Yahoo and Google - Love Thy Neighbour As Thyself (Photo credit: Anirudh Koul)
As a Jewish American, what some people don't know is that I was raised in the Jewish faith by the great Abba Hillel Silver. Not only was Rabbi Silver the head of the American Jewish Congress. But he actually was one of the co-writers of the Declaration of Independence of Israel. And in addition worked on the Constitution of Israel with Ben-Gurion.
My fellow Jews and I haven't got along very well over the years. Because I don't really buy into a lot of the extremist behavior in this world. And Israel is in fact no different than any other country. There's extremism everywhere. And what's remarkable is that the entire war going on between Israel and the Muslim world has to do with nothing more than the same father with two different mothers. That's what it really boils down to, ladies and gentlemen. It is a family feud. Believe it or not, that is exactly what it is. Because both religions come from the same father but the two religions have two different mothers.
It doesn't matter what you believe in. It doesn't matter how you view God. I have many many friends in the Muslim world. Just like I have many many friends in the Christian and Catholic world. And I still have a number of friends in the Jewish world meeting my fellow Jews. So it's not about religion, ladies and gentlemen, it's a family feud. And what's remarkable is that Mohammed was actually a pacifist. Just like me. Moses was actually a pacifist. Just like me. He was a shepherd. He would've never sanctioned this kind of violence. Neither would Mohammed. The matter what anyone says reality is reality, ladies and gentlemen. Fiction and adventure stories with superheroes is always a lot more fun. But it's not reality.
And as remarkable as it may seem I have had discussions over the years quite privately in various segments of the United States and overseas where my opinion was being solicited. Not because I'm anyone special because I'm not. But because the people of Israel know very seriously. Without any doubt I have always loved Israel. I always have loved my fellow Jews. But then I also have tremendous love and admiration for the Muslim world. Just like I have tremendous love for the Catholics and the Christians and the Buddhists. Because I love when people actually celebrate the Almighty. I always have.
But again, reality shows its face. We humans never like that. We would rather reality. Just stay in the background so that we can go ahead and live in our little pretend world of adventure heroes in comic books. Because we don't like reality coming forward because when reality comes forward then we actually have to face the truth and we don't like doing that. It's much more enjoyable to build all these fantasy plans and have all these fictitious ideas about the world because then we have all sorts of excuses to do really ugly unspeakable things to each other. Like the Spanish Inquisition whether Crusades or the burning times. And all the wars we waged claiming that we were doing this in the name of the Almighty. But in reality the Almighty never felt any of those things toward us. God never created us with a sense of hatred or racism or bigotry. Allah or Buddha or Jesus Christ or God never created humanity with any kind of hatred it was out of love. And yet unfortunately, no matter what. Because we just don't like reality expressing love to each other, is the one thing we have the hardest time doing even know. That's how we were created.
That is remarkable. That's remarkable. I don't know how many of you know this. But in the Koran. There is actually a section of the Koran specifically titled, the teachings of Jesus Christ. That's true. And what's even more remarkable is that in the Old Testament or the Jewish Bible there's a book on David. And David is rather interesting character. The story of Goliath is really rather amazing. Because Rabbi Silver told me this story when I was a young child going to Temple in Cleveland. He explained that the day before this huge battle was supposed to take place with Goliath that the Jews were asking for anyone who would volunteer to fight Goliath. And no one did. But David being about 16 or 17 years old and a shepherd thought he would give it a try. So he volunteered.
And that night as he sitting out tending his sheep. He became scared out of his works. Because he realized he was probably going to die the next day. So he wrote down a supplication to God. He wrote down on a piece of lambskin or paper or whatever. This prayer to God because he thought he was going to die the next day. That prayer, of course, became the 23rd Psalm.
And of course David defeated Goliath. But then things went rather sideways. Because when David became king. He actually became the most murderous king in the entire history of the world other than King Alexander. Because when David was king he murdered his mother and his father and his sister and all of his brothers. And he conquered every single town that he ever interacted with. He murdered every single man and woman and child in that town and the woman or the women. He did not kill he made concubines of. And to this very day. He is known as the one single king in human history other than King Alexander with the bloodiest legacy in the history of humankind.
Amazing, isn't it? And yet when the Jews claim to be pacifists here. They have this book in the Old Testament where they are celebrating David and all the killing. He has done. And my question always was when I was growing up if the Jews are pacifists then why are they celebrating someone known for or who has done and committed such a horrible level of mass murder?
I actually have some rather amazing Muslim friends one from Egypt who is now living in the United States and I have some Palestinian friends as well. And we laugh because we believe that if we meaning all of us could go over to the Middle East that we could probably solve all of this problem between the Muslims and the Jews within a matter of days. The whole movie Lawrence of Arabia speaks volumes about the problems with the various tribes. The tribes in the Muslim world. But every religion has their dark side. The Jews do as well.
So it's a family feud, ladies and gentlemen. And what's really tragic is that historical and religious sites are being destroyed with all this violence. And for what? For what.
If we do not stop this kind of hatred. This kind of hatred will stop us.
Note: I am, by birth, a Sephardic Jew. I was raised in a mixed religious household where my father was one of the Ashkenazi Jews . My birth mother's family lineage goes back to Sephardic Jews who lived in Spain and migrated to Ireland, and then to the United States. Growing up, Rabbi Abba Hillel Silver used to call me "his little bridge". Not because of my mixed religious family that I had been adopted into. But because, at the time, I was one of the few Sephardic Jews who was in his congregation.
Technorati Tags: Israel,Hamas,government,Yahoo,News,Jewish,American,faith,Abba,Hillel,Silver,Rabbi,Declaration,Independence,addition,Constitution,Gurion,Jews,haven,extremist,behavior,world,fact,extremism,Muslim,father,Believe,Very,Hatfields,McCoys,Millions,friends,Just,Christian,Catholic,religion,Moses,violence,Neither,Fiction,adventure,discussions,opinion,admiration,Catholics,Christians,Buddhists,background,truth,fantasy,plans,ideas,Spanish,Inquisition,times,racism,bigotry,Allah,Buddha,Jesus,Christ,Koran,teachings,Testament,Bible,David,Goliath,Temple,Cleveland,volunteer,sheep,supplication,piece,paper,prayer,Psalm,history,Alexander,woman,human,legacy,mass,Egypt,Palestinian,Middle,East,Muslims,movie,Lawrence,Arabia,problems,religions,segments,humans,heroes,Crusades,tribes,ladies,gentlemen,doesn