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Integrated Earth Charter Ethics

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image of Worldviews: Global Religions, Culture, and Ecology

After a brief review of the spirit and content of Charter principles, this essay proposes that integrated ethical re fl ection should deliberately: draw on main principles and supporting principles as interactive imperatives for a sustainable way of life; think across the four parts of the Earth Charter to emphasize combinations of principles; and bring Charter principles to bear both as general ideals and as practical guidelines. Moreover, these principles become quite lively, and we gain multi-dimensional issue perspective, when we hold the Charter in one hand and material presenting a contemporary issue analysis in the other. The essay moves on to illustrate how to make integrated use of Earth Charter principles in ethical refl ection on three key global issues: destructive economic integration, loss of biologically diverse habitat, and close confi nement of animals. In each case, the author "gathers" Earth Charter principles that illumine the problem's philosophical, ecological, socio-economic, and political dimensions, and help to shape a constructive response.


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