RE-GESTATING THE ECO-ETHICS OF RĀMĀYAṆA IN ANTHROPOCENE
An Eco-Aesthetical Approach
The paper critically evaluates the eco-ethical practices of the knowledge society in the period of Rāmāyaṇa from an eco-aesthetical perspective. In the current anthropocentric epoch, reorienting people toward eco-ethical values is a considerable challenge. Ecological ethics is one of the key concepts of eco-aesthetics, which can be read through the ancient Indian epic Vālmīki-Rāmāyaṇa. Also, the articulation of human-nature interrelations is deeply embedded in the Sanskrit literary tradition, which Vālmīki’s epic narrative illustrates in the Rāmāyaṇa. Against this backdrop, this article proceeds with a discussion of the root causes of the ecological crisis in the Anthropocene. The paper explores the ecological ethos and knowledge rooted in the Hindu religion through a few select secondary works of literature. Further, the paper discusses the concept of eco-aesthetics in the present ecosophical discourse. Finally, the article critically assesses the text of Rāmāyaṇa for the philosophical and aesthetical deliberations of eco-caring, seeking to bring those eco-ethical notions from the epic to the fore that can potentially induce ecological awareness in people.
Albrecht, Glenn. A. “Exiting the Anthropocene and Entering the Symbiocene.” 2015.
Bateson, Gregory. “The Root of Ecological Crisis.” Steps to an Ecology of Mind. New York: Ballantine Books, 1972. 488-493.
Bilimoria, P.; Prabhu, J.; and Sharma, R. Indian Ethics: Classical Tradition and Contemporary Challenges (Volume 1). New York: Routledge, 2016.
Carlson, Allen. “Environmental Aesthetics, Ethics, and Ecoaesthetics.” Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 76.4(2018): 399-410.
Carson, Rachel. Silent Spring. London: Penguin, 1962.
Chapman, J. L. and Reiss, M. J. Ecology: Principles and Applications. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012.
Chapple, Christopher. K., and Tucker, Mary. E. Hinduism and ecology: the intersection of earth, sky, and water. MA, USA: Harvard Divinity School, 2000.
Cheng, Xiangzhan. “Ecoaesthetics and Ecocriticism.” Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment 17.4 (2010): 785–789.
Cheng, Xiangzhan. “On the Four Keystones of Ecological Aesthetic Appreciation.” East Asian Ecocriticism: A Critical Reader. Eds. Simon C. Estok and Won-Chung Kim. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013. 213–228.
Das, Bhupendra C. “Vedic Concept of Ṛta.” The Journal of East West Thought 8.1 (2018): 5-11.
Jain, Pankaj. Dharma and Ecology of Hindu Communities: Sustenance and Sustainability. London, UK: Ashgate, 2011.
Kinne, Otto. “Ethics and Eco-ethics.” Marine Ecology Progress Series 153 (1997): 1–3.
Lee, David. “The Natural History of the Rāmāyaṇa.” Hinduism and Ecology: The Intersection of Earth, Sky & Water. Eds. Christopher. K. Chapple, and Mary. E. Tucker. Harvard, MA: Harvard Divinity School, 2000. 245-268.
Miles, Malcolm. Eco-Aesthetics: Art, Literature and Architecture in a Period of Climate Change (Radical Aesthetics-Radical Art). London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2014.
Nadkarni, N. M. “Ecology.” Routledge Handbook of Religion and Ecology. Eds. W. Jenkins, M. E. Tucker and J. Grim. London: Routledge, 2017. 412–419.
Naess, Arne. “Self-Realisation: An Ecological Approach to being in the World.” Eds. John Seed et al. Thinking like a Mountain: Towards a Council of All Beings, Gabriola Island: New Catalyst Books Edition, 1988. 19-30.
Nandhikkara, Jose. “Planetary Ethics During Anthropocene.” Journal of Dharma 46.2 (2021): 123-128.
Nandhikkara, Jose. “Role of Religion in Society.” Journal of Dharma 40.2 (2015): 149-154.
Narayanan, Vasudha. “One Tree Is Equal to Ten Sons: Hindu Responses to the Problems of Ecology, Population, and Consumption.” Journal of the American Academy of Religion 65.2 (1997): 291-332.
Orr, Andrew. “An Introduction to Eco-Theology.” A Church of Ireland Theological Journal, 2017. 10–12.
Rambachan, Anantanand. The Advait Worldview: God, World and Humanity. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2006.
Ravikanth, Gudasala. “Indian Philosophy and Environmental Ethics.” GNOSI: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Human Theory and Praxis 4.1 (2021): 47-63.
Tewari, Anil K. “Harmony in Nature: The Role of Right Understanding.” Journal of Dharma 46.4 (2021): 517-534.
Tucker, Mary E, and Grim, John. “Series Foreword.” Hinduism and Ecology: The Intersection of Earth, Sky & Water. Eds. Christopher. K. Chapple, and Mary. E. Tucker. MA, USA: Harvard Divinity School, 2000. XV–XXVII.
Vālmīki-Rāmāyaṇa (With Sanskrit Text and English Translation), Volume-1. Gorakhpur, India: Gita Press, 2006.
Vālmīki-Rāmāyaṇa (With Sanskrit Text and English Translation), Volume-2. Gorakhpur, India: Gita Press, 2006.
White, Lynn. “The Historical Roots of Our Ecologic Crisis.” Science 155.3767 (1967): 1203–07.
Copyright (c) 2023 Journal of Dharma
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.