This is the time of year when most of us slow down, gather with friends and family, focus on the blessings in our lives, decorate our homes, and celebrate life lessons emanating from whichever deity we worship.
It can be a wonderful time, but it can also be incredibly stressful as we all too often find ourselves engaged in heated, frustrating conversations about important personal and professional issues that all too often divide us instead of uniting us.
This year, 2015, makes celebration especially difficult. Just about every country around the world has suffered through far too many natural disasters and acts of willful violence, to say nothing of fear-mongering and callous refusals (at least here in the United States) to accept and protect the victims of violence who seek refuge.
But I believe the difficulty we seem to have engaging in respectful conversations about important issues is an even deeper tragedy. Read more