What is Ecopsychology?

Ecopsychology is an emerging field that is developing in recognition that human health, identity, and sanity are intimately linked to the health of the earth and must include sustainable and mutually enhancing relationships between humans and the nonhuman world.

Ecopsychology places human psychology in an ecological context, and is aimed at healing the divisions between mind and nature, humans and earth. The central concern of ecopsychology is the physical, psychological, and spiritual health of both the human and nonhuman world and an understanding of the psychological processes that either bond us to the natural world or alienate us from it.

Ecology is the study of connection, of the interrelationships among all forms of life, and the physical environment. Psychology is the study of the human psyche, of the human mind and soul as it perceives, feels, thinks, and acts. Ecopsychology brings psychology and ecology together to create a healing context for and new understanding of the human-nature relationship.

Read Ecopsychology's Niche: Why the Transpersonal Matters to Ecopsychology, an article by Naropa's John Davis, PhD.

Areas of interest to ecopsychologists include effective environmental education and action, ecotherapy, the healing and initiatory influences of encounters with "wild" nature, development of the "ecological" self, creating healthy alternatives to materialism and consumerism, earth-based spiritual practices, and education for a just and sustainable future.

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