Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Notations From the Grid (Weekly Edition): On this #Ramadan2020 - THE STORY OF ISLAM

#Ramadan has arrived.    With the Lockdown around the World, Muslims have gone virtual.   Our team captured the nightly prayers at the Holy Kabaa in Mecca which has been shutdown on orders from the Government of Saudi Arabia.   Those who led the prayers are the custodians of the Holy Kabba who are in isolation.   

As we extend best wishes to all Muslims Brothers & Sisters around the World. we present the following on the Story of Islam:

Friday, April 24, 2020

Update on Covid-19: The Next Stage of the Pandemic, Virology & Diagnostics

Notations On Our World (Special Friday Edition): In Honor #EarthDay2020

Stay Home. Save Lives : Help Stop Coronavirus

As we join Google in honoring our Healthcare Warriors,  please enjoy this courtesy of Paul Winter which we hope all enjoy--Please #StayHomeStaySafe and remember, #WeWillGetThroughThisTogether


"And a little later on, your friend. . . goes out to the moon. And now he looks back and he sees the Earth not as something big, where he can see the beautiful details, but now he sees the Earth as a small thing out there. And the contrast between that bright blue and white Christmas tree ornament and the black sky, that infinite universe, really comes through, and the size of it, the significance of it. It is so small and so fragile and such a precious little spot in that universe that you can block it out with your thumb, and you realize that on that small spot, that little blue and white thing, is everything that means anything to you - all of history and music and poetry and art and death and birth and love, tears, joy, games, all of it on that little spot out there that you can cover with your thumb. And you realize from that perspective that you've changed, that there's something new there, that the relationship is no longer what it was."

- Apollo 9 Astronaut Rusty Schweickart

Dear Friends,

In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, we are happy to announce the release of a new film of our Earth Mass, entitled Missa Gaia in Maine. It is a full concert performance by the Consort with a choir of 175 voices, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Portland, Maine.

The Earth Mass is the Consort’s ecological, ecumenical celebration of “Mother Earth,” in the form of a mass. Its alternate title, Missa Gaia, comes from the Latin Missa, for mass, and Gaia, the Greek name for “Mother Earth.”

This is the most comprehensive video ever done of the Earth Mass, and the concert also includes seven songs from the Consort’s program "In Celebration of the Earth."


  1. Adoro te Devote
  2. Canticle of Brother Sun 
  3. Beatitudes
  4. Kyrie
  5. Mystery
  6. The Promise of a Fisherman (Iemanja) 
  7. Agnus Dei
  8. Sound Over All Waters 
  9. Stained-Glass Morning 
  10. Sanctus and Benedictus
  11. Sun Singer
  12. The Blue Green Hills of Earth 
  13. Joy
  14. The Rain is Over and Gone
  15. Wolf Eyes
  16. Let Us Depart in Peace 
  17. Air
  18. Icarus
  19. Common Ground

Missa Gaia in Maine features renowned gospel singer Theresa Thomason; long-time Consort cellist Eugene Friesen; a multi-cultural rhythm section with players from Bulgaria, Colombia, France, Taiwan, and the U.S.; and I am playing soprano sax. 

Paul Winter Consort
Paul Winter/soprano sax
Theresa Thomason/voice
Eugene Friesen/cello
Tim Ray/piano
Peter Slavov/bass
Michael Wimberly/drums
Maxime Cholley/percussion
Juan Mejia/percussion
Janet Yieh/organ

with the voices of
Wolf, Whale, Wood Thrush, Bell-Bird, and Harp Seals

The Earth Mass was originally created by the Consort in 1981, and premiered at New York’s Cathedral of St. John the Divine on Mother’s Day (for “Mother Earth”) that May, with David Brower, founder of Friends of the Earth, as the featured speaker.

However, the Earth Mass is truly a child of the space age, born out of those adventures that enabled humans to view, for the first time in history, our planet home. This grand embrace began when the astronauts of Apollo 8, on Christmas Eve, 1968, sent back from the moon the Earthrise photo (which we have reproduced on the cover of our new DVD). The roots of the aural-vision and music of the Earth Mass go back to then, with the founding of the Consort in 1968, and my first encounters, that year, with wolves and with the songs of the humpback whales; and to my inspiration, then, from the first Whole Earth Catalog, which featured this Earthrise photo on its cover.

Among the seminal experiences of the next dozen years was our fortuitous connection with astronaut Rusty Schweikart, the first man to walk in space without an umbilical. Rusty became our friend and mentor, from the mid-‘70s, and his inspiration was integral to the emergence of the Earth Mass as a celebration of the Earth as a sacred place: our home.

This full back-story, along with my essay on “The Making of a Mass” can be read on my website here>>

The Missa Gaia in Maine film is available to stream for free on my website here>> 

Physical copies of the DVD are now available for purchase through Bandcamp; however, due to a production delay, we will not have the DVD's until next week and will not ship until then. Click here to purchase a DVD>>

We hope that watching and listening to the Missa Gaia in Maine concert will be an uplifting experience for you, perhaps on some evening during this time of quarantine. 

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Notations From the Grid: Remembering the 3rd President of the United States

Happy Birthday Thomas Jefferson:


Only aim to do your duty,
and mankind will give you credit where you fail.
- Thomas Jefferson
All tyranny needs to gain a foothold
is for people of good conscience to remain silent.
- Thomas Jefferson
It is always better to have no ideas than false ones;
to believe nothing, than to believe what is wrong.
- Thomas Jefferson
Truth is certainly a branch of morality
and a very important one to society.
- Thomas Jefferson
He who knows best knows how little he knows.
- Thomas Jefferson

Do you want to know who you are?
Don't ask. Act!
Action will delineate and define you.
- Thomas Jefferson
In matters of style, swim with the current;
in matters of principle, stand like a rock.
- Thomas Jefferson

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Notations From the Grid (Weekly Edition): The Latest From Global Citizen on #LifeinTheTimeofCorona


'One World: Together At Home' Will Inspire Action to End COVID-19


We will be urging governments, corporations, and philanthropists to increase investments in the World Health Organization's Solidarity Fund while celebrating and supporting frontline health workers.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Notations From the Grid (Special Edition): Digital security during the COVID-19 pandemic courtesy the team at @CPJ

A Lebanese journalist uses her mobile phone as she wears a medical mask and gloves at Rafik Hariri University Hospital in Beirut, Lebanon, on February 22, 2020. (AP/Bilal Hussein)

The current global health situation has seen changes to the way journalists do their job, with an increasing number working from home instead of an office. This is creating digital security issues for journalists and media outlets who still need to work during the coronavirus outbreak.

Journalists working from home may be using personal devices to do research, speak with sources, and download documents. The inability to have face-to-face meetings has caused many media organizations to adopt online conferencing services, often unaware of what they are giving up in terms of privacy and security.

Journalists who are reporting on the spread of COVID-19 are also at risk of being exposed to malware and scams as criminals target people with misinformation and sophisticated phishing campaigns linked to the virus. These are more of a threat to journalists working without tech support, or using personal devices that have not been secured; personal information could also be at risk if devices in the home are exposed to malware.

Secure your remote office

● Update your devices, including your phone, to the latest operating system. Updates often fix known vulnerabilities in the software that attackers could try to exploit. Configure your devices to update automatically.

● Update apps and browsers to the latest available version.

● Use a password manager to create long, unique passwords and secure your online accounts. Turn on two-factor authentication for all accounts wherever possible.

● Think about where you are storing your documents, especially if you are working on sensitive issues. Create a system for storing work while you are working from home so that you will be able to find it easily when you return to the office. Avoid downloading and storing documents on an ad hoc basis, or on multiple devices.

● Back up your data and research on a regular basis to avoid losing work. Create more than one copy—for example, back up your work to an external hard drive as well as saving it on your computer. If possible, protect your backup with a password, and store it away from your regular workstation.

● Use a virtual private network (VPN) if you are concerned about your internet service provider seeing your online activity, especially if you are carrying out sensitive research. Be aware that a VPN service may also record your internet activity, so research the best VPN service for you, depending on your location and your level of risk.

● Lock all your devices with a PIN or password to deter people from accessing them. Avoid sharing devices you use for work with other members of your household.

● Ensure that your home Wi-Fi is protected with a password.

Communicate more securely

Be aware that online communication services are often collecting personal data on you and the people that you are speaking with. This data can be sold, handed over to governments, or if the company does not secure the data properly, breached by criminals.

● Do an internet search on any online communication service you plan to use. Check for security vulnerabilities, privacy concerns, or if the company has suffered any data breaches. If possible, see if the company has been subpoenaed by a government and review what information the service handed over.

● Review the service’s privacy policy to see what they do with your data, how they store it, and how long they keep it.

● Check to see whether the service uses end-to-end encryption. Research the law in your country with regards to using encrypted communications methods.

● Be aware of your own risk profile, and that of the people you wish to speak with. If you or anyone you communicate with is likely to be a target of a government or of an adversary with sophisticated technology, consider whether using these services could put you at risk.

● Back up anything important contained in messaging apps regularly, and delete anything inessential.

● Be aware that many messaging apps store a copy of your messages, including photos and documents, either in a cloud account or on your device. Signal, the end-to-end encrypted messaging service, allows users to delete messages after a certain time set by the user.

● If you are working with low internet bandwidth and need to speak with more than one person at the same time, consider using end-to-end encrypted chat or voice messages instead of video conferencing.

Secure research, phishing, and COVID-19

● Do a regular internet search for common scams and misinformation about COVID-19. This will help you be more informed about documented attacks, including those that are less obvious and more sophisticated.

● Try and use one device for researching COVID-19. This will help limit exposure to malware.

● Avoid clicking on links or downloading documents about COVID-19 on your phone. The small screen makes it difficult to properly analyze the source.

● Think carefully before clicking or downloading information about COVID-19. Consider the source and whether it is reputable.

● Go directly to the source of the information instead of downloading documents sent to you via email, through SMS, or messaging apps. Look up the author of the information online to verify their identity and expertise.

● Research the authors of unexpected messages or requests to take action and verify their identity. Reach out to them directly to confirm they sent the message if possible.

● Use advanced search strategies, such as Boolean search methods, to look up information and confirm the source.

● Be aware that websites from legitimate sources should be encrypted. You can check this by looking for https and a padlock icon at the start of the URL, or web address, in your browser. This means that traffic between you and the site is encrypted.

● Be wary of information about COVID-19 shared in group chats on WhatsApp and other messaging services. There is a lot of misinformation being passed around and some of it may also contain malware.

For more information, consult CPJ's Digital Safety Kit, also in EspañolFrançaisРусский, and در فارسی. CPJ’s safety advisory on covering the coronavirus outbreak is available in multiple languages.

Creative Commons License