Engaging Global Civilization

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The Challenge of Civilizational Change

We face issues of poverty, security and ecology that are intractable within our current civilizational framework. A new framework is emerging, that of ecological civilization. Within a civilizational period change is incremental, but when a civilization changes everything changes at once over a relatively short period of time.  The civilization that is emerging will be as different from the modern period as the modern was from the medieval. It will not be defined by industry, markets,  materialism and globalism, but rather by ecology, culture, sufficiency, reciprocity, localities and the sacredness of Earth community.

The Progression of Civilizations

Agriculture gave birth to the classical civilizations. The industrial revolution gave birth to the modern globalized civilization. Now ecological consciousness is giving rise to ecological civilization.

Ecological Civilization

The term “ecological civilization” was first widely used in the Peoples Republic of China and has become official state policy in that country. Related endeavors  are proceeding in various parts of the world—the quest for “green economy” in Europe and the United States, the search for “sufficiency economy” in Thailand,  the call for “Earth democracy” in India, the rediscovery of the cosmovisión Andina in Peru, and the groping for “degrowth” in France and Italy. **

ICEC wishes to deepen the global conversation on ecological civilization grounded in the awarenesses that…

  • Earth is a single sacred community bound together in interdependent relationships.
  • Earth is a communion of subjects, not a collection of objects.*
  • We learn from creation and from that we learn to live the good and sustainable life in harmony with creation.
  • Earth’s processes and components developed over long periods of time. They offer possibilities, impose constraints, and require respect.
  • Earth’s special purposes are to create, sustain and enhance life and consciousness.
  • The key roles of humans are celebrating and caring for the community of life in conscious self-awareness.

And that an ecological civilization

  • Understands Earth as oikos (Greek) or eco (English), which means our Earth home. Ecology is the understanding of all the relationships in our Earth home.
  • Lives by standards of fundamental justice and fairness for all humans. It places survival and human welfare outcomes above products, profits and markets as means.
  • Recognizes the rights of all species to habitat, nourishment, and dignified participation in the community of life.
  • Honors the all living components and processes of Gaia in their qualitative dimensions as well as their functional roles.
  • Is grounded in local communities and bioregions, and in historic cultures and classical civilizations.
  • Protects the commons at global, regional and local levels.
  • Is unified by a shared sense of the sacredness of Earth community.
  • Is a process concept, not something to be arrived at, but something ever to be created.
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