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Education for a Sustainable Future: Strategies of the New Hindu Religious Movements

Author(s): Martin Haigh

Journal: Sustainability
ISSN 2071-1050

Volume: 2;
Issue: 11;
Start page: 3500;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: community education | NGO | Hinduism | faith-based environmentalism | Sarvodaya | Gandhi | Vivekananda | PROUT | ISKCON | Ananda Marg | Karma Yoga | Bhakti Yoga | Bhumi Project

Increasingly, sustainability is conceived as a crisis of the human mind and the key challenge for pro-sustainability education is developing sufficient motivation in learners. The spiritual aspirations of religious communities contain sufficient motivational force, which may be deployed for effective sustainability education. This paper explores the approaches to sustainability and sustainability education of some internationally-oriented Hindu religious movements. These include the rural education initiatives of Gandhian Sarvodaya, which emphasizes non-harming, self-reliance and personal ethics, ISKCON, which emphasizes devotional service, P.R. Sarkar’s Ananda Marg, which emphasizes cooperative enterprise, the Tantric body re-imagined at the social scale, and Swami Vivekananda’s Sri Ramakrishna Order, which emphasizes karma yoga, spiritual development through service to the God in each human. It also describes the British Hindu contribution to the UNDP/ARC’s multi-faith sustainability initiative “Many Heavens, One Earth”; which is the “Bhumi Project” and its two main campaigns, Green Temples and Compassionate Living.
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