Abraham's insight of One

being lived out by Muslims, Jews, Christians, others

Saturday, 04 October 2008


     Since Abraham's intuitive, primitive insight about One, we are learning more and becoming more as one.
     Galileo showed how we are not the center but part of a larger, interconnected universe.
     Einstein revealed how life, time, and space are one and interrelated.
     Jung illustrated how our psyches, inner-most dreams, and symbols are similar and not dissimilar -- One.
     Campbell illustrated how the mythology of diverse people's have quite similar themes.
     Genographic DNA studies of of humankind's journey by foot out of northeast Africa reveal we are one people.
     Sir Fred Hoyle, the British astronomer, rightly predicted in 1948:

"Once a photograph of the Earth, taken from outside, is available. . .

a new idea as powerful as any in history will be let loose."

     We have now seen Earth from space; we see there is no individual survival.
     So we are increasingly engaging face-to-face and on the magical Internet, discovering one another, living "as if" we are One.
     Six stories below help you meet some contemporary cultural explorers, connectors, healers, creators of a new life on Earth.
     Do what they do.
     It's time.
     You can.
                        - L&L

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Synagogue Lends Space to Mosque
Published in The Reston Connection (Virginia) - Tuesday, September 30, 2008

     The All Dulles Area Muslim Society (ADAMS) has found a new home for its weekly prayer services in Reston in an unusual place, a Jewish synagogue.
     Hana Newcomb, president of the Northern Virginian Hebrew Congregation just accepted an award from ADAMS on behalf of her congregation for its efforts in promoting interfaith dialogues and peace Sept. 27.
     The mosque also honored United Christian Parish, which had hosted its Friday prayer services in Reston for the past seven years.
     The parish sold one of its facilities and no longer has space to share with ADAMS, said parish board moderator Kay Rodgers.
     "We dont have the space anymore but United Christian Parish is totally committed and dedicated to the interfaith experience we have," said Rodgers.

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Muslim and Jewish students win advanced degrees from Catholic Union
Two teachers become first Jewish female and first Muslim female to
receive advanced degrees from Catholic Theological Union
Published in the Chicago Tribune -- May 14, 2008

     As a teen, Sarah Bier traveled from Chicago to Israel to learn more about Judaism. But her journey to the Holy Land, marred by religious violence from beginning to end, ultimately led her to explore other faiths as well.
     Syafa Almirzanah chose to pursue similar studies after growing tensions among Muslims in her native Indonesia began to threaten formerly healthy relationships with the Christian and Jewish minority there.
     Bier and Almirzanah were the first Jewish woman and the first Muslim woman to receive advanced degrees from Catholic Theological Uniona sign of how the graduate seminary has expanded its mission to foster a peaceful co-existence of religious traditions around the world.
     "I think of them as real pioneers, both of them, in their own communities," said Rev. Donald Senior, president of Catholic Theological Union, which was founded four decades ago to train priests.
     "We need bridge builders like this or else we're going to be killing each other. Religion often becomes the battle line.
     "We desperately need people who can say 'We can live together and show mutual respect in a pluralistic world.' "

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Alif-Aleph UK
     Alif-Aleph UK is a group of British Muslims and British Jews since 2003, emerging out of increasing individual Jewish-Muslim citizen relationships.
     They are building bridges between their communities.
     Their Schools Linking Programme (SLP) launched in September 2007 has been a successful bridge building initiative between Jewish and Muslim students in
     SEE PHOTOS of the Schools Linking Programme:


     It began with more than 100 students from seven Muslim and Jewish schools in London coming together for a series of groundbreaking curriculum-based workshops and fieldtrips.
     Students engaged in activities to correct misunderstandings and apprehension between the different faith groups, and built new friendships.

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Building peace between Jews and Muslims, one pastry at a time
Published in the International Herald Tribune - Thursday, 24 July 2008

     There are a core of fifty women in Paris who call themselves Les B⴩sseuses de Paix, or Peace Builders.
     Peace Builders is providing a neutral space for women who want to engage and discover one another's humanity and even recipes, and not continue fruitlessly pitting the Jewish and Muslim communities against each other.
     Six years after its creation, Peace Builders counts several hundred participants. They sponsor "culture sharing" programs at major Arab and Jewish institutions, run seminars in Paris, attend conferences in Brussels and are campaigning for a plaque to be put on the Grand Mosque of Paris commemorating Jews saved by Muslims during World War II.
     "What they do is very courageous, because it's practical work on the ground," says Evelyne Berdugo, 60, who heads a Jewish women's organization, Cooption Feminine. "Not big words and speeches, but action with regular people who aren't well-known."
     Ghaleb Bencheikh, 47, host of a television program called "Islam," says that women's "tenderness and maternal sentiment" make them "the best agents for stopping conflict."
     Djamila Saadi, 45, a Muslim member from Algeria who attended the recent pastry workshop, understands that message. "This is for our children," she said, her hands coated in flour, as Jewish women worked by her side.

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A Jewish-Muslim Friendship Extends Open Hands to Others
In the blog READ THE SPIRIT: Connecting Men and Woman with great spiritual voices
September 26, 2008

     In Detroit, a Muslim leader, Victor Begg, and a Jewish peace activist, Brenda Rosenberg, do wonders bringing together diverse, previously alienated citizens to achieve new understanding and cooperation.
     Blogger David Crumm ( ReadTheSpirit@gmail.com ) describes how for Victor "this work often comes down to something as simple as the fact that, each morning, his friend Brenda calls him at 9 a.m. Just a short call on a cell phone to check in for the day. Both of them have their own spouses, their own families. This is purely a friendship.
    Crumm reflects: "The wonderful thing about Victor telling that story was that, each morning since then, when I notice that its 9 a.m., I think: Somewhere Brenda and Victor are talking for just a moment and they're starting their days work in peacemaking. Remembering that simple story reminds me that I am not alone in this work. Other friends are connecting as well."
     READ more about this effective Muslim-Jewish duo.

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Finding common ground:
Jewish, Palestinian students return from Balkans with better understanding of peace, conflict
Lead story in J., the Jewish news weekly of Northern California - Friday October 3, 2008

     Eleven Jews and 11 Palestinians traveled to Serbia during their summer break from various U.S. colleges.
     The students had eye-opening, transformative experiences, but they’re not finished learning yet.
     They will re-engage at follow-up retreats beginning next month in West Virginia and also communicate what they learned to larger audiences where they live and study.
      Exemplary are the life paths chosen by the sponsoring Abraham's Vision co-directors—a Palestinian and a Jew.
     Huda Abu Arqub came from a Muslim home in Hebron and, after helping raise her eleven siblings, then became a Fulbright scholar in Conflict Transformation and now a shepherd of young adults who refuse to be enemies.
     Aaron Hahn-Tapper ( Aaron@abrahamsvision.org ) determinedly participated in many U.S. peace-building camps then combined practical experience with academic  excellence in Comparative Religions on the road to inventing and fulfilling Abraham's Vision - http://abrahamsvision.org/ - helping our youth keep their idealism.
     This is the future, living as one.