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CALENDAR OF EVENTS

May 2018
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Speeches

The non-violent approach unequivocally won and changed forever the history of the United States and of the entire world. The precedent it created, similarly to the French Revolution 200 years earlier, turned into a symbol with present and future implications for political struggles in various locations.

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The renowned sixteenth-century Kabbalist Isaac Luria taught that God created the world by forming vessels of light to hold the Divine Light.

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Allah blessed humanity when He created us in the best form, giving us the mind to understand and behave in a manner beneficial to ourselves and to others.

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Civilization has completed a circuit of the entire globe and has now arrived in the Pacific sphere. Human history has now come to a point in the providence where it should reach fruition through the Pacific Rim region.

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Even now, criminal cartels are still running Africa. We have people who are dividing nations. When we talk about reconciliation, it means that the country is devastated and needs reconciliation among its people and with God. In Darfur, the Congo, and until recently Angola, which are rich countries, the criminal cartels provide armaments to various warlords. Why are they doing so? They are doing so to further deplete those countries of their resources, because, just as when two dogs are fighting for a bone, the foreign dog that is not fighting will pick up the bone. This is what is happening in Africa.

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Religion is also a universal source of morality. There are secular ways of talking about morality. There have been important philosophers, from Kant to John Rawls, who talk about secular morality, but I have yet to meet a person who follows secular morality. Have you ever met a Kantian in everyday life? Most people follow morality through religion. Religion is the main incubator of morality, and the secular importance of religion in the world is that it provides ultimate accountability for a person’s actions.

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I think I was born in love with Africa. As a little girl, all I remember was dreaming about Africa. There’s something about the word Africa that brings feelings into my heart and into my soul. In fact, my son will be turning three next week, and he has already been to twelve African countries, many of them eight or nine times. Already he talks about Africa to everyone he meets along his way.

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In recent years, democracy has begun to spread in Africa. Nigeria has enjoyed over eight years of uninterrupted civilian, democratic rule. Yet, religious and ethnic tensions continue throughout the continent, and growing disparity in economic structures between the haves and have-nots has heightened tensions between economic classes in Africa.

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The twentieth century will be marked by the magnanimous women and men who made the ultimate sacrifice for truth and justice, peace and nonviolence, conflict resolution and community reconciliation. They were the peace ambassadors of the people-powered revolution of the Philippines, the velvet revolution in Czechoslovakia, the modern civil rights movement of the United States of America, the freedom movement of South Africa, and the satyagraha of India.

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I had been involved with the national prayer breakfast fellowship in Washington and had seen how spiritually motivated lay persons operating on the basis of their personal religious faith were able to reconcile differences between peoples—sometimes bringing wars to a halt with no one the wiser for how it took place. I thought to myself: if this kind of activity could be captured in a compelling book that could be made available to policymakers and diplomats, then perhaps government could learn how to build upon it.

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It is a privilege to share some thoughts with such a distinguished assembly representing nations from all the continents on the key topic of providing vision and leadership at a time of global crisis.

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In Africa, when the poverty is so severe, people ask me, is God for Africa, too? When they go without food, there is tendency to ask, is God for Africa, too? Thank God, Africa is for all of us. And for all the things that have gone on in the past and those that may be in the present, we thank God because now we can feel protected, not by armies but by peace.

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