We hurt ourselves and others because we fail to realize that God’s signature is written on every soul, that it is apparent in every creation whether we are willing to acknowledge it or not.
Fear drives sheep to commit atrocious crimes against innocent people. Frightened sheep are easy to herd, and quick to do what they are told. Zionism is terrible for people, but most useful for governments. We must first eliminate fear to eliminate suffering.
Historically, a basis for today’s Jewish Zionism was the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine. From there, it has many branches in all directions. At best, it is extreme nationalism; at worst; it is pure domination, religious and cultural bigotry in action. The excesses are not unique to Israel. In fact, the most orthodox Jews reject it, partly because it makes Judaism “racial accident” rather than “spiritual choice” and often Jews reject Zionism simply as unjust, at least I hope they do.
Like much that grows from need and suffering, Zionism warps into extremes, and at the cost of others, itself creating new human suffering. It is hard to comprehend that people who experienced the holocaust would themselves oppress another people. Yet the Germans themselves suffered an unjust peace after the First World War, then turned all too easily to persecute others.
Militance can bring only temporary protection, not safety. If safety exists in this world, it comes from mutual respect, understanding, and alliances. These come from mastering fear, not yielding to fear.
Religious leaders, and indeed people of good will everywhere, must pray and make effort that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict will be resolved quickly. The world will benefit from peace. Religious leaders of all three faiths must work together by encouraging their own government and other governments as well to promote and strive for such a resolution.
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, as we know, must be resolved ultimately by the Israelis and Palestinians themselves, but the resolution will also require the services of many in the international community. Since the effects of this conflict extend far beyond the boundaries of these two states, all those who are affected in some way certainly must become actors in the resolution process, but religious leaders from the three Abrahamic faiths especially ought to become involved in this process.
All three Abrahamic faiths make claims to historical sites that are sacred to them. These sites have often been points of friction and even violence. Resolving the conflict will make it easier for these faiths to live side-by-side and the share sites that more than one faith has claimed.
Threats create fear, and should. Everyone in the Middle East faces real threats, so does Israel and Iran. Afghanistan suffered through wars with Russia, and then the US; millions in Iraq lost their homes or lives; Syrians still experience state sponsored terrorism and a civil war; the Palestinians have been suffering for a century of oppression.
Yielding to fear creates anxiety, then paranoia. People breathe in the poisonous air of a constant state of fear. Anxieties and embodiments of fear grow in their minds and turns people into monsters.
Being who I am, I attribute nothing to tribes or nations, only to individuals. I grant a “collective memory of individuals” within the tribes and nations. Still, none of us can escape the responsibility for our own decisions.
Those who work to improve life and eliminate suffering have learned what it means to be human beings. Those who work to inflict suffering upon the “others” are those who have not yet been fully developed conscientious human beings.
As Yoda says, “Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.” This is Zionism, whatever its religion or nation.
Fear not anyone or anything! There is no gain in being a hunter. The heart lives to experience the Beloved. Without love the heart sickens. Living in fear is akin to living like a wounded animal as is living in grief, and living in pain or hatred.
May 10th, 2012
Copyright © Yilmaz Alimoglu 2010-2015