Worldwide solidarity with Gaza




We, who know about energy, would like to see more positive language used to describe the DEMONSTRATIONS FOR PEACE. And yet, when I listen with my heart, I sense the true motives behind the world taking to the streets in support for Gaza and all the Palestinians. They are standing with their Palestinian brothers and sisters … they are being present with the suffering members of our ONE FAMILY. Their energetic focus is on “Stop the killing!” “Bring justice to the Palestinian people!” That’s what we all desire.

 The Palestinians can know that the world cares … that they are not alone. Finally, their story is known throughout this planet and this planet is standing with them–the oppressed ones. Instead of suffering alone and behind the scenes, the world now knows their plight and they will never be forgotten again. WE ARE ONE!

 One day in the very near future, all wars will cease because the people of our planet have demonstrated in such huge numbers … they have proclaimed to the world and our Star brothers and sisters, “We want peace and justice for all! No longer will Earth be a quarantined planet due to our proclivity toward violence. Instead, we will reunite in love and peace with each other and our Galactic Families!



Worldwide solidarity with Gaza

By John Catalinotto

July 22, 2014


Often the corporate media use the term “international community” to give weight to an opinion that is really the opinion of a handful of imperialist heads of state — from the U.S., its major NATO allies and Japan. Since the Israeli assault on Gaza began, the real international community is coming out into the streets, sometimes defying police violence, to show its solidarity with Gaza and Palestine and protest.

These protests and their acceptance by many others in their regions showed the growing support for the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel, and growing solidarity with Palestine.









Nancy & Twin Flame, Uriel


FOOD FOR SERIOUS THOUGHT – Since “all things work together for good,” could one facet of Good coming from the crisis in Israel/Palestine be that we seek the hidden wisdom within the biblical story? Think about it … the I AM THAT I AM dwells within each of us, thus there can be no Chosen People or Promised Land in the literal sense of the words.

A literal interpretation of the Bible has resulted in much bloodshed. Yet, when we search for the hidden wisdom with open minds, there is much Truth hidden beneath the surface words.

In the words of Geoffrey Hodson, in his book HIDDEN WISDOM IN THE BIBLE: “… the fact that the divinity in all human beings is one and the same. When the spiritual unity between all members of the human race is recognized, aggressive competition, organized crime and wars of conquest become impossibilities.” (page xiv)

Is this a time in which we are to transform our acceptance of the literal concepts found within all religions into the knowledge of the hidden wisdom within these concepts? Can we all come together in unity and reach an understanding that will end all wars?

I know we can, IF WE WILL!


This document is a portion of my graduate work in a seminar that included a 3 week Study tour of the Middle East.  Sadly, this document is not out of date … you can learn much from it that still relates to present day events.

I strongly suggest studying the entire document, but if you feel pressured for time, the 4th volume is the most important and explains the metaphysical hidden wisdom behind the biblical story of the Promised Land.

“The Bible tells the story of the Jews—those who in their highest aspect symbolize divine ideas or spiritual consciousness. The story is NOT A RACIAL ONE, it is the metaphysical story of all humanity attempting to maintain a spiritual consciousness and failing to do so….






Nancy B. Detweiler


While the Israeli-Palestinian conflict spirals into the worst violence in years, the orange keeps popping into my mind.

It is no ordinary orange, but a delicious orange harvested from an orchard near Jerusalem. The land on which the orchard exists may or may not have once been Palestinian land—their orchards were destroyed.

destroyed orange orchardOrange orchard in the Gaza Strip destroyed by Israeli soldiers

In 1993, I took a seminar course on the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict that included a 3 weeks tour of the Middle East. We spent two of those weeks in Israel, one week in Jewish hotels talking with the Jewish people and one week in a Palestinian hotel in East Jerusalem. The feeling of danger in East Jerusalem was palpable.

The Palestinians were required to display blue car tags; the Jews, yellow. The seminar included lectures by outstanding speakers from each group. Some of the Palestinian speakers came to our hotel in East Jerusalem. They were ill-at-ease and we soon realized they had risked their lives to speak to us. Israeli soldiers were scattered throughout the city.

In fact, I experienced the jolt of suddenly having a rifle block me as I unknowingly took a forbidden turn while shopping in Old Jerusalem.

While staying in the Jewish hotels, the food was fabulous—fresh and locally grown. When we moved to a Palestinian hotel, the food they provided was also fresh and delicious, but they were limited in their access. Fruit was not available. In fact, the shops along the street on which our hotel was located were boarded up due to a boycott.

One morning I asked the waiter if he had an orange. He answered, “No, but I’ll get one for you.” I assumed he knew he could find one in the kitchen. However, he was gone too long.

Finally, he returned with one orange.

He had gone to West Jerusalem to purchase an orange for me. He would accept no money for the orange or running the errand. He simply smiled.

I’ll never forget that orange! To me, it represented an act of selfless love.

Keep in mind that the root cause of the Jewish-Palestinian conflict is not the people. In the words of Rebecca Vilkomerson, Executive Director for the Jewish Voice for Peace:

The occupation, with US military and financial support, is the root cause. And it systematically denies the very humanity of Arabs, while valuing Jewish lives at the expense of others.

 Anti-Palestinian bigotry is not only acceptable but a powerful political tool in Israel. Long before this latest escalation, everyday life for Palestinians meant increasing numbers of settlements taking over their lands and homes, and a web of violence and control which reached into every area of life, simply because they are not Jewish. The recent and very public violence against Palestinians in the streets of Jerusalem and elsewhere did not happen in a vacuum. [i]

My Palestinian waiter friend knew I am American. Instead of treating me like an enemy, he journeyed through dangerous territory just to bring me an orange!



Palestinian homeIsraeli Soldiers on the rooftops of Palestinian homes in the West Bank

 barricaded neighborhood

Barricaded Palestinian Neighborhood in the West Bank

 Palestinian neighborhoods on the West Bank are encircled with bobbed wire fences.  Without the barricades, Palestinians could exit from their neighborhood via several streets.  Instead, the Israeli army had all but one exit sealed off.  The Palestinians have to start to work around 4:30 AM to allow for hours of sitting in line waiting for approximately 6,000 people to exit their neighborhood via the one open street.

 You may view my 1993 Photos & Commentary of the Middle East at:

Sadly, the Pictorial Commentary is not outdated.




[i]  Quote is from a 7/9/14 e-mail that I included in this blog post:






Israel Cuts Off Water Supply to 45,000 Palestinians

Israeli Jews and Palestinians are caught in a frightening, often violent scenario that given a choice, I believe could be solved by the people themselves with love.  Sadly, decades ago, both groups became pawns in the hands of those powerful elites who wanted only to control that part of the world.

American Christians and Jews have been taught the Old Testament story of the Promised Land.  To believe this story literally is one more example of how skewed our concept of God is.   God’s children demonstrate much more love than the God of religion we are taught. The true story below took place in the early 1990s, but remains heartbreakingly relevant in 2014.

In January 1993, our seminary tour group arrived in Jerusalem.  We spent one week in a Jewish hotel, one week in a Palestinian hotel.  We listened to the stories of each side.  When we returned to the U.S., I attempted to share our experiences with Christians.  I found the situation such a hot potato that I dropped it.  However, I have never forgotten my promise to Mrs. Habiby, a Palestinian Christian, that I would do whatever I could to shed light on this complicated situation.

Every time the news reveals mistreatment as the above article does, I remember my promise.  When one human being is deprived, we all are because–in truth–WE ARE ONE.  Those of you who knit know that not one stitch can be dropped without the entire garment eventually unraveling.  Likewise, not one Part of the Whole Family of God can be mistreated without the Whole Family being impacted.  We cannot have World Peace while one planetary inhabitant is being violated.

 CathedralSunday morning worship service at St. George’s Cathedral in Jerusalem

One of the most memorable experiences of our visit among Christian Palestinians was a Sunday morning worship service at St. George’s Cathedral.  Canon Ateek preached his sermon twice—once in Arabic and once in English.  We were astounded that Palestinian Christians sat through both sermons … we wondered what Americans would have done had Palestinians been visiting us in the states.  The most inspiring moment was when we prayed the Lord’s Prayer in unison—some speaking English, most speaking Arabic.  For those few moments, all barriers fell away … we were One.

 Canon Ateek Canon Naim Stifan Ateek

 Canon Ateek is the author of several books, the most recent one being A Palestinian Christian Cry for Reconciliation.  Others are:  Justice, And Only Justice:  A Palestinian Theology of Liberation,  Holy Land, Hollow Jubilee:  God, Justice, & the Palestinians, and  Faith & the Intifada:  Palestinian Christian Voices.

Following the worship service, we met with Canon Ateek in the educational building to be assigned in small groups to visit the homes of Palestinian Christians.  That afternoon we visited our assigned homes and listened to the individual stories of Palestinian Christians.  They told of seized homes, bank accounts, and lands.  They shared their stories in the hopes that we would return to the states and give Palestinians a voice in the political and religious arenas.

As we listened to their stories, we were struck by their honesty and their sincere desire to have us not react with anger at the Palestinian plight, but to respond with positive efforts to bring about a peaceful solution.

 Habiby home

My 1993 seminary group visiting in the Jerusalem home of Mrs. Habiby.

This 4 volume pictorial series on the Middle East is dedicated to

Mrs. Habiby.

To quote from Canon Ateek’s book Justice & Only Justice:  “For most Palestinian Christians, as for many other Arab Christians, their view of the Bible, especially the Hebrew Scriptures, or the Old Testament, has been adversely affected by the creation of the State of Israel.  Many previously hidden problems suddenly surfaced.  The God of the Bible, hitherto the God who saves and liberates, has come to be viewed by Palestinians as partial and discriminating.  Before the creation of the State, the Old Testament was considered to be an essential part of Christian Scripture, pointing and witnessing to Jesus.  Since the creation of the State, some Jewish and Christian interpreters have read the Old Testament largely as a Zionist text to such an extent that it has become almost repugnant to Palestinian Christians.  As a result, the Old Testament has generally fallen into disuse among both clergy and laity, and the Church has been unable to come to terms with its ambiguities, questions, and paradoxes—especially with its direct application of the twentieth-century events in Palestine.  The fundamental question of many Christians … is:  ‘How can the Old Testament be the Word of God in light of the Palestinian Christian’s experience with its use to support Zionism? ….  What has been seriously questioned is the nature and character of God.  What is God really like?  What is God’s relation to the new State of Israel?  Is God partial only to the Jews?  Is this a God of justice and peace? ….  The focus of these questions is the very person of God.  God’s character is at stake.  God’s integrity has been questioned.”  (pages 77-78)


An American Jewish friend wrote several years ago:  “It is the tribalism in the Bible that convinces me that the text is the work of humanity.  I don’t believe that God would have written a story that justifies such cruelty, arrogance, and xenophobia.  That said, I sense much of the same divinity in the Bible as I sense in Great Expectations and The Life of Pi, and the poetry of T.S. Eliot, and the paintings of Casper David Friedrich.  I just think the Bible is no more authoritative or divine than other great works that call us to compassion and courage.

          It is this very fact—the fact that the divinity of the human striving for God is so evident in the Bible despite the text’s wildly contradictory world views—that convinces me of the existence of a loving and compassionate God.  It’s just like the ordinary world which sparkles with a sacredness everywhere you turn, just begging us to join in the sparkling and let the darkness die away.

          But that doesn’t make religion bad.  When religion is used to speak coherently to a group that has chosen to cling to each other because of their common mode of understanding or common history, that’s not necessarily bad.  Not everyone can get the message the same way.  God made us all different.  However, when religion is used to gather power and resources for one group at the expense of another, that is the danger:  anyone can be tempted to believe the thing that gives them and those they love an advantage regardless of the cost to anyone else.  It’s too hard to resist.

          Regarding religion, too, it’s hard to talk about the inherent value of religion without regarding the way that different religions see themselves.  For Jews, religion and national identity are woven together like a sturdy fabric.  Is there another modern religion—I’m sure there is, but I can’t think of one—that says to its converts ‘when you choose to practice our faith, you choose to throw your fortunes in with the fortunes of our people even though you have been protected from those fortunes until now?  I wasn’t raised this way.  I was raised in the Reform Jewish Movement which tried desperately and futilely to shake off its attachment to a national identity until it found that it was too hard for most people to ‘be Jewish’ without one.  My father fought with this paradox all the years I knew him.  I think he craved a stake in the comfort that God might offer, but hated the idea that he might not be able to have that without a national identity that denied him a plain vanilla North American identity.”


These questions are questions all of us need to ask.  How can God be partial to a particular race or ethnic group?  How can God sanction the seizure of property, the destruction of cities, and the killing of every man, woman, and child—as is depicted in the Old Testament and as an example that humankind follows to this day?

The unequivocal answer is:  GOD IS NOT PARTIAL.  The only reason we could even ask the question is that we do not know the Truth—WE ARE ALL ONE WITH GOD.  There dwells within each human being a divine spark—the I AM PRESENCE.


You may view/read the entire pictorial/written document at:



We Are Fighting for All Palestinians

In jail, my fellow hunger strikers and I are doing battle against the Israeli occupation that humiliates our people

Published on Sunday, March 3, 2013 by The Guardian/UK

by Samer Issawi

Palestinians protest outside the International Red Cross offices

My story is no different from that of many other Palestinian young people who were born and have lived their whole lives under Israeli occupation. At 17, I was arrested for the first time, and jailed for two years. I was arrested again in my early 20s, at the height of the second intifada in Ramallah, during an Israeli invasion of numerous cities in the West Bank – what Israel called Operation Defensive Shield. I was sentenced to 30 years in prison on charges relating to my resistance to the occupation.

I am not the first member of my family to be jailed on my people’s long march towards freedom. My grandfather, a founding member of the PLO, was sentenced to death by the British Mandate authorities, whose laws are used by Israel to this day to oppress my people; he escaped hours before he was due to be executed. My brother, Fadi, was killed in 1994, aged just 16, by Israeli forces during a demonstration in the West Bank following the Ibrahimi mosque massacre in Hebron. Medhat, another brother, has served 19 years in prison. My other brothers, Firas, Ra’afat and Shadi were each imprisoned for five to 11 years. My sister, Shireen, has been arrested numerous times and has served a year in prison. My brother’s home has been destroyed. My mother’s water and electricity have been cut off. My family, along with the people of my beloved city Jerusalem, are continuously harassed and attacked, but they continue to defend Palestinian rights and prisoners.

After almost 10 years in prison, I was released in the Egypt-sponsored deal between Israel and Hamas to release the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in exchange for Palestinian prisoners. However, on 7 July 2012, I was arrested again near Hizma, an area within the municipality of Jerusalem, on charges of violating the terms of my release (that I should not leave Jerusalem). Others who were released as part of that deal were also arrested, some with no declared reason. Accordingly, I began a hunger strike on 1 August to protest against my illegal imprisonment and Israel’s violation of the agreement.

My health has deteriorated greatly, but I will continue my hunger strike until victory or martyrdom. This is my last remaining stone to throw at the tyrants and jailers in the face of the racist occupation that humiliates our people.

I draw my strength from all the free people in the world who want an end to the Israeli occupation. My weak heartbeat endures thanks to this solidarity and support; my weak voice gains its strength from voices that are louder, and can penetrate the prison walls.

My battle is not just for my own freedom. My fellow hunger strikers, Ayman, Tarik and Ja’afar, and I are fighting a battle for all Palestinians against the Israeli occupation and its prisons. What I endure is little compared to the sacrifice of Palestinians in Gaza, where thousands have died or been injured as a result of brutal Israeli attacks and an unprecedented and inhuman siege.

However, more support is needed. Israel could not continue its oppression without the support of western governments. These governments, particularly the British, which has a historic responsibility for the tragedy of my people, should impose sanctions on the Israeli regime until it ends the occupation, recognises Palestinian rights, and frees all Palestinian political prisoners.

Do not worry if my heart stops. I am still alive now and even after death, because Jerusalem runs through my veins. If I die, it is a victory; if we are liberated, it is a victory, because either way I have refused to surrender to the Israeli occupation, its tyranny and arrogance.

© Guardian News and Media Limited 2013

Samer Issawi was convicted in 2002 of being a member of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a group proscribed by Israel, and of shooting at Israeli vehicles. He is now on the 216th day of hunger strike.