Deepen Spirituality

Quaker Earthcare Witness is different from organizations that come from a purely environmental standpoint in that we seek to improve our relationship with Earth by living out right relationship with all of creation. We feel that a spiritual need rests at the heart of our current environmental crises and that by applying Friends’ ways and testimonies, we can bring a voice of connection, reflection, deepening, and right action to today’s environmental concerns.

In this Section

This section of our website offers ideas and inspiration for Friends and caring others who want to deepen their spiritual understanding and practice in relation to their care of Earth. Here you can learn more about Friends’ ways and practices, explore ideas around eco-spirituality, find tools that can help you deepen your own spiritual connection with Earth, and find out more about the 5 Purposes.

Poems: "The Earth is Us" and "gifts"

Leaf on stone by Kathy Barnhart

The Earth is Us
By Mary Ann Iyer

The cells of this earth
are our cells.
The wind that blows
across its surface is
the self same air that
we breathe.

Our life blood courses
through our veins
with no less certainty than
the rivers cascading to
the sea.

And what are we to make
of this?

we are of the earth
is not the question.
Rather, we should ask
what part we play.

Our capacity to choose
sets us apart from
the other beings here.

The quarterly journal of Quaker Earthcare Witness.

Interfaith Earthcare Touchstones

Photo of tree and ferns by Kathy Barnhart

“A touchstone transcends any one religion, thought, or spiritual tradition and serves as a guide. These touchstones provide examples of specific prayers, passages or scripture, or inspirations from various sacred texts or philosophical writings associated with diverse traditions.” Last year I joined faith leaders at an interfaith Peace Breakfast hosted by Valencia College’s Peace and Justice Institute. We were each asked to share a touchstone from our faith traditions on how humans are accountable to the care and protection of our home, planet Earth. I’ve shared these touchstones below.

The quarterly journal of Quaker Earthcare Witness.

Beckoned by Living Trees

 Photo: “American elm” Melissa McMasters/Flickr

THE  FIRST  TREE  that beckoned me silently, long ago, was a sapling on the far side of a lawn. When I investigated, I discovered it was being strangled by an orange plastic band encircling its trunk. After the sapling had been purchased from a local nursery, the label and price tag had been removed, but not the band  The trunk, now grown, was being choked by the plastic ring.

Did I merely imagine the tree’s relief when I cut it off? 

The quarterly journal of Quaker Earthcare Witness.