Jennie Joe
Nature from the Perspective of Indigenous Religions


A member of the Navajo nation, Jenny is a professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine in the College of Medicine (DFCM), University of Arizona, and is also a faculty member in American Indian Studies. She is the Director of the Native American Research and Training Center (NARTC) and is deeply engaged in intercultural activities.


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Does every religious or spiritual tradition contain some teaching of the sacredness of the Earth and all life? Why is that dimension more central in some traditions?

Related Links:

Quotes from the World's Religions on Nature

Video Meditation on Nature

Prof. Chung Hyun-Kyung
Eco-Feminism and Peace


Professor of Ecumenics and World Christianity at Union Theological Seminary, New York, she is active in Christian women's movements in Asia. Formerly Professor of Systematic Theology at EWHA Women's University, Seoul, Korea. Author of Struggle to be the Sun Again and other books.


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Theme: Eco-Feminism and Peace
The connection between feminist insight into the world and human society is profoundly interdependent with ecological thinking. As Susannah Heschel said at the 1993 Parliament of the World’s Religions (in Chicago): “It’s not an accident that we call the Earth ‘Mother’ and then proceed to treat her as we have always treated women.”

But what is the connection between feminist consciousness and ecological activism? Why aren’t more women eco-activists? How does feminist consciousness affect men? How can activists embrace and engage the eco-feminist connection? How can men rediscover the feminine through ecological activism?

And finally, what does this discussion tell us about the evolution of culture and consciousness in our time? What can we learn from the visionaries, pioneers, and activists in the field?

Excerpt from Thriving in the Crosscurrent: Clarity and Hope at a Time of Cultural Sea Change (Jim Kenney, Quest Books 2010), p. 203:
Is the Planet Really Sacred? Thomas Berry thought so. Before his death in 2009, Berry had become one of the most important religious voices addressing the human relationship to the Earth and the planetary community. In Evening Thoughts: Reflecting on Earth as Sacred Community, he wrote: “The ancient human-Earth relationship must be recovered in a new context, in its mystical as well as in its physical functioning. There is need for awareness that mountains and rivers and all living things, the sky and its sun and moon and clouds all constitute a healing, sustaining sacred presence for humans, which they need as much for their psychic integrity as for their physical nourishment.”

1. What is your understanding of “eco-feminism?” Why do the concepts of the empowerment of women and the stewardship of the Earth intertwine so powerfully?
2. It has been suggested that feminism and ecology are the two most visible dimensions of the dramatic cultural evolution that marks our age. How do you respond to that observation?

Further Reading:
Chung Hyun Kyung: a brief profile
Hyun Kyung and Alice Walker
Union Theological Seminary