Pope Francis, during his historic visit to Mongolia, commended the nation’s ecological wisdom and deep respect for nature, highlighting it as an exemplary model for responsible ecological policies.
During his meeting with government and civil leaders on September 2, the pontiff praised Mongolia’s unique approach to environmental issues, blending the traditions of Mongolian shamanism and Buddhism.
Pope Francis drew a striking parallel between Mongolian children’s morning ritual of counting cattle and humanity’s need to shift from short-sighted perspectives to a broader, global vision.
“We too benefit from gazing towards the vast horizons everywhere around us,” he said, emphasizing the importance of adopting a global perspective in addressing ecological challenges.
The pontiff highlighted the country’s unique ecological landscape, which spans from the arid Gobi Desert to the lush pine forests and mountain ranges.
He described the intricate network of winding rivers, comparing them to precious ancient textiles’ delicate decoration.
“Your lands mirror the grandeur and beauty of the entire earth, which is meant to be an attractive and inviting garden,” he said.
Pope Francis expressed admiration for Mongolia’s native wisdom, which has “evolved over generations of ranchers and planters who respect the delicate balances” of the ecosystem.
He noted that this wisdom should serve as an inspiration to those who seek to preserve the planet for future generations.
“You help us to appreciate and carefully cultivate what we Christians consider to be God’s creation, the fruit of His benevolent design,” said Pope Francis.
He also emphasized the importance of combating the effects of human devastation through a culture of care and foresight, as reflected in responsible ecological policies.
Pope Francis also drew attention to the efficiency and ecological soundness of traditional Mongolian dwellings, known as gers, which have zero impact on the environment and are versatile and multifunctional.
He acknowledged the significant contributions of Mongolian shamanic traditions and the respect for all living beings inherited from Buddhist philosophy to the urgent global efforts to protect and preserve planet Earth.
“The holistic vision of the Mongolian shamanic tradition, combined with the respect for all living beings inherited from Buddhist philosophy, can contribute significantly to the urgent and no longer deferrable efforts to protect and preserve planet Earth,” he said.