Dharmaecology is an interweaving of dharma themes from the Buddhist Naturalist tradition and ecology, which I define as natural systems theory.

Dharmaecology indicates a strong focus on ecology and climate justice, dharma naturalism, and a systems ecology approach to dharma theory and practice. It’s about connectedness, networks and integration, social, biological and cosmic.

What I seek to both uncover and create is what I call the Dharma Code, the way things connect and work at multiple levels of reality, from the largest and most observable, to the smallest and most obscure. I am aware that ‘what I see’ is largely determined by the narrative codes that I bring to the experience. In physics, it’s called “the measurement problem.” In social theory, it’s called ‘constructivism.’ I am aware that we construct the world we observe, through the way we observe it. And I believe that we create the version of the world that we want to see. This is not the same as saying that ‘we create reality’. But we create the version of reality that we want to experience, that we are capable of knowing. Nonetheless, I believe we can consciously construct new heuristic narratives, that I call ‘dharma codes,’ which can reveal these multiple layers of interconnected reality. This is a cybernetic dharma, a dharma that is explored with experiments in language and meaning.

It is neither ‘religious’ nor ‘spiritual’, and operates naturally within ordinary human life. It’s transhumanist and includes all other species on the planet. In practice, it focuses on the immanent rather than the transcendent, and promotes an intimate and vibrant connection with the world. It counteracts the formation of hierarchy and domination, so it’s anarchist in that sense, yet also communal. It references traditional Buddhism with respect to where it came from, but surpasses historical Buddhism and is futuristic. It operates outside of institutional Buddhism, dharma formalism and orthodoxy, and is thus post-Buddhist. It grows from the dharma of interbeing, interdependence, interconnectedness, dependent origination, mutual causality, and similar ideas derived from dharma and systems theory. It conveys an ethical responsibility for all other beings on this planet and for the individual’s role in the world community.

Dharmaecology aims to be a hub for intellectual and creative exploration of dharma concepts grounded in natural science and regenerative culture. I welcome submission of your articles, photos, film and other visual art, poetry, creative writing and sound explorations. The dream is to venture outside the confines of ‘spiritual’ practice to create a broader dharmaecology culture. Send your offerings to: sbartone22@gmail.com

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