Man uses the animals and plants in his diet. Plants and animals, for example, the wood of trees or animal leather are used to make household items. The Bible indicates that God Himself allowed the man to use nature in the same way. Does it mean that man, using the nature for his own benefit, does nothing against the will of God?
Man today often uses nature mercilessly, considering it as a warehouse where there are useful ingredients and products for his life. When considering the use of nature as a warehouse, it is contrary to not only the Christian doctrine but also the whole Bible position.
It is true that in the Old Testament God ordered the use of plants as food, and then after the flood commanded to use animals as food and sacrifices. However, God said through the prophet: “I desired mercy, and not sacrifice” (Hosea 6:6). This is repeated also in the New Testament (Matthew 9:13, 12:7).
Though the Bible contains instructions admitting the use of animal for man (Genesis 1:28, 2:16, 9: 13), but in the Scriptures there are God’s orders to treat with the compassion and care towards nature and especially the animals that are endowed with sensitivity (Exodus 20:10, Leviticus 25:17, 23-24, Deuteronomy 5:14, 22:67,10, Proverbs 12:10, John 10:24). So, nature is not a store for material and food for the human being but is a subject to guardianship, love, and care.
The Catholic Church has saints who deeply have been kept in touch with nature, talked and even preached to animals, such as Philip Neri, Francis of Assisi, whose name present Pope of Rome have chosen and bears. In the example of these saints, the Catholic Church teaches its believers to show love and respect for nature.
The enormous and universal processes, taking into account nature only as a warehouse and with the position of consumerism only to take and have a profit, lead not only to the distortion of the natural world but also deprive future generations of the right and opportunity to use natural resources.
It is clear that people should also treat with respect for life in nature. However, humanity also uses largely the soil, the depth of the earth, which does not contain life. In this case, what kind of attitude should it be?
The soil is not alive and sensitive in the meaning that plants and animals are. Stone, coal, iron, and other metals and minerals are generally lifeless and inanimate. However, the acquisition of mineral resources by drilling the soil, with the extreme exploitation of nature, is not acceptable. Even though minerals are lifeless, but the procurement of them with the degradation of nature damages the surrounding life of animals and plants, as well as human life.
The use of the soil and subsoil without damaging nature is appreciable and beneficial for the well-being of humankind. But often the consequences of human negative actions in nature are irreversible. They affect not only on inanimate but also on living nature.
Mineral processing, that is made with various chemical substances, often poison the environment, the life not only of plants and animals living in that area but also the lives of people, destroy the health of the inhabitants. So, not only the use of flora and fauna but also the use of the soil and the earth’s subsoil must be done with the care of nature and the consciousness about the human as the greatest value.