The famous photographs of the Earth (e.g., the Earthrise photo in 1968 and the fully-illuminated photo of the Earth in 1972) taken from outer space by the astronauts of the Apollo missions depict the Earth “as it truly exists.” They have allowed us to see the Earth outside of the Earth. As these photographs have revealed, the complex parts of the Earth appear to be wonderfully interrelated to one another to the effect that they form and emerge as a single whole. From a distance, the Earth and humankind appear to be forming a single entity. This worldview awakens our desire to love this beautiful planet and enkindles our ecological advocacy. In the face of the climate change phenomenon, the captivating photographs of a fragile Earth may serve as a powerful visual art for advocating ecological consciousness. Our contemplation on these Earth photographs invites us to revisit some vital questions about our identity (who are we?), origin (where did we come from?), and destiny (where are we going to?). To explore these questions, James Lovelock, Thomas Berry, and Leonardo Boff serve as our main dialogue partners. These authors will help us realize whether or not our traditional myths and cosmological theories still offer adequate answers to these perennial questions.
The Earth Photographs and Ecological Theology
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