“How can I enter into a dialogue if I always project ignorance onto others and never perceive my own… if I consider myself a member of the in-group of ‘pure’ [persons], the owners of truth and knowledge, for whom all non-members are ‘those people’ or ‘the great unwashed’? … Founding itself upon love, humility and faith, dialogue is a horizontal relationship of which mutual trust between participants is the logical consequence.” ~~Paulo Friere~~
That’s true – dialogue that establishes a horizontal relationship among people and builds trust is founded on love, humility and faith. It reminds me of the interfaith dialogue website. I think such dialogue encourages sharing of diverse views and beliefs in a peaceful, fruitful and harmonious way.
On the other hand, religious fundamentalism discourages dialogue and instead majors on monologue and debate, which is founded on hate, pride and “certainty”. Such a mindset creates exclusive “in” groups and causes division among people over differences in beliefs. This harms relationships among people.
I believe most people do not want harm in our society. We want harmony. I believe harmony is possible when people awake and remember who they are, and remain grounded in love, humility and faith, like what the quote says.
I admire how Dalai Lama seeks to engage in dialogues with people of different faiths and he would start each workshop by reminding everyone we are all human beings regardless of our different cultures, backgrounds and belief systems. This peaceful atmosphere not only allows him to share his insights but also learns insights from others, including scientists, and as a result, not only others are enriched by his knowledge, he himself is enriched by others’ knowledge. As a result, people as a whole become more enlightened and are better equipped and more inclined to help and support one another.