Wednesday, September 1, 2010

"Dayenu" -- It is enough

I vowed that when the time came for me to publish this story (before I knew about the internet and blogging) that I would tell my story with love and compassion.

So here it is – without much editing and fancy publishing (I have grown weary of that for the time) – relatively spontaneously, off the cuff, ready to go.

Having decided that it is time – as the NYC mosque controversy escalates, keeping many on the edge of their seats – how do I begin?

How do I tell a story about an experience of a “Middle East Crisis In My Backyard” that brought me great pain, its remnants continuing to this day without significant healing between involved parties, fours years after the fact?

(For details of the public account of the controversy, check out the above link. For me, it is what happened behind the scenes, interwoven with the "public," that I am pressed to recount, sooner or later.)

And, do it with love and compassion?
I am not sure how to achieve what I am after.
When the message of my story -- how the collective "we" in the U.S.A. mange or fail to effectively manage our relationships with non-terrorist Muslims -- is closely aligned with our great fears of continued terrorist attacks brought to the fore.
Maybe it is enough that I make the effort to do this with love and compassion.
(“Dayenu” is the Hebrew for the phrase, “it is enough,” as written in the Passover Hagadah.)
Maybe it is enough that one anti-Semitic, American Jewess (me) has come home to her tribe through the events that transpied.
Maybe it is enough that a beautiful Christian congregation on the verge of closing benefited from lessons I (and my “right arm” Sue) learned from a partially successful, partially abortive effort to reconcile local Jews and Muslims.
This is how I will begin my tale.

It is enough to begin.

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