"When leaders in various fields ask me for advice, my response is always the same: dialogue, dialogue, dialogue. It is the only way for individuals, families and societies to grow, the only way for the life of peoples to progress, along with the culture of encounter, a culture in which all have something good to give and all can receive something good in return. Others always have something to give me, if we know how to approach them in a spirit of openness and without prejudice. I call this attitude of openness and availability without prejudice, social humility, and it is this that favours dialogue. Only in this way can understanding grow between cultures and religions, mutual esteem without needless preconceptions, respectful of the rights of everyone. Today, either we stand together with the culture of dialogue and encounter, or we all lose, we all lose; from here we can take the right road that makes the journey fruitful and secure." (Pope Francis, Address to leading members of Brazilian society, Saturday July 27 2013, reported online by Official Vatican Network.)

When Things Fall Apart

800px cradle mountain seen from barn bluffBefore Pema Chödrön became a world-renowned Buddhist teacher and best-selling author, she had what she calls a "conventional" life and marriage. Then, one day, her entire world came crashing down in a matter of seconds when her then-husband blurted out that he wanted a divorce. Chödrön recalls it being one of the most devastating moments in her life, but looking back, she now understands it was also one of the most profound.  Read more