Was invited by a Jewish family living in Manhattan to share their Shabbat on a Saturday when I once visited New York, and as I watched the four candles being lit, two for the couple, my two friends and the smaller ones for their two children, I saw in their eyes, and in all the prayers offered the ever increasing need for peace.
Outside, on the streets of New York I heard the constant sound of traffic and every once in a while the sound of police sirens and in that moment there in that peaceful room was a flicker of fear, as the harsh, grinding, noise of that police vehicle made everyone flinch.
The prayers went on, some in Hebrew, some in English and every once in a way, David my Jewish host translated the prayers for me, and every once in a while Ellen his wife would explain a tradition, break the bread and share the significance of their Shabbat.
They were holy moments. David asked me whether I would pray at the end of their prayers and I did: All the urgency in me, talked to a God above about granting a peace, a peace that would envelop these Jewish friends and their Muslim neighbors in Israel.
It’s all about peace isn’t it? It’s not about who’s right and who’s wrong, it’s not about who’s firing the missiles and where those horrible weapons of destruction are hitting, whose lives are being snuffed out, it’s all about peace.
If only we would move away from trying to judge who is right and wrong, if only we would stop looking for reasons and instead hold onto the one big reason of living in peace, we could then bring same calm into that land and stop the violence.
There must be thousands of homes, mosques or synagogues where prayers are being said, and where as the prayers rise up to the same God above, a quietness prevails and then the sound of police jeeps, machine gun fire or a missile crashing in somewhere near, all spelling destruction makes everyone afraid. Suddenly prayers are shattered by screams, gentleness by violence and love by hate.
They asked me to pray at the end of their prayers and today back in India, I raise my voice as I did that evening and plead for a God above to bring peace to warring nations who long for such. Oh God of peace grant them what they all so desire..!
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