Download and read online Biodivinity and Biodiversity in PDF and EPUB This book is concerned with the argument that religious traditions are inherently environmentally friendly. Yet in a developing country such as India, the majority of people cannot afford to put the 'Earth first' regardless of the extent to which this idea can be supported by their religious traditions. Does this mean that the linking of religion and environmental concerns is a strategy more suited to contexts where people have a level of material security that enables them to think and act like environmentalists? This question is approached through a series of case studies from Britain and India. The book concludes that there is a tension between the 'romantic' ecological discourse common among many western activists and scholars, and a more pragmatic approach, which is often found in India. The adoption of environmental causes by the Hindu Right in India makes it difficult to distinguish genuine concern for the environment from the broader politics surrounding the idea of a Hindu rashtra (nation). This raises a further level of analysis, which has not been provided in other studies.
Download and read online Religion Heritage and the Sustainable City in PDF and EPUB The speed and scale of urbanisation in India is unprecedented almost anywhere in the world and has tremendous global implications. The religious influence on the urban experience has resonances for all aspects of urban sustainability in India and yet it remains a blind spot while articulating sustainable urban policy. This book explores the historical and on-going influence of religion on urban planning, design, space utilisation, urban identities and communities. It argues that the conceptual and empirical approaches to planning sustainable cities in India need to be developed out of analytical concepts that define local sense of place and identity. Examining how Hindu religious heritage, beliefs and religiously influenced planning practices have impacted on sustainable urbanisation development in Jaipur and Indian cities in general, the book identifies the challenges and opportunities that ritualistic and belief resources pose for sustainability. It focuses on three key aspects: spatial segregation and ghettoisation; gender-inclusive urban development; and the nexus between religion, nature and urban development. This cutting-edge book is one of the first case studies linking Hindu religion, heritage, urban development, women and the environment in a way that responds to the realities of Indian cities. It opens up discussion on the nexus of religion and development, drawing out insightful policy implications for the sustainable urban planning of many cities in India and elsewhere in South Asia and the developing world.
Download and read online Writing the City in British Asian Diasporas in PDF and EPUB In 1962, the Commonwealth Immigrants Act hastened the process of South Asian migration to postcolonial Britain. Half a decade later, now is an opportune moment to revisit the accumulated writing about the diasporas formed through subsequent settlement, and to probe the ways in which the South Asian diaspora can be re-conceptualised. Writing the City in British Asian Diasporas takes a fresh look at such matters and will have multi-disciplinary resonance worldwide. The meaning and importance of local, multi-local and trans-local dynamics is explored through a devolved and regionally-accented comparison of five British Asian cities: Bradford, the East End of London, Manchester, Leicester and Birmingham. Analysing the ‘writing’ of these differently configured cities since the 1960s, its main focus is the significant discrepancies in representation between differently-positioned texts reflecting both dominant institutional discourses and everyday lived experiences of a locality. Part I offers a comprehensive, yet still highly contested, reading of each city’s archives. Part II examines how the arts and humanities fields of History, Religion, Gender and Literary/Cultural Studies have all written British Asian diasporas, and how their perspectives might complement the better-established agendas of the social sciences. Providing an innovative analysis of South Asian communities and their multi-local identities in Britain today, this interdisciplinary book will be of interest to scholars of South Asian Studies, Migration, Ethnic and Diaspora Studies, as well as Sociology, Anthropology, and Geography.
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Download and read online Religion and the Environment in PDF and EPUB In the last two decades a new form of religiously motivated social action and a virtually new field of academic study each based in recognition of the connections between religion and humanity 's treatment of the environment have developed. Interactions between religion and environmental concern have been manifest in the explosive growth of ecotheological writings, institutional commitment by organized religions, and environmental activism explicitly oriented to religious ideals. Clergy throughout the world in virtually every denomination have received word from leaders of their religion that the environment no less than sexuality, poverty, or war and peace is now a basic and compelling religious matter. Out of this confrontation have been born vital new theologies based in the recovery of marginalized elements of tradition, profound criticisms of the past, and ecologically oriented visions of God, the Sacred, the Earth, and human beings. Theologians from every religious tradition along with dozens of non-denominational spiritual writers have confronted world religions past attitudes towards nature. In the realm of institutional commitment, public statements and actions by organized religions have grown dramatically. In the context of political action, throughout the U.S. and the world religiously oriented groups take part in environmentally oriented political action: from lobbying and consciousness raising to activist demonstrations and civil disobedience. This collection serves as a comprehensive introduction, overview, and in-depth account of these exciting new developments. The four volumes cover virtually every aspect of the field from theological change and institutional commitment to innovation in liturgy, from new ecumenical connections among different religions and between religion, science and environmental movements, from religious participation in environmental politics to an account of the global social and political contexts in which religious environmentalism has unfolded.
Download and read online Religion and Non Religion among Australian Aboriginal Peoples in PDF and EPUB Offering a significant contribution to the emerging field of 'Non-Religion Studies', Religion and Non-Religion among Australian Aboriginal Peoples draws on Australian 2011 Census statistics to ask whether the Indigenous Australian population, like the wider Australian society, is becoming increasingly secularised or whether there are other explanations for the surprisingly high percentage of Aboriginal people in Australia who state that they have 'no religion'. Contributors from a range of disciplines consider three central questions: How do Aboriginal Australians understand or interpret what Westerners have called 'religion'? Do Aboriginal Australians distinguish being 'religious' from being 'non-religious'? How have modernity and Christianity affected Indigenous understandings of 'religion'? These questions re-focus Western-dominated concerns with the decline or revival of religion, by incorporating how Indigenous Australians have responded to modernity, how modernity has affected Indigenous peoples' religious behaviours and perceptions, and how variations of response can be found in rural and urban contexts.
Download and read online Dowry in PDF and EPUB The concept of a Dowry is much misunderstood and often regarded as synonymous with acts of violence against women. Taking a variety of theoretical and active approaches, this work bridges the gap between today's prevailing theory and practice, whilst taking South Asian women's own experiences as a starting point to any discussion.
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Download and read online Dharma and Ecology of Hindu Communities in PDF and EPUB In Indic religious traditions, a number of rituals and myths exist in which the environment is revered. Despite this nature worship in India, its natural resources are under heavy pressure with its growing economy and exploding population. This has led several scholars to raise questions about the role religious communities can play in environmentalism. Does nature worship inspire Hindus to act in an environmentally conscious way? This book explores the above questions with three communities, the Swadhyaya movement, the Bishnoi, and the Bhil communities. Presenting the texts of Bishnois, their environmental history, and their contemporary activism; investigating the Swadhyaya movement from an ecological perspective; and exploring the Bhil communities and their Sacred Groves, this book applies a non-Western hermeneutical model to interpret the religious traditions of Indic communities. With a foreword by Roger S Gottlieb.
Download and read online Rise of a Folk God in PDF and EPUB Vitthal, also called Vithoba, is the most popular Hindu god in the western Indian state of Maharashtra, and the best-known god of that region outside India. His temple at Pandharpur is the goal of an annual pilgrimage that is one of the largest and most elaborate in the world. This book is the foremost study of the history of Vitthal, his worship, and his worshippers.
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Download and read online Dark Green Religion in PDF and EPUB "A love of green may be a human universal. Deepening the palette of green scholarship, Bron Taylor proves remarkably to be both an encyclopedist and a visionary."--Jonathan Benthall, author of Returning to Religion: Why a Secular Age is Haunted by Faith "This important book provides insight into how a profound sense of relation to nature offers many in the modern world a vehicle for attaining a spiritual wholeness akin to what has been historically associated with established religion. In this sense, Dark Green Religion offers both understanding and hope for a world struggling for meaning and purpose beyond the isolation of the material here and now."--Stephen Kellert, Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies "In this thought-provoking volume, Bron Taylor explores the seemingly boundless efforts by human beings to understand the nature of life and our place in the universe. Examining in depth the ways in which influential philosophers and naturalists have viewed this relationship, Taylor contributes to the further development of thought in this critically important area, where our depth of understanding will play a critical role in our survival."--Peter H. Raven, President, Missouri Botanical Garden "Carefully researched, strongly argued, originally conceived, and very well executed, this book is a vital contribution on a subject of immense religious, political, and environmental importance. It's also a great read."--Roger S. Gottlieb, author of A Greener Faith: Religious Environmentalism and our Planet's Future "A fascinating analysis of our emotional and spiritual relationship to nature. Whether you call it dark green religion or something else, Bron Taylor takes us through our spiritual relationship with our planet, its ecosystems and evolution, in an enlightened and completely undogmatic manner."--Dr. Claude Martin, Former Director General, World Wildlife Fund "An excellent collection of guideposts for perplexed students and scholars about the relationships of nature religions, spirituality, animism, pantheism, deep ecology, Gaia, and land ethics--and for the environmentalist seeking to make the world a better place through green religion as a social force."--Fikret Berkes, author of Sacred Ecology: Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Resource Management "Dark Green Religion shows conclusively how nature has inspired a growing religious movement on the planet, contesting the long reign of many older faiths. Taylor expertly guides us through an astonishing array of thinkers, past and present, who have embraced, in part or whole, the new religion. I was thoroughly convinced that this movement has indeed become a major force on Earth, with great potential consequences for our environmental ethics."--Donald Worster, University of Kansas "In this exceptionally interesting and informative book, Bron Taylor has harvested the fruits of years of pioneering research in what amounts to a new field in religious studies: the study of how religious/spiritual themes show up in the work of people concerned about nature in many diverse ways. Taylor persuasively argues that appreciation of nature's sacred or spiritual dimension both informs and motivates the work of individuals ranging from radical environmentalists and surfers, to eco-tourism leaders and museum curators. I highly recommend this book for everyone interested learning more about the surprising extent to which religious/spiritual influences many of those who work to protect, to exhibit, or to represent the natural world."--Michael E. Zimmerman, Director, Center for Humanities and the Arts, University of Colorado at Boulder
Download and read online The Sacred Tree in PDF and EPUB The fundamental nature of the tree as a symbol for many communities reflects the historical reality that human beings have always interacted with and depended upon trees for their survival. Trees provided one of the earliest forms of shelter, along with caves, and the bounty of trees, nuts, fruits, and berries, gave sustenance to gatherer-hunter populations. This study has concentrated on the tree as sacred and significant for a particular group of societies, living in the ancient and medieval eras in the geographical confines of Europe, and sharing a common Indo-European inheritance, but sacred trees are found throughout the world, in vastly different cultures and historical periods. Sacred trees feature in the religious frameworks of the Ghanaian Akan, Arctic Altaic shamanic communities, and in China and Japan. The power of the sacred tree as a symbol is derived from the fact that trees function as homologues of both human beings and of the cosmos. This study concentrates the tree as axis mundi (hub or centre of the world) and the tree as imago mundi (picture of the world). The Greeks and Romans in the ancient world, and the Irish, Anglo-Saxons, continental Germans and Scandinavians in the medieval world, all understood the power of the tree, and its derivative the pillar, as markers of the centre. Sacred trees and pillars dotted their landscapes, and the territory around them derived its meaning from their presence. Unfamiliar or even hostile lands could be tamed and made meaningful by the erection of a monument that replicated the sacred centre. Such monuments also linked with boundaries, and by extension with law and order, custom and tradition. The sacred tree and pillar as centre symbolized the stability of the cosmos and of society. When the Pagan peoples of Europe adopted Christianity, the sacred trees and pillars, visible signs of the presence of the gods in the landscape, were popular targets for axe-wielding saints and missionaries who desired to force the conversion of the landscape as well as the people. Yet Christianity had its own tree monument, the cross on which Jesus Christ was crucified, and which came to signify resurrected life and the conquest of eternal death for the devout. As European Pagans were converted to Christianity, their tree and pillar monuments were changed into Christian forms; the great standing crosses of Anglo-Saxon northern England played many of the same roles as Pagan sacred trees and pillars. Irish and Anglo-Saxons Christians often combined the image of the Tree of Life from the Garden of Eden with Christ on the cross, to produce a Christian version of the tree as imago mundi.
Download and read online How Much Should a Person Consume in PDF and EPUB Based on research conducted over two decades, this accessible and deeply felt book provides a provocative comparative history of environmentalism in two large ecologically and culturally diverse democracies--India and the United States. Ramachandra Guha takes as his point of departure the dominant environmental philosophies in these two countries--identified as "agrarianism" in India and "wilderness thinking" in the U.S. Proposing an inclusive "social ecology" framework that goes beyond these partisan ideologies, Guha arrives at a richer understanding of controversies over large dams, state forests, wildlife reserves, and more. He offers trenchant critiques of privileged and isolationist proponents of conservation, persuasively arguing for biospheres that care as much for humans as for other species. He also provides profiles of three remarkable environmental thinkers and activists--Lewis Mumford, Chandi Prasad Bhatt, and Madhav Gadgil. Finally, the author asks the fundamental environmental question--how much should a person or country consume?--and explores a range of answers. Copub: Permanent Black