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The Split: Differences over Israel tear apart a Jewish marriage

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Stan: And what might that be? Pray tell.

Hannah: I know this sounds grandiose and impossible, but so have a lot of major shifts in human development right before they happened. I'm hoping this is the start of our species finally outgrowing its need for group identities. Having all these groups -- familial, tribal, ethnic, national -- leads to battles. But now we may be getting ready to view humanity as one unified group. We could be going through the birth pains of a new era in which we realize the whole world is our family.

This terrible knot of problems in Israel/Palestine comes from group identities -- religion, ethnicity, nationalism. It seems to be a knot that can't be untangled, so we'll have to cut through it. We'll have to start cutting loose from these identities, leaving them behind, dismantling the structures, stop thinking of ourselves as Jews and Arabs, Israelis and Palestinians, get beyond the whole deadly game of separation. This might be a long, slow process, but now is the time to start. Every step we can make in that direction will help. There's no other way out.

The problems around Jerusalem are really a microcosm of the problems of the world. Since they're most intense there, that's where the breakthrough can happen. Whatever we can do to reduce the separating identities -- tear down national boundaries, dissolve ethnicity, eliminate the gap between rich and poor -- will bring us closer to being a human family. I'm not saying do away with differences, just divisions.

The separations have developed out of fear, because primitive life was such a struggle and humans felt so weak and vulnerable. They needed groups to survive. But now we're at another level, and the groups have become a threat to our survival. We need to leave them behind before we can have world peace. The horrors of the Mideast could be forcing us all to this new evolutionary step.

Stan: Hosanna, Hannah! Praise the Lord! Very convincing. You're good at arguments. That's why you're a good attorney. Too bad you're not a divorce lawyer -- we could save a bundle.

But the end result of all this idealism is that Israel goes down the tubes.

Hannah: Maybe so, as the first of many obsolete nations to fall apart and evolve into something more humane -- a world family.

#

"The Split" is a chapter from RADICAL PEACE: People Refusing War, which present s the experiences of war resisters, deserters, and peace activist s in the USA, Europe, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Other chapters are posted on OpEdNews and on a page of the publisher's website at http://media.trineday.com/radicalpeace .

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http://www.peacewriter.org

William T. Hathaway's first book, A World of Hurt, won a Rinehart Foundation Award. His new novel, Wellsprings: A Fable of Consciousness, concerns the environmental crisis: www.cosmicegg-books.com/books/wellsprings. He was a Fulbright professor (more...)
 

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There's nothing writ in stone that absolute compat... by landtorpedo on Sunday, Nov 20, 2011 at 5:59:47 PM
If only the Israelis had 'behaved'. Good behavior ... by syed mahdi on Monday, Nov 21, 2011 at 3:56:35 AM
Stan's part of the discussion read like a bad scri... by Paul Hershfield on Monday, Nov 21, 2011 at 6:25:55 AM
Not that it does not have any good meaning but.. ... by Mark Sashine on Monday, Nov 21, 2011 at 8:53:04 AM
I am a Hannahite. But if we don't learn to respect... by Peter Duveen on Monday, Nov 21, 2011 at 9:18:01 PM