The work of Tiqqun `Olam CANNOT WAIT for some far off date of a FUTURE Messianic Era. Realizing this, a group of peace-minded, progressive Jews and Muslims across the United States, Europe, Australia and even places as seemingly “far-fetched” as Iran, Egypt and Israel have stepped up to walk in the harmonious and PROVEN steps of our predecessors. We are making PEACE not only a “hopeful” prospect, but an inevitable one, borne of a forgotten approach that yielded understanding, cooperation and respect between Jews and Muslims FOR CENTURIES.
Introducing… THE HASHLAMAH PROJECT!
While the Hashlamah Project employs old, tried-and-true models of the successful co-existence enjoyed by our Jewish and Muslim predecessors throughout the Medieval Era (and in many cases, prior to it), this is contextually a new move, in a new direction, and in some cases divorced from anything that had ever been attempted recent history.
The term “Hashlamah” itself means RECONCILIATION, completion and, to an extent equanimity. When we speak of “Greater Israel,” for instance, we speak of “Eretz Yisrael Hashlamah.” Indeed, the Hashlamah Project is concerned with a solution to the Israel and Palestine conflict(s) that results in a unifying of the land on a FEDERAL level, and yet affording individual statehood therein which preserves the cultural and religious orientation of three states unified under federal jurisdiction. The term “Hashlamah” itself comes from the same root as “Shalom,” and it denotes – by its very definition – a Spiritual Balance, Peace and COMPLETION.
The Hashlamah Project aims to draw Jews and Muslims together in co-worship, TOGETHER, under ONE roof, and to then use that as a pivot to add a momentum to peace that cannot be impeded by even by the most rhetorical political venom currently holding sway over the minds, hearts and even the very lives of innocents on both sides of the illusionary divide.
You might say “Perhaps some day, but this is new territory. Something this bold has NEVER been done before; we’re just not there yet.” Nothing could be further from the truth, and this, indeed, is part of the reason why the Hashlamah Project MUST exist: to educate Jews and Muslims about the CENTURIES of Jewish and Muslim interaction and co-worship. Far from anecdotal examples and fringe, alienated groups, this activity involved some of the biggest names in Judaism, including Rabbeinu Bachya ibn Paqudah (whose originally Judeo-Arabic, “Duties of the Hearts” is still studied in Orthodox Yeshivot today), to the Maimonidean dynasty of Nagidim. The Cairo Genizah cache of Jewish letters and documents have elucidated just how wide-spread and far-reaching this activity was, over the course of CENTURIES, rather than decades.
If this is news to you, that is precisely why the work of the Hashlamah Project is so necessary. Peace is possible. We know it is possible, because we have seen it work before, and we have the blueprints for how to revive these successful modes of dialog, discussion and respectful co-worship.