A Catholic perspective on the strange gods and alternative religion of the Eco-Pagans

Al Gore: High Priest and False Prophet of the Eco-Pagans

Do I have to buy Sunkist tuna, because it is dolphin friendly, even if Bumblebee tuna is cheaper?  Do I have to campaign for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, or for renewable sources of energy?  How does a Catholic use resources?  There is nothing wrong with using resources; that is what the good Lord put them on the earth for.  However, there are simple and affordable things I can do to use resources well, by practicing good economy in my lifestyle and my choice of recreation.  While it is primarily the responsibility of legislators, social and political leaders, and governments to promote policies that favor the conservation of resources, and stimulate their use in nations still in development, nevertheless there is much that I can do on a personal level.  The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace has this to say:

Lifestyles should be oriented according to the principles of sobriety, temperance and self-discipline, both at the personal and social levels. People need to escape from the consumer mentality and promote methods of production that respect the created order, as well as satisfying the basic needs of all (November 12, 2005).

But what about the whales and the trees?  The fact is I do not have direct responsibility towards the humpback whales in the Artic, nor do I need to check before purchasing toothpaste whether the company supports the Amazon rainforest.  The environment and animals are important, but are not ends in themselves.  They are cared for in regard to something else.  However, my responsibility to foster and respect human life is binding, because each and every human being is an end it itself, and may never be used as a means to get something else.  It turns out that the human person, whether ”Greens” like it or not, is the centerpiece of creation.  He alone of all creation has a sense of purpose in his life, and he can recognize and live for this purpose.  He has a God-given dignity that bestows priority with respect to the goods of the earth.  Respect and care for the environment is very good and important, but only when it’s taken care of in the right order: humans first.

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