What You Should Write About:
Each paper is based upon a broad question, you should thoughtfully respond to the question and its implications. In each paper, work to develop a clear and straightforward answer to the question (a thesis), and to support that answer. The questions are open-ended, and part of what this assignment tests is your ability to thoughtfully and manageably reflect on each one for at least three pages. There is no single correct answer, and you should consider multiple possibilities before choosing and defending one.
A well-written portfolio will not only answer the required questions, but also make connections to other relevant subjects. This might include ideas you have encountered in other classes, thoughts from previous academic experiences that connect to our work, topics from texts or lectures you encounter this semester, or reflections on mass media and popular culture.
Initial Reflection: Is it important for environmentalists to pay attention to religion? Using a specific example of an environmental problem and a religious tradition to defend your answer, explaining why or why not.
Reflection 2: Based on at least one of the definitions of religion and nature we've discussed over the last two weeks, is it valid to think of environmentalism as a religion, as suggested by Thomas Dunlap? Explain your reasoning, being sure to consider multiple possible answers in addition to defending your own.
Reflection 3: What, above all else, is worth sustaining? In the face of environmental degradation, what aspect of the natural world and/or civilization do you believe should be conserved most urgently? Drawing on at least 3 readings from Grounding Religion, including the one you chose for 11/13, justify your answer and explain how such conservation might take place.
Reflection 4: What would you articulate as the core teaching of Zen Buddhism as you have come to understand it? How does this core message connect and/or conflict with the goal of resisting environmental degradation?
Final Reflection: What are two ideas you hope to remember from this class? How did they emerge from our readings, our class conversation, and your written work?
Eassy question is: Is it important for environmentalists to pay attention to religion? Using a specific example of an environmental problem and a religious tradition to defend your answer, explaining why or why not.
1. An Islamic Response to the Manifest Ecological Crisis: Issues of Justice
2. Christianity and the Survival of Creation
3. Climate Change and Christian Values