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Elias Economou

An Orthodox View of the Ecological Crisis

1.2 The Distinction between Macro-Ecology and Micro-Ecology.

Although the ecological crisis factually and visually extends from the depths of the underground water resources to the οzon shield above, we have to distinguish between its micro-ecological phenomenology, and its macro-ecological essence. Regarding the first, the micro-ecological phenomena, we can easily ascribe the crisis to technological, industrial and political activity. But these visual causes οf tbe problem are produced from roots belonging to causes of a different order; these ultimate causes are related to the human mentality, hidden behind the natural facts and motivating the technological, industrial and political activity that promotes anti-ecological socio-ethical behaviour.

The human conceptions about the world, mankind and their interrelationship are tlιe mental and psychological causes of the ecological crisis of our times. These ultimate causes ought to be discribed as macro-ecological.

The macro-ecological factor i.e. the human mentality, is part of the human being; it is the God-created personality, with its special and precious abilities and charismata, incorporated in it "after God's image". So, the state of the mind (mentality) and the condition of the human being are inseparable. Therefore, when we speak of the human mentality, we mean the spiritual condition itself. From this point of view, it is clear that we see the function of the human mind as an intellectual activity strongly and inseparably related to the Creator and to His creation. Strictly speaking, the ecological crisis is not a question of mankind's relationship to nature alone, but a question of relationship to the Creator and His purpose in creating the world. This is the macro- ecological view of the problem. The micro-ecological aspect is man's activities and use of the world, as side-effects of the macro-ecological human view of the same.

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