The Primal Child of Nature – Towards a Systematic Theory of Eco-Phenomenology
In this present lecture I will try to provide a preliminary theoretical framework for the eco-phenomenology, understood as a specialized field of phenomenology in general. In order to give a precursory definition of eco-phenomenology, we shall start with the condition of the modern man in the industrialized, technologized world. The existence of modern man is determined by globalized, planetary technology. The technologically, industrially determined being of man strained his relationship with nature, understood as the natural environment of human being. The human, industrial, and technical-technological activities endanger the reproductive and rehabilitative resources and capacities of nature on Earth. The task of eco-phenomenology is to provide a phenomenological analysis of this strained relationship between the industrially and technologically determined human existence and nature. This analysis presupposes, as its theoretical basis, a general understanding of the relationship of man as such and nature. The theoretical foundation of eco-phenomenology is the phenomenology of the human condition in the natural world of Earth and in the cosmos in general. When such a firm apodictic and theoretical basis (concerning the natural existence of human being) is prepared, then one can establish three further theoretical disciplines upon this theoretical basis as the concrete components of eco-phenomenology. The first one is the above-mentioned discipline: the phenomenology of modern human existence in the age of planetary technology and globalized industrial world, and the relationship of the natural environment to the human world of global technology and industry. The second is an axiological study of man-nature relationship: the phenomenological evaluation of the man’s connection to the world of nature. The third is a practice-oriented ethical investigation about how the human being should relate to the natural world, and the means ecological phenomenology have to drift back its theoretical and practical(-ethical) insights into the wider social world. That is to say: what means are available to ecological phenomenology for it to have an effect on the extra-scientific social reality and influence the common relationship to environmental questions and problems, on the field of politics as well as on the field of private people.