Religion and Ecology in India and Southeast Asia

Front Cover
Psychology Press, 2001 - Religion - 210 pages
The resolution of the ecological problems facing the Indian sub-continent -- with its huge Himalayan land mass and large population -- and southeast Asia will be a major factor in whether life as we know it will survive beyond the early centuries of the new millennium.

Religion and Ecology in India and Southeast Asia looks at the part the Hindu and Buddhist traditions could play in promoting more just and sustainable relationships between people and the natural world. The ecological potential of these traditions is considered both from a historical perspective, and in relation to their contemporary expressions. From this view of these traditions, transformations between the past and the present are shown to offer the most fertile possibilities for improvement. David L. Gosling's arguments are based on the extensive fieldwork he has carried out in the region and are framed by the sociopolitical context of religious change in India and southeast Asia, where it is maintained that the development-led analysis of Amartya Sen, with its emphasis on participative education, healthcare and a reduction of the gender imbalance, is a crucial prerequisite for social and environmental improvement. Though regional in scope, this is a study of global significance, considering the most urgent social and environmental problems of the new millennium.

 

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Contents

Figures
15
Ecology and Hindu tradition
16
Ecology and modern India
34
Struggles for the forests
51
Ecology and Buddhism
68
a case study
86
India since Independence
110
Signs of hope
136
Expanding our horizons
159
Transformations
165
Indian nongovernmental organizations
181
Select bibliography
201
Copyright

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About the author (2001)

David L. Gosling trained as a nuclear physicist and more recently was the first Spalding Fellow in Religions at Clare Hall, University of Cambridge, where he is currently based. He was Director of Church and Society at the World Council of Churches at the University of Geneva and has published widely on environmental issues in south Asia.

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