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Second major international meeting of the ISSRNC: “The Re-Enchantment of Nature across Disciplines: Critical Intersections of Science, Ethics, and Metaphysics”

  • 2008-01-17
  • 2008-01-18
  • Morelia (Mexico)
The second, major, international meeting of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture (ISSRNC), “The Re-Enchantment of Nature across Disciplines: Critical Intersections of Science, Ethics, and Metaphysics,” will be held 17-20 January 2008 in Morelia, Mexico and will be hosted by the National Autonomous University of Mexico, in Morelia, Mexico. The Society has had nearly 200 proposals and invitations for accepted proposals have been sent by email. Please monitor the Conference Updates section for additional announcements concerning the conference. We are pleased to announce the featured keynote speakers: Dr. Davìd Carrasco Harvard University USA Dr. Victor Toledo UNAM-Morelia MexicoDr. Holmes Rolston III Colorado State University USA The theme of this conference provides focused opportunities to explore and evaluate both new and established links among increasingly specialized areas within this emerging and exciting interdisciplinary field. We seek to critically evaluate the notions of scientific disenchantment and religious or spiritual re-enchantment of nature, addressing the intersections between science, ethics, and metaphysics in environmental thought and behavior, religious worldviews, and spirituality. Over the past thirty years, scholars have observed a potential paradigm shift from the disenchantment to a re-enchantment of nature, as scientists and humanists from diverse disciplines apprehend or construct values in nature, including those they construe as religious or spiritual. Contrary to the modernist idea of a secularized, disenchanted, and (often) meaningless world, contemporary environmentalisms have found in nature ultimate value and meaning. It may be that the Western (re)discovery of ethical and moral principles in environmental thought and behavior may generate a greater respect for nature, eventually leading to sustainable subsistence and conservation practices, a possibility about which we invite critical reflection and research. Conference participants will critically explore and evaluate the notions of disenchantment and re-enchantment of nature, asking questions such as:Does the moral story of the “spiritual,” “the intangible,” and “the sacred” in contemporary environmentalisms present particular opportunities and/or dilemmas for the critical inquiry of religion, nature, and culture? What do current developments tell us about the relationship between science, religion, and environmentalism in the contemporary world? To what extent is the quest to save nature also a quest to save individual subjectivities from the presumed meaningless of the modern condition? Are we witnessing a renewal of eco-centric and/or religious worldviews, or did they ever decline? What is the role of indigenous traditional knowledge and indigenous religions in the Western re-enchantment of nature? Does the re-enchantment of nature provide an answer to the problem of meaning? Can we and, if so, how can we conceptualize emergent relations between the ethical, the religious and the political in ways that do not fit the paradigms of disenchantment/re-enchantment?

For further information check the conference homepage at

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