Green Patriarch: Bartholomew
This is a powerful film on a true spiritual leader who fully grasps the significance of the current moment for the future of humanity and Creation, and who is working behind the scenes to change the way humanity relates to Earth and Nature. (watch The Green Patriarch)
Recent Developments in Religion and Ecology
A while back we posted an excerpt from a film about an inspiring man, the Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople. The Green Patriarch, as Bartholomew is known, has been working quietly for years to reawaken a sense of responsibility for Earth's nature within the Christian tradition. Here we look at some other voices in this field, notably the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology and the legacy of Thomas Berry.
Yale University has launched a program to explore common ground among religions concerning ecology and the environment issues facing our species. The Yale University Forum on Religion and Ecology is supported by The Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, Yale Divinity School, Yale Center for Bioethics, Yale Institution for Social and Policy Studies, and several foundations, including The Thomas Berry Foundation.
In these videos, Co-Directors John Grim and Mary Evelyn Tucker, along with Bill McKibben and Thomas Berry and others, discuss a new relationship between religion and the environment, a new religious consciousness which considers the natural world sacred:
The Forum on Religion and Ecology is the largest international multi-religious project of its kind. With its conferences, publications, and website it is engaged in exploring religious world-views, texts, and ethics in order to broaden understanding of the complex nature of current environmental concerns.
The Forum recognizes that religions need to be in dialogue with other disciplines (e.g., science, ethics, economics, education, public policy, gender) in seeking comprehensive solutions to both global and local environmental problems.
The creation of the Yale Forum on Religion and Ecology was inspired by the work of Thomas Berry, cultural historian, ecologist and theologian, author of The Dream of the Earth and The Great Work, who died in 2009. Here is a video excerpt of the film "Thomas Berry Speaks":
"Creation is a communion of subjects rather than a collection of objects"
Some further clips of Thomas Berry:
Inspired by the Yale Forum, filmmakers Marty Ostrow and Terry Kay Rockefeller have made a documentary on the religious-environmental movement. Michael Zimmerman of the Clergy Letter Project reports Ostrow told him "the film demonstrates 'the enormous potential the movement holds for environmentalism." [and that] He is convinced that broader participation by members of traditional religious groups may well enliven a "secular environmental movement that has stalled.'"
In the late 1990's Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim organized the "Religions of the World and Ecology" conference series at Harvard University. Harvard did a book series from the conference:
"The Religions of the World and Ecology series, published from 1997 to 2003, examines nine religious traditions and their ecological implications. These volumes result from a three-year research project conducted at the CSWR under the direction of Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim; the project involved the direct participation and collaboration of some 600 scholars, religious leaders, and environmental specialists from around the world." (view conference publications)