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How relevant is religion in the context of the worldwide ecological problem that we are experiencing? Many climate researchers are sounding the alarm. The changes in the world climate are accelerating in a dramatic fashion and much faster than previously assumed. This catastrophic development has been brought about to a large extent by humanity itself and may only be quickly slowed down by prompt action.

Worldwide the ecological problems such as the extinction of species,environmental pollution and climate change are connected to social problems, spreading poverty, hunger, diseases, immigration, exploitation of women and children and much more. Technical solutions to this are not sufficient, as important as they might be, in order to change anything.

What is needed is a swift and decisive change of our human mentality, thinking and behavior. The point is to create a cleaner, socially more responsive and healthy world. Such a comprehensive change in human mentality and behavior also includes in particular the religious and moral ideas of humankind.

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This brings religion into play as an important authority creating a way of thinking.

The ethical and moral principles of religions also influence human action towards nature.

Consciously or unconsciously, our behavior vis-à-vis our environment and nature is also based on our religious worldview.

Our worldview, which influences our behavior towards creation, is also shaped by our religious views. Moreover, religion, because of its moral authority, has the power to determine the
image the believer has of the cosmos and to change how she interacts with nature.

Religion not only consists in a belief in a transcendental god or gods and in a life after death. Religion also informs human behavior vis-à-vis the real world, material nature and the entire creation.

FlowersFlowers

P. Johannes B. Freyer, OFM

Question for Reflection:

What is it like for you to contemplate the holiness and goodness of God’s creation? Why not spend a few moments thanking and praising God...