Environmental History of Dharmic Communities

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Presentation for the Dallas Philosophers Forum. This presentation discusses the intertwining of environmentalism in the dharmic practices of traditional grass-roots rural communities such as Bishnois, Bhils, and Swadhyaya.

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1 recording (50 min., 22 sec.)

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Jain, Pankaj January 8, 2019.

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This audio recording is part of the collection entitled: UNT Scholarly Works and was provided by UNT College of Arts and Sciences to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. More information about this recording can be viewed below.

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Description

Presentation for the Dallas Philosophers Forum. This presentation discusses the intertwining of environmentalism in the dharmic practices of traditional grass-roots rural communities such as Bishnois, Bhils, and Swadhyaya.

Physical Description

1 recording (50 min., 22 sec.)

Notes

Abstract: The traditional grass-roots rural communities such as Bishnois, Bhils, and Swadhyaya continue to live the dharmic way of life in the sense that for them their traditions are part of their daily way of life and thus there is no such thing as “religion” in their lives as there is no separation of sacred from profane. Therefore, there is no such thing as environmentalism distinct and separate in their lives. Their environmentalism reflects in their dharmic practices even though they may not be conscious about it. If Bishnois are saving animals and trees from invaders, they are simply living their traditions, not “protecting the environment” per se. If Swadhyayis are building Vṛkśamandiras (tree temples) and Nirmal Nīrs (water harvesting sites), they are simply expressing their devotion and reverence for all creation according to the teachings of Gitā, not “restoring the environment”. If Bhils continue to practice their rituals in their Sacred Groves, it is their ancient tradition, not “saving the bio-diversity”. The traditional, comparatively much less modernized, groups do not see religion, ecology, and ethics as separate entities. In line with the etymological definition of dharma, their duty, virtue, cosmic ecological order, and spiritual aspects of their lives are all intertwined just as dharma in its various definitions and meanings includes duty, virtue, cosmic ecological order and spiritual aspects of lives.

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  • Dallas Philosophers Forum, January 8, 2019. Dallas, Texas.

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UNT Scholarly Works

Materials from the UNT community's research, creative, and scholarly activities and UNT's Open Access Repository. Access to some items in this collection may be restricted.

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  • January 8, 2019

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • March 15, 2019, 11:51 a.m.

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Jain, Pankaj. Environmental History of Dharmic Communities, audio recording, January 8, 2019; (https://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1459147/: accessed March 21, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, https://digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT College of Arts and Sciences.