Green Man Rising: Spirituality and Sustainable Strategic Management

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One of the most enduring spiritual images in western art, literature, and religion is the Green Man (the Jack of the Wood): "the archetype of our oneness with the earth" (Anderson, Green Man: The Archetype of Our Oneness with the Earth, Harper Collins, San Francisco: 1990, p. 3). The Green Man has recently awakened from a long sleep, and his primary targets for renewal are business organizations that create pollution, resource depletion, waste, and human misery in their efforts to earn profits. With the rising Green Man comes a new economic story rooted in a rapidly growing global movement that is putting real pressure on business organizations to function in more sustainable ways that protect society and the natural environment. Leading organizations as they become more sustainable requires spiritually motivated strategic managers who can guide organizations as they transform into cultures built on deeply held values for the sacredness of nature, humankind, and posterity. The result of this transformation is the creation of spiritual capital in organizations, a kind of wealth earned by serving humankind and the planet. Firms that can successfully make this transformation will climb up the coevolutionary spiral into higher-level organizations with higher expectations, values, and purposes.