“The First Environmentalists” by Melanie Blain

Believe it or not, the first environmentalists date back to 1485, according to an article published in L’Actualité. During this year a man born in the Indian state of Rajasthan came up with the hypothesis that droughts were caused not by the anger of the gods, but by savage tree cutting.  So he created 29 edicts, which include:

  • Have pity on all living beings
  • Don’t cut down green trees
  • Don’t keep goats or sheep
  • Don’t eat meat
  • No smoking
  • No drinking

The followers of these edicts belong to the Bishnoi sect, who mainly reside on the edge of the Thar desert in

Rajasthan.  There are approximately 800,000 Bishnois currently living in India. They have managed to turn parts of the desert into a lush green space. Their homes are made of dead branches, and their diets consist of “guar, sesame, lentils, fruits, vegetables and whatever grows in abundance” (L’Actualité). Contrary to other Hindu

branches, cremation is banned because of the wood needed for it. Furthermore, they avoid lighting fires at night to avoid burning insects. (Finally, someone loves

mosquitoes!) Their love and respect for nature is so deep that women even breastfeed orphaned fawns and men lay down their lives chasing poachers and protecting trees.

Talk about dedication. Could we match that?

By Melanie Blain

Lawrence, Gary. “Écolos depuis le Moyen Âge!” L’Actualité. 22 Oct 2012. Web.


Published by: G.R.E.E.N. G.R.A.S.S.

G.R.E.E.N. G.R.A.S.S., which is an acronym for Glendon Residence Environmental E-Newsletter & Glendon Roots and Shoots' Serial, is a newsletter and serial blog created and maintained by Glendon Roots and Shoots and its creation was inspired by the Glendon Residence Environmental Committee's Glendon Residence Environmental E-Newsletter (GREEN), thus its namesake. Our goal for GREEN GRASS is to spread awareness on environmentalism and sustainability by publishing submitted articles from Glendon's very own environmental activists and students. Published once a month, we hope to inspire fellow Glendonites and netizens beyond to become active world citizens and conscious consumers by sharing fellow students' voice of concern for the well-being of Mother Nature as we also promote G.R.A.S.' projects and initiatives. Thanks for reading~

Categories The National and International GREEN SceneTags, , , , , , 1 Comment

One thought on ““The First Environmentalists” by Melanie Blain”

  1. I spent a lot of time in Rajasthan a few years back. It’s an amazing thing to see such crazy green spaces in desert climates. Definitely an inspiration.

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