Inside Sheffield Cathedral
Video, 1 hr

Sacred Nature - Karen Armstrong

Part of the University of Sheffield's "God and the Good" series

Karen Armstrong is one of the world’s leading commentators on religious affairs. She spent seven years as a Roman Catholic nun, but left her teaching order in 1969 to read English at St Anne’s College, Oxford. In 1982, she became a full-time writer and broadcaster.

In this talk, Karen Armstrong addresses the gravity of climate change and the need to change our attitude to nature, a challenge as we no longer regard the natural world as sacred. The talk examines a number of ways in which we can relate to the natural world at a deeper level by adopting attitudes that were assiduously cultivated in the religious traditions of China, India, Greece, and, interestingly, Islam, which has a much stronger emphasis on the sacrality of nature than the other two monotheisms.

It is not a question of changing beliefs, but of adopting practices that will change our minds and hearts. 


  • Karen Armstrong, religious commentator

  • Henk de Berg, School of Languages and Cultures

  • Robert Stern, Department of Philosophy

See also