Religious and spiritual aspects of wetland management

Verschuuren, Bas


The spiritual significance of wetlands is closely related to the religious, cultural and historic importance wetlands play in human well-being. Spirituality contrib- utes significantly to wetland services and values but often remains overlooked and undervalued. Indigenous peoples' spirituality is often directly related to wetlands being imbued by spirits while mainstream religions construct places of worship in wetlands. Pilgrimages the world over follow rivers and wetlands and in cases these can have a profound impact. Religious leaders can help protect wetlands and some incentives in international policy exist to assist policy makers and decision makers with this.