Thursday, 26 May 2011

"A sustainable world: reasons to be hopeful"

Jonathon Porritt spoke to a full house at our local Friends' Meeting House last evening on this, at first sight surprising, theme. (I had organised the event on behalf of Christian Ecology Link, of which Jonathon has for long been a Patron.) It was appropriate for "hope" to be the watchword at a Christian gathering, though "optimism" was how Jonathon more often referred to it - something rather different.

He spoke powerfully, and with his customary fluency - who answers questions more generously? - about the uniqueness of human knowledge; about the benefits that he perceives will come from technology, and about the new mandate existing in civil society worldwide, to create wealth with lower impact. And he suggested that, so far from being wired for agression, we might indeed be wired for empathy, his "hopeful" conclusion being that "the sheer urgency of the crisis will bring us together!"

But we need to call upon our spiritual resources, and - crucially - at present, social justice is not there in the churches' practice, even if it is in the teaching.

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