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Guardians of Creation


June 9, 2017
BBC
Heart and Soul

Faith communities say these are critical times for the environment. Their driving force comes from the belief that they are guardians of creation - protectors of the earth. While people of faith the world over are working for change, Ritula Shah asks what special dynamic they bring to the environmental movement and whether they can harness religious conviction to effect global policy.

Pope Francis has joined the voices of Islamic, Jewish, Sikh and Hindu leaders, amongst others, in calling for action on climate change, imbuing the debate with a moral and spiritual imperative. And it is not just religious leaders. People of faith across the religious spectrum and around the world are actively involved in practical projects to protect the environment and raise awareness.

We visit some of these projects and meet the people running them. We attend an environmental workshop for imams, we talk to worshippers in the Punjab celebrating Sikh Environment Day, workers at an Eco Village in Tanzania run by Islamic Help and we have tea with volunteers at a Christian run community allotment in England. What difference can they make?

Dr Mary Evelyn Tucker, expert on Religion and Ecology says there are roughly a billion Hindus, a billion and a half Muslims, a billion Confucians and two billion Christians alone, making quite a moral force.

Dr Rajwant Singh from Eco Sikh says these vast faith communities have to work together and if they do, they are better placed than anyone else to influence governments.

Listen to the recording here:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p054nkxf