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The Point of “Interfaith Dialog” and Seeking Understanding

September 18, 2009

With all the problems and suffering in the world,

it’s legitimate to ask, “Why talk, blog, attend

meetings and such, rather than take direct action

to alleviate suffering and create a better world?”

A part of the answer is that better mutual

understanding is part of creating a better world,

and one in which action is much more efficient.

     Of course, it needs to be a “both/and”…. both

discussion and action. 

Consider: how vast are the human and monetary

resources that could be applied to hunger,

disease, etc. if even a small portion of the energy

spent on “culture war” issues (often more

symbolic than substantive) were redirected?

And what about all the energy expended on trying to evangelize others to believe the right things about God and Christ? Or to be reassured of one’s own salvation? Or to not believe in God, because God is considered no more than a human projection by some, and a dangerous one?

What do you think are the most crucial issues to deal with to bring us all toward a place of mutual acceptance, respect and the ability to cooperate on social and humanitarian needs?  Not that we can’t disagree and present our cases to one another, but that we can at least be humble enough to admit we also have no corner on truth, and may have things to learn from people with whom we disagree but want to cooperate. 

Does this resonate with you and your values? Or do you seriously differ? Either way, please share your thoughts or suggestions.

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