Dark Green Religion - discovery of the sacred in nature

Photo copyright Jennie Burns
Dark Green Religion. I first heard the term on National Public Radio. Bron Taylor, Professor of Religion and Nature at the University of Florida, has just written a book with this title. I was excited to finally have put a name to my way of thinking. Let me explain...

It has been known for some time that the Earth, in its ideal atmosphere for human existence, may be unique in our galaxy, and that nature as we know it may be a peculiarly rare thing in the infinite universe in which we exist. So then, shouldn't nature itself be considered sacred and miraculous? Whereas many christians believe that the sacred only exists above and beyond this earth and above and beyond what we know, followers of "dark green religion" consider that the sacred lies here on Earth, able to be touched, experienced, loved and protected. And this is the very sentiment that I have always felt. According to Bron, Nature religion is most commonly used as an umbrella term to mean religious perceptions and practices that are characterized by a reverence for nature and that consider its destruction a desecrating act. This seems to be a progressive way of thinking that could, in time, replace traditional religion, as there is a dire need for this way of thinking AT THIS MOMENT, considering that our resources will not last forever and we are starting to realize that action needs to be taken to protect what we have.

Humans, animals, and all life has shared the same struggle for existence, and therefore everything here on this Earth is interconnected. We all share a common ancestor, common beginnings, and common ties to each and every species on this planet. In this way, even evolution is spiritual. These beliefs have led me into the life I live, and I hope that the "greening" of religion continues - for the sake of all life here on Earth.

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