Inter-faith religious climate change activists broke tablets on the site in Egypt reputed to be Mount Sinai as a protest linked to COP27, The Times Of Israel reports. The protesters said they had taken inspiration from the Bible as the mountain is where Moses is reputed to have smashed the tablets inscribed with the Ten Commandments.
About 90 heads of state have gathered in Sharm El Sheikh in Egypt for the annual COP27 climate change conference to discuss objectives to cut emissions, scale-up adaptation efforts, and enhance finance options.
COP27 began on November 6 and will conclude on November 18 but climate-change activists have become more proactive in raising awareness. Some have united with religious leaders in a bid to urge politicians to move faster against climate change.
One Israeli environmental activist smashed stone tablets on the peak of the Egyptian mountain believed to have been the biblical Mount Sinai, about 125 miles (200km) from where the COP27 conference is taking place.
The protest took place on the same day several faith leaders united in London as part of the “world’s first inter-faith ceremony on climate change.”
Climate change activists smash tablets on ‘Mount Sinai’
Five activists from non-profit environmental organizations gathered at the summit of the mountain to launch the Sinai Climate Partnership as part of an initiative to kick off a “spiritual call to action on climate justice,” David Miron-Wapner, director of The Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development, announced.
Jewish environmental organization Hazon was represented by Nigel Savage and Jakir Manela, while the Christian Climate Observers’ representatives were Elsa and Anneka.
“With faith in God’s mercy and in our divinely mandated ability to make a difference,” Manela said, “we declare global climate change is an emergency that demands a massive and immediate response.”
The first smashed tablet was made by teenagers representing StrikesForFridays, a youth-led global climate strike movement created by Greta Thunberg in 2018. Written in Hebrew, the tablet reads: “Keep your promises which are not being kept by world leaders.”
A green-colored tablet was smashed to symbolize dissatisfaction with the planet’s current state.
After the tablets had been smashed, the protesters read from the draft list of “Ten Principles for Climate Repentance,” formulated during the multifaith meeting in London
The top three objectives are:
- Bring religious leadership to UN public policy discussions on climate change
- Resonate a clarion spiritual call for climate action throughout faith-based communities around the world
- Provide thought leadership for faith-based communities ready to mobilize on climate change
Mount Sinai believed to be sacred location for three Abrahamic faiths
Mount Sinai is worshipped as the mountain on which the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God in the three Abrahamic faiths: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
Moses was said to have lived on the mountain for 40 days before he received the Commandments. The first tablet was inscribed by God’s finger but, on descending the mountain, Moses became enraged after seeing Israelite children worshipping a golden calf.
Moses returned to the mountain top to inscribe a second tablet inspired by the words of God, the Torah states.