a gay black woman's discovery of her jewish self

Meanwhile…

Posted on: August 4, 2014

one g-dI think of Judaism, Christianity and Islam as three rivers. If you are on either of the three, you run into some good spots and some rough currents. You sometimes float down lazily just to get to a stretch of water seemingly impossible to traverse. The three rivers run separately, of course. But, if you are brave and decide to go upstream, against the current to the source, you will find that your one river connects to two others, that the three rivers come from the same source. These three rivers, or branches of faith, aren’t so different because they all started from the same place.

This sameness is how I became interested in studying Judaism. It’s how I found myself downstream as a Jew, though I once floated down another river. It was this source, this beginning that gave me the strength and the courage to paddle upstream to find the beginning and I made the choice to become a Jew.

one g-d3I’ve been steadily un-friending and un-following folks on Twitter and Facebook. Not for their extreme views, or passion for either Israel or Palestine, but for their inability to hear opposing opinions. Which seems a bit immature, I will admit, but it’s easier than opening my page to an onslaught of hatred. So this week I’ve decided to only post puppies, kittens and other furry animals, along with pictures of babies and children. Not because we shouldn’t be talking about the conflict, but because our talking has turned into something ugly and unproductive.

I’m keeping hope that the new truce talks in the works pan out to something tangible and that through these talks leaders from the region and beyond can come to the understanding that we’re all the same; human beings with the inalienable right to live. We all breath the same air, our bodies require the same nutrients to live. We all bleed the same blood and we all die. G-d has given all of us the will do do as we please, but also commanded us to love.

The children of Abraham have the same rights and the same promise of a great people, people who are, in fact, brothers and sisters, not cousins. We come from the same biblical  patriarch, our biblical mothers  may be different, but our G-d is the same.

one g-d2Meanwhile, our distant cousins, the extremists, continue to do unthinkable things, in the name of G-d, but the focus still seems to be settled on Israel. While our brothers in other parts of the Middle East are driven from their homes, simply for living another fraction of faith.

My prayer this week is that my brothers and sisters in Islam and Christianity have the courage to take a glimpse upstream to see what connects us all, and that that may guide us in our words, actions and deeds.

Thank you for reading my blog and my opinions during the Crisis in Israel and Palestine. I have appreciated reading so many opinions, but again will be keeping comments closed. Instead I again suggest that you turn inward towards peace/shalom/salaam. I’ve found it to be incredibly comforting in this time of misunderstanding and hatred.

 

2 Responses to "Meanwhile…"

The strength and breadth of your heart to be able to write on this, like this, and not be in a state or permanent heartbreak astounds me. Although, maybe you are in that state. I know I am. But the way you put it, I wish everyone could–or would–read these words.

Thanks Michael! And sorry for the delay in response!

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