Israel/Palestine at the CoE General Synod

Bismillah.

Earlier this month, Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg and I addressed a fringe meeting on Israel/Palestine at the CoE General Synod, Church House, London.

We spoke in our capacities as Patrons of the Parents’ Circle, Friends of the Bereaved Families’ Forum (Ali Abu Awwad, Robi Damelin, etc.). The Bishop of Truro chaired & the Archbishop of Canterbury made time to attend our session. We discussed peace-building and improving Muslim-Jewish relations in the UK & abroad.

I noticed a dome above the Church House reception, with an inscription from scripture in English around the inside border of the dome, which reminded me of the dome above Mount Safa at the Grand Mosque in Mecca. The inscription began, “The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord …” This reminded me of the Islamic saying, “Ra’s al-hikmah makhafatullah (The height of wisdom is the fear of God).” The latter is often attributed to the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, but may actually be a teaching of his cousin and son-in-law, Caliph Ali.

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