Are telescopes instruments of desecration or technologies of the sacred?

December 3, 3:00pm - 4:30pm
Mānoa Campus, KUY 209

Contestation over the construction of telescope observatories on Mt. Graham and Mauna Kea exemplifies longstanding disputes about whether the sacred is here on Earth or somehow above and beyond the biosphere. For some, these telescopes are technologies of the sacred that can provide, awe, wonder, meaning, and even reverence for the universe and Earthly life. For others, these telescopes represent desecration and cultural genocide; they are imposed by the laws and martial powers of imperial settler societies that have deracinated indigenous peoples from most of their traditional lands.

Bron Taylor, Professor of Religion, Nature, and Environmental Ethics at the University of Florida and a Rachel Carson Fellow in Munich Germany, seeks to illuminate these competing perspectives while putting them in global context by analyzing how they reflect emerging trends in nature-based spiritualities and citizen activism. This broader picture may indicate that, despite painful and fraught histories, new opportunities may be emerging for a rapprochement between those with world views that have long been, and have accurately been, seen as intractable.

To attend this campus talk remotely, please click the weblink below or visit:

Event Sponsor
Department of Religion, SEED IDEAS, Mānoa Campus

More Information
Christine Walters, (808) 264-1665,,

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