Environmentalism as a religion

Environmentalism is truly a religion. Consider:

It has its weekly rituals (putting out the blue box); it has its dogmas that must not be questioned (catastrophic, man-made global warming) and its corresponding heretics (Bjorn Lomborg, and everyone else who has a hint of scepticism regarding the dogma of catastrophic, man-made global warming); it has its prophets (Al Gore, David Suzuki, etc.); it has its eschatologies (global warming will melt the ice caps and flood and drown us all, OR there’ll be a new ice age (back in the ‘70s, that was the prediction), OR the mushrooming global population will destroy us, etc., etc. – “unless we take drastic action”, though it turns out never to be enough)); it has its special days and observances (Earth Hour, Earth Day); it has its sacred documents (the Kyoto Accord; Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring”); it has its faith-inspired politically active organizations (Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, etc.); it has a system of sacrifice and atonement (offsetting one’s “carbon footprint” through various acts – tree-planting, donating to conservationist and environmentalist causes, blah blah blah); it implicitly has a creation account (evolution by natural selection, or Darwinism, which it of course shares with philosophical materialism – this makes man not special in any way, and not to be specially favoured, so it does constitute an important aspect of the philosophical basis of environmentalism); it has its daily observances (sorting and putting things in recycling bins, and composters); it has its deity to be respected and honoured (Gaia / Mother Earth / Mother Nature), it even has outright worship for those so inclined (various Wiccan and New Age practices); and it has, in the minds of some of its proponents, special dietary restrictions (the vegetarians and vegans who invoke concern for the environment, as well as animal suffering / death, as their reasons for eschewing meat consumption), and various other self-denial actions (riding a bicycle or walking rather than driving a car / truck / SUV); like many religions and sects, it has a certain colour associated with it symbolically (green); and certain symbols (globe motifs; the three recycling arrows Mobius loop triangle).

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