Mental ecology
The third, mental ecology, is also called profound ecology, maintaining that the causes for the deficit of the Earth are not found only in the type of society that we actually have, but also the type of mentality that invigorates us. Its roots reach from former epics into our modern history, including the depth of our personal and archetypal conscious and sub-conscious human psyche.

Within us there are instincts of violence, desires to dominate, and shadowy archetypes that distance us from benevolence in relation to life and nature. There within the human mind are initiated the mechanisms that lead us to war against the Earth. They express themselves categorically as our anthropocentric culture. Anthropocentrism considers the human to be ruler of the universe. It holds that all other beings only have value when ordered by human beings; they are there for their good pleasure. This structure breaks with the most universal law of the universe: cosmic solidarity. All beings are interdependent and live within a very intricate web of relationships. All are important.

There is no need for anyone to be the ruler and to consider oneself independent, without needing others. Modern cosmology teaches us that everything is related to everything else at all times, in all circumstances. Humans forget this reality. They distance themselves and place themselves above things rather than feeling one with them in an immense planetary and cosmic community. It is important that we recuperate attitudes of respect and adoration for the Earth.

This is only possible if the feminine dimension of men and women is recaptured. Through the feminine humans open themselves to caring, becoming sensitive to the profound mystery of life and recuperating the capacity for awe. The feminine helps to recapture the sacred dimension. The sacred places limits on the manipulation of the world because it gives origin to adoration and respect, fundamentals for the protection of the Earth. It creates a capacity to reconnect all things with their creative source, which is the Creator and Originator of the universe. From this reconnecting capacity spring all the religions. Today we need to revitalize the religions so that they can fulfill their religious functions.

Minimal Bibliography
- Berry, T., Dream of the Earth, Sierra Club Books, San Francisco 1988.
- Boff, L., A nova era: a civilização planetária, Atica, S.Paulo 1995.
- Boff, L., “Eco-Spirituality: Feeling, Loving, and Thinking as Earth” in Ecology: cry of the Earth, cry of the poor, Orbis Books, New York 1997.
- Lutzenberger, J., Gaia, o planeta vivo (por um caminho suave), L&PM 1990, Porto Alegre 1990.
- Prigogine, I. & Stengers, I., La Nouvelle Alliance. Les metamorphoses de la Science, Gallimard, Paris 1971.
- Sagan, C., Pale blue dot, a vision of the human future in space, Random House, New York 1994.
- Unger, N.M., Encantamento do humano: ecologia e espiritualidade, Loyola, S.Paulo 1997.
- Zohar, D. & Dr. Ian Marshall, SQ, Spiritual Intelligence, Bloomsbury, London 2000.