Spirituality and Civilization Sustainability in the 21st Century

Andrew Targowski (Editor)
Western Michigan University, MI, USA
President Emeritus of the International Society for the Comparative Study of Civilizations (2009-2013)

Marek J. Celinski (Editor)
Private Practice in Psychology, Toronto, Canada

Series: Religion and Spirituality, Focus on Civilizations and Cultures
BISAC: OCC027000



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This book investigates the state of civilization in the 21st century, which is characterized by the transformation of Western Civilization into Global Civilization and the resulting Great Recession, triggered by the financial crisis in the United States in 2008. Since the state of former Western Civilization is steadily worsening, the question is rising whether civilization is sustainable at all. To answer this question, 20 authors, members of the International Society for the Comparative Study of Civilizations (from several countries and continents) investigate the aspect of human spirituality, and whether its actual level of development is able to steer the sustainable development of civilization? The authors investigate the complexity of the current state of world civilization and the Planet, concluding that western societies entered the Second Great Crisis of Civilization, and reminding that the First Great Crisis took place after the fall of Rome I in 476 CE, and lasted till the Italian Renaissance, which means almost 1000 years. The current Second Great Crisis is characterized by 16 analyzed crises, such as; population, ecological, strategic resources, education, administration, technique, science, religion, and similar crises. Therefore further questions are investigated. Are we overcivilized? Do we have human and societal potential for transcending this crisis of civilization? How should human behavior be re-engineered? Hence, the traditional main religions are analyzed, including whether their spirituality can successfully direct humans toward the sustainable life. Also, secular thinking is analyzed on whether it is able to do same task. Particularly the “religion” of Global Civilization is analyzed and eventually the conclusion is rather pessimistic, since this religion is de facto “business” with its limited ethics and social responsibility. This book offers spirituality 2.0 as a possible “tool” for people to behave wisely in order to sustain our civilization. This new spirituality 2.0 contains a set of complementary best values of current eight civilizations, which should lead to tolerant (less-conflict driven) human behavior and wise decision-making. The book finally defines Wise Civilization and paths of its implementation, under the condition that people will be not only knowledgeable, but wise and inspired mainly by right spirituality. (Imprint: Nova)



Chapter 1. Spirituality: Its Potential for Inspiration and Dysfunctionality in Civilization
Marek J. Celinski (Private Practice in Psychology, Toronto, Canada)

Chapter 2. The World and the Planet in a Great Crisis of the Third Millennium: We Need a New Renaissance
Andrew Targowski (Western Michigan University, MI, USA)

Chapter 3. Are We Overcivilized? Toward (a) More Sustainable Future(s)
Lech W. Zacher (Kozminski University, Poland)

Chapter 4. Dieu Et Mon Droit: Spiritual Sovereignty and the Decline of Civilizations in History
Stephen M. Borthwick (University of Chicago, IL, USA)

Chapter 5. Human and Societal Potentials for Transcending the Crisis of Civilization
Lech W. Zacher (Kozminski University, Poland)


Chapter 6. The Role of Religion in Civilizational Development
Ashok Kumar Malhotra (SUNY College at Oneonta, NY, USA)

Chapter 7. Potential of Christianity for the Civilization Revival in the IIIrd Millennium
Anthony M. Stevens-Arroyo (Brooklyn College, City University of New York, NY, USA)

Chapter 8. The Chinese Civilizations: Driving Forces, Implications, and Challenges in the IIIrd Millennium
Bernard Han (Western Michigan University, MI, USA)

Chapter 9. The Potential of Japanese Civilisation: Its Religious Characteristics and Contributions to the World
Hisanori Kato (Butsuryo College of Osaka, Japan)

Chapter 10. Islam in the Forthcoming Millennium: Potential For Revival in the IIIrd Millennium
Norman C. Rothman (University of Maryland University College, MD, USA)

Chapter 11. Potential of Buddhism for Renewal of Civilization in the Third Millennium
Walter Benesch (University of Alaska Fairbanks, AL, USA)

Chapter 12. Hinduism: A Collective Tradition in the IIIrd Millennium
Satish P. Deshpande and Samir S. Deshpande (Western Michigan University, MI, USA, and others)

Chapter 13. Current Social and Political Role of Religions: The Particular Case of Judaism and of Candomble
Pedro Geiger (State University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

Chapter 14. African Civilization: The Religious Dimensions in Light of the Third Millenium
Tseggai Isaac (Missouri University of Science and Technology, MO, USA)

Chapter 15. Religion versus Theology: Its Impact on Civilizations
Walter Benesch (University of Alaska Fairbanks, AL, USA)

Chapter 16. Religion for a Sustainable Civilization
Michael Andregg (University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN, USA)


Chapter 17. Global Religion and its Civilizational Repercussions
Andrew Targowski and Edward Jayne (Western Michigan University, MI, USA)

Chapter 18. Corruption of Institutions and the Decay of Civilizations
Michael Andregg (University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, MN, USA)

Chapter 19. Toynbee’s Perception of Declining Western Values
W. Reed Smith (Jefferson Parish, LA, USA)

Chapter 20. Reviving Business Ethics for Sustainable Civilization in the 21st Century
Elain E. Englehardt (Utah Valley University, UT, USA)

Chapter 21. Automation with Human Face
Andrew Targowski and Vladimir Modrak (Western Michigan University, MI, USA, and others)

Chapter 22. Could Composite Altruism Become a Universal Comprehensive Spirituality Model for the Planet?
Richard Zinser (Western Michigan University, MI, USA)

Chapter 23. Universal Spirituality as a Condition for a Sustainable Civilization
Andrew Targowski (Western Michigan University, MI, USA)


Chapter 24. Can Spirituality Save Civilization?
Andrew Targowski and Marek Celinski (Western Michigan University, MI, USA, and others)


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