Meditating on the work of American poet and environmental activist Gary Snyder and thirteenth-century Japanese Zen Master Eihei Dōgen, Jason M. Wirth draws out insights for understanding our relation to the planet's ongoing ecological crisis. He discusses what Dōgen calls "the Great Earth" and what Snyder calls "the Wild" as being comprised of the play of waters and mountains, emptiness and form, and then considers how these ideas can illuminate the spiritual and ethical dimensions of place. The book culminates in a discussion of earth democracy, a place-based sense of communion where all beings are interconnected and all beings matter. This radical rethinking of what it means to inhabit the earth will inspire lovers of Snyder's poetry, Zen practitioners, environmental philosophers, and anyone concerned about the global ecological crisis.
Jason M. Wirth is Professor of Philosophy at Seattle University. He is the author of Schelling's Practice of the Wild: Time, Art, Imagination and The Conspiracy of Life: Meditations on Schelling and His Time; the translator of The Ages of the World by F. W. J. Schelling; and the coeditor (with Patrick Burke) of The Barbarian Principle: Merleau-Ponty, Schelling, and the Question of Nature, all published by SUNY Press.