Convened to explore the ways in which ecological degradation represents a crisis of consciousness, the Religion and Ecology Summit, an annual transdisciplinary conference at the California Institute of Integral Studies, assembles cutting-edge scholars, thinkers, and activists to share innovative work at the intersection of religion and ecology.
Conference presentations investigate the transformational possibilities awakened when ecological concerns inform religious thought and practice. Scholars and practitioners consider the integration of spiritual perspectives into environmental protection and activism. The Religion and Ecology Summit series attracts a cross-sector blend of activists and scholars from the ecological and environmental justice movements, as well as faith and spiritual leaders-all of whom seek to share strategies for moving through the global ecological crisis with consciousness and heart.
The burgeoning field Religion & Ecology marshals the power of religions and spiritual traditions to address the global ecological crisis through a purpose-driven lens of love, compassion, justice, and community. This movement is providing a new generation of activists, scholars, and leaders with the skills and insight needed to transform practices, worldviews, and consciousness in service of a more just, sustainable, healthy, and flourishing future. The Religion and Ecology Summit series is an effort to strengthen the field of Religion & Ecology by establishing a supportive, intergenerational, and cross-cultural network of grassroots activists, scholars and leaders from the scientific, spiritual, and faith-based sectors who are developing the knowledge and wisdom to respond to environmental devastation from life-affirming and healing perspectives.
Browse the contents of Religion and Ecology Summit at the California Institute for Integral Studies:
- 2021: Online Summit Series
Indigenous Lifeways, Cosmologies & Ecology: Connecting to Past, Restor(y)ing Present & Future
- March 15-19, 2021 - In partnership with local advisors and with the support of Fetzer Institute, Kalliopeia Foundation, and other anonymous donors, ESR presents a 5-day online summit to explore the restoration work of Indigenous communities in the Bay Area territories. Indigenous approaches to biocultural stewardship and sacred sites offer insight to the inquiry of Religion and Ecology, which explores how spiritual beliefs and practices affect the natural world. Other presentations will address environmental justice and the broader context of Religion & Ecology.
- 2020: Postponed
- The 2020 Religion & Ecology Summit was postponed due to the Covid-19 precautions for public gatherings. In spring 2021, we will revisit the theme of Indigenous Lifeways, Cosmologies, and Ecology: Connecting to the past, restor(y)ing the present and future.
Cosmovision: Thomas Berry and the Great Work
- The fourth annual Religion & Ecology Summit builds upon Thomas Berry's Great Work, commemorating the tenth anniversary of his death by convening scholars and activists involved in analyzing, exploring, and advancing integrated cosmological visions as exemplified in Berry's writing. The Summit also celebrates the forthcoming book Thomas Berry: A Biography (Columbia Press, 2019) by Mary Evelyn Tucker, John Grim, and Andrew Angyal. Mary Evelyn Tucker and John Grim were long-time collaborators of Berry's and were inspired by him in founding the field of Religion and Ecology as means of advancing a positive view of integrated human/Earth relations.
Gender in Religion & Ecology
- The third annual Religion and Ecology Summit showcases scholars, practitioners, environmentalists, and religious leaders who address the topic of gender at the intersection of religion and ecology. The goal is to provide opportunities for networking, learning, alliance building, and sharing of research.
Equity, Justice, and Climate Change & Listening to Land: Nonhuman Voices in the Ecozoic Era.
- The Ecology, Spirituality, and Religion graduate program presents a one-day conference to invite leaders of environmental organizations into dialogue with practitioners, faculty, and students of religious studies, philosophy, and theology. Together, these scholar-practitioners continue to explore the transformational possibilities of incorporating ecological concerns into religious education, and the integration of spiritual perspectives into environmental protection and activism.
Religion & Ecology Summit
- The Ecology, Spirituality, and Religion program at CIIS presents the first annual Religion and Ecology Summit at CIIS, a one-day conference which invites leaders of environmental organizations and public land managers into dialogue with faculty and students of religious studies, philosophy, and theology programs. Together, these scholar-practitioners explore the transformational possibilities of incorporating ecological concerns into religious education and integrated spiritual perspectives into environmental protection and activism. The conference is a catalyst for scholarly growth for those involved in the field of Religion and Ecology, and professional development for students and professionals in the Bay Area.