Dialogue Quotes

Posted by Joop / on 04/07/2009 / 1 Comment

(Authors in alphabetical order)

"Dialogue among civilizations is one of the motors of progress; it allows for the dissemination of innovations produced within each of them. It is the vector of the perfectibility of human kind as a whole, of the never-ending task of humanizing humanity."
Abdelaziz Bouteflika, President of Algeria

"The world desperately needs new approaches to peace building, and sports may be a vehicle to urge peace and development that can have an impact on the everyday existence of people. Sports are not just games. They are instead instruments that can play important roles in forging peace and understanding. "
Adolf Ogi, Special Adviser to the United Nations Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace, Former Swiss President

"Dialogue becomes a method and a choice. The medicine of dialogue enables to heal many misunderstandings and conflicts between people and religions."
Andrea Riccardi, Founder of the Community of Sant'Egidio

"First of all, though, we need to reform ourselves. Hatred, conflict and war must never find an incentive in religion. War can never be motivated by religion. May the words of religions be always words of peace. "
Appeal for Peace signed in Milan in 2004 at the 20th Interreligious Prayer Meeting for Peace

"The Golden Rule, for example, to do unto others as you would have others do unto you, the injunction to love God, the injunction not to harm other creatures, the positive injunction to take responsibility for the well-being and care of others and the environment; these are all profoundly connected in the dialogical principle."
Ashok Gangadean, Professor of Philosophy at Haverford College, Co-founder of the Global Dialogue Institute

"The dialogue of civilizations, the dialogue of cultures and the dialogue between religions are nothing less than human encounters whose purpose is to build up a civilization of love and peace. We are all called to promote such dialogue according to its distinctive forms in order to foster greater appreciation of other cultures and religions."
Cardinal Francis Arinze, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue

"Dialogue is thinking about something with two minds instead of one. "
"When I say I'm open to dialogue, I mean that I'm open to learning something from a conversation. What I learn doesn't necessarily come from the other speakers or from their words alone; it may come from the experience as a whole."
Daniel Quinn, Writer

"The concept of war is outdated. Violence is unpredictable and it can go out of hand. Conflict situations should be resolved through negotiations."
"All religions have the same potential for peace."
"Proper conflict resolution should be through dialogue. It needs more determination and more patience. It may take more time but it is better."
Dalai Lama

"The scarcest resource is not oil, metals, clean air, capital, labor, or technology. It is our willingness to listen to each other and learn from each other and to seek the truth rather than seek to be right."
Donella Meadows, a pioneering environmental scientist, a teacher and writer

"In our African languages we say, "We're the same - a person is a person through other persons. I am me, because you are you. Without other persons, I could never be a real person."
Desmond Tutu, South African Anglican Archbishop

"Generally speaking, the first nonviolent act is not fasting, but dialogue. The other side, the adversary, is recognized as a person; he is taken out of his anonymity and exists in his own right, for what he really is, a person. To engage someone in dialogue is to recognize him, have faith in him. At every step in the nonviolent struggle, at every level we try tirelessly to establish a dialogue, or reestablish it if it has broken down. When I say 'the other side,' that could be a group of persons or a government."
Hildegard Goos-Mayr, Honorary President of International Fellowship of Reconciliation

"The implementation of an agenda of dialogue is quintessential not only for the self-realization of each and every civilization, but for the survival of all nations. It alone will help avoid endless confrontation that would finally defeat all civilizations' and nations' interest in self-preservation, including that of the Western civilization which appears to benefit most from the uni-polar political constellation of today."
Dr.Hans Kochler, Chairman of the Department of Philosophy, University of Innsbruck

"To focus on the future, we must build on the values that unite us. We must stop thinking in terms of "us and them". We need to focus on what unites people- on creating bonds, on paving the way for joint, positive experiences."
"Those of us who have a religious conviction should be the first to understand and respect people of a different faith. In inter-religious dialogue we must focus on common values, as human dignity - and consequently human rights, peace and reconciliation. Religion is often considered to be part of the conflict. In my view, it should be the other way around. Religion must become part of the solution.
Kjell Magne Bondevik, Former Prime Minister, Norway

"Diversity is not only the basis for the dialogue among civilizations, but also the reality that makes dialogue necessary."
Kofi Annan, Former Secretary-General of the United Nations

"...But let us not deceive ourselves. This dialogue of civilizations entails responsibilities and the observance of certain rules, not only at the interpersonal level but also in the public domain and political life. It must be based on the voluntary commitment of individuals and societies to respect, reciprocally and in their common interest, a set of essential principles and rights. It is consequently a fundamentally democratic and pluralist process that presupposes a respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. The dialogue of civilizations requires that we reconcile, in the new realm created by globalization, the universality of rights and the diversity of the human condition."
Mr. Koïchiro Matsuura, Director-General of the United Nations Educational,
Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)

"Together we have filled our eyes with visions of peace: They release energies for a new language of peace, gestures which will shatter the fatal chains of divisions inherited from history or spawned by modern ideologies. Peace is a workshop, open to all and not just to specialists, savants and strategists."
Pope John Paul II

"It is only through a dialogue among civilizations that people's basic needs and desires can be restated and new solutions sought. Thus, the intercultural humanism we envision is not founded on any particular ideology nor does it assume that one civilization or culture has succeeded in responding to basic human needs better than any other. Each civilization can show great achievements in some areas, but has much to learn in others."
"The dialogue of civilizations seeks a humanism that supports the genuine advances of modern life while, at the same time, maintains a critical stance towards modern values."
Liu Binyan, Chinese journalist and political campaigner

"No major culture or civilization has evolved in isolation. Only through continuous dialogue they are enriched and become living and thriving entities. The power of communication entailing both ‘speaking' and ‘listening' have the capacity of contributing to their survival and growth. "
Dr. Madan G. Gandhi, Educationist, author and publicist

"The political translation of dialogue among civilizations would consist in arguing that culture, morality and art must prevail on politics."
"In order to understand the meaning of the phrase dialogue among civilizations as defined here, one has no choice but to closely pay attention to a number of points, one of which is the relationship between a politician and an artist, and the other is the relationship between ethics and politics."
"The essence of language is the communion of living beings, in other words, dialogue makes possible self-knowledge, knowledge of the other and of the world."
Mohammad Khatami, Former President of Iran

"Listening to the other is never done in vain, but we need to let the other meet us: Listening means giving hospitality to the other within ourselves."
Monk Enzo Bianchi

"We must not yield to fear or pessimism. Rather, we must cultivate optimism and hope. Inter-religious and intercultural dialogue can not be reduced to an optional extra. It is in fact a vital necessity, on which in large measure our future depends".
Pope Benedict XVI

"For me, the World Council on Religions for Peace (WCRP) is about promoting dialogue and conversation in order to empower communities. It is about developing comprehension and engagement, leading to mutual wellbeing. In that sense, the communities that we aim to represent - the grassroots believers - are far more important than us, the people who stand up on stages like this. If it weren't for them then we would not be here. We, at WCRP, are the servants of the servants."
Prince El Hasan bin Talal of Jordan

"The "clash of civilizations" is relatively easy to envisage. More effort will be needed to have meaningful dialogue, but such dialogue will respond to a crucial need of our time."
René Waldow, Editor of Transnational Perspectives, Geneva, Switzerland

"My response to the Clash of Civilizations is to insist on the ‘golden rule' of ‘Do not do to others what you do not want others to do to you', which is formulated in almost identical terms both in the writings of Confucius and in the Bible, and indeed in some form or other in all great civilizations."
Roman Herzog, Former President of Germany, author of "Preventing the Clash of Civilizations"

"Deliberative dialogue differs from other forms of public discourse -- such as debate, negotiation, brainstorming, consensus-building -- because the objective is not so much to talk together as to think together, not so much to reach a conclusion as to discover where a conclusion might lie. Thinking together involves listening deeply to other points of view, exploring new ideas and perspectives, searching for points of agreement, and bringing unexamined assumptions into the open."
Scott London, Writer

"When you go deep within, you do not see each religion as something separate. You see only one reality operating in and through many forms, many ideas, many ideals and many religions."
"Only when all the religions join together will they be able to create something beautiful, soulful and fruitful."
"When a religion comes to realise that all religions form a single, eternal religion - an eternal Eye of Truth or an eternal Heart of Truth - then that religion becomes perfect."
Sri Chinmoy, contemporary Indian spiritual leader

"All religions are true. God can be reached by different religions. Many rivers flow by many ways but they fall into the same sea. There all are one."
"A truly religious man should think other religions are also paths leading to the truth. We should always maintain an attitude of respect towards other religions."
Sri Ramakrishna, an Indian sage, promoted the concept of the harmony of all religions

"The call for dialogue among civilizations is a call for defending the value of democracy in international relations at both conceptual and institutional levels. It is also a call for mobilizing all human efforts to reach agreement on a common set of minimum agreed parameters based on mutual respect and understanding, paving the ground to finding solutions, on equitable and democratic global bases, to the challenges faced by mankind and threatening its very existence, continuity, universality and humane nature."
Dr. Walid M. Abdelnasser, an Egyptian diplomat and writer, author of "Dialectic of the Challenge: Dialogue among Civilizations"

"It is probably true quite generally that in the history of human thinking the most fruitful developments frequently take place at those points where two different lines of thought meet."
Werner Heisenberg, German physicist and Nobel laureate

"Each human being has the eternal duty of transforming what is hard and brutal into a subtle and tender offering, what is crude into refinement, what is ugly into beauty, ignorance into knowledge, confrontation into collaboration, thereby rediscovering the child's dream of a creative reality incessantly renewed by death, the servant of life, and by life the servant of love".
Yehudi Menuhin, World famous Violinist


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  • Sandy says:

    These are great! We also have a bunch of quotes on dialogue, deliberation, listening, communication, etc. on the NCDD (Nat'l Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation) site at http://www.thataway.org/?page_id=550 . We also have a page of quotes from leaders in dialogue defining what dialogue and deliberation mean to them, at www.thataway.org/?page_id=490

    June 22, 2009 at 8:06 PM | Permalink


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