National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation's

The Learning Exchange

fostering knowledge-sharing in the dialogue & deliberation community

Skip to main content.

Spirituality & Religion

Here are the 14 resources from Spirituality & Religion.

20,000 Dialogues Great for Beginners

20,000 Dialogues is a nationwide campaign to bring people of different faiths together using films about Muslims to stimulate discussion and promote understanding. It brings the concept of interfaith dialogue into the hands of ordinary people who want to make a positive difference. 20,000 Dialogues is a Unity Production Foundation (UPF) project in cooperation with Connecting Cultures, LLC.

Resource Link:

At Issue: Marriage. Exploring the Debate Over Marriage Rights for Same-Sex Couples

GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network), 2003.

This resource offers educators six lesson plans for high school aged students that challenges them to explore the range of complex issues reflected in the marriage debate. The resource was developed at the time when the U.S. was awaiting the decision of the Massachusetts Supreme Court on the right of same-sex couples to civil marriage.

Resource Link:

Bread, Bricks and Belief: Communities in Charge of Their Future

Mary Lean. Kumarian Press, 1995.

Mary Lean shows how a foundation built on ethics and spirituality has made a significant impact on community development in post-industrial cities and Third World villages. Readers enter poor cities and villages to meet Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Muslim, and Sikh leaders who, with their driving spirit, seed the community with their energy and vision. Readers see how these efforts take root, steadily changing the cultural and economic life of these once despondent and declining communities.

Resource Link:

Center for New Community

The Center for New Community is a faith-based initiative whose mission is to revitalize congregations and community for genuine social, economic and political democracy. The Center's two main programs focus on building democracy and revitalizing church and community through faith-based organizing.

Resource Link:

Gay Rights: All the Way to the Altar?

Public Agenda.

In the next few years, politicians will have to decide whether gays and lesbians should have the right to marry, adopt children, or serve in the military, and whether they should be protected from hate crimes or workplace discrimination. Your vote can decide how far the country will go — or where it will refuse to go. Consider the alternatives. Decide what you think is best. And let your vote influence what they decide. This choicework guide about same-sex marriage presents three approaches: (1) Extend equal rights to all our citizens, including gay people; (2) Let states and communities choose their own solutions; (3) Protect traditional institutions and values. Each approach is accompanied by arguments for and against the approach.

Resource Link:

I and Thou

Martin Buber. Scribner Press, 1974 (translated version).

This classic philosophical work is among the 20th century's foundational documents of religious ethics. Today considered a landmark of twentieth-century intellectual history, I and Thou is also one of the most important books of Western theology. Buber suggests that in authentic dialogue something far deeper than ordinary conversation goes on. The I-Thou interaction implies a genuine openness of each to the concerns of the other.

Interfaith Encounter Association

The Interfaith Encounter Association is dedicated to promoting peace in the Middle East through interfaith dialogue and cross-cultural study. We believe that, rather than being a cause of the problem, religion can and should be a source of the solution for conflicts that exist in the region and beyond.

Resource Link:

Pax Christi

Pax Christi USA, headquartered in Erie, Pennsylvania, publishes peace education literature and develops ministry programs that promote justice to more than 14,000 members worldwide. It is active in more than 30 countries. In 2001, Pax Christi USA unveiled its long-term anti-racism program called Brothers and Sisters All, a 20-year organization-wide effort to transform the Catholic peace movement into an anti-racist multicultural movement for justice and peace.

Resource Link:

Shambhala Institute

The Shambhala Institute is an international network of people, projects, and programs actively engaged in the organizational and societal challenges of our time. The Institute is based in Halifax, Nova Scotia, on the east coast of Canada. The Institute is a nonprofit organization funded by a combination of program tuition, grants, and donations. While rooted in the vision, meditation practice, and principles of the Shambhala tradition, the Institute welcomes a rich diversity of people and perspectives.


Soulforce is an interfaith movement committed to ending spiritual violence perpetuated by religious policies and teachings against LGBT people. The website’s “Resources” links are of particular use here, and contain biblical, medical, psychiatric, psychological, and scientific evidence from both Soulforce and other organizations (the APA, the AMA, etc.) for the legitimacy of LGBT people and issues.

Resource Link:

Talking Across the Divide Great for Beginners Highly Recommended

Colleen O'Connor, Denver Post Staff Writer. Denver Post, August 29, 2004.

This long article on political polarization in the U.S., which was published in the Denver Post two months before NCDD’s 2004 conference was held in Denver, quotes several NCDDers. Here is an excerpt from the article: “Most people in both political parties want the same things: safety, security, beauty, liberty, strong families and healthy neighborhoods. The best way to achieve these goals, experts say, is meaningful conversation about tough issues across the partisan divide.”

The Different Drum: Community Making and Peace Highly Recommended

M. Scott Peck, M.D.. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster, 1987.

Psychiatrist M. Scott Peck, author of The Road Less Traveled, explores how the nature of community can be recognized by the vulnerability, honesty, and theological cultural inclusiveness of its participants. Born of a yearning for world peace, this book draws analogies between the ways communities emerge and the dynamics of individual spiritual development.

The Pitfalls of Dialogue Great for Beginners Highly Recommended

Jonathan Kuttab. Conflict Resolution Center International Newsletter, January 1998, pp 25-26, 1998.

This article, written by a Palestinian attorney with many years of dialogue experience, describes some common problems with intergroup dialogue and suggests some basic solutions. Kuttab says at the end of the article, "I have written some harsh words about dialogue and its pitfalls; yet I am still a firm believer in it. Peace, justice and reconciliation can be advanced tremendously by an open dialogue between members of the oppressed group and those who are willing among the oppressor society."

The Tao of Holding Space: 81 Short Chapters on Facilitating Open Space

Chris Corrigan.

This 84-page book is a collection of interpretations of the 81 short chapters of the Chinese classic Tao te Ching as they apply to the author's experience of holding space. Corrigan started this book in 2003, when he began noting parallels between Lao Tzu’s words and his own experience of leadership, facilitation and living in Open Space. In some ways this book chronicles the essence of Corrigan's own emergent practice of Open Space, and most of his knowledge about Open Space is somehow distilled into these chapters. The book is meant to be shared freely.

Resource Link:

© 2003-2007 National Coalition for Dialogue & Deliberation.
Learn more about us or explore this site.