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(From tolerate: L. tolerare). Moral quality that expresses an attentive and respectful attitude on the part of a person, group, institution, or society with respect to the interests, beliefs, opinions, habits and conduct of others. T. manifests in a willingness to achieve mutual understanding and reconciliation of divergent interests and opinions through persuasion and negotiation. As construed by some religions, t. includes the principle of not resisting evil by means of violence. This approach was developed into a political and moral doctrine by Tolstoy and Gandhi. T. should not be confused with charity (*) or compassion. T. assures the spiritual freedom of each person in modern society. Since the eighteenth century it has been applied above all in the sphere of religion, with the recognition of the freedom and right of people to profess faiths that are different from the one that is official or dominant. Today, t. has become a condition necessary to the very survival of humankind because it allows effective dialogue between different cultures and currents on the basis of mutual respect and equal rights. T. is the foundation of modern democracy because it assures religious, ideological and political pluralism, provides guarantees for minorities vis-à-vis majorities, and assures the sovereignty of the personality. N.H. considers t. an indispensable condition for the humanist style of life and of national and international cooperation as a basis for the effective implementation of universal human rights.