Many, if not all, religious texts have passages which require honoring the Earth. Why is "modern" man disregarding the knowledge of thousands of years of spiritual, historical writing defending our planet?

Why are being so dumb?

All these ancient documents talk of honoring the Earth:

The Egyptian Book of the Dead;

the Atharvaveda;

In Job, 12:7-10, God said, “...ask the animals, and they will teach you … or speak to the earth and it will teach you...;

Mimar Sinan, an important Ottoman architect, included several ecofriendly designs in his works, such as using ostrich eggs to repel insects, allowing for spreading courtyard houses, and a system for capturing smoke of soot to make ink- which both purified the air and utilized an early form of recycling (Al-Hassani);

Buddha set down a rule against cutting down trees, stating that “[i]ntentionally destroying or damaging a living plant is an offense against [confession]” (qtd. by Bhikkhu Ariyesako);

The Confucianism attitude towards nature was also one of respect and reference. Mencius said, “if hatchets and axes are permitted in the forests on the hills only in the proper seasons, then there will be more timber than they can use... This is the first step along the kingly way” (qtd. by Thorngren).

Again, if earlier civilizations saw the need to respect the Earth, why don't we? What do you think?

asked 18 Dec '09, 05:31

Jaianniah's gravatar image


edited 18 Dec '09, 05:51

Vesuvius's gravatar image


No, I do not believe we are at odds with the ancient texts.

When I was growing up, air pollution from automobiles was a real problem. It seemed like air quality alerts were issued on a daily basis.

Today, while there are far more cars on the road than there were back then, there is far less air pollution due to technological advances in the way we build cars.

Mimar Sinan was clearly using technology to advance ecological concerns.

Budda and confucianism essentially restate our forestry policy as it exists today. We plant more trees than we cut down, and we are much smarter about our forestry practices than we were some years ago.

In Job, 12:7-10, God said, "ask the animals, and they will teach you … or speak to the earth and it will teach you." That is exactly what we do today. We have numerous scientific programs that study the earth, plants and animals for ways in which we can understand our ecosystem better and live in greater harmony with our environment.


answered 18 Dec '09, 06:14

Vesuvius's gravatar image


edited 18 Dec '09, 16:45

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Asked: 18 Dec '09, 05:31

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Last updated: 18 Dec '09, 16:45

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