Thursday, October 22, 2009

The New Vision of Reality: excerpt 4

the sense in which I use the term "ecological" is associated with a specific philosophical school and, moreover, with a global grassroots movement, known as "deep ecology," which is rapidly gaining prominence - the philosophical school was founded by the Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess in the early seventies with his distinction between "shallow" and "deep" ecology - this distinction is now widely accepted as a useful terminology for referring to a major division within contemporary environmental thought.

shallow ecology is anthropocentric - it views humans as above, or outside of nature, as the source of all value, and ascribes only instrumental, or use value to nature - Deep ecology does not separate humans from the natural environment, nor does it separate anything else from it - it does not see the world as a collection of isolated objects but rather as a network of phenomena that are fundamentally interconnected and interdependent - Deep ecology recognizes the intrinsic values of all living beings and views humans as just one particular strand in the web of life.

ultimately, deep ecological awareness is spiritual, or religious awareness - when the concept of the human spirit is understood as the mode of consciousness in which the individual feels connected to the cosmos as a whole, it becomes clear that ecological awareness is spiritual in its deepest essence - it is therefore not surprising that the emerging new vision of reality, based on deep ecological awareness, is consistent with the so-called "perennial philosophy" of spiritual traditions, whether we talk about the spirituality of Christian mystics, that of Buddhists, or the philosophy and cosmology underlying the Native American traditions.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Mammon or Messiah research contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of "fair use" in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, economic and social issues. The material on this site is presented without profit for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than "fair use" you must request permission from the copyright owner.