2021 has been one of the hottest years on record in many parts of the globe. There have been wildfires in California, Turkey, Italy, Greece and Siberia as well as floods in the UK, Germany, Belgium, India and China. The continued existence of humans and other species is at risk if we don’t change our ways.

António Guterres, the UN Secretary General, warned: ‘This is a code red for humanity. The alarm bells are deafening, and the evidence is undisputable: greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel burning and deforestation are choking our planet and putting billions of people at immediate risk.’

We are putting a lot of attention on living sustainably, but how can we reconnect with nature to sustain us on our green path? While practical approaches on how to be more eco-friendly in our life offer important first steps, it is essential that we ground these actions in broader, spiritual understanding so that we can effect real change in the world.

Hundreds of millions of people around the world practise Buddhism. Can Buddhists be a critical voice in the era of climate change? How can Buddhists respond to the climate emergency?

In The Burning House Shantigarbha asks how we can wake up and respond to the climate crisis from a Buddhist perspective. He offers a simple, Buddhist-inspired way of taking up environmental action in practical and effective ways while staying grounded in our spiritual practice. This book will be of interest to Buddhists concerned about the climate and to eco-activists wishing to ground their work in a spiritual context, as well as to anybody who is interested in making positive changes in their life to help our planet.

With personal stories, examples and guided reflections you will learn to work with doubt, overwhelm, grief and anger; engage with the science of the climate debates; free yourself to align with life; and act with courage, humour and generosity.

Anna Gear, founder of the Global Network for the Study of Human Rights and the Environment, says of The Burning House:

‘Deeply practical, balanced and thoughtful, this book is a trustworthy, insightful companion for the development of the conscious change and enlightened action now so urgently mandated by planetary challenges.’

If you would like to meet the author and find out about more ways we can respond to this situation, come to our online book launch event on Monday 30th August at 19:00 (UK time). Our Director, Dhammamegha, will be in conversation with Shantigarbha, discussing the topics covered in the book as well as exploring the broader dimension of climate change, how this affects our lives and how we can act to avoid more serious consequences. Click here to access the event on the day.

Shantigarbha is a Buddhist mediator and activist. He is an experienced teacher of both Buddhism and Nonviolent Communication (NVC). After studying Classics and Philosophy at Oxford, he devoted himself full-time to the Dharma. Ordained into the Triratna Buddhist Order in 1996, he was given the name Shantigarbha, which means ‘Seed or Womb of Peace’. Shantigarbha has written one other book, also published by Windhorse Publications: I’ll Meet You There: A Practical Guide to Empathy, Mindfulness and Communication.