The Human-nature Relationship Revisited

We have traveled through time on an evolutionary journey of humanities’ relationship with the natural world and have become aware of the events, both natural and human, that have shaped that relationship from one of relative harmony and connectedness to one of disconnection and alienation. We have delved into the specific reasons for our dysfunctionalContinue reading “The Human-nature Relationship Revisited”

Commitment and Concerted Action in the World: Uniting Humanity to a Global Environmental Purpose

We cannot resolve the environmental problems we have caused by simply becoming aware of what we have done and attaching a diagnosis to it. What is needed now is a disposition of urgency to create a comprehensive plan on which to act with full commitment and conviction. We are now at the place where weContinue reading “Commitment and Concerted Action in the World: Uniting Humanity to a Global Environmental Purpose”

Predicting Our Ecological Future

Our biosphere is a very complicated system of interrelationships. These relationships include the interactions between microorganisms, soil, water, rocks, the atmosphere, the global chemistry and all flora and fauna. Any breakdown or imbalance in the relationship between any of these components is very significant and can lead to extensive ecosystem damage. In fact, the simplerContinue reading “Predicting Our Ecological Future”

Does the Universe Have a Purpose?

The question should be asked if humanity has a right to exploit the environment for its own purposes, knowing that such intentional behavior will eventually destroy the Earth?  I would reply that we do not have the right to make such a selfish decision in that the Earth is a living organism that has byContinue reading “Does the Universe Have a Purpose?”

Bioregionalism/Living in Place

Bioregionalism is the formal or scientific term for the practice of living in a particular geographical region in a symbiotic manner. Ideologically, it is predicated on an awareness of the ecology, culture and economy of a particular area and a conscious effort to live in harmony and sustainably with it. Practically, it concerns itself withContinue reading “Bioregionalism/Living in Place”

The Great Turning

The “Great Turning” refers to the transition and transformation from the ideologies of the industrial age to the new perspectives of respect for the planet, sustainability of the biosphere, and a sense of participation and connectedness with our habitat. This new philosophy is manifested in three main areas of focus including interventions to slow theContinue reading “The Great Turning”

Personalism and the Social Context

Personalism, a school of philosophy, usually idealist, asserts that the real is the personal, i.e., that the basic features of personality, consciousness, free self-determination, directedness toward ends, self-identity through time and value retentiveness make it the pattern of all reality. The ecological perspective related to personalism asserts that humans are part and parcel to the naturalContinue reading “Personalism and the Social Context”

The Minority Tradition and Direct Action as a Departure from the Technocratic-industrial Ideology

The minority tradition refers to a societal structure that is self-regulating and lacking in a centralized authority that employs large forces of police or military to regulate and control unwanted behavior. Many primal cultures operated in this manner and proved to be successful in meeting the social and psychological needs of its people as evidencedContinue reading “The Minority Tradition and Direct Action as a Departure from the Technocratic-industrial Ideology”

Transitioning to an Ecological Context and Ideology

There is a growing consensus that the attitudes, values, perceptions and basic worldview humanity has created and perpetuated is the root cause of our current ecological catastrophe and that a dramatic shift in consciousness, ideologies and behavior is our only hope of restoring harmony and balance with the Earth. If we are to change ourContinue reading “Transitioning to an Ecological Context and Ideology”

Ecotopian Thinking to Re-invent the Course of Human History and Evolution

Utopian thought has been an active component of many societies throughout history. It has conjured up notions of a preferred future and the creation of an idyllic world that can be viewed as a goal worthy of attainment or unrealistic and futile in recognition of the human condition historically. From an ecological perspective, utopianism isContinue reading “Ecotopian Thinking to Re-invent the Course of Human History and Evolution”

Personal Survival in a Chaotic World

Our ancestors possessed a fund of instinctual knowledge about how to survive and thrive in the habitats in which they lived. They knew how to hunt game, harvest plants and prepare the food they gathered to feed their tribes. They were aware of the local weather, natural disasters and how to interact with their surroundingsContinue reading “Personal Survival in a Chaotic World”

Ecological Resisting

Ecological resisting is the deep ecology term for non-violent direct action. Direct action means being in touch with and communicating about environmental concerns, educating ourselves regarding local and global ecological issues, being involved in eco-related initiatives and enrolling others to become involved as well. Resisting may include trespassing and other illegal activities such as blockingContinue reading “Ecological Resisting”

The Perceived Role of Humanity as Managers and Stewards of the Earth

According to James Lovelock, humanity has the faulty impression that it can extend its population and lifespan indefinitely or to certain desired levels through the practice of planetary management and that there is no particular limit to the Earth’s carrying capacity. All living creatures have a finite lifespan as a function of the way livingContinue reading “The Perceived Role of Humanity as Managers and Stewards of the Earth”

Deep Ecology

Deep Ecology is a branch of ecological philosophy that views humanity as interconnected and interdependent with its environment. It proposes that all entities of nature have an equal right to survive and evolve without interference from other entities. Deep Ecology is concerned with creating environmental ethics that help establish principles by which the human communityContinue reading “Deep Ecology”

The Relationship Between the Individual, Society and Nature

Civilization and nature are integrally connected. Humans have a covenant with the biosphere that influences our understanding and behavior and our relationship to the natural world. That relationship has been conventionally framed as individuals being separate and superior to the natural world and thus entitled to exploit it. This perception has spawned the ecological crisisContinue reading “The Relationship Between the Individual, Society and Nature”

Progressing Towards Cultural Maturity

Paul Shepard, in Nature and Madness, claims that we do not need to uproot all our social institutions, return to our initial state as hunters and gatherers, or revolt against modernism. Those philosophies, practices and lifestyles that do not meet the needs of a modern evolving society will slowly dissipate on their own, due toContinue reading “Progressing Towards Cultural Maturity”

Creating a New Vision and a Desired Future for Humanity and the Biosphere

What we desperately need today is a comprehensive vision and mission statement with appropriate goals and objectives to guide us in our efforts to restore the Earth to its original state of purity. Such a proclamation would help to empower our commitment and give us a plan of action with which to bring our visionContinue reading “Creating a New Vision and a Desired Future for Humanity and the Biosphere”

Proposed Political Models to Address the Ecological Crisis

There are two main political/social approaches being articulated in relation to our ecological crisis. They are the reformist and systemic models and within them comprise centralist and decentralist strategies. The reformist model operates within the current capitalist market economy and political paradigm and seeks to change those aspects that are problematic without changing the actualContinue reading “Proposed Political Models to Address the Ecological Crisis”

Government and Political Will

Governing bodies are vital entities that can have a substantial influence on the outcomes of the environmental crisis. Given governments have political power, financial, technical and human resources and the ability to organize and mobilize agendas, they are often able to do what smaller communities or groups of people cannot do and in a timelyContinue reading “Government and Political Will”

Economics, Capitalism and Consumerism

“Economics is usually defined as the “social science concerned chiefly with description and analysis of the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services.” (Economics: Definition of Economics by Merriam Webster), English economist Lionel Robbins defines economics as “the science which studies human behavior as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternativeContinue reading “Economics, Capitalism and Consumerism”

Predicting Our Ecological Future Via Computer Scenarios

Authors Donella Meadows, Jorgen Randers and Dennis Meadows created a sophisticated computer model of ecological scenarios of the world called World 3. In these scenarios, they depicted various human interactions with the environment based on a number of assumptions related to sustainability and ran the models to obtain a forecast of possible results. These modelsContinue reading “Predicting Our Ecological Future Via Computer Scenarios”

Evolution, Learning, Information and the Acceleration of Change

Information is one of the most powerful tools known to humanity. It has allowed humans to advance from primitive beasts to one of the most intelligent creatures on Earth. This transition has not been smooth and has had many growing pains along the way. Despite our problems, dysfunctional behaviors and other setbacks, we have evolvedContinue reading “Evolution, Learning, Information and the Acceleration of Change”

Technology

As I have previously stated, technology, when used appropriately, can be a tool of great importance and value in forwarding the advancement of civilization and humanities’ destiny.  Technology should be used to accommodate humanities material and other needs and allow for a productive and pleasurable lifestyle without resorting to practices that damage the Earth’s ecosystems.Continue reading “Technology”

Science

Science has historically promoted the perspective that discovering the mysteries of the universe are attainable only through the application of logic and the scientific method. It has not included other forms of knowledge (non-Western) that are mystical, spiritual, or experiential and has tended to discouraged attempts to integrate them into its scientific framework. It hasContinue reading “Science”

Population Growth

It is generally accepted by the scientific community that the planet can only accommodate a finite number of human beings. Overpopulation would eventually result in mass starvation and a significant depletion of natural resources such that ecosystem collapse would be inevitable. This would also disrupt the balance of all living things, cause the extinction ofContinue reading “Population Growth”

Psychoactive Plant Medicines, Minerals, Rituals and their Application in Inducing Altered States of Consciousness to Connect with the Natural World

Indigenous cultures have utilized plants, minerals and rituals such as dancing and drumming to connect with the mysteries of nature throughout history. It has been recognized that certain plant essences can affect parts of the brain that induce altered states of consciousness. Feelings of connectivity, affiliation, empathy, heightened sensory perception and expanded states of consciousnessContinue reading “Psychoactive Plant Medicines, Minerals, Rituals and their Application in Inducing Altered States of Consciousness to Connect with the Natural World”

Experiencing Wilderness and Wild Places

People have an inherent thirst for wild places for a variety of reasons. They are instrumental in satisfying both basic and sophisticated psychological needs, help us with the process of maturation and connects us to the habitats of other living creatures and the elements of the Earth. This connectedness and interrelatedness assist us in understandingContinue reading “Experiencing Wilderness and Wild Places”

Ecological Perception

Laura Seawall explains that our five senses, especially sight, are a fundamental bridge in connecting with our environment. Given our tendency to value cognitive processes as more important than the characteristics of our physical nature, learning to fully utilize our perceptual capabilities could help us to better integrate the mind-body split that has plagued humanityContinue reading “Ecological Perception”

Ecofeminism: An Ecofeminist Vision of Humanity

Eco-feminism is a transformational endeavor or movement that critically examines the historical relationship between the subjugation and denigration of women and the natural world. Furthermore, it explores the roots of patriarchy and the consequent philosophies that sanctioned the exploitation of nature and women for the seemingly sole benefit of the male species. Other conditions ofContinue reading “Ecofeminism: An Ecofeminist Vision of Humanity”

Eco-Psychology

Principles of Eco-psychology by Theodore Roszak Theodore Roszak, in The Voice of the Earth, has formulated a number of principles that define the new psychological constructs that Eco-psychology is based on. Eco-psychology includes human interactions and connectedness with its habitat in its study of human behavior and does not view humanity as separate from orContinue reading “Eco-Psychology”

Psychology

Psychology has promoted a multitude of theories, diagnosis and interventions for nearly every cognitive and emotional problem humanity has ever encountered in the history of our species. Unfortunately, it has not often considered human ailments in terms of environmental factors (only psychological ones related to internal thoughts and emotions as they relate to the selfContinue reading “Psychology”

Philosophy

Philosophy, somewhat like religion, has been interested in understanding the nature of the universe and humanities’ place within it. In its early inception, it had many overlapping areas of investigation and discourse with that of religious inquiry.  Eventually, philosophy started to focus more on ontology, metaphysics and other scientific issues and left morality primarily withContinue reading “Philosophy”

Religion

Religion, attempting to help humankind understand the mysteries of creation and our place within the cosmos, issued theological statements about our origin and how we should live. These proclamations varied greatly with the accumulated knowledge of the day and with the motivation and intentions of its leadership. Many of these mandates were not concocted forContinue reading “Religion”

Returning to Our Initial State as Hunters and Gatherers

There are those who advocate that we abandon our modern way of life and return to our initial state as hunters and gatherers and forsake all the technological advances that we have made in order to partake in a simpler and more basic lifestyle. This idea might sound rather appealing, given our current circumstances, butContinue reading “Returning to Our Initial State as Hunters and Gatherers”

Part Two: Considerations and Corrective Thinking and Action to Address the Troubled Human-Nature Relationship and Reconnect with the Natural World

Given the multitude of difficulties that have defined the human-nature relationship since Homo erectus evolved to a state of sophistication on this planet, it is apparent that we, as a species, have perceptual and behavioral problems that appear to be highly significant and maybe even insurmountable. I have not meant to paint humanity in aContinue reading “Part Two: Considerations and Corrective Thinking and Action to Address the Troubled Human-Nature Relationship and Reconnect with the Natural World”

A Summary of Human Interactions with the Environment

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. Many of us have come to perceive that we are separate and independent from the biosphere. We often fail to see the naturalContinue reading “A Summary of Human Interactions with the Environment”

Is It Too Late?

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. There are many scientists, environmentalists and other professionals who believe the environmental crisis is solvable if we assume responsibility for what we haveContinue reading “Is It Too Late?”

Does the Universe Have a Purpose?

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. The origin of the universe is uncertain but we know that at one time, it existed as very condensed, hot energy that resultedContinue reading “Does the Universe Have a Purpose?”

The Acceleration of Evolutionary Change

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. Since the beginning of the cosmos, everything has continued to evolve but the pace of evolutionary change has speeded up and has continuedContinue reading “The Acceleration of Evolutionary Change”

Recreational Pursuits

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. In primal cultures, recreational pursuits were carried out in local villages and in surrounding environments. Rituals and ceremonies were an important aspect ofContinue reading “Recreational Pursuits”

Polluting the Environment

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. The history of pollution is very long. Dealing with human waste has been a significant problem for all societies. Initially, the most pressingContinue reading “Polluting the Environment”

Pillaging the Planet

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. Early hunters and gatherers utilized nature’s bounty in a pragmatic manner. They gathered and hunted enough food to sustain their nutritional needs butContinue reading “Pillaging the Planet”

The Influence of Governing Bodies

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. Governments have been both a help and hindrance in regards to the environmental crisis we currently face. Apathy, Isolationism and self-interests have oftenContinue reading “The Influence of Governing Bodies”

The Age of Information

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. Humanity has progressed from small-scale hunter-gatherer societies to larger settlements based on agriculture to the endorsement of science and technology in complex societalContinue reading “The Age of Information”

Influence of the Dominant Worldview on the Educational System

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis.          Given the education system is steeped in our current technological-industrial framework, it tends to perpetuate the misdirected perceptions, values and attitudes thatContinue reading “Influence of the Dominant Worldview on the Educational System”

Consumerism, Computers and the Internet

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. Before the advent of the Internet, the acquisition of most material goods and services was done more at a local level, usually closeContinue reading “Consumerism, Computers and the Internet”

The Influence of the Elite and Wealthy Power Holders

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. There are a group of powerful and wealthy people who have decided on the goal of controlling the populous politically and economically andContinue reading “The Influence of the Elite and Wealthy Power Holders”

Economics and the Market Economy

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. “Economics is usually defined as the “social science concerned with analyzing and describing the production, distribution, and consumption of wealth”. English economist LionelContinue reading “Economics and the Market Economy”

Population Growth

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore. I will be posting new articles to this site on a regular basis. The environmental movement has advocated for conservation and preservation of our habitat to ensure that both humanity and the planet will be sustainable.Continue reading “Population Growth”

Conservation and the Laws of Nature

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore The environmental movement has advocated for conservation and preservation of our habitat to ensure that both humanity and the planet will be sustainable. As much as this philosophy makes sense and has ethical implications as well,Continue reading “Conservation and the Laws of Nature”

Reformism

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore Philosophical Reformism Philosophically, reformism frames progress as the cultural development of humanity from the primitive nature of superstitious religious hunters and gatherers through philosophy and metaphysics, to the current scientific, industrial and technologically based paradigm weContinue reading “Reformism”

Human Psychology and Nature-part five

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore Perspectives Related to the Human Psyche and Consciousness Indigenous cultures appeared to understand the roots of their existence and were in touch with the fact that human evolution was an integrated process with that of creation.Continue reading “Human Psychology and Nature-part five”

Human Psychology and Nature-part four

A Critique of Deep Ecology Al Gore points out that some deep ecologists frame the human relationship with nature using the metaphor of disease. This portrays humans playing the role of a pathogen: a virus attacking the Earth and threatening the planet’s fabric of life. One example is that humans are likened to an HIVContinue reading “Human Psychology and Nature-part four”

Human Psychology and Nature-part three

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore The Fear of Scarcity The fear of scarcity is a very significant problem in the human condition. When we don’t have enough of something, not only are we aware of this fact but we have feelingsContinue reading “Human Psychology and Nature-part three”

Human Psychology and Nature-part two

Autism Thomas Berry, a theologian, presented the idea that the human species has become autistic in relation to its environment. He reasoned this disposition originated in Descartes’s view of the world as being mechanistic. As humans began to perceive the world as a mechanism (as it was referred to by the scientists and philosophers ofContinue reading “Human Psychology and Nature-part two”

Human Psychology and Nature-part one

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore The Psychology-Nature Relationship A perplexing aspect of psychology is that the study of humans and their mental aliments have been predominately aimed at identifying and understanding internal emotions, thoughts, values and behavior and has not consideredContinue reading “Human Psychology and Nature-part one”

Philosophy and Nature

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore Philosophy was created to aide humanity in finding purpose and meaning in life. It was also used to understand our origins and ontology and in the process of doing this, redefined the human-nature relationship in manyContinue reading “Philosophy and Nature”

Religion Is Initiated

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore Religion was early humans’ first venture at understanding the cosmos and their place in its unfathomable mysteries. The first religions worshiped the elements of nature, especially cosmic entities, animals and the diverse land forms of theContinue reading “Religion Is Initiated”

Consciousness and its Relationship to Biological Evolution

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore Consciousness is defined as the state of being awake and aware of one’s surroundings; the awareness or perception of something by a person; the fact of awareness by the mind of itself and the world. AllContinue reading “Consciousness and its Relationship to Biological Evolution”

The Development of the Intellect

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore Intelligence is the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills. All living things have intelligence as a mechanism to survive and prosper. Humans and animals functioned similarly in this sense until the intellect developed. IntellectualContinue reading “The Development of the Intellect”

The Development of Speech and Language

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore The development of language and the vocal capacity for speech has been attributed as the most significant development of any creature on the planet. Language provided a means of communication that allowed complex interactions between individualsContinue reading “The Development of Speech and Language”

A Change in Perspective in the Human-nature Relationship

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore As civilizations evolved and became more sophisticated, human beings continued to discover and utilize the resources of their domain to assure their advancement and security. At first, the abundance of natural reserves seemed endless but asContinue reading “A Change in Perspective in the Human-nature Relationship”

The Advent of Agriculture and the Beginning of Settlement

An excerpt from the Passionate Earth: The Evolution of Our Relationship with the Natural World by John Del Signore As hominids evolved and gained more knowledge and experience with their habitat, they began to experiment with growing their own food and agriculture was initiated. (P. 22, Russell) The first indication of agricultural practices dates backContinue reading “The Advent of Agriculture and the Beginning of Settlement”