• Features
  • About
  • Careers
  • Newsletter
Features Professor writes about spiritual experiences with nature

Professor writes about spiritual experiences with nature

-

This spring, professor of religion Daniel Capper will begin a new discussion that has never been initiated. In his new book, “Learning Love from a Tiger: Religious Experiences with Nature,” Capper will examine the interaction between religious persons and the nonhuman world.

“Across religions, people have had varied religious experiences with the nonhuman natural world,” Capper said. “In the book, I explore many such experiences, asking the questions, ‘Why are these experiences so varied?’ and ‘What do these experiences mean for humans and for the natural world?’ There is no other book which approaches this material, so already with this description my book is unique.”

Capper recognized the absence of this kind of research in the public sphere and decided to take the initiative to start the conversation.

“It is important to understand religious experiences with nature in comparative perspective, so someone had to write a book like this,” Capper said. “As it turns out, that someone was me.”

The book will include stories from religious texts and personal experiences. One example of such stories comes from two early Christian texts that describe how Paul, a Christian evangelist, was led to baptize a lion. It was surprising to Paul when he received the request, but he took the lion to a river and baptized him.

“Although most Christian traditions today do not allow baptizing animals, what we see in this story is an unusual openness to the natural world in the early Christian tradition,” Capper said. “The book has many, many more stories like this, as I tell stories on almost every page.”

The University of California Press is the publisher of Capper’s manuscript and said the book “prompts readers to engage their own views of humanity’s place in the natural world and in particular question longstanding assumptions of human superiority.”

“Learning Love from a Tiger” examines the animated encounters humans have with the natural world. This research introduces important ideas to recent work in environmental ethics, religion and ecology.

The eight chapters of Capper’s book cover perspectives in the traditions of many religions, such as Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism. The book also examines folk religious traditions of the Maya, citizens of the Himalayas and people in ancient China.

But the richest information will come from Capper’s personal observations.

“A lot of the book is based on my own field work done at Christian pet blessing rituals, a Hindu ashram, a Buddhist monastery and in various places in Tibet,” Capper said.

“Learning Love from a Tiger” is available for pre-order on Amazon.

 

- Advertisement -

Latest news

‘Sword and Shield’ exposes what the series lacks

After a long wait that featured a series of leaks and spoilers, “Pokèmon Sword and Shield” have finally been released. Despite the unavoidable issues with the game, “Sword and Shield” remain entertaining entries in the “Pokèmon” franchise.

Students search for deals this Christmas

Southern Miss students are facing the embarrassment of gift-giving, or lack thereof, this holiday season. While some are working multiple jobs, others simply can’t afford to buy their mom the espresso machine she desires.

Victoria’s Secret surrenders its wings

There will be no angels this holiday season except for the ones on top of trees. In late November, L Brands announced that the Victoria’s Secret 2019 Fashion Show was canceled.

Freshmen reflect on fall semester

Freshmen students tend to struggle to figure out how to answer when their families ask how college is going.

The Republican Party lacks ideological diversity

With Donald Trump and his supporters getting most of the media coverage, it would be easy to make the mistake of assuming that he and his platform are the only things to be taken seriously as 2020 Republican contenders, but that is not the case.

Independent tattoo artist discusses growth, community

A flat bright yellow building sits at the corner of Hardy Street and I-59 in Hattiesburg. One half of the building belongs to the Ra Shop; the other half belongs to The Ink Company. Three independent tattoo artists, all with different backgrounds, perspectives and art styles, make up the shop.

Must read

‘Sword and Shield’ exposes what the series lacks

After a long wait that featured a series of leaks and spoilers, “Pokèmon Sword and Shield” have finally been released. Despite the unavoidable issues with the game, “Sword and Shield” remain entertaining entries in the “Pokèmon” franchise.

Students search for deals this Christmas

Southern Miss students are facing the embarrassment of gift-giving, or lack thereof, this holiday season. While some are working multiple jobs, others simply can’t afford to buy their mom the espresso machine she desires.

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you