By Seyyed Hossein Nasr, Suhail Academy, Hardback, 309 pages
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The current ecological crisis is a matter of urgent global concern, with solutions being sought on many fronts. In this book, Seyyed Hossein Nasr elucidates the religious view of Nature and the ecological crisis and argues that the devastation of our world has been exacerbated, if not actually caused, by the reductionist view of nature that has been advanced by modern secular science.
What is needed, he believes, is the recovery of the truth to which the great enduring religions all attest, namely, that nature is sacred. Nasr traces the historical process through which Western civilization moved away from the idea of nature as sacred and embraced a world view that sees human beings as alienated from nature and nature itself as a machine to be dominated and manipulated by human beings.
His goal is to negate the totalitarian claims of modern science and to re-open the way to the religious view of the order of nature developed over centuries in the cosmologies and sacred sciences of the great traditions. Each tradition, Nasr shows, has a wealth of knowledge and experience concerning the order of nature. The resuscitation of this knowledge he argues would allow religions all over the globe to enrich each other and cooperate to heal the wounds inflicted upon the Earth.
“The most comprehensive and intelligent treatment of its topic that has been written Nasr is one of the major intellects of our day.” - Huston Smith
About the author:
Seyyed Hossein Nasr (b. 1933) was born in Tehran, where he received his early education. He studied in the West and gained his BS from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his MA and PhD from Harvard University, where he studied the History of Science and Learning with special concentration on Islamic science and philosophy. In 1958, he returned to Iran to teach at Tehran University, where he was Professor of the History of Science and Philosophy. In 1962 he was visiting lecturer at Harvard University, and he taught there during the summer of 1965. During 1964-65, he was the first holder of the Agha Khan Chair of Islamic Studies at the American University of Beirut. He also served as Vice-Chancellor of Tehran University and Chancellor of the Arya-Mehr University of Technology in Iran. He was the founder and first President of the Iranian Academy of Philosophy and is presently University Professor of Islamic Studies at the George Washington University, Washington D. C. and President of the Foundation for Traditional Studies. Professor Nasr has lectured in America, Europe, the Middle East, Pakistan, India, Japan, and Australia and was the first Muslim Scholar to deliver the Gifford Lectures. He is the author of over twenty-five books and five hundred articles in Persian, English, Arabic and French. His works have appeared in more than ten languages. His important contribution is three generations of scholars he has trained in the course of his fifty-year scholarly career in Iran and the West.
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