Tag Archives: progressive

Can Love Cast Out Fear?

Last week in this space, I suggested that most of us Americans—conservative and liberal, coastal and middle America, urban and rural—share a weird type of common ground: fear. We fear the white-hot public square, in which anything we do or say might incur wrath. We fear our leaders, our institutions, and our systems, often with […]

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The Weirdest Common Ground Ever

Many people are bemoaning America’s vicious public square. Few are discussing the weird common ground that most of us share—and what might be the best way to address it. Two recent conversations brought this into focus for me. The first—with a conservative Christian friend who reluctantly supported Donald Trump—fulfilled a longing I’ve had since the […]

Posted in Current Events, Dialogue and Civility, Dialogue and Current Events, Listening, Practical Steps Toward Dialogue | Also tagged , , , , , , | 2 Responses

Singing the Lord’s Song to the “Other Side”

“How shall we sing the Lord’s song on alien soil?”  —Psalm 137:4 This haunting question—asked by the psalmist after the people of Israel had been swept into captivity, hundreds of miles from home—formed the theme of an address by the Bishop of Central New York, Gladstone (Skip) Adams, to the annual meeting of Albany Via […]

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Of Dreamers, Realists, and Dialogue

A few years ago, my wife and I had the privilege of visiting a monastery in South Africa. Like many monasteries, Mariya uMama weThemba observed the Great Silence from roughly 8:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. I relish this extended time of silence and was dismayed, when I awoke early one morning, to hear my wife […]

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Dialogue by Being There

Can you start a dialogue just by showing up? Miki Kashtan’s friend did. At a conference on reconciliation, this friend realized with despair that there was no exploration of gay issues on the agenda. On the third day of the conference, after praying and wrestling with the omission, she stepped to the microphone, announced to […]

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Intolerant? Me?

Let’s try some word association. I’ll give you three words, and you say the first word that comes to mind. Here we go: Intolerant. Rigid. Confrontational. Did you read these words and instantly think fundamentalist, or conservative, or something like that? I have, for many years. To those of us who think along such lines, […]

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