Inderscience Publishers

May spirituality lead to reduced ecological footprint? Conceptual framework and empirical analysis

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Courtesy of Inderscience Publishers

Living a happy and satisfied life while staying within ecological limits of Earth is a challenge humanity must face during this century. As spirituality impacts our lives in both material and non-material ways, we may reasonably suppose that spiritual beliefs also have an impact on how one thinks about environmental degradation, how likely individuals will behave in a pro-environmental way and how it impacts one’s ecological footprint. This article explores the links between a value-driven life and ecological impact, both theoretically and empirically. Our results suggest that traditional religious thinking, in-my-way spiritualism and green value-driven atheism are associated with an increased level of subjective wellbeing, while religious people also seem to be featured by a reduced level of ecological footprint. Materialism is supposed to be associated with a high level of ecological footprint and a low level of subjective wellbeing.

Keywords: spirituality, wellbeing, sustainable lifestyle, happiness, life satisfaction, ecological footprint, pro-environmental behaviour, religion

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