Nature Spirituality

REL-D 300 — Fall 2020

Lisa H. Sideris
Days and Times
MW 4:00-5:15P
Course Description

Does the human connection to nature constitute a form of religion? Are outdoor activities like hiking, running, climbing, and surfing, a form of spiritual practice? What are the consequences, positive and negative, of framing environmentalism as a form of religious commitment? As humans increasingly engage with artificial environments and technology, what are the social and psychological impacts? Through a variety of lenses, including nature writing, pagan practices, studies of awe and wonder, indigenous and animistic perspectives, and the reflections of scientists and religion scholars, we will consider the variety of ways in which humans engage spiritually with nature and nonhumans. Requirements include short papers, outdoor field activities, and in-class presentations.