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“The earth is your mosque”: narrative perspectives of environmental health and education in the Holy Quran

Abstract

Philosophical and ideological arguments have been proposed in support of the importance of the environment and environmental health. An argument that has been given recent attention includes the religious argument. The Holy Quran is regarded as the authoritative text on both spiritual and behavioral guidance for Muslims worldwide. With the ever-growing challenge to tackle and address issues facing the environment and environmental health, various approaches and proposals have prompted calls for broad environmental health education solutions to reduce, if not reverse, the growing issues facing the environment. This narrative review examines relevant verses in the Holy Quran and identifies the chapters and verses where keywords and phrases are mentioned relevant to the environment and environmental health as a whole. A total of 88 verses in 42 Quranic chapters were identified with a considerable emphasis placed on the importance of water resource management and water conservation, environmental justice, plant conservation, biodiversity, sustainability, and environmental stewardship. These results suggest that the Holy Quran could serve as an influential medium and educational resource for culturally congruent environmental health interventions in diverse populations, particularly in Muslim communities, and for improving and maintaining a healthy environment.

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Acknowledgements

The author would like to express appreciation to Dr. Jacquelyn Bowser for providing valuable edits to several initial drafts.

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Correspondence to Basil H. Aboul-Enein.

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Aboul-Enein, B.H. “The earth is your mosque”: narrative perspectives of environmental health and education in the Holy Quran. J Environ Stud Sci 8, 22–31 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13412-017-0444-7

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13412-017-0444-7

Keywords

  • Islam
  • Environmental education
  • Religion
  • Beliefs
  • Environmental health