Special Issue: Dharma, De-Growth, and Climate Change

Call for Papers: Dharma, De-Growth, and Climate Change
The Arrow: A Journal Of Wakeful Society, Culture & Politics
2017 Special Issue

As it becomes increasingly clear that perpetual economic growth is untenable in the face of climate change and ecosystem collapse, viable economic alternatives must be explored and developed. In particular, we would like to explore arguments for de-growth economics from a perspective that integrates Dharma teachings and political economy. If we are to have any meaningful impact on climate change and widespread environmental degradation, it will be critical to link these issues to economic forces that underpin them and to develop economic structures that support human well-being without relying on perpetual exploitation of the earth. The special issue will investigate questions such as:

  • How can our understanding of the Dharma inform methods for prefiguring alternative economic models?
  • What is repressed or constricted in society’s current obsession with economic growth, and what might be released and invigorated in the process of de-growth in the market?
  • What does it look like for contemplative communities to be beacons of new forms of economy?
  • What stories can we tell about how our household and contemplative-community alternatives can be part of much larger and structural changes to economic systems?
  • Must de-growth imply austerity and a reduction in the comforts and luxuries of modern life? Many religious traditions—including Buddhism—have made a moral case for ecological harmony that emphasizes a sense of “less.” From a tantric perspective, is there a place for a certain sense of “more” in relation to economy and ecology?

Issue Format

  • Feature Essays – Establishing the Theory/View: 3,000-4,000 word essays that address one or more of the issue’s key questions)
  • Essays in Response – Exploring Praxis: 500-2,000 word essays that emphasize concrete methods for putting into practice ideas discussed in the Feature Essays)
  • Comments in Response – Questions & Future Exploration: 200 – 400 word reflections that raise questions or suggest further directions above and beyond the ideas offered in the Feature Essays and Response Essays

Authors interested in writing a Feature Essay should submit an abstract of no more than 300 words by April 1, 2017 for review. The submission deadline for article manuscripts is July 1, 2017. Please direct submissions and inquiries to Gabe Dayley at gabe@arrow-journal.org.

Authors interested in writing a Response Essay or a Comment should contact Gabe Dayley at gabe@arrow-journal.org, providing information on relevant research or experience.


The Arrow explores the relationship between contemplative practice, politics, and activism. We investigate topics in politics, economics, ecology, conflict transformation, and the social sciences. Inspired by the vision of meditation master Chögyam Trungpa for a “union of social life and spiritual wakefulness” in society, The Arrow provides a critical and much needed space for investigating the meeting point of contemplative wisdom and pressing issues of democracy, capitalism, climate change, racism, and conflict.