Religion and Spirituality

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALorraine Lander, Genesee Valley Center, Canandaigua Unit, SUNY Empire State College writes:

“The role of religion and spiritual beliefs are important in considerations of man’s relationship with nature and sustainable behaviors, including the study of spiritual ecology and deep ecology. Study in this area could focus on religious attitudes and nature, as well as nonreligious spiritual connections with nature.  Organized religious groups have also taken a lead in many communities in promoting sustainable behaviors, and this work can also be explored.”

“In terms of spirituality, this is broadly defined as how an individual conceives of his/her relationships with the broader world around them, as well as how that conception influences thoughts, beliefs and behaviors connected to the environment and sustainable behaviors.  Investigations into this aspect of the subtopic could look at concepts of Gaia, deep ecology, examining aspects of ecological identity, biophilia and how they connect to well-being and man’s relationships with the natural world. Deep ecology  is an ecological movement that considers the worth of all beings founded on the idea that human and nonhuman life are connected and interdependent.”

Below is a list of resources on this topic. Find a more complete list of resources with links for learning and teaching about this topic on our Pinterest site: Follow Sustainability’s board Religion, Spirituality and Nature on Pinterest.

Web Resources

Minobimaatisiiwin – the good life, a talk by Winona LaDuke from TEDxSitka – YouTube

An article from Earth Charter Institute on religion and sustainability.

The Sacredness of Earth Day: Stewardship as Spiritual Practice, Gail Straub. A blog post on the Huffington Post.

Spiritual Dimensions of Sustainable Development, Arthur Lyon Dahl.