OSU debates religion & environment

By Oregon State University Socratic Club

The OSU Socratic Club will sponsor a debate on the topic “Is Christianity a Help or a Hindrance to Sound Environmental Stewardship?” on Tuesday, May 6, at 7 p.m. in Milam Auditorium on the OSU campus. The speakers will be Professors Loren Wilkinson of Regent College in Vancouver, Canada, and Allen Thompson of Oregon State University.

In a celebrated article published in Science in 1967 Lynn White Jr. argued that modern environmental devastation had its roots in the Western marriage between science and technology. By eradicating pagan animism, which viewed humanity as a part of nature, the human race came to be thought of as having dominion over nature and licensed to exploit the physical environment. The triumph of Christianity fostered environmental indifference and, when joined to new technology, led to ecological havoc.

Loren Wilkinson and Allen Thompson will debate the motive, meaning, and vision of sustainable environmental stewardship from both a Christian and secular humanist perspective. Issues to be discussed include the Lynn White thesis, different visions of what good environmental stewardship should be, and the different accounts that form the basis of a moral responsibility to be good stewards of the earth.

For more information visit the Socratic Club website at https://groups.oregonstate.edu/socratic/ . We regret that a live stream of the event will be not be available for viewing. But the debate will be videotaped and posted at a later date for viewing on the Socratic Club’s YouTube page, where more than 20 previous Socratic Club debates may be viewed online at https://www.youtube.com/user/orstsocraticclub . Please use the contact form to request special accommodations.

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