Holy Hills Role in Biodiversity Conservation and Mountain Management: Implication of Multi-Purpose Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church in Sustainable Mountain Conservation

Tulu Tolla Tura


Ethiopia is the country practiced Judaism before Christianity which is unique church in the continent of Africa and glob in holding judo-Christian sect. The church in her traditional believes that forests are shelters of the earth’s crust and provide enormous and beautiful scenery to the world. Most of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church and monasteries are built on hills, mountains and high places with densely forests and trees. This practice and tradition was comes from Eden, the place had all the best and choicest trees and plant, God a tender Father, provide not only for Adam’s needs, but also his pleasure. The church on the earth signifies the new heaven, the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down of God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband, Adam. Therefore, gardening was the first kind of employment on record in which man was engaged. Though trees and plants produced the necessary flower and fruits by the will of God, dressing and keeping are necessary to maintain in their perfection. This is the under laying principle often considered and practiced by Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church in nature conservation. The review conducted through reviewing published journal articles, published books, published conference proceeding, Holy scriptures, Holy Bible, Holy Bible commentary, church scholars teaching and audio visual documents. The main objective of the paper is to explore past and present work on sacred grove role in general, Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church in particular in mountain ecology management and biodiversity conservation. Accordingly, the review indicates that religious philosophy and practices are playing significant role on mountain management, biodiversity conservation and carbon emission reduction in the changing world. Therefore, incorporating this best practice in biodiversity management and mountain conservation policy formulation is win-win scenario.

Keywords: Biodiversity conservation, Church forest, Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahiodo church, Holly Hills, Sacred Groves, Mountain Conservation

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