We're proud to present our latest interview, with ecological philosopher David Orton.
David was a highly-regarded proponent of "deep ecology," a perspective that sees all life forms – man, moose or microbe – as having an equal right to survive and flourish. But he was not only a bold thinker; he was also a deeply principled man who made a remarkable effort to live in accordance with his beliefs, minimizing his ecological footprint by subsisting on a small hill farm in Nova Scotia which he and his wife, Helga Hoffmann-Orton, deliberately allowed to return to forest.
David was best known for the articles he published on the internet, particularly on the Green Web website, which he started in the 1990s, and latterly on his Deep Green Blog. His focus was on a subject that may be the fundamental factor in our environmental crisis, something that, depending on your outlook, might be called wrong understanding, wrong attitude, wrong philosophy or wrong spirituality. If people can be induced to engage in right thinking, then right action must surely follow.
In early 2011, David was diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer. He faced his own death with great courage and dignity, and we were fortunate enough to interview him just a couple of weeks before he died. It was a very moving conversation, and it is our first posthumous interview.