Christian Humanism, Anthropocentrism, and the Contemporary Ecological Crisis

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Anthony Le Duc

Abstract

The tradition of Christian humanism is one of the greatest treasures of the Catholic Church. As ecological concerns loom over the world, the Catholic Church has been presenting an environmentalism faithfully founded on this tradition, which can be traced back to the early Church Fathers, and indeed Jesus himself. Unfortunately, the term "humanism" has been co-opted by those holding secularist views, and Catholic humanistic environmentalism has not always been understood by those looking to evaluate the Church’s disposition towards the ecology, often mistaking it for a form of anthropocentrism. The discussion shows that Catholic environmentalism is a sound expression of the rich tradition of Christian humanism. It also asserts that Catholic environmentalism must be understood within this unique humanistic outlook without references to the notion of anthropocentrism, which has its own controversy about meaning and usage.  

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