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Bethlehem, Pa., February 5, 2010—The Way of Ecopiety: Essays in Transversal Geophilosophy (Global Scholarly Publications, 2009), a collection of twenty selected writings by Hwa Yol Jung, professor emeritus of political philosophy, spans nearly four decades of the author's thinking on environmental ethics and philosophy. Professor Jung wrote the first essay, "The Ecological Crisis: A Philosophic Perspective, East and West," calling for a paradigm shift in thinking, in 1970 in conjunction with the first Earth Day. "It was the first time I wrote on ecology," he said. "What had been a passionate avocation now is my passionate vocation."
The essays describe and promote a philosophy that includes characteristics of Confucianism, Daoism, and Zen Buddhism (all practical and focused on "this world"), as well as of contemporary Western environmental thinkers—a new paradigm that is "against the anthropocentric notion that nature or earth is a pile of objects for human use, and that spirituality and rationality are in the sole possession of human faculties." Transversality, like globalization, encourages the cross-cultural exchange of ideas and values and "makes the world less and less ethnocentric," writes Professor Jung in the book's preface.
With chapters on poet "Gary Snyder's Ecopiety" and "The Splendor of the Wild: Zen and Aldo Leopold, the book is "more accessible than some of my previous books," said Dr. Jung, one of Moravian's first Lindback Award recipients for excellence in teaching. Dedicated to Professor Jung's four grandchildren, the book is part of a series of volumes on Chinese and comparative philosophy sponsored by the Association of Chinese Philosophers in North America. The text design was by his son, Michael Jung.
Hwa Yol Jung will discuss his new book of essays at a Faculty Luncheon presentation at Moravian on February 25. In May, he will travel to Korea to teach a course based on the book.