Item description for Living Beyond The "End Of The World": A Spirituality of Hope by Margaret Swedish...
Overview Melting polar ice-caps, Hurricane Katrina, and the loss of New Orleans-are these signs of things to come? In this bracing lamentation, Margaret Swedish outlines a series of interrelated forces that could well undermine the fabric of life as we know it: global warming and climate change; the depletion of petroleum sources; overpopulation and the exhaustion of natural resources; the collapse of a debtor economy; and the escalation of global violence. Letting these pending threats speak for themselves, Swedish poses a challenge to people of faith:What kind of human beings will we be as we approach this difficult period in human history? Finally, she outlines the values, the vision, and the spiritual resources that might nurture a new human community and thus ensure a future for coming generations.
Publishers Description Were Hurricane Katrina and the loss of New Orleans a sign of things to come? Margaret Swedish argues that we face a series of interrelated forces that could well undermine the fabric of society as we know it: global warming and climate change; the depletion of petroleum sources and a looming energy crunch; the exhaustion of other resources needed to sustain life as a result of over-exploitation and population growth; the collapse of a debtor economy; and a crisis in U.S. democracy. Ecological Hope addresses these crises and poses a challenge to people of faith: What kind of human beings will we be as we approach this difficult period in human history? After forecasting the dangers, Swedish lays out the values, a framework of meaning, and a spirituality that might plant seeds of a new human community and ensure a future for coming generations.
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Studio: Orbis Books
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.21" Width: 7.35" Height: 0.54" Weight: 0.78 lbs.
Release Date May 1, 2008
Publisher Orbis Books
ISBN 1570757674 ISBN13 9781570757679
Availability 0 units.
More About Margaret Swedish
For 25 years Margaret Swedish was co-coordinator, then director of the Religious Task Force on Central America and Mexico in Washington DC. She is the co-author of Like Grains of Wheat: A Spirituality of Solidarity. In 2004, she stepped down from her role at the RTF to take up a new challenge ??? addressing the ecological crisis as it impacts US society.
Reviews - What do customers think about Living Beyond The "End Of The World": A Spirituality of Hope?
What kind of human responses will take place to increasing global conflict and challenge? Sep 12, 2008
From global warming to the end of natural resources, Religious Task Force coordinator Margaret Swedish poses a fine challenge to people of faith: what kind of human responses will take place to increasing global conflict and challenge? Her survey of spiritual vision and community involvement lend to a fine spirituality of hope and a passion for ethics and shared support, making this an excellent pick for college-level audiences surveying spiritual ethics and world conditions from a Christian perspective.
Diane C. Donovan California Bookwatch
"We must reinvent the human presence on the earth." Aug 26, 2008
So says author Margaret Swedish in the concluding chapter of her sober but hopeful Living Beyond the End of the World. Hers is one of the most courageous books published in the last few years, and she and her publisher, Orbis, are to be commended for saying what few of us want to be told.
We--the world in general and the U.S. in particular--are in a crisis, and it's likely to get much worse. Climate change is a reality that will impact economies, geopolitical relations, individual lifestyles and health, and the very stability of the good earth itself. The "American Way of Life," predicated on an abundance of cheap, nonrenewable fuel, is over. The problem is that we've become so addicted to it in the very short time it's been around--a generation or so--that we can't quite bring ourselves to believe that it's an exception rather than the rule. So we go on pursuing it, to the detriment of the environment. In the meantime, the rich truly are getting richer (and fewer) and the poor are getting poorer (and more numerous). The end of the world as we know it is upon us, and there's nothing we can do to salvage it.
What we can do, however, is rethink who we are and what our purpose is--this is what Swedish means by reinventing our presence on earth. We need, as she says, to begin learning how to restore our "primary relationship" with our "home community"--earth. Doing this is a holistic work that necessarily redirects our interpersonal, economic, and political relationships too. We become better seers, better listeners, and better at grateful wonderment, because we've weaned ourselves from our alienated drive to subdue and seize the planet.
Swedish tells us that she chooses to believe that the reinvention our dire situation calls for is possible. She chooses hope, believing that we can discover the moral will to create a better world, one more compatible with our role as God's stewards. But her message isn't one for pollyannas. She's painfully aware that the task before us is colossal, and that whatever happens in the future, the lifestyle that the baby-boomer generation enjoyed is a thing of the past. We're moving into a "permanent fast." The only question is whether it will be voluntary, thought-through, and reflective, or forced by circumstances.
Read this book alongside James Howard Kunstler's brilliant and equally disturbing The Long Emergency, as well as his futuristic novel World Made by Hand. Equally timely are Thich Nhat Hanh's The World We Have: A Buddhist Approach to Peace and Ecology and Michael Mann & Lee Kump's Dire Predictions: Understanding Global Warming.