Jewish-Muslim Relations Past and Present

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Jews and Muslims unite in Germany against circumcision ban

Rabbi Yitzhak Ehrenberg (R) gives his kippah to the head of the Turkish Community in Germany (TGD) Kenan Kolat during a demonstration against the controversial circumcisions law in Berlin, September 9, 2012. REUTERS-Pawel KopczynskiAs with Kashrut (the kosher slaughtering of animals), and its Muslim halal equivalent, there have been problems recently with the religious rite of circumcision. With anti-circumcision activists demanding a law against the practice in San Francisco and now a court in Cologne, Germany ruling against it Jewish and Muslim communities have come together to protest. (more…)

Radio Salaam Shalom: A Unique Venture

mission5Radio Salaam Shalom is an internet-based broadcasting station based in Bristol UK. It is run by members of the Jewish and the Muslim community together. Their work is voluntary and each programme is devised and broadcast by a Jew and a Muslim working together. I got to know the station when I was living in Bristol doing my MA and I will never forget the feeling of warmth and genuine interest in each others’ faiths that everyone working there showed. I joined in a few times on the Saturday night broadcast, Abraham Nexus and was impressed by the willingness to engage in any topic and the great respect shown for all perspectives. In the meantime the Radio Salaam Shalom has become Salaam Shalom Media to reflect all the work they do in the community. Their mission is expressed in the caption on the above which is on the front page of their website. If you go over to their website you will find many podcasts of previous broadcasts that you can listen to. It’s well worth visiting. Just click here.

Jews and Muslims Exploring Each Others Sacred Texts

Naomi Seidman, left, explains the layout of a Torah page to a Muslim-Jewish text study class in Berkeley while co-instructor Hatem Bazian looks on, Feb. 2, 2010. (A.H.  Sellars)This is a new graduate level course that is also open to the general public at Berkeley, California. It is about religious literacy which means being informed about the faith of the other and correcting misunderstandings that are often based on media bias. This is excellent as a form of dialogue and follows in the footsteps of scriptural reasoning groups I know of in the UK. The Centre for the Study of Muslim-Jewish Relations Relations at the University of Cambridge does similar work with its e-learning programme on the Muslim-Jewish encounter and its support of scriptural reasoning. (more…)

A Rabbi’s Arabic language website about Judaism

“The Arabic website project is a synergy of Gabbai’s personal mission and AJC’s pioneering inter-religious work, addressing one of the greatest interfaith challenges of the 21st century – Jewish-Muslim relations. Asl al-Yahud is purposely apolitical. It does not take on the contentious, divisive political issues that dominate discourse about the region, nor does it offer specific guidance on advancing Muslim-Jewish relations. But recalling the historical interactions of Jews and Muslims over the centuries is a key to deepening understanding of Judaism among Arabs across the Middle East.”

Members of Yemen's Jewish communityEphraim Gabbai is a New York Rabbi and is passionate about the conversations he has with Muslims about Judaism via the website he created for that purpose. (more…)

Leslie Hazleton’s delightful blog

Both humorous and insightful, Leslie Hazleton discusses Judaism and Islam in her irrepressible manner and from an agnostic perspective. I’ve been enjoying her writing for about a year now after hearing her speak on a TED talk about reading the Qur’an.  I’ve added the link to her blog in the blogroll. She calls herself an accidental theologist, something which she says came about after spending thirteen years living and working in Jerusalem. Head on over and see what you think. 

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