Get access

NON-VIOLENCE AND NONHUMANS: Foundations for Animal Welfare in the Thought of Mohandas Gandhi and Albert Schweitzer

Authors

  • Ryan P. McLaughlin

    Corresponding author
    1. Duquesne University
      Ryan Patrick McLaughlin is a doctoral student at Duquesne University. His primary academic aim is to constructively contribute to a theology of nonhuman animals and further develop the ethical implications of this theology. Ryan Patrick McLaughlin, 141 Front Street, Irwin, PA 15642, ryan.patrick.mclaughlin@gmail.com
    Search for more papers by this author

Ryan Patrick McLaughlin is a doctoral student at Duquesne University. His primary academic aim is to constructively contribute to a theology of nonhuman animals and further develop the ethical implications of this theology. Ryan Patrick McLaughlin, 141 Front Street, Irwin, PA 15642, ryan.patrick.mclaughlin@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

This essay explores how the principles of ahimsa and reverence for life provide a foundation for animal welfare in the thought of Mohandas Gandhi and Albert Schweitzer, respectively. This exploration unfolds through a consideration of the contextual background of both thinkers, the scope of life to which they apply their respective principles, and both the ethical ramifications and limitations of this application. Within this common framework, the author delineates the striking commonalities and the significant disparities between Gandhi and Schweitzer. This comparison opens a common space within which ecologically-minded Hindus and Christians can dialogue, augmenting each other's positions by drawing on respected thinkers in their traditions. It also provides an opportunity, within the tensions highlighted at the intersection of Gandhi and Schweitzer's thought, to further construct a foundation for animal welfare in contemporary discussions.

Get access to the full text of this article

Ancillary