Environmental Ethics Essay

1147 Words Apr 17th, 2013 5 Pages
Sebastian Estrada
PHIL 3360: Environmental Ethics
Dr. Vicki Toscano
Issues paper#1
Anthropocentrism vs. Biocentrism
1/26/2012

The Historical Roots of our ecologic crisis is an article written by Lynn T. White, Jr. published in the journal Science in 1966. White was a medieval scholar and in this article he blames technology, Christianity, and anthropocentrism as the “Roots” of our ecologic crisis.
He states, “All forms of life modify their contexts,” but believes that this modification should be for the good of the earth like the coral polyp. He states Man must coexist with nature. Man had always been a dynamic element in harmony with the earth. This all changed sometime around the 1850 when the “Baconian Creed” of scientific
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White states, “It is God’s will that man exploit nature for his proper ends.” This is an overstatement. It is not God’s will for man to exploit anything. White’s word choice here adds strength to his argument.
Humans have the ability to reason unlike any other living creature on earth; therefore we must assume the responsibility that comes with this greater cognitive power. But the collected corrupted ambitions of few have affected the whole. We must always make sure to do only what is best for the earth regardless of whether one believes in God or not. Humanity must act as protectors/guardians of earth not as individuals exerting dominion over the land.
Created in the Image of God: Humanity and Divinity in an Age of Environmentalism is an article written by Lawrence Troster and originally published in Conservative Judaism. This articles’ main idea was an attempt to find common ground between contemporary Judaism and the more novel Gaia movement.
Troster argues that according to Genesis 1:26-27 humanity was created in the “image of God” and “shall rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the cattle, the whole earth, and all the creeping things that creep on earth.” Troster believes the numerous biblical references to man being created in the image of God (betzelem Elohim) are among the most influential verses of the Jewish and Christian traditions. They “express the enormous value of

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