Cultivating Empathy: The Worth and Dignity of Every Person--without Exception

Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations
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In this personal and emotionally honest exploration of conflict, the Reverend Nathan C. Walker introduces a creative and compassionate way to develop empathetic responses. He introduces the concept of the moral imagination--a vital character trait used by those who have the courage to project themselves into a conflict and understand all the perspectives, aware that understanding need not imply agreement.

"Cultivating Empathy" presents a collection of essays about the author's wrestlings with personal and cultural conflicts and his commitment to stop "otherizing"--which occurs when we either demonize people or romanticize them. Walker's remedy for these kinds of projections is to employ the moral imagination as an everyday spiritual practice. He shows that through this approach, we can save ourselves from irresponsibly using our imaginations by cultivating genuine empathy for those we previously held in contempt. We can visualize ourselves playing various characters within a conflict and choose not to play a lead role in the drama. Throughout the book he endeavors to find connection with skinheads, murderers, homophobic preachers, privileged 1 percenters, and Monsanto executives.

An online companion workbook will help readers to hone these skills through a variety of exercises.

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About the author

Nathan C. Walker is the executive director of the Religious Freedom Center of the Newseum Institute in Washington, D.C. A Unitarian Universalist minister, he spent fifteen years serving congregations in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia. He is the author of Exorcising Preaching: Crafting Intellectually Honest Worship (Chalice Press).
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Additional Information

Unitarian Universalist Association of Congregations
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Published on
Dec 31, 2016
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Best For
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Body, Mind & Spirit / Inspiration & Personal Growth
Self-Help / Personal Growth / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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