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Becoming ecosynchronous, part 1. The root causes of our unsustainable way of life


  • Robert Hay

    (Curtin University of Technology, Western Australia)


The condition of modern, Western society is examined in two parts. In Part 1 the root causes of our society's unsustainable condition are considered through a new approach, becoming ecosynchronous, to discuss the unfolding of self (becoming) and being aware of events that are meaningfully related (synchronicity). The problems that confront us are first noted, including where those trends are heading, followed by a review of initiatives underway to address these problems. The limitations of a shallow ecology approach are discussed and juxtaposed with philosophical and psychological root causes of systemic failure. This includes reviews of the long-term cycles of civilizations, the decline of a sacred relationship with nature, the Western view of reality, ecopsychology, ecofeminism, sense of place and consumerism|busyness. A shift to an ecocentric position is advocated, as is an emphasis on personal development, with direction offered toward becoming more sustainable (discussed further in Part 2). Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd and ERP Environment.

Suggested Citation

  • Robert Hay, 2005. "Becoming ecosynchronous, part 1. The root causes of our unsustainable way of life," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(5), pages 311-325.
  • Handle: RePEc:wly:sustdv:v:13:y:2005:i:5:p:311-325
    DOI: 10.1002/sd.256

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. David Pepper, 1998. "Sustainable development and ecological modernization: A radical homocentric perspective," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 6(1), pages 1-7.
    2. Kerry James Grundy, 1997. "Sustainable management: a sustainable ethic?," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 5(3), pages 119-129.
    3. Jason Palmer & Ian Cooper & Rita van der Vorst, 1997. "Mapping out fuzzy buzzwords - who sits where on sustainability and sustainable development," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 5(2), pages 87-93.
    4. Georgia O. Carvalho, 2001. "Sustainable development: is it achievable within the existing international political economy context?," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(2), pages 61-73.
    5. T. R. Franks, 1996. "Managing Sustainable Development: Definitions, Paradigms, And Dimensions," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 4(2), pages 53-60.
    6. Paul Upham, 2000. "Scientific consensus on sustainability: the case of The Natural Step," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(4), pages 180-190.
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    Cited by:

    1. Mert Bilgin, 2012. "The PEARL Model of Sustainable Development," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 107(1), pages 19-35, May.
    2. Robert Hay, 2010. "The relevance of ecocentrism, personal development and transformational leadership to sustainability and identity," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 18(3), pages 163-171.

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