Scientific, Religious Convergence Toward Environmental Typology.

Andrew M. Downs, Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne
Andrew Weigert, University of Notre Dame

Abstract

Although scientific and religious prespectives often give different interpretations of physical phenomena, there are indications of a shared concern for understanding human-environment relations. Biological, social, and behavioral sciences provide constructs for a typology to describe and interpret human-environment relations. Using the typology to analyze recent Catholic papal and episcopal documents concerning human-environment relations suggests overlap as well as differences in the use of scientific constructs. The main difference is the relative absence of two biological constructs in the Catholic documents, carrying capacity and population, that may affect possible convergences of scientific and religious environmental understanding