Affecting any environmental theme, we are basically dealing with a person and his connection with the environment. We – people – are the main cause of most of today’s environmental problems, and therefore it is important that we consider ourselves to be the main element of any proposed solution. Integral ecology is designed to radically change our habitual way of thinking about environmental problems and environmental pollution.
Having understood the essence of the problem, in order to find out the possible ways to solve it, integral ecology proposes to orient simultaneously to many value systems, worldviews, priorities, preferences, habits, needs, emotions, as well as various cultural norms, external structural and social constraints.
Given the characteristics of individuals, groups of people, countries, or even entire bioregions, finding, finding and implementing a joint plan of action may seem extraordinary, or even quite hopeless. Nevertheless, integral ecology within its holistic position suggests that environmental solutions can be introduced and real positive effects achieved only if we consider everything that there is a person as an individual and everything that we are as a collective.
An integral approach to the problems of human ecology offers ways to overcome any difficulties by combining different values and different points of view. To complete the picture, when searching for a solution to a problem, more than one separate worldview knowledge base is required. Each proposition contains something important and can make a significant contribution to its solution of the problem.
In other words, each point of view on the essence of the problem has the same value. And, of course, for this it is necessary to recognize the complexity of each individual and society as a whole, as well as the complexity of any environmental situation.
Combining a multitude of opinions represents a certain complexity, but it also opens up new opportunities for us.
Our direct perception of ourselves, other people and nature plays an important role in how we treat the environment. Integral ecology tells us that mental faculties, mental state, moral beliefs shape our individual attitude to issues such as toxic emissions. We need to understand these various psychological aspects and their role in shaping our opinions about toxins entering the environment.
Integral ecology assumes that transformational practices such as therapy, contemplation, meditation and social activities will help people to discover the roots of their views, beliefs and emotions, which in turn generate concern or disregard for the environment.
Transformational practices can support the individual development of the individual, and therefore, can affect the collective relations and actions that lead to the emergence of new institutions. These new institutions will have to provoke universal development. After all, while people cannot create a clear expression of their divergent worldviews and while there are leaders who embody different ethics in relation to the same things on our planet, we will continue our abuse of nature.
Integral ecology as a concept of environmental studies
There are many approaches to the environment: philosophical, spiritual, religious, social, political, cultural, behavioral, scientific and psychological. Each of them emphasizes the importance of some of its components, but too often remains naked and deaf in relation to other dimensions.
To overcome such fragmentation, integral ecology studies methods of combining all approaches into a single ecological “tapestry”. This “ecology of ecology” focuses not only on physical and behavioral systems, but also includes cultural and deliberate aspects at all levels of the organization. Thus, integral ecology is the study of all aspects of the natural world at different levels of complexity.
This new emerging theory in ecology emphasizes that the environment and its various aspects are revealed in different ways depending on the way the issue is resolved or the methodology used to find the answer. Integral ecology takes into account multiple worldviews within individuals, communities and cultures and their accompanying environmental perspectives – each with its own specific forms of mutual understanding.