Skip to main content

30% Off New Releases: Explore the List

Harvard University Press - home
Jainism and Ecology

Jainism and Ecology

Nonviolence in the Web of Life

Edited by Christopher Key Chapple

ISBN 9780945454342

Publication date: 09/01/2002

The twenty-five-hundred-year-old tradition of Jainism, which emphasizes nonviolence as the only true path leading to liberation, offers a worldview seemingly compatible with the goals of environmental activism.

But can Jainism adopt a sociocentric environmentalism without compromising its own ascetic principles and spiritual tradition? How does traditional Jain cosmology view the natural world? How might a Jain ethical system respond to decisions regarding the development of dams, the proliferation of automobiles, overcrowding due to overpopulation, or the protection of individual animal species? Can there be a Jain environmental activism that addresses both the traditional concern for individual self-purification and the contemporary dilemma of ecosystem degradation? The voices in this volume reflect the dynamic nature of the Jain faith and its willingness to engage in discussion on a modern social issue.


  • Christopher Key Chapple is Navin and Pratima Doshi Professor of Indic and Comparative Theology, Loyola Marymount University.

Book Details

  • 304 pages
  • Center for the Study of World Religions