Sisters and brothers in peace:
It's been years since I visited this space, and I'm asking a lot, but with the peace talks on the brink, I believe I may be able to offer at least a little hope. Normally this would be ideal for the forgiveness reconciliation and spirituality forum (maybe we should link it there?), but I'm centering my efforts urgently on the Israeli Palestinian conflict.
Please take a look!
I have been working hard to produce a joint Muslim-Jewish prayer service whose main feature is a series of collective requests for Divine forgiveness before asking for help and hope in our current crisis.
The premise is that no matter how much we may blame each other (or ourselves), or whether you believe that Israelis or Palestinians are more at fault generally, it should be obvious to most people by now that truly horrible things have been said and done in the names of both Judaism and Islam in connection with the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
By releasing our shame publicly and to God, we can look to the future more hopefully, no matter how dire the state of the peace process.
Being a cantor familiar with traditional Orthodox Jewish prayer guidelines, I also consulted thoroughly with the respected Imam Jihad Turk, to make sure it is in conformity with the theology and liturgy of both faiths. I have noticed that previous attempts at Interfaith prayers tend to skim the surface of our theologies and shy away from anything negative. Also, as much as I would like to include Christians as most such services do, I want to instead emphasize the special connection between Muslims and Jews and focus on our mutual failings.
I think we need a good cry together to feel like progress is possible. And our leaders need to hear that cry. Badly.
At a little over 4 pages, the prayer is long: it's ideally designed as a full service for a group of Jews and Muslims led by at least one liturgically experienced member for each faith. That service includes both the main English text (if you can translate to Arabic and/or Hebrew, it would be very very appreciated!) and several suggestions for liturgy from each faith that conforms to the theology of both faiths.
However, in the interest of time and generating interest, it could also be mostly just the new text, done by individuals (again, at least one of each faith) and posted on YouTube.
I plan to design simple paragraph prayers as well in the coming month, but real healing needs a lot of spiritual space.
I have the cooperation of a very gifted web-designer and web-marketer who would donate his time to make the video as visible as possible. With God's help, I should be able to produce something from Los Angeles with the help of one or two gifted Muslim and Jewish friends. But schedules are tight and nothing is certain. Perhaps more importantly, the ideal is not to have Americans like me leading with this but to have Israelis and Palestinians doing so.
What do you think? Would this be something you could join or maybe even lead? Do you know who can? Do you have suggestions for how to improve it or move it forward?
I am posting both the individual version and the full version, as well as a source sheet with English translations of the liturgy (I just don't have the fonts but I could transliterate). The full version also includes an intention-setting introduction that should help people feel more safe to join.
…And now the news is even worse. I will work on modifying what I must in the call for help. Asking for peace to come now almost seems futile. But the need to deal with our demons has certainly not decreased...
Good try, well written!
I am postponing this effort. Now is not the best time for a thorough interfaith service. Instead, I just posted a simpler unilateral show of sorrow and faith I propose for the Jewish community. I intend to return to this prayer in the not-so-distant future.
so true i am with u
The only solution to the Israeli - Palestinian conflict!
Let our actions do the talking.
Amnesty for all.
The only common sense solution for Palestinian and Israeli conflict lays written in Ezekiel 37:15-26.
Instead of proposed two states solution, quite contrary, unite as one nation, the rest of the world will follow, united as One Global Family. Acts 17:26
One Nation with One King
15 The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,
16 Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions:
17 And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand.
18 And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these?
19 Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand.
20 And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes.
21 And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land:
22 And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all:
23 Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling places, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.
Amnesty for all.
So help us God!
Initiator of http://www.visutech.net/peace365/read-petition.asp
Let our actions do the talking!
Where did they all get it wrong?