Buddhism and Ecology

May 2-5, 1996


  • Opening Session and Plenary Address
  • Theravada Buddhism and Ecology
  • Engaged Buddhism
  • Buddhism and Animals
  • Zen Buddhism and Ecology
  • Buddhist Ecology Defined and Problematized
  • American Buddhism and Ecology


Opening Session and Plenary Address

Mary Evelyn Tucker, Conference Convener, Bucknell University and Masatoshi Nagatomi, Conference Advisor, Harvard University


Opening remarks

Lewis Lancaster, University of California, Berkeley - The Cultural Collective and Buddhist Ecological Issues


Theravada Buddhism and Ecology

Leslie Sponsel and Poranee Natadecha-Sponsel, University of Hawaii, Manoa - The Buddhist Monastic Community as a Green Society in Thailand: Its Potential Role in Environmental Ethics, Education and Action

Donald Swearer, Swarthmore College - The Hermeneutics of Buddhist Ecology in Contemporary Thailand: Buddhadasa and Dhammapitaka

Joe Franke, Wat Forest Project - The Wat Forest Project: Organizing Support for Southeast Asia's '”Green Monks”


Engaged Buddhism: Policy Dimensions of Buddhist Ecological Worldviews

Kenneth Kraft, Lehigh University - Nuclear Ecology and Engaged Buddhism: Making the Connections

William LaFleur, University of Pennsylvania - Ending Fecundism: Buddhism and a Critique of the Fertility-Piety Nexus

Susan Murcott, Massachusetts Institute of Technology - This Very Place, This Very Body–the Role of Water and Wastewater Treatment in Human/Ecological Well-Being

Rita Gross, University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire - Buddhist Resources for Issues of Population, Consumption and the Environment

Panel respondent - Christopher Queen, Harvard University

Joan Halifax and Marty Peale, Upaya Foundation - Interbeing: Precepts and Practices of an Applied Ecology


Buddhism and Animals

Christopher Key Chapple, Loyola Marymount University - Animals in the Early Sramanic Tradition

Joanna Handlin Smith, Harvard Journal of Asiatic Studies - Saving Animal Lives in Ming Ch'ing China: Buddhist Inspiration and Elite Imagination

Duncan Ryûken Williams, Harvard University - Liberation and Death: Issues in the Study of Rites to Release Animals (Hôjô-e) in Medieval Japanese Buddhism

Panel respondent - Charles Hallisey, Harvard University


Zen Buddhism and Ecology

Ruben Habito, Southern Methodist University - Mountains, Rivers and the Great Earth: Zen Buddhism and the Ecological Question

John Daido Loori, Zen Mountain Monastery - Teachings of Mountains and Rivers: The Earth's Ethical Imperative

Graham Parkes, University of Hawaii, Manoa - The Cosmic Buddha Teaches Through Rocks and Trees: Dôgen and Deep Ecology

Panel respondent - David Shaner, Furman University


Buddhist Ecology Defined and Problematized

Jeffrey Hopkins, University of Virginia - Tibetan Buddhism and Concern for the Environment: Real or Imagined

M. David Eckel, Boston University - The Issue of Anthropocentrism: On Emptiness and the Concept of Nature

Steven Rockefeller, Middlebury College - Buddhist Contributions to the Earth Charter

Panel respondent - Leslie Kawamura, University of Calgary


American Buddhism and Ecology

David Barnhill, Guilford College - Great Earth Sangha: Gary Snyder's Buddhist View of the Land and its Implications for Environmental Ethics

Stephanie Kaza, University of Vermont - American Buddhist Responses to the Land

Jeff Yamauchi, Zen Mountain Center and Prescott College - The Greening of Zen Mountain Center: A Case Study

Panel respondent - Larry Gross, University of Vermont

Closing remarks - John Berthrong, Conference Convener, Boston University