Abstract: Taking the threatening anthropogenic global environmental destruction—the anthropocene—as a starting point, this paper examines the Catholic tradition, which has remained relatively indifferent to this looming crisis, asking what might help it to change its focus from a decided human ecology to one that counts the human as an integral part of the larger natural ecology. Thomas Berry, whose teachings underlie this work, suggests that since the tradition has grown out of a cosmological perspective that places the human being at the center of ethical deliberations and separate from the natural world, it needs to rely on other Earth-centered and ecological expressions to help Catholics to discover more harmonious avenues of being on Earth, which he describes as a fourfold wisdom—the wisdoms of indigenous peoples, classical traditions, women, and science. Through a critical weaving of these wisdoms into a conversation with the Catholic tradition, this article examines the efficacy of the fourfold wisdom to transform the tradition into a more Earth-honoring expression. While this work concludes that the fourfold wisdom is effecting change where engaged, it also reflects on the challenges and opportunities this engagement faces in light of current realities within the Catholic tradition.
- Used by people who call the work: Story of the Universe, The New Story
- Applies a deep time evolutionary perspective to: Religion/Spirituality
- Learning Stages: Adult Education, Higher Education, Lifelong, Secondary 9 - 12
- Type: Article
- Keywords: Thomas Berry, Fourfold Wisdom
- Posted By: Jennifer Morgan
- Date Added: February 17, 2020