Spiritual Resilience for Sustainable Living

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Strand, Noni
Master of Arts in Earth Literacy
Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kansas, is the living laboratory for exploring what it means to live sustainably and embody the four themes of Earth Literacy: worldview, the interconnectedness of systems, social justice, and importance of place. “Spiritual Resilience for Sustainable Living” chronicles the history of Bethany’s grassroots Green Team efforts, along with institutional initiatives that are helping to move the College towards more faithful living out of its core value of sustainability in its full understanding — economic, environmental, social, and spiritual. Non-linear models for planning and future efforts, including a Bethany Ecosystem, are presented to help in that direction. The final section explores the realm of spiritual resilience by providing a smorgasbord of ideas, practices, and activities that can be used on campus. A wide variety of sources and kinds of experiences, to serve a range of spiritual types and learning styles, are aimed at helping bring healing and wholeness to the Bethany community while providing avenues for living with more resilience in times of increasing complexity and stress. The four themes of Earth Literacy and the author’s personal journey give the foundation and impetus for spiritual resilience for sustainable living.