentence. He is known as Rod because its too much trouble to say his last name, Blagojevich, and he is the fourth of the last seven Illinois governors to be sent to prison. The judge who gave him 14 years wanted to make him an example for future elected officials, since the 6.5-year sentence of his Republican predecessor didnt seem to deter Rod from using the office for his own benefit as well.

Ironically, it started, and ended, with a phone call he made. The prosecution used it as the evidence they needed to prove that Rod intended to carry out a plan to sell the Senate seat vacated by president-elect Obama. On the recording, Rod tells another politician he wont give that seat up for nothing this is (bleeping) golden. The phrase quickly became part of the Midwestern lexicon.

So in Illinois, where I am from, sometimes you have no choice to vote for the Republican, although why party names are even used in state, municipal or county offices is beyond me. A well-known story about a Chicago law student, who later became a Democratic congressman and federal judge, happened in 1948 when he stopped by his aldermans ward office to volunteer for the upcoming campaign. When he was asked who sent him, he said, nobody. He was told, we dont want nobody that nobody sent. Thats pretty much how political parties still work.

And switching parties is not uncommon. Party hopping can be done by politicians while in office, although its more frequently done before an election, or perhaps years in advance. For example, Trump has changed his party affiliation five times since 1987, as is anyones right to do. As a Democrat in 2004, he told CNNs Wolf Blitzer, it just seems that the economy does better under the Democrats. He was correct.

And here in West Virginia, the governor switched parties just one year into office. Youd think there should be a law against false advertising in campaigning, seeing as people likely supported him as a candidate according to party affiliations, as I did. And if the wind is blowing the opposite direction next year, elected officials might again switch, resembling a grown-up version of musical chairs. Even though you know that politicians tell you whatever you want to hear, thats something you need to realize before you vote for them, not after theyve jilted you. Hence, my favorite saying is, disillusionment starts after your guy wins. But for a politician to change parties, it seems like it would require a lot of soul-searching and plenty of transparency, neither of which is evident in the conversions of Jim Justice or our sitting president.

Meanwhile, back in Illinois, at least Rod has a good reason for saying he will support Trump for president this year rather than the nominee of his party. Serving four fewer years in a federal white-collar prison has made him a self-described Trump-o-crat. That Bleeping Golden Rule might have worked out well for him, but I seriously doubt that anyone will split their 2020 ticket based on Rods personal good fortune. Even the Illinois State Republican delegation criticized the commutation, saying, Blagojevich is the face of public corruption in Illinois and not once has he shown any remorse.

It makes you wonder. If the law of the land was good enough to follow when it locked him up, why would the law and order candidate and head of the law and order Republican party disagree with that law now, unless it could sway voters in a Democratic state? If its that easy to influence people, as the Russians actually proved in 2016, perhaps everyone should just register as independents, including the candidates.

Sometimes the nobody that nobody sent would be a better choice than a somebody that somebody sent, especially when that somebody can change at any time; from blue to red, or even to golden.

Carol Williams is a U.S. Army veteran, former ER nurse, and writes a bi-monthly column for the Martinsburg Journal. She lives in Berkeley County.

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Carol Williams: The disrepair of the two party system - Charleston Gazette-Mail

Shaping a New World at the End of Our Present System – Patheos

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In both Matthews and Lukes gospels we find this imagery:

So if anyone tells you, There he is, out in the wilderness, do not go out; or, Here he is, in the inner rooms, do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. (Matthew 24:26-27)

People will tell you, There he is! or Here he is! Do not go running off after them. For the Son of Man in his day will be like the lightning, which flashes and lights up the sky from one end to the other. (Luke 17:23-24)

These passages are connected to the last two statements about Jesus vision for a Jewish future without an exploitative Temple State. In Jesuss day, the Temple State exploited the vulnerable and messiah movements promoted Temple reform. These movements that grew in Galilee and Judea depended on violent liberation efforts that Jesus believed were suicidal and, because of Romes violence, were ultimately catastrophic for those who engaged them.

As we read last week in The Kingdom of God is within You, the messiah figures of these movements implored the people to act first in faith and then YHWH would reveal a sign of confirmation. Josephus gives us examples of followers who did go out to the wilderness with these charismatic leaders expecting a sign but instead found annihilation at the hands of the Roman empire.

Before we launch into examples of these movements Jesus was warning his followers of following, I want to share a brief word about Jesuss vision for a Jewish future without a Temple State. Long before Jesus, there was a Jewish thread of no sacrifice in the tradition.

Hosea 6:6For I desire mercy, not sacrifice,and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings.

Isaiah 1:11-12What to me is the multitude of your sacrifices? says the LORD; I have had enough of burnt offerings of rams and the fat of fed beasts; I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or of lambs, or of goats. When you come to appear before me, who asked this from your hand?

Psalms 40:6Sacrifice and offering you did not desiremy ears you have openedburnt offerings and sin offerings you did not require.

Jeremiah 7:22For in the day that I brought your ancestors out of the land of Egypt, I did not speak to them or command them concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices.

Jesus embraced this strand of the tradition in his own teachings:

Matthew 9:13Go and learn what this means, I desire mercy, not sacrifice.

Matthew 12:7But if you had known what this means, I desire mercy and not sacrifice, you would not have condemned the innocent.

After the devastating experience of the Jewish people in the 1st Century, some rabbis did embrace a future without sacrifice, the Temple, and violence. Karen Armstrong shares a beautiful passage about this in The Great Transformation: The Beginning of Our Religious Traditions:

The Golden Rule, compassion, and loving-kindness were central to this new Judaism; by the time the temple had been destroyed, some of the Pharisees already understood that they did not need a temple to worship God, as this Talmudic story makes clear: It happened that R. Johanan ben Zakkai went out from Jerusalem, and R. Joshua followed him and saw the burnt ruins of the Temple and he said: Woe is it that the place, where the sins of Israel find atonement, is laid waste. Then said R. Johanan, Grieve not, we have an atonement equal to the Temple, the doing of loving deeds, as it is said, I desire love and not sacrifice. Kindness was the key to the future; Jews must turn away from the violence and divisiveness of the war years and create a united community with one body and one soul. When the community was integrated in love and mutual respect, God was with them, but when they quarreled with one another, he returned to heaven, where the angels chanted with one voice and one melody. When two or three Jews sat and studied harmoniously together, the divine presence sat in their midst. Rabbi Akiba, who was killed by the Romans in 132 CE, taught that the commandment Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself was the great principle of the Torah. To show disrespect to any human being who had been created in Gods image was seen by the rabbis as a denial of God himself and tantamount to atheism. Murder was a sacrilege: Scripture instructs us that whatsoever sheds human blood is regarded as if he had diminished the divine image. God had created only one man at the beginning of time to teach us that destroying only one human life was equivalent to annihilating the entire world, while to save a life redeemed the whole of humanity. To humiliate anybodyeven a slave or a non-Jewwas equivalent to murder, a sacrilegious defacing of Gods image. To spread a scandalous, lying story about another person was to deny the existence of God. Religion was inseparable from the practice of habitual respect to all other human beings. You could not worship God unless you practiced the Golden Rule and honored your fellow humans, whoever they were. (pp. 454-455, emphasis added.)

Three examples of the kind of liberation efforts Jesus warned his followers about going into the wilderness to meet, and which ended in the most severe failures in the first century, were the Judas Rebellion, the Jewish-Roman War, and the Bar Kochba Revolt.

The Judas Rebellion took place during the reign of Augustus while Varus was the Roman Governor in Syria. You can read Josephuss account in his Jewish Antiquities 17.288-295. As a result of it, 2,000 Jewish people were crucified in Jerusalem alone. In Galilee, Varus turned over part of his army to his son and to one of his friends, and sent them out to fight against the Galileans who inhabit the region adjoining Ptolemais. His son attacked all who opposed him and routed them, and after capturing Sepphoris, he reduced its inhabitants to slavery and burnt the city (17:28889). Archeology tells a slightly different version of this event (no evidence of burning, for example) but confirms the devastation that resulted for the people nonetheless.

The next war was even worse: the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE after the Roman-Jewish War under Nero (66-69 CE). The Roman legate in Syria at this time was Cestius Gallus. Not only was Jerusalem razed by Titus, one of Cestius columns also killed some 2,000 rebels in Galilee as well.

And lastly, the Bar Kochba revolt (the Third Jewish Revolt) was met with such violence by Rome that it marks the last attempt at liberation by the Jewish people. According to Cassius Dio, 580,000 Jews perished in this war and many more died of hunger and disease. In addition, many Judean war captives were sold into slavery. The Jewish communities of Judea were devastated to an extent which some scholars describe as genocidal.

Jesus nonviolent liberation movement belonged to a different family of 1st Century resistance movements. Two examples of this resistance were the Standards (Ensigns) incident in 26 CE and the Temple episode over the statue of Gaius Caligula in 40 CE.

Josephus writes about both cases of nonviolent noncooperation. First is the Standards incident:

As procurator [Greek: hegemon] of Judaea Tiberius sent Pilate, who during the night, secretly and undercover, conveyed to Jerusalem the images of Caesar known as standards. When day dawned this caused great excitement among the Jews; for those who were near were amazed at the sight, which meant that their laws had been trampled on they do not permit any graven image to be set up in the City and the angry City mob was joined by a huge influx of people from the country. They rushed off to Pilate in Caesarea, and begged him to remove the standards from Jerusalem and to respect their ancient customs. When Pilate refused, they fell prone all round his house and remained motionless for five days and nights.

The next day Pilate took his seat on the tribunal in the great stadium and summoned the mob on the pretext that he was ready to give them an answer. Instead he gave a pre-arranged signal to the soldiers to surround the Jews in full armour, and the troops formed a ring three deep. The Jews were dumbfounded at the unexpected sight, but Pilate, declaring that he would cut them to pieces unless they accepted the images of Caesar, nodded to the soldiers to bare their swords. At this the Jews as though by agreement fell to the ground in a body and bent their necks, shouting that they were ready to be killed rather than transgress the Law. Amazed at the intensity of their religious fervour, Pilate ordered the standards to be removed from Jerusalem forthwith. (War 2:175-203, emphasis added.)

Meanwhile, tens of thousands of Jews came to Petronius at Ptolemais with petitions not to use force to make them transgress and violate their ancestral code. They said, If you propose at all costs to set up the image, slay us first before you carry out these resolutions. For it is not possible for us to survive and to behold actions that are forbidden us by the decision both of our lawgiver and of our ancestors. In order to preserve our ancestral code, we shall patiently endure what may be in store for us for God will stand by us

Petronius saw that they were determined and that it would be impossible to carry out Gaius order without great conflict and slaughter. He went to Tiberias to determine the situation of the Jews there. Again, many tens of thousands faced Petronius on his arrival. They besought him to not put up the statue. Will you then go to war with Caesar, regardless of his resources and of your own weakness? he asked. On no account would we fight, they said, but we will die sooner than violate our laws. And falling on their faces and baring their throats, they declared that they were ready to be slain. They continued to make these supplications for forty days. Furthermore, they neglected their fields even though this was the time to sow the seed. For they showed a stubborn determination and readiness to die rather than to see the image erected.

Then members of the royal family and civic leaders appealed to Petronius to refrain from the plan and instead to write to Gaius telling how incurable was their opposition to receiving the statue and how they had left their fields to sit as a protest, and that they did not choose war, since they could not fight a war, but would be glad to die sooner than transgress their customs, and that since the land was unsown there would be no harvest and no tribute. They brought pressure to bear upon him in every way and employed every device to make their plea effective. Petronius was influenced by their plea, and saw the stubborn determination of the Jews, and thought it would be terrible to bring death on so many tens of thousands of people. He thought it best to risk sending a letter to Gaius. Perhaps he might even convince him to cancel the order. If not, he would undertake war against the Jews. And thus Petronius decided to recognize the cogency of the plea of the petitioners. (Antiquities 18:261-309, emphasis added.)

Philo also writes of the statue incident in his Legatio ad Gaium, When the Jews at large got to know of the scheme, they staged mass demonstrations of protest before Petronius, who by then was in Phoenicia with an army.

It was in nonviolent resistance movements such as these that Jesus saw the best chances at resistance and surviving such attempts. And this is the context of this weeks saying about not following after other more violent messiah movements.

Jesus again embraced a vision for a human society without the Temple. Early Jesus followers associated Jesus movement with the image of the son of humanity in an earlier Jewish liberation text, Daniel 7. In that vision, violent predator beasts that symbolize Gentile world empires subjugating the Hebrew people are removed and replaced by the Hebrew hope in liberation. All violence, injustice, and oppression in the world would be put right. Over 80 times, the gospels refer to Jesus as Daniels son of humanity.

Mark 14:62I am, said Jesus. And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven. (emphasis added)

What Jesus did was turn this image on its head: change came through nonviolence instead of the violent imagery in Daniel 7. Jesus vision for humanity was not like the other movements that went to the wilderness, wanting to be a source of light for the world but only adding more darkness to the darkness. Jesus vision for humanity was of a movement that would light up the darkness of oppression in our world as lightning lights up the night sky from the east to the west. His vision was that we would be a source of light in the darkness of domination, oppression, marginalization, and exploitation, not add more darkness to the world. As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. so eloquently stated, Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that (Loving Your Enemies, 1957; in Strength to Love, 1963).

I do want to say a word of caution about nonviolence before we wrap up.

I subscribe to nonviolence. I teach it. Yet nonviolence is also used by the status quo to keep people subjugated. To be of value to the oppressed, nonviolence must be liberatory. If nonviolence is held as the highest value and liberation is secondary, then nonviolence can then be co-opted and used to keep oppressed peoples from ever achieving their liberation. Any talk of nonviolence today must include an in-depth understanding of structural and systemic violence and oppression or nonviolence will end up being a violent form of nonviolence. It will place upon oppressed people an additional burden to remain nonviolent while the status quo preaches nonviolence to them and simultaneously ignores the violent system they live in. Nonviolence will do violence. It will be a violent nonviolence.

Jesus nonviolence was also rooted not only in liberation but also in survival. Jesuss opposition to the use of violence in the liberation movements of his day was deeply informed by Romes heavy response making such movements not only futile but lethal. When deciding whether violence or nonviolence will be the means whereby we strive for liberation, we must consider both their success and failure rates. Both violence and nonviolence, at times, succeed. And both violence and nonviolence, at times, fail. But when violent liberation efforts fail, the results can be catastrophic, so much more than when nonviolent efforts fail. I will address this much further in next weeks saying about the circling vultures, but for now, whether we choose violent resistance or nonviolent resistance, we must consider nonviolence from the viewpoint of the oppressed rather than from the vantage point of the privileged and ask how nonviolence will affect the oppresseds liberation work. Again, well dive into this much more deeply next week.

Ill close with a word from James Douglass on how this image of lightning lighting up the sky from east to west can be used today. In Lightning East to West: Jesus, Gandhi, and the Nuclear Age, James warns of another type of lightning that threatens to end our world as we know itthe threat of nuclear war.

Lightning east to west can be adopted as the image of our end-time. We live in the final time [that] offers human the clearest choice in history: the kingdom or holocaust. Either end is lightning east to west: the nuclear holocaust of lightning fire or the kingdom of Reality, a lightning spirit . . . Whoever believes in Jesus way deeply enough, a way of life and death which is a way of seeking an objective love-force in history, will perform the same works as he did, and even greater workswhich are absolutely necessary today for the continuation of human history . . . Every living person is capable, through a particular process, of creating the conditions for the expression of an objective love-force in history, a power of Reality beyond any of us which can raise humankind from the global death of our end-time. (James Douglas, Lightning East to West: Jesus, Gandhi, and the Nuclear Age, p. 17-23)

The choice is ours: which type of lighting up the darkness will we choose?

Will we be a source of genuine light in our worlds oppression and exploitation, or will we choose a blinding light that actually results in death for us all? James Douglass offers hope: How does one live at the [potential] end of the world? By beginning a new one.

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Shaping a New World at the End of Our Present System - Patheos


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