Session 3: Deep Ecology

Deep ecology An approach to nature that holds that all parts of the natural world should be taken into equal consideration both for their intrinsic value and as part of a diverse global ecosystem. It opposes anthropocentrism.
Philosophical idealism The conviction that the world as it manifests itself to the observer either does not exist on a material level or is at least in some fundamental sense shaped by the mind of the observer. Its antithesis is realism, the conviction that the world exists independent of its observer.
Scala naturae A divine hierarchy of all organisms; an idea particularly prevalent in Neoplatonic thought. It originally reflected the perfect order of creation, but Manes argues that in Renaissance humanism it came to emphasize the dominance of humankind over all other species.
Teleology The belief that history moves towards a goal, as for instance in any religion with end-time beliefs or certain brands of Marxism.
Transcendentalism A movement originating in nineteenth-century New England asserting that the human mind has access to (e.g. moral) truths which cannot be learned through the senses. Knowledge was thought to reside in a universal spirit inhabiting the entire cosmos, which could be consulted through intuition and seclusion from society.