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These seem to be almost a secret. What do you think?

Points of Religious Agreement in Environmental Ethics

A review of environmental ethics in each of the world's religions show that religious traditions agree, to a greater or lesser extent, on the following important points:

  The natural world has value in itself and does not exist solely to serve human needs.
  There is a significant continuity of being, between human and non-human living beings, even though humans do have a distinctive role. This continuity can be felt and experienced.
  Non-human living beings are morally significant, in the eyes of God and/or in the cosmic order. They have their own unique relations to God, and their own places in the cosmic order.
  The dependence of human life on the natural world can and should be acknowledged in ritual and other expressions of appreciation and gratitude.
  Moral norms such as justice, compassion and reciprocity apply (in apropriate ways) both to human beings and to non-human beings. The well-being of humans and the well-being of non-human beings are inseparably connected.
  There are legitimate and illegitimate uses of nature.
  Greed and destructiveness are condemned. Restraint and protection are commended.
  Human beings are obliged to be aware and responsible in living in harmony with the natural world, and should follow the specific practices for this prescribed by their traditions.

* The research supporting this conclusion can be found in Kusumita P. Pedersen, "Environmental Ethics in Interreligious Perspective," in Explorations in Global Ethics: Comparative Religious Ethics and Interreligous Dialogue,eds/ Sumner B. Twiss and Bruce Grelle, Boulder, CO. and Oxford, U.K.: Westview Press, 1998. Reprinted with permission of Libby Bassett, John T. Brinkman, Kusumita P. Pedersen, editors, Earth and Faith (United Nations Environment Programme: New York, 2000), page 78.

Some sources of information for religion and environment:

Alliance of Religion and Conservation, Martin Palmer, ARC/ICOREC, 3 Wynnstay Grove, Manchester, M14 GXG, UK. Tel: 44(0)161 248-5731 / Fax: 44(0)161 248-5736 / E-mail: icorec@icorec.nwnet.co.uk

Forum On Religion and Ecology, Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim, coordinators. Department of Religion, Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA 17837, USA. Tel: (570)577-1205 / Fax: (570)577-1064 / E-mail: mtucker@bucknell.edu / Web: www.environment.harvard.edu/religion

National Religious Partnership for the Environment, Paul Gorman, Executive Director, 1047 Amsterdam Ave., New York, NY 10025, USA. Tel: (212)316-7441; (212)316-7547 / E-mail: nrpe@nrpe.org / Web: www.nrpe.org

Islamic Foundation for Ecology and Environmental Sciences (IFEES), 93 Court Rd., Birmingham B12 9LQ, UK. Tel: 44(0)121 440 3500 / Fax: 440-8144 / Web: www.webofcreation.org

United Nations Environment Programme, New York Office, DC2-803, Unted Nations, New York, NY 10017, USA. Tel: (212)963-8210 / Fax: (212)963-7341 / E-Mail: uneprona@un.org

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