Reflections on Thomas Berry: A Biography

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On the release of Thomas Berry’s first biography, National Council member Mary Evelyn Tucker met with Orion’s Editor-in-Chief H. Emerson Blake to reflect on Berry’s continuing significance in these times:

Berry overcomes many of the abstractions and intellectualizations that are present in many modern thinkers. He is seeking a more encompassing worldview for contemporary dilemmas, such as racial divisions and ecological exploitation. This is why Berry calls us to a Great Story for the Great Work of transformative change for the well-being of both people and the planet.

Berry is interested in our identity as humans in the largest sense of our being. This means that an important part of who we are is our race or ethnicity, gender or sexuality, state or nation. We are richly differentiated, yet also one species. Thus, he is keen to awaken our deepest identity as related to the cosmos itself—we arise from out of universe and Earth processes. This is an ancient reality and yet a new discovery. That is because all cultures have had cosmologies that explain where we come from and where we are going. But now through the lens of science we have a new sense of cosmology as the interrelationship of systems—galactic, planetary, and ecosphere. We are part of nested circles of interwoven realities from stars to planets, from mountains to rivers, from humans to more than humans.

Read more of the interview here.