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May 2016


The Forum on Religion and Ecology Newsletter
10.5 (May 2016)



1. Overview, by Elizabeth McAnally

2. New Book: Living Cosmology: Christian Responses to Journey of the Universe

3. New Publications

4. New Book Series: “Religious Ethics and Environmental Challenges”

5. Calls for Papers

6. Summer Courses

7. Events

8. Journey of the Universe Events

9. Climate Change Statements from the World’s Religions

10. Forward Movement Announces New Video Curriculum on Science and Faith

11. Deep Time Walk App

12. Metta Earth Institute (Lincoln, VT, USA)

13. Holyscapes: Blog by Jason Brown

14. Green Seminary Initiative

15. Job Opening

Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology

1. Overview, by Elizabeth McAnally


Welcome to the May 2016 issue of the newsletter for the Forum on Religion and Ecology. We have much to share with you this month with regards to developments in the field of Religion and Ecology, including publications, calls for papers, events, a job opening, and more.

We are very excited to share with you a new volume edited by Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim entitled Living Cosmology: Christian Responses to Journey of the Universe. Published by Orbis Books, this is the newest book in the Ecology and Justice Series on Integral Ecology. For more about this book, see below or visit: http://www.orbisbooks.com/living-cosmology.html This volume is a collection of papers from the 2014 “Living Cosmology” conference at Yale University held in honor of Thomas Berry's 100th birthday. For more about this conference, including videos of the talks, visit: http://www.journeyoftheuniverse.org/living-cosmology-conference/

We are happy to let you know that Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim participated in the “Second International Seminar on Religion, Culture and Environment,” which was held April 23-24 in Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran. The Journey of the Universe trailer was shown with Persian subtitles at the beginning and end of the conference. For the seminar agenda, visit: http://tinyurl.com/jh4d3v6 To read a discussion note prepared for this seminar entitled “Environment, Religion and Culture in the Context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” visit: http://tinyurl.com/je64h5s This conference follows on two conferences on religion and ecology in Tehran in 2001 and 2005 that Mary Evelyn and John also participated in, sponsored by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Iranian government.

We would like to call your attention to “Christian Ecotheology: Text, Context, and Practice,” a summer course that will be taught by one of our Forum scholars, Dr. Matthew Riley. The class is a week-long intensive course held at Yale Divinity School on June 13-17. It is open to all. For more, visit: http://summerstudy.yale.edu/classes/christian-ecotheology-text-context-and-practice

We have recently launched a new website for Thomas Berry: http://thomasberry.org/. This new site highlights Thomas’ life and thought and was launched on the occasion of the presentation of the Thomas Berry Award to Brian Edward Brown by the Thomas Berry Foundation on January 24, 2016. On this website, you will find many of Thomas’ videos and audio recordings, along with several of his essays.

The Forum on Religion and Ecology has a Facebook page. Please show your support by “liking” us and sharing our page with your Facebook friends. Visit the page here: https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Forum-on-Religion-and-Ecology-at-Yale/807941202606307

Journey of the Universe also has a Facebook page that we invite you to visit: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Journey-of-the-Universe/179213572122084?fref=nf The film is now live on Vimeo for streaming/renting: https://vimeo.com/ondemand/journeyoftheuniverse. For a list of more stores where the Journey project is available, visit: http://www.journeyoftheuniverse.org/buy/

We hope this newsletter supports your own work and helps you further your own engagements with the field of Religion and Ecology.

Take care,
Elizabeth McAnally
California Institute of Integral Studies
Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale
Website Manager & Newsletter Editor
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

2. New Book: Living Cosmology: Christian Responses to Journey of the Universe

Living Cosmology: Christian Responses to Journey of the Universe
Edited by Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim
Foreword by Brian Thomas Swimme
Ecology & Justice Orbis Series
Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 2016
Flyer: http://fore.yale.edu/files/Living_Cosmology_flyer.pdf

Journey of the Universe is a book, a film, and a conversation series by Mary Evelyn Tucker and Brian Thomas Swimme that offers a rich unfolding of “the universe story”—a moving narrative of cosmic evolution from the origins of the cosmos to the present. This volume explores the Christian responses to Journey of the Universe and its implications for the contemporary environmental crisis. Beginning with recent statements by Pope Francis and the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the book draws on the contributions of leading theologians, ethicists, scientists, and activists, including John Haught, Ilia Delio, Heather Eaton, Catherine Keller, Larry Rasmussen, and more than twenty-five others.

This volume is a collection of papers from the 2014 “Living Cosmology” conference at Yale University held in honor of Thomas Berry's 100th birthday. For more about this conference, including videos of the talks, visit: http://www.journeyoftheuniverse.org/living-cosmology-conference/

Living Cosmology: Christian Responses to Journey of the Universe is the newest book in the Ecology and Justice Series on Integral Ecology. Published by Orbis Books, this series seeks to integrate an understanding of Earth’s interconnected life systems with sustainable social, political, and economic systems that enhance the Earth community. To see the new flyer for this Orbis series, visit: http://thomasberry.org/assets/uploads/Orbis_Ecology_and_Justice_3-24-16.pdf

3. New Publications

“A Radical Alliance of Black and Green Could Save the World”
By James Gustave Speth and J. Phillip Thompson III
The Nation
April 14, 2016

In this article, the authors mention Thomas Berry, the Forum on Religion and Ecology, and the Iroquois Confederacy.

A beautiful thing is happening: Advocates for racial justice and for environmental protection—too often, movements quite distant from each other—are coming together in a new way. One can see it in the campaign of National People’s Action and the Climate Justice Alliance to push for a just and locally empowering transition to clean energy; in the New Economy Coalition’s inclusive membership and commitment to front-line communities; and in the projects of the Evergreen Cooperatives, in inner-city Cleveland. These new efforts (may they multiply!) are grounded on a strong foundation. When one explores the roots of both the environmental and civil-rights movements, one finds a strikingly similar radical critique. Both movements have called for a deep restructuring of society and the economy; in both cases, that call is based on an affirmation of life and the devoted care that life requires of us.


“In Photos: The Indigenous Protectors of the World’s Most Sacred Places”
By Christopher McLeod
YES! Magazine
April 21, 2016

All around the world, sites sacred to indigenous people are besieged by mining, tourism, and other threats. Meet the groups safeguarding and restoring them. Christopher “Toby” McLeod directs the Sacred Land Film Project. His most recent film series, the award-winning Standing on Sacred Ground, tells the stories of eight embattled indigenous communities around the world. It is now airing on public television stations, including The PBS WORLD Channel. First Nations Experience (FNX), a network of 16 PBS stations reaching Indian Country, started broadcasting the series on Tuesday, concluding on Earth Day at 9 PM (ET). Check local listings. Read more at StandingOnSacredGround.org.


A Canadian Climate of Mind: Passages from Fur to Energy and Beyond
By Timothy B. Leduc
McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2016

The twenty-first century is a period of great environmental and social transformation as climate change increasingly marks lives at levels that are personal, familial, communal, national, and global. A Canadian Climate of Mind presents stories that emerge from the waters, lands, and climate of Canada, and which have the potential to renew a compassionate energy for changing human relations with each other and with our world. The turbulent effects of climate change are popularly discussed in the modern language of scientific knowledge, political policies, economic mechanisms, and technological innovation. While there is much to be learned from these views, Timothy Leduc suggests a more profound call for change by returning to past understandings of the land and climate. He argues that the world is initiating us into a broader and humbler sense of what it is to be human in an interconnected reality. The world is doing this by responding to unsustainable practices such as our devastating reliance on fossil fuels. Weaving together voices from numerous backgrounds and time periods with Indigenous views on present and past environmental challenges, A Canadian Climate of Mind illuminates a world that is being shaken to its core while we hesitate to act.


Learning Love from a Tiger: Religious Experiences with Nature
By Daniel Cappe
University of California Press, 2016

Learning Love from a Tiger explores the vibrancy and variety of humans’ sacred encounters with the natural world, gathering a range of stories culled from Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Mayan, Himalayan, Buddhist, and Chinese shamanic traditions. Readers will delight in tales of house cats who teach monks how to meditate, shamans who shape-shift into jaguars, crickets who perform Catholic mass, rivers that grant salvation, and many others. In addition to being a collection of wonderful stories, this book introduces important concepts and approaches that underlie much recent work in environmental ethics, religion, and ecology. Daniel Capper’s light touch prompts readers to engage their own views of humanity’s place in the natural world and question longstanding assumptions of human superiority.


Special Issue on the Anthropocene
The Indiana University Consortium for the Study of Religion, Ethics, and Society (CSRES)
Forum Spring 2016

The Anthropocene is the proposed name for a new geological epoch in which humans have come to dominate the planet, reshaping and transforming it as a geological force. The suffix ‘cene’ means new; Anthropos means human. What are the theological and ethical implications of naming a geological epoch after ourselves? Here we present four perspectives from scholars of religion and theology.

• "Is there a future in the age of humans? A critical eye on the narrative of the anthropocene" (Sigurd Bergmann)
• "Naming and Shaming the Anthropocene" (Celia Deane-Drummond)
• "Anthropocene as Perilous Gift" (Willis Jenkins)
• "I, No You: I-I and the Interpretation of the Anthropocene" (Forrest Clingerman)

4. New Book Series: “Religious Ethics and Environmental Challenges”

Lexington Books is launching a new series in religion entitled “Religious Ethics and Environmental Challenges.” Sarah E. Fredericks and Kevin J. O’Brien are the series editors.

Religion shapes human responses to 21st century environmental challenges—discouraging some adherents from accepting scientific evidence, encouraging others to make sacrifices to preserve ecosystems, and leading still others to develop new spiritual traditions. This interdisciplinary series explores the ways diverse religious communities can, should, and do respond to contemporary environmental challenges. Many of the works will be explicitly ethical, dealing with normative commitments, applied ethics, or ethical theory; others will be theological or philosophical; still others may be social scientific descriptions. Since readers of the series will come from diverse academic contexts, all works will be explicit about methodology, enabling conversation across disciplines. We are particularly interested in works that 1) bring together distinct branches of scholarship to address practical or theoretical issues that cannot be addressed by one alone, (e.g. linking healthcare ethics and environmental ethics or comparing religious traditions); 2) explore under-researched religious communities, sub-communities, and traditions; or 3) investigate commonly studied religions in a novel way. We welcome monographs, edited volumes, and exemplary revised dissertations that take one of these approaches. While not all works in the series need to be normative or contemporary, all will help readers advance conversations about the ways religion aids or hinders responses to contemporary environmental challenges.

For the proposal guidelines, visit:

5. Calls for Papers

“Protecting our Common Home: Scientific Contributions & Religious Perspectives”
Presidential Conference on the Integrity of Creation
Duquesne University, Pittsburgh, PA, USA
September 28-30, 2016
Submission deadline: May 27, 2016

12th International Environment, Sustainability and Climate Change Symposium
Harris Manchester College in the University of Oxford, Oxford, England
July 20-23, 2016
Submission deadline: June 15, 2016

6. Summer Courses

Certificate in Contemplation and Care for Creation
Center for Religion and Environment (CRE) at Sewanee: The University of the South
Sewanee, TN, USA
May 30 - June 10, 2016

“Bread in the Wilderness: A Summer Seminar on Food, Faith, and Ecological Well-Being”
Fourth Annual Wake Forest Food & Faith Intensive
Asheville, NC, USA
June 6-10, 2016

“Ecologies of Justice: Christian Environmental Ethics and Sustainable Communities”
Summer course with Dr. Andrew R. H. Thompson
The University of the South, Sewanee, TN, USA
June 6-24, 2016
Auditors are welcome.

“Christian Ecotheology: Text, Context, and Practice”
With Matthew Riley, Ph.D.
2016 Summer Study Course
Yale Divinity School, New Haven, CT, USA
June 13-17, 2016

“The Spirituality & Practices of Asian Religions”
Special one-week intensive class
Hartford Seminary, 77 Sherman Street, Hartford, CT, USA
June 13-18, 2016

7. Events

“Healing Ourselves and The Earth”
Mindfully Weaving Pope Francis' Spirituality and Education for Earth Care with Thich Nhat Hanh's Love Letter to Mother Earth
With Jeanne Anselmo
Iona College, New Rochelle, NY, USA
Presented by The Thomas Berry Forum for Ecological Dialogue
May 6, 2016

“Animal Agency: Language, Politics, Culture”
University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands
May 12-13, 2016

American Teilhard Association Annual Meeting
Lecture by Ilia Delio: "Teilhard de Chardin and World Religions: Ultra Catholic or Ultra Human?"
Union Theological Seminary, New York City, NY, USA
May 14, 2016

“Caring for Creation in a Changing Climate”
With Judith Mayotte, PhD
Maryknoll Mission Institute, Maryknoll, NY, USA
May 15-20, 2016
2016 Programs:

“Sacred Sources to Heal the Earth”
A Weekend with Rabbi Arthur Waskow and Phyllis Berman
Bet Alef Meditative Synagogue, Seattle, WA, USA
May 20-22, 2016

“Sacred Texts and Human Contexts: Nature and Environment in the Sacred Texts of World Religions”
International symposium
Nazareth College, Rochester, NY, USA
May 23-25, 2016

United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA-2)
Nairobi, Kenya, Africa
Green Room Event 6: “Exploring the contribution of faith communities in delivering the Sustainable Development Goals” (May 24)
May 23-27, 2016

“International Conference on Rural Sustainability”
University of North Texas, Denton, TX, USA
June 10-11, 2016

“Sacred Earth, Sacred Trust: A Worldwide Day of Prayer & Action for People & Planet”
June 12, 2016

“Climate Justice”
This is the 9th retreat in the Earth-Honoring Faith series.
Ghost Ranch, Abiquiu, NM, USA
June 19-25, 2016
Flyer: http://fore.yale.edu/files/2016_Earth-Honoring_Faith.pdf

“Wonder & the Natural World”
Indiana University Bloomington, IN, USA
Hosted by the Consortium for the Study of Religion, Ethics, and Society (CSRES)
June 20-23, 2016
Flyer: http://fore.yale.edu/files/Wonder_and_the_Natural_World.pdf

“Zest for Life: Partnering with Our Sacred Earth Community”
2016 Sisters of Earth Conference
Presentation Center, Los Gatos, CA, USA
July 7-10, 2016

“Contemplative Environmental Practice”
Retreat for Professors and Activists
Lama Foundation, San Cristobal, NM, USA
July 24-30, 2016

“Re-Polishing the Silver Covenant Chain: Building Relationships for the Good of the Earth”
This is the seventh in the series of Ancient Voices - Contemporary Contexts Forums.
Six Nations Polytechnic, Six Nations Grand River Territory, Ontario, Canada
September 13-15, 2016

For more events, visit: http://fore.yale.edu/calendar/

8. Journey of the Universe Events

Journey of the Universe Film Screening
June 4, 2016 at 2pm
Grace Farms, New Canaan CT, USA
Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim will lead a discussion.

Journey of the Universe Film Screening
June 14, 2016 at 7pm
Mercy Center Chapel, Farmington, MI, USA
With Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim
Discussion afterward about the Universe Story and Pope Francis’ Encyclical Laudato Si’
Hosted by Mercy Center and St. Paul of the Cross Passionist Retreat and Conference Center
Cost: Free Will Offering
Contact: (313) 286-2800

Journey of the Universe Summer Course
July 4-22, 2016
Global Academy for Future Civilizations
Kyung Hee University, South Korea
Faculty for this 3 credit course on Journey of the Universe include:
• Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim, Senior Lecturers and Research Scholars, Yale University
• Sungsoo Kim, Professor, Kyung Hee University
• Jeong-Eun Lee, Professor, Kyung Hee University
Contact: 82-2-961-0995~6, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Brochure: http://gafc.khu.ac.kr/gep/pdf/GC_2016%20Brochure.com.pdf
Website: http://gafc.khu.ac.kr/gep

Journey of the Universe Film Screening
July 12, 2016 at 7pm
Gwancheon National Science Museum, South Korea
Discussion with Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim
This event is part of the 2016 Global Collaborative Special Lecture Series.
Contact: 82-2-961-0995~6, .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Brochure: http://gafc.khu.ac.kr/gep/pdf/GC_2016%20Brochure.com.pdf
Website: http://gafc.khu.ac.kr/gep

For more details about these events, visit:

9. Climate Change Statements from the World’s Religions

Interfaith Climate Change Statement to World Leaders
Statement by Religious and Spiritual Leaders on the Occasion of the UN Secretary General’s High Level Signature Ceremony for the Paris Agreement
April 18, 2016

A Western Soto Zen Buddhist Statement on the Climate Crisis
April 2016

Manifesto on an Ecological Reformation of all Christian Traditions
Volos Academy Consultation on Eco-Theology, Climate Justice and Food Security
March 10-13, 2016

For more climate change statements from the world’s religions, visit:

10. Forward Movement Announces New Video Curriculum on Science and Faith

Are science and faith compatible? Ordained scientists in The Episcopal Church offer insight on this sometimes controversial question through a new groundbreaking video curriculum offered by Forward Movement, now available for free download. The curriculum, offered in partnership with the Committee on Science, Technology and Faith, invites a sense of wonder and discovery to play a part in building care for creation in our faith communities.

“In the Beginning: A Video Curriculum Exploring the Catechism of Creation” explores the Bible’s basic doctrine of creation, the modern scientific worldview, perspectives on the Big Bang and evolution, and the biblical roots for environmental care. The Rev. Stephanie Johnson says it is a “thoughtful, engaging invitation into a deeper understanding of all God’s Creation.” Featured clergy-scientists include Katharine Jefferts Schori—former Presiding Bishop and oceanographer; Nicholas Knisely—the Bishop of Rhode Island and physicist; Rev. Lucas Mix—evolutionary biologist; Rev. Alistair So—microbiologist; and the Rev. Stephanie Johnson—environmentalist.


11. Deep Time Walk App

The Deep Time Walk App, currently in development, is a walking audio history of the living Earth giving users a detailed and dramatised experience of the planet’s 4.6 billion year big history as they are guided on a physical 4.6 kilometre walk across time. Award winning playwright Peter Oswald has collaborated with ecologist Stephan Harding (Schumacher College) to create a unique script that provides an enticing and poetic dialogue between ‘The Scientist’ and ‘The Fool’ as they journey through deep time. The production is directed by Jeremy Mortimer, who has created over 200 dramas for BBC Radio.

With each metre walked representing one million years, users of the Deep Time Walk mobile app listen to the story of the evolution of the 4.6 billion year big history of the Living Earth - from a disc of rocky debris, through the formation of the Earth, its oceans and atmosphere, the appearance of bacteria, nucleated cells and, eventually, multicellular organisms. At the climax of the walk the last 20cm (200,000 years) represent the timespan of humanity, and in the final 1/5th of a millimetre (200 years), the walker witnesses the miniscule time (in geological terms) that has elapsed since the start of the industrial revolution.


12. Metta Earth Institute (Lincoln, VT, USA)

Metta Earth Institute, a Center for Contemplative Ecology, is a non-profit educational retreat center in Lincoln, Vermont dedicated to enhancing contemplative and ecologically sustainable community through the harmonious interface of culture, agriculture, and nature. Our intention is to participate in the evolution of consciousness and support a quantum paradigm shift to global interconnectedness. Metta Earth Institute invites you to engage in cultivating creatively compassionate responses to the ecological challenges in bioregional communities and the global community. Metta Earth Institute is dedicated to developing pathways for reclaiming the connection to the joy of each present moment and enhancing the capacity for compassionate action. We offer you opportunities to nourish the deeper relationship to self, society and nature through contemplative and ecological practices.


13. Holyscapes: Blog by Jason Brown

Holyscapes is the project of PhD student Jason Brown. In his PhD work, he studies Sacred Sites, Sacred Landscapes, and Religion and Ecology, particularly the relationship Catholic monks have to landscape in the American West. Holyscapes are the ways we make Holy the lands and places where we dwell. Holyscapes are places where human beings make their living, grow their food, where they go to be with family and friends, where they worship, where they move and where they dwell. Holyscapes are also places where non-humans can flourish without exploitation and the threat of extirpation. Holyscapes are the many layers of place, story and sacred sites that preceded many of us of immigrant background. Holyscapes are the wild and tangled inner landscapes where we fight demons, and strive toward the Divine.


14. Green Seminary Initiative

The Green Seminary Initiative fosters efforts by theological schools and seminaries to incorporate care for creation into the identity and mission of the institution. If you missed the recent webinar introducing the new Seminary Environmental Certification Program, you can find links to the recording, slides, and support materials here: http://www.greenseminaries.org/

15. Job Opening

Faculty Position: Theology, Ecology and Race
Methodist Theological School in Ohio, Delaware, OH, USA
Position begins January 1, 2017.

16. Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology

Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology has as its focus the relationships between religion, culture and ecology world-wide. Articles discuss major world religious traditions, such as Islam, Buddhism or Christianity; the traditions of indigenous peoples; new religious movements; and philosophical belief systems, such as pantheism, nature spiritualities, and other religious and cultural worldviews in relation to the cultural and ecological systems. Focusing on a range of disciplinary areas including Anthropology, Environmental Studies, Geography, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Sociology and Theology, the journal also presents special issues that center around one theme.

For more information, visit: brill.com/wo

For the online edition, visit:

Table of Contents for Volume 20, Issue 1 (2016)

Special Issue: “Ecowomanism: Earth Honoring Faiths”

• Introduction (Melanie L. Harris)
• Ecowomanism (Melanie L. Harris)
• Nankani Women’s Spirituality and Ecology (Rose Mary Amenga-Etego)
• Turning Weapons into Flowers (Xiumei Pu)
• Seeds of Light, Flowers of Power, Fruits of Change (Layli Maparyan)
• Between Dishwater and the River (Sofía Betancourt)
• Afro-Brazilian Religion, Resistance and Environmental Ethics (Valdina Oliveira Pinto and Rachel E. Harding)
• Earth Hope (Mercy Oduyoye)
• Book Review: Religion and Ecological Sustainability in China, edited by James Miller, Dan Smyer Yu, and Peter van der Veer (Review by Seth Clippard)
• Book Review: Just Sustainability: Technology, Ecology, and Resource Extraction, edited by Christiana Z. Peppard and Andrea Vicini (Review by Larry Rasmussen)
• Book Review: A Political Theology of Climate Change, written by Michael Northcott (Review by Robin Globus Veldman)

For the archive of previous Forum newsletters, visit:

To download this newsletter as a PDF, visit: