In the paper he wrote “Christianity bears a huge burden Of guilt” and concludes that “Hence we shall continue to have a worsening ecologic crisis until we reject the Christian axiom that nature has no reason for existence save to serve man. ” White depicted Western Christianity as seeing the world existing primarily for the benefit of man, and man, bearing God’s image and sharing in great measure God’s transcendence of nature, exploit nature for his proper ends according to God’s will.
This thesis of White shall be referred to as “Dominion Hypothesis” for ease of identification in this paper. But are the claims in his Dominion Hypothesis valid? Does Christianity bear a burden of guilt for the ecological crisis of the world? The purpose of this paper is to assess the trench of his thesis by firstly analyzing what the biblical scriptures and theologians have to say with regard to the relationship of God, man and the environment.
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Next the symptoms and origins of our ecological crisis are examined, after which their ties with Western Christianity are assessed to determine whether the later has causal relationship with the former. Finally, after arriving at the conclusion, some recommendations are presented. White’s Thesis White’s thesis can briefly be summarized as: “All forms of life modify their contexts, and the human race has in one sense simply done this more than there. However, the human impact on the environment, whilst frequently detrimental in the past, was given an added impetus by Christianity in its Westernizes form.