Over the last few decades, the revolution in global communication has enabled us all to witness the destructive impact that industrial production and farming practises, unethical marketing and unchecked consumerism have wreaked on the planet. This global awareness has lead to a search for more responsible approaches to managing our relationship with our environment.
ECO-Buddhism has emerged as a natural response to these problems and as a form of practical engagement with the key Buddhist concepts of compassion and interdependence. By inspiring and guiding communities to work together on environmental issues, it aims to protect not just the physical environment but also all the sentient beings that make up the complex web of life on the planet.
The Karmapa himself has stated that the environment is the “biggest challenge,” the essentialquestion for the 21st century. Among his many other activities aimed at promoting respect for the environment, the Karmapa has set up the Khoryug Association to promote environmental awareness and practical environmental protection projects among monastic communities in the Himalayas.
Supporting the environment is therefore a key concern at TNG-CENTRE® too. Under the guidance of Lama Sangyay Tendzin, the centre has fully adopted a set of principles inspired by His Holiness Karmapa, Orgyen Thrinley Dorje’s advice. In line with the directives of the Khoryug Association, the centre has initiated a number of projects, which it aims to develop and expand in the future. This has resulted in:
- planting trees to support the environment
- planting fruit trees providing food for both residents and wildlife
- supporting a thriving local insect community by avoiding all chemicals in the flower and vegetable gardens
- growing organic vegetables and fruit, integrating principles of bio-agriculture
- using ecological water treatment processes
- using only environmentally friendly cleaning products
- following a reduce, reuse and recycle policy
- studying and promoting the use of various local medicinal plants
- promoting environmental awareness through wwoofing programs
Positive change in our societies begins with ourselves: together we can help and protect all life on Earth!