The Danube
Danube and Europe
Living Force

Theme 1
Modern day dilemmas
The scale and complexity of the interconnections that link and divide modern human society result in a huge number of dilemmas that the human mind seems poorly equipped to handle. As we struggle to resolve these dilemmas one by one, we frequently miss the "big picture" - and a solution to one problem may lead us directly to another. Hapless victims of ourselves, we are reassured that "market forces" will lead us blindly forward and that economic growth and technology will cover the trail of problems generated by our frequent blunders. Taking stock of the situation is becoming increasingly difficult as the space in our lives is constrained by the overpowering noise of our new means of communication. The opportunity provided by the Religion, Science and the Environment Symposia, to pause, reflect, and take a broader vision is a rare and particularly welcome one...
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Theme 2
Energy choices

Meeting in the Great Hall of the Academy of Sciences in Vienna, the debate on energy choices was tense and taut. It generated both heat and light. It underlined the complexity and the difficulty of decision-making in matter relating to mankind's demand for energy...
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Theme 3
The wonders of the Danube

The blue Danube has, for hundreds of years, symbolised purity and life to the Western world and to parts of the East. This presentation examines the history and current state of this great, now brown, river and identifies what must be done to restore it and its surrounding ecosystems...
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Theme 4
Caring for the common good
In earlier ages, people living on the banks of the Danube were fearful of the fast flowing, unimpeded waters that brought floods, waves, and rocks: their houses faced away from the river, as though turning their backs on the powerful, sweeping force. When the river began to be tamed by two large dams in the mid-19th century, Johann Strauss composed the famous Blue Danube Waltz with a spirit of exuberance and lightness, rather than fear. Today, the river has lost any hint of wildness, its flow imprisoned by a sequence of dams and channels that contain its entire length of 2,400 kilometres, apart from 80 kilometres that flow freely...
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Theme 5
The cost of war
The scars of the Kosovo conflict are still visible along the banks of the River Danube. Long after the attention of CNN was transferred elsewhere, the communities who depend on the river for their economic lifeblood were left counting the cost of the war. NATO allies, like Romania and Bulgaria, were particularly hard hit by the severing of this vital artery of trade...
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HAH's Prayer for Peace address
As we encounter the mournful faces of those of you who, together with your people, have been subjected to assaults from the air, we do not know whether we should express our joy for this meeting or our sadness for what has occurred. We find ourselves weeping amongst those who are weeping, because we do not have amongst us those who would otherwise be rejoicing so that we could rejoice with them. We would, however, prefer to express our joy, so that the evil one will not gloat excessively that he has succeeded in removing from our hearts the joy which the Lord of truth, life, and victory over death has assured us that no one can take away. Even in the midst of a myriad of hardships, we rejoice and are triumphant over the sad things in life, inspiring in those that have been injured, an optimism and faith in the help of God, who alone can increase two-fold and further bless the last things of the faithful more than the first, as He did with Job (Job 4: 2, 10, 12)...
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