The Pathos of Politics (72) Arne Naess

Arne Naess

Earth does not belong to humans. ~ Arne Naess

Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess (1912–2009) was so impressed by Silent Spring that he devoted himself to raising public awareness of the impact that people were having on the environment. He developed a theory he termed deep ecology. Its central tenet was that all life has its own intrinsic value, and therefore “needs protection against the destruction of billions of humans.”

The challenge of today is to save the planet from further devastation which violates both the enlightened self-interest of humans and nonhumans, and decreases the potential of joyful existence for all. ~ Arne Naess

Naess’ deep ecology called for human population reduction and less interference in the natural world. Deep ecology was enthusiastically endorsed by environmentalists who despaired about the value of shallow ecology, which ignored the environmental impact of economic growth and technology.

Life is fundamentally one. ~ Arne Naess