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Compare philosophical Daoist notions of nature with the emerging discourses in the West of Spiritual Ecology - Essay Example

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Whereas the west’s ‘spiritual ecology’ calls for “a spiritual response to the ecological crisis”, Daoist approach, to nature, itself responds to this demand to a large extent…
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Compare philosophical Daoist notions of nature with the emerging discourses in the West of Spiritual Ecology
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Compare philosophical Daoist notions of nature with the emerging discourses in the West of Spiritual Ecology

Download file to see previous pages... A spiritual ecologist believes that since spirituality dominates a significant part of human life, it can be manipulated to change and, in cases, to alter man’s perspective towards nature and the universe in order for a better inhabitable environmental status. In this regard, discourses on ‘spiritual ecology’ pivots on man’s religiosity and its connection with environment and ecology. On the contrary, religiosity and nature stand on the two opposite ends of the same continuum. Daoism is more of a philosophy, than religion, which includes spirituality that is indispensably connected with human being’s harmonious position amid the sacred order of the universe. Discourses on ‘Spiritual ecology’, in the first place, put emphasis on the idea that “The major problems in the world are the result of the difference between the way nature works and the way man thinks.” ...
Before heaven and earth it existed. Without sound, without substance, it stands alone and unchanging. It is all-pervading and unfailing. We do not know its name, but we call it Dao” (Lao Tzu, quoted in “On Truth and Reality”). According to Daoism, man is an integral part of how the immense unity of this universe functions. Therefore, man’s happiness and salvation lie in his or her knowledge about the Dao, in other words, about how the immense entity of the universe functions. Obviously, Daoism also puts emphasis on the fact that man should lead his or her life in harmony with Dao. Daoism includes man and nature, spirituality and devotion to nature on the same continuum. Man Position in Nature according to Daoism and Spiritual Ecology Uniting with Dao through Nature is considered to be the ultimate goal of human life in Daoism. As to the goal of human life, Lao Tzu, one of the central figures of Daoism, notes, “Being one with nature, the sage is in accord with the Dao” (Lao Tzu, “On Truth and Reality”). The concept of Dao in Daoism is more philosophical than doctrinal. Since Daoism asserts that man needs to know about his or her role in the greater way how the universe or nature functions, he or she is assigned with any dominion over the nature; rather man is entrusted with a responsibility to grow a harmonious relationship with natural orders and functions. Referring to this environment-friendly aspect of Daoism, Chen Xia comments, “Chinese Daoism rejects such idea that humans have dominion over the earth and its other inhabitants. Nature in Daoism is something of great value in and for itself.” (2) But in Daoism, the universe as well as the nature is infused in the existence of Dao. Indeed ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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