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Book: Buddhism in Five Minutes

Chapter: 70. Are Buddhists Active in Ecological Movements and Protecting the Environment to Mitigate Climate Change?

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.40812


The climate crisis is something that affects each and every one of us today. Although environmental concern was present in early Buddhist texts, this concern meant something different when the texts were compiled. It was more localized in scale and far removed from today’s global crisis. So, modern Buddhist ecological activists have had to innovate, engaging with debates outside of their tradition in order to create new Buddhist models. To answer the question, then: yes, Buddhists are active in ecological movements, and, through figures such as the Dalai Lama and Thich Nhat Hanh, the tradition as a whole is increasingly seen as “green".

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