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Toward a Jain Ecotheology

Course Number: 1010

For millennia, it has been widely recognized that the Jain tradition has been distinctive in its central focus on nonviolence (ahiṃsā) towards all beings (jīva-s). Because of this, Jain theology is uniquely oriented towards healing humanity’s strained relationship with the natural world. For several decades, the field of ecotheology had been developed by various thinkers from multiple world religious traditions, Christian in particular.

In this course, we will articulate a clear understanding of the methodology of ecotheology that can provide a framework where religious traditions might effectively advocate and empower ecological healing based on the unique paradigmatic resources of each tradition. This course will then examine what the Jain tradition might contribute to the bourgeoning academic discipline of ecotheology, and how the Jain tradition can play an important, necessary, and unique role in a pluralistic approach to environmental healing.

Learning Area

Climate Change and Environment