If the polar icecap melts, will the common ground survive?
Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists, Taoists. Leading representatives of all the world's major faiths have gathered for a conference to address a topic they all consider urgent-- a topic which, they all agree, religious leaders must address. What is that topic?
- Terrorism and violence unleashed in the name of religious belief?
- The worldwide epidemic of abortion?
- Widespread starvation in an affluent world?
- The persecution of believers by oppressive governments?
- Family breakdown, divorce, depression, alienation, homosexuality, drug abuse?
- War, injustice, intolerance, poverty, disease, illiteracy?
No, No, No, Nonono, and Nononono. The common enemy of all religious faiths is climate change.
We should readily accept the idea that religious believers of all stripes, having already made one leap of faith, should be ready to embrace the cause of climate change despite the sketchy evidence that a man-made problem exists. But if we assume that the problem does exist, what can religious leader do to solve it?
They aim to set up a manifesto to encourage far-reaching policy goals from the United Nations.
Oh, good. UN policy goals. That should do the trick. And the organization that has done so well at putting an end to warfare should have no problem patching a hole in the ozone layer.
"Here is a major, human emergency," the Anglican Bishop Richard Chartres of London tells BBC. It's a human emergency, mind you. Not Darfur. Not AIDS. Not the anti-Christian pogroms in Orissa or the genocidal slaughters in Congo. Climate change.
Bishop Chartres continues: "Many of our constituencies regard this still as a peripheral second-order issue-- it's got to be moved up the agenda.
Now there's true religious leadership for you: moving issues up the agenda.
Wait a minute. Did this illustrious shepherd just refer to his flock as a "constituency"?
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