By Len Traubman
The Muslim Ramadan month and Jewish Yom Kippur ended Monday, October 23rd. Both faithsâ€™ followers re-dedicated themselves to return again and again to a closeness to God and people, in deed and in heart.
More than ever, they did it together.
In Vancouver, Canadaâ€™s Ahavat Olam Synagogueâ€”http://ahavat-olam.ca/â€”Rabbi David Mivasair knew of shared principles of Jews and Muslims. So Yom Kippur morning, the Rabbiâ€™s congregation welcomed Imam Saâ€™ad Bahr of the Masjid Al-Hidayahâ€”http://islam-canada.com/pn/â€”a mainstream, beautiful Sunni mosque.
The imam and rabbi, side-by-side, affirmed shared intentions of Jews and Muslims to be their very best.
This was not a one-time event. It is a new tradition of courage and wisdom in Vancouver.
In each of the four years of its existence, Ahavat Olam has invited a Muslim religious teacher during Rosh ha-Shanah or Yom Kippur, the two holiest days of the Jewish year.
Rabbi Mivasair: â€œThe Zohar teaches that problems are not solved on the level on which they occur. Ahavat Olam is seeking a different level on which to begin approaching the relationship between our community and our Muslim neighbors,â€ published the Jewish Independent.
An unprecedented Muslim outreaching saw six San Francisco Bay Area mosques open their doors to Jews and others in the public. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) along with six mosques hosted Ramadan Open Houses & Iftars the weekend of October 7th and 8th to celebrate Ramadan: A Month of Sharing. It is described at http://www.myvillage.us/profile/profile.asp?/my/ramadan .
Mosque members of the Oakland Islamic Center reached out community-wide. Mosque Muslims broke the daily Ramadan fast one Friday night at Kehilla Community Synagogue as part of an event that also included the Montclair Presbyterian Church. Published in the San Francisco Chronicleâ€”Saturday, 07 October 2006
Israeli Jews and Arabs of the Interfaith Encounter Associationâ€”http://interfaith-encounter.org/â€”traveled twice to Hope Flowers Schoolâ€”http://hope-flowers.org/â€”in El-Khader, Bethlehem. Thursday, October 5th, 2006 was the first of two Ramadan interfaith gatherings to study faith traditions and share a Ramadan Iftar dinner to break the fast.
MORE ABRAHAMIC GATHERINGS for global healing
This Fall, 2006, many more than ever are these interfaith educational and healing re-connections are being initiated.
Read about inspiring gatherings in Maryland, New York, Washington, California, Florida, Rhode Island, and the Holy Land described at: http://shalomctr.org/node/1206
We are beginning to understand the meaning of Oneâ€”Echod, Wahadâ€”and to live as though it is true.
We are totally and inextricably interconnected and inter-relatedâ€”neighbors forever.