By Leonard Swidler
This important quantity gathers jointly the cumulative perception of greater than fifty years of Leonard Swidler's paintings on discussion. The founder and president of the discussion Institute, Swidler bargains via event and study his thought and instruments of interreligious, intercultural, and foreign dialogue.
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Additional info for Dialogue for Interreligious Understanding: Strategies for the Transformation of Culture-Shaping Institutions
This expanded knowledge of ourselves and of the other that we gain in the dialogue cannot of course remain ineffective in our lives. As our self-understanding and understanding of those persons and things around us change, so too must our attitude toward ourselves and others change, and thus our behavior as well. Once again, to the extent that this inner and outer change, this transformation, does not take place, to that extent we tend toward schizophrenia and hypocrisy. Whether one wants to speak of dialogue and then of the subsequent transformation as “beyond dialogue,” as John Cobb once did, or speak of transformation as an integral part of the continuing dialogue process, as Klaus Klostermeier has,4 need not detain us here.
This dimension engages our emotions, imagination, intuitive consciousness. If we do not come to know each other in this deepest dimension of our selves, our dialogue will remain relatively superficial. The technique that John Dunne called “crossing over” can help here. Through it we focus on a central image, or metaphor, from our partner’s spiritual life and let it work on our imagination, our emotions, evoking whatever responses it may, leading us to different feelings. We then return to our own inner world enriched, expanded, with a deeper sympathy for, and sensitivity to our partner’s inner world.
Humans have long recognized that we are something unique in the cosmos (there may be other free beings we have not yet discovered—or perhaps never will) because of our radical freedom (despite its limitations, of which we are increasingly becoming aware) based on our rationality. ”4 Hence, we have no other intelligent choice but to reach out in dialogue, Deep-Dialogue, to those who think differently from us to learn increasingly/endlessly more about reality. I have also increasingly stressed the other side of our “coin of humanity,” CriticalThinking, wherein we constantly pose the critical Three “W” Questions: What precisely are we talking about?
Dialogue for Interreligious Understanding: Strategies for the Transformation of Culture-Shaping Institutions by Leonard Swidler