By Roger S. Gottlieb
In a time of darkening environmental customers, scary spiritual fundamentalism, and moribund liberalism, the striking and traditionally extraordinary upward thrust of spiritual environmentalism is a profound resource of desire. Theologians are recuperating nature-honoring components of conventional religions and forging daring new theologies connecting devotion to God and non secular fact with love for God's production and take care of the Earth. and non secular humans during the international are remodeling the which means in their faiths within the face of the environmental difficulty. The successes and value ofreligious environmentalism are occur in statements via leaders of almost all of the world's religions, in new and "green" prayers and rituals, and in subtle criticisms of contemporary society's financial system, politics, and tradition. From the Evangelical Environmental community to the Buddhist leading minister of Mongolia, the nationwide Council of church buildings to tree-planting campaigns in Zimbabwe, non secular environmentalism has develop into a strong portion of the realm environmental circulate.
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Extra resources for A Greener Faith: Religious Environmentalism and Our Planet's Future
Whether our values come from the Bible or intuitions about human rights, conﬂicts between “what most of us think” and “what is right” are endemic to any nontotalitarian society in which there are basic disagreements about justice and the good life. m The question of how to feel God’s presence despite the magnitude of unjustiﬁed suffering is at least as old as Job. Because of our era’s ever larger capacity for destruction, the anguish that attends the search for God has only increased. ” Ironically, despite all our technological “advances,” we are like the Raji: when we seek God’s presence in nature, we are no longer sure where He (or She) can be found.
I will remember my covenant which is between me and you and every living creature of all ﬂesh; and the waters shall never again become a ﬂood to destroy all ﬂesh” (Gen. 9:9–15). The rainbow—based, we are told, on the sign of a bow (that is, a weapon) turned into a sign of compact and peace—is extended to every living thing on earth. If God is committed to preserving the world, religious environmentalists ask, can humans, as least humans who take the Bible seriously, have the arrogance to destroy it?
23 This change would require new laws to go along with new “spiritual goals”—and a practical commitment to take the environment seriously in all aspects of our economic life. Thus, Lerner’s proposal, in a form typical of religious environmentalists, combines universal values grounded in a religious vision of the ultimate worth of life with detailed proposals for deep-seated societal reform. Once again the Voice of Reason chimes in: “Are you kidding? Totally impractical! ” Such a worldly wise response makes perfect sense—until, that is, we remember occasions when similarly “naı¨ve” and “impractical” religious ideas took leading roles in profound social transformation.