By Raymond Lam
China is undergoing a renaissance in environmental awareness. In this article Raymond explores how recent shifts in ethical and spiritual attitudes (thanks to China’s Daoist, Confucian, and Buddhist faiths) can help combat the economics of extinction, a terrifying new trend that provides incentive to drive endangered species to annihilation.
Planetary Healing: Buddhism and World Ecology
From biodiversity loss to desertification, from veganism and vegetarianism to green energy, environmental issues are the most significant and pressing matters for our present and future generations. Religious institutions and individuals around the world, from the Roman Catholic Church to the China Daoist Association, have mobilized in support of initiatives and projects that can educate people about the responsibility to stewardship and protection of the global ecology. The Buddhist community is no different. Over the past few years the Buddhistdoor Global team has covered the extensive involvement of Buddhist leaders and communities in environmental causes, from the Gyalwang Drukpa’s yatras to clean up trash from the Himalayas to landmark climate change statements signed by preeminent leaders.
We devote 2017’s special issue to the planet itself, and the environment on which humankind depends for survival. In this issue we draw from the ideas, experience, and research of diverse Buddhist contributors, bringing a Buddhist perspective to diverse ecological issues like the animal trade, pollution and waste, and sustainable living. Every quarter our special issue will be updated with two articles from contributors, so keep a lookout throughout the year for updates!
Explore our Special Issue:
By Raymond Lam
Thanissara has spent many decades at the forefront of spiritual activism and Engaged Buddhist thinking. In this article she explores the Buddhist angle on ecological issues in South Africa, particularly on wildlife conservation, a subject close to her heart. She proposes a holistic approach to tackle the endemic crises of animal trafficking, game hunting, and the paradigm of acquisition, while also educating oneself about the difference between true and false conservation.