Religion And The Order Of Nature
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"The most comprehensive and intelligent treatment of [religious ecology]....Nasr is one of the major intellects of our day."--Huston Smith, University of California, Berkeley.
The Encyclopedia of Religion and Nature, originally published in 2005, is a landmark work in the burgeoning field of religion and nature. It covers a vast and interdisciplinary range of material, from thinkers to religious traditions and beyond, with clarity and style. Widely praised by reviewers and the recipient of two reference work awards since its publication (see www.religionandnature.com/ern), this new, more affordable version is a must-have book for anyone interested in the manifold and fascinating links between religion and nature, in all their many senses.
This volume contains ten new essays focused on the exploration and articulation of a narrative that considers the notion of order within medieval and modern philosophy—its various kinds (natural, moral, divine, and human), the different ways in which each is conceived, and the diverse dependency relations that are thought to obtain among them. Descartes, with the help of others, brought about an important shift in what was understood by the order of nature by placing laws of nature at the foundation of his natural philosophy. Vigorous debate then ensued about the proper formulation of the laws of nature and the moral law, about whether such laws can be justified, and if so, how-through some aspect of the divine order or through human beings-and about what consequences these laws have for human beings and the moral and divine orders. That is, philosophers of the period were thinking through what the order of nature consists in and how to understand its relations to the divine, human, and moral orders. No two major philosophers in the modern period took exactly the same stance on these issues, but these issues are clearly central to their thought. The Divine Order, the Human Order, and the Order of Nature is devoted to investigating their positions from a vantage point that has the potential to combine metaphysical, epistemological, scientific, and moral considerations into a single narrative.
This ground-breaking study reveals an unorganized and previously unacknowledged religion at the heart of American culture. Nature, Albanese argues, has provided a compelling religious center throughout American history.
"A love of green may be a human universal. Deepening the palette of green scholarship, Bron Taylor proves remarkably to be both an encyclopedist and a visionary."--Jonathan Benthall, author of Returning to Religion: Why a Secular Age is Haunted by Faith "This important book provides insight into how a profound sense of relation to nature offers many in the modern world a vehicle for attaining a spiritual wholeness akin to what has been historically associated with established religion. In this sense, Dark Green Religion offers both understanding and hope for a world struggling for meaning and purpose beyond the isolation of the material here and now."--Stephen Kellert, Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies "In this thought-provoking volume, Bron Taylor explores the seemingly boundless efforts by human beings to understand the nature of life and our place in the universe. Examining in depth the ways in which influential philosophers and naturalists have viewed this relationship, Taylor contributes to the further development of thought in this critically important area, where our depth of understanding will play a critical role in our survival."--Peter H. Raven, President, Missouri Botanical Garden "Carefully researched, strongly argued, originally conceived, and very well executed, this book is a vital contribution on a subject of immense religious, political, and environmental importance. It's also a great read."--Roger S. Gottlieb, author of A Greener Faith: Religious Environmentalism and our Planet's Future "A fascinating analysis of our emotional and spiritual relationship to nature. Whether you call it dark green religion or something else, Bron Taylor takes us through our spiritual relationship with our planet, its ecosystems and evolution, in an enlightened and completely undogmatic manner."--Dr. Claude Martin, Former Director General, World Wildlife Fund "An excellent collection of guideposts for perplexed students and scholars about the relationships of nature religions, spirituality, animism, pantheism, deep ecology, Gaia, and land ethics--and for the environmentalist seeking to make the world a better place through green religion as a social force."--Fikret Berkes, author of Sacred Ecology: Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Resource Management "Dark Green Religion shows conclusively how nature has inspired a growing religious movement on the planet, contesting the long reign of many older faiths. Taylor expertly guides us through an astonishing array of thinkers, past and present, who have embraced, in part or whole, the new religion. I was thoroughly convinced that this movement has indeed become a major force on Earth, with great potential consequences for our environmental ethics."--Donald Worster, University of Kansas "In this exceptionally interesting and informative book, Bron Taylor has harvested the fruits of years of pioneering research in what amounts to a new field in religious studies: the study of how religious/spiritual themes show up in the work of people concerned about nature in many diverse ways. Taylor persuasively argues that appreciation of nature's sacred or spiritual dimension both informs and motivates the work of individuals ranging from radical environmentalists and surfers, to eco-tourism leaders and museum curators. I highly recommend this book for everyone interested learning more about the surprising extent to which religious/spiritual influences many of those who work to protect, to exhibit, or to represent the natural world."--Michael E. Zimmerman, Director, Center for Humanities and the Arts, University of Colorado at Boulder
The field of religion and ecology is an emerging and growing movement that is becoming relevant and influential in the world. It seeks to analyse, encourage, inspire, use, compare, and combine religious traditions to engage and shape environmental issues. Tony Watling seeks to ethnographically analyse this important field and its expressions. In particular, he analyses and compares its explorations of different world religions for ecological themes and the resulting expressions of ecological visions, in what he terms 'religious ecotopias' - idealized, environmentally-friendly re-imaginings of nature and humanity, and correspondingly religion, which seek to influence environmental attitudes.
The author makes a stirring, poignant argument for making nature the basis for the metaphysical, pointing out that nature itself is worthy of a deep adoration and commitment. (Philsophy)
In the wake of both the semiotic and the psychoanalytic revolutions, how is it possible to describe the object of religious worship in realist terms? Semioticians argue that each object is known only insofar as it gives birth to a series of signs and interpretants (new signs). From the psychoanalytic side, religious beliefs are seen to belong to transference energies and projections that contaminate the religious object with all-too-human complexes. In Nature's Religion distinguished theologian and philosopher Robert S. Corrington weaves together the concept of infinite semiosis with that of the transference to show that the self does have access to something in nature that is intrinsically religious. Corrington argues that signs and our various transference fields can and do connect us with fully natural religious powers that are not of our own making, thereby opening up a path past the Western monotheisms to a capacious religion of nature. With a foreword by Robert C. Neville, Nature's Religion is essential reading for philosophers of religion, scholars of the psychology of religion, and theologians.
A fundamental requirement in an inclusivist understanding of the relationship between Christianity and other religions is evidence of God's salvific activity outside any knowledge of Christ. This is commonly identified in the religion of Old Testament Israel. On this basis an analogy (the Israel analogy) is drawn between the religion of the old covenant and contemporary non-Christian religions. Closely related is the parallel argument that as Christ has fulfilled the Old covenant, he can also be seen as the fulfillment of other religious traditions and their scriptures. This study outlines the use of the Israel analogy and the fulfillment model, subjecting these concepts to a biblical and theological critique revealing that the exegetical and patristic data are misconstrued in support of these concepts. Furthermore, the Israel analogy and the fulfillment model undermine the sui generis relationship between the old and new covenants and fail to respect the organic, progressive nature of salvation history. They also misconstrue the old covenant and the nature of its fulfillment in the new covenant. The Israel analogy and fulfillment model rely on a correspondence between the chronologically premessianic (Israel) and the epistemologically premessianic (other religions), and therefore consider the BC condition to continue today. In so doing, they undermine the significance of the Christ-event by failing to appreciate the decisive effect of this event on history and the nature of existence. It marks a radical turn in salvation history, a crisis point, rendering the BC period complete and fulfilled. Therefore the concept of a continuing premessianic condition or state is seriously flawed, as are the Israel analogy and fulfillment model. Thus the inclusivist paradigm reliant in large part on these defective concepts is also problematic, and proponents of this paradigm need to reconsider its basis.
"The issue of the Protestant ethic and the spirit of capitalism has been debated endlessly, but few scholars have seriously continued Weber's own research into the Reformation sources of seventeenth-century England. David Little's study was one of the first to do so, and remains an important contribution."—Guenther Roth, University of Washington