Holmes Rolston, III is the university distinguished professor of philosophy at Colorado State University, a Templeton prize winner and Gifford lecturer and author of seven books. He addressed University Chapel with, “Promised Land and Planet with Promise.”
Anciently Palestine was a promised land. Landscapes east and west, north and south, on six continents have proved homelands that peoples can come to cherish and on which they can flourish. My forebears in the Shenandoah Valley, coming from Scotland, loved gospel and landscape, sometimes wondering which love took priority. When this wonderland Earth is seen as divine gift, grace, that vision makes more alarming that Earth is also a planet in peril. “A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.” That ancient certainty needs now to become an urgent future hope. Today and for the centuries hence, the call is to see Earth as a planet with promise.