Monday, September 20, 2010


(UKPA) - Thousands of residents were evacuated as a powerful typhoon struck Taiwan, flooding the southern part of the island, crippling transport and shutting off power. Typhoon Fanapi was the first major storm to strike the island this year. It later reached Fujian province in mainland China after crossing Taiwan with peak winds of 102 mph. Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau said as much as 44 inches of rain had been dumped in southern Taiwan by early on Monday- with more to come. TV images showed water submerging streets and first floors of buildings. Military vehicles entered inundated areas to help trapped residents in the southern part of the island, including Taiwan’s second largest city Kaohsiung Schools and offices were closed. Officials evacuated 10,000 residents from remote areas vulnerable to landslides, half of them in the southern part of the island. They said 107 people were injured. Some were cut by broken glass and others hurt when they fell off motorcycles in strong winds.

Taiwan’s China Airlines suspended all international departures from Kaohsiung. All of Taiwan’s domestic air and rail service was halted. Taiwan’s government has deployed thousands of emergency workers and military personnel throughout the island to try to mitigate damage, mindful of the estimated 700 deaths caused by Typhoon Morakot last year. In eastern China, officials said 186,000 people had been evacuated. “Fanapi is the strongest typhoon to hit Fujian in 2010 and we should prepare for the worst,” said Sun Chunlan, Communist Party chief of Fujian, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

Typhoon 'Fanapi' hit Taiwan on Sunday, causing floods, leaving three dead, more than 100 injured, forcing schools to close and suspend industrial activities. The Taiwan authorities feared further damage by the crossing of 'Fanapi', but its effects have been much lower than those caused by typhoon 'Morakot' in August 2009 that left at least 700 dead. The chanting of the Holy Names can relieve us from the danger and huge miseries of this world.

“This is foolishness,” said the scientist. “Not only foolishness, it is absolutely great foolishness. I know all the scientific reasoning about the natural systems of this world.” While this conversation was going a huge typhoon appeared on the horizon with giant black clouds. ... The boat began to rock dangerously in the middle of the now turbulent river. The scientist became very afraid due the fierceness of the storm, and he shouted “O boatman! Please do something to save us! I have so many responsibilities with my family! Please boatman, speak to me! Save your boat and save our lives!” - Boatman: “Oh scientist, I don’t know how I can save this boat from this powerful typhoon. But, we have two ways to save our lives; either by swimming to shore, or by the Grace of God. You don’t know how to swim, so let’s both pray to God, Krishna together”… “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare. Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare.” The scientist and the boatman both chanted from their hearts the Holy-Names and gradually the boat reached the bank of the river.

Śrīla Bhakti Bibudha Bodhayan Mahārāja :
“The Pious Boatman and the Proud Scientist”

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