International colloquium on sacred values in nature and the landscape
University of Orleans, France22-24 January 2009
“Sacred nature, sacred landscapes!” was the title of the international colloquium organized by the laboratories CEDETE (Centre for the Study of Territorial and Environmental Development) and SAVOURS (Knowledge and Power from Antiquity to the Modern Day) of the University of Orleans and the laboratory ENeC (Natural Spaces and Culture) of the University of Paris IV and VIII.
Held on 22-24 January 2009, the colloquium consisted of a reflection on the relationship between humans and nature in terms of religions and beliefs and the imprint left by human activity on the landscape. On the basis of an observation of our surroundings we can discover what is and what was the exact relationship between ourselves and the landscape, and we can also go on to appreciate how religious factors have helped created natural landscapes.
The scientific debate was organized in four sessions. The first dealt with the epistemological and spiritual approach of the sacredness of nature. The role of nature in the world’s main religions or spiritual tendencies allows us to understand collective and individual behaviour regarding the creation of a landscape. The four workshops of the second session dealt with the specific manifestations of sacredness in nature and how they can be explained through trees, forests, mountains and water bodies. A round table discussing the imprint left by sacredness on the landscape began the third session, which also included two workshops that discussed landscapes constructed through beliefs and the world’s principal religions. The final session debated the interpretation of sacredness in the landscape and analysed the manipulations that it has suffered throughout history.
See the full program below.
More information here.