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Peace & Harmony vs. Reality

by Rabbi Rami ShapiroSeptember 13, 2012
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Peace & Harmony vs. Reality

I'm in India as part of a Peace & Harmony conference in honor of the 150th anniversary of Swami Vivekananda's birth. His Holiness the Dalai Lama and I both spoke to the gathering of more than 1,500 (as well as dozens of others, but really, who can remember?). Being in India promoting peace to the already peaceful people assembled, I was out of touch with the news. Today I managed to get Internet access and learned of the killings of the Americans in Lybia, and the wicked anti-Muslim film defaming the Prophet (PUH).
What is the point of a conference on Peace & Harmony when such evil is going on under our noses? At the very least we should have issued a statement about the film and the killings and the recent desecration of the Latrun Monastery by Israeli settler movement extremists. We should have marched or done something. Maybe no one knew. I didn't.
From what I am reading, the film was made by a Coptic Christian posing as an Israeli Jew. This compounds the evil. The man is a coward, an Islamophobe, and a Jew hater. He must have known that his movie would inflame Muslims, and by claiming to be a Jew and an Israeli, he knowingly sought to aim that anger at Jews.
I was honored to have been invited to this amazing gathering in Delhi, but I am chagrined that we played while the world burned. Again.


Rabbi Rami Shipiro

Author and teacher Rabbi Rami Shapiro will lead “Walking Without, Journeying Within”—a trip to the Holy Land with S&H in fall 2018.

Rabbi Rami Shapiro is an award-winning author, essayist, poet, and teacher. His spiritual advice column, "Roadside Assistance for the Spiritual Traveler," addresses reader questions pertaining to religion, spirituality, faith, family, God, social issues, and more.

His newest book is The World Wisdom Bible.

He has this to say about religion: "To me, religions are like languages: no language is true or false; all languages are of human origin; each language reflects and shapes the mindset of the civilization that speaks it; there are things you can say in one language that you cannot say or cannot say as well in another; and the more languages you know, the more nuanced your understanding of life. Judaism is my mother tongue, yet in matters of the spirit I strive to be multi-lingual. In the end, however, the deepest language of the soul is silence."

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