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Jerusalem as Spiritual Center

A Path to Peace


    "Thus saith the Lord God unto Jerusalem: 'Thy birth and thy nativity is of the land of Canaan; thy father was an Amorite, and thy mother a Hittite.'"
        - Ezekiel 16.3

As the campaigns in Afghanistan begin to wind down, the focus shifts back to two other critical fronts: Iraq (Ancient Babylon), as the Bush administration debates widening the war; and Israel-Palestine. In Response 8 I discussed Chicago as the 'center of the world'. Today our story is Jerusalem.

The religious right in Palestine, led by 'martyrs' of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, assault the civil population of Israel. Religious fundamentalists in Israel support the war government of Sharon, ostensibly in an effort to 'crack down' on terrorists. While the attacks on civilians are proclaimed as 'holy war' by one side, they are also practiced by the other, with a fatality rate so far of approximately four Palestininians to each Israeli. The 'moral high ground' seems difficult to discern amidst the smoke from bombs and missiles. Each side proclaims Jerusalem, the 'holy city', as its deity-sanctioned capital. Here, for instance, is original scriptural authority for the first Jewish occupation of Jerusalem ('Jeblus' is the prehebraic name for the city; 'Jebusites' its early inhabitants):

    "When the Lord God hath delivered them into your hands, you shall smite every male with the edge of the sword. You may take as your booty the women, the children, the livestock and everything in the town - so you shall deal with those far from you, towns that do not belong to the nations hereabouts. But of the cities of the nations which the Lord hath given you for your inheritance, you shall destroy all that breathes. You shall utterly destroy them; namely the Hittites and the Amorites, the Canaanites and the Perizzites, the Horites and the Jebusites; as the Lord hath commanded."
        - Deut. 20.14-18

Grim stuff. A God-sanctioned genocide. A holocaust - the very first in recorded history. When a 'chosen people', a race of 'Ubermenschen' need 'Lebensraum', well, you can bet they're just cleansing the planet of evil doers or inferior genetic stock. Like Sodomites and Canaanites and Jebusites. Pagans and Infidels. American Indians, Jews and Gypsies, Slavs or Muslims.

But who were all those people: Jebusites, Hittites, Amorites? Were they the ancestors of the Palestinians? Is Jerusalem originally an Arab, a Palestinian city? Who knows. We speak today of Egypt, for instance, as an Arab country, and then assume that all the rich history of that land involved the same people. But when Herodotus traveled to Egypt a couple thousand years ago, he reported back of the Egyptians: "They are black." There were periods when Egypt was ruled by, or largely populated by, black Nubians. But Ptolemaic Egypt under Cleopatra was Greek. In other eras, Persians (Aryans) inhabited and ruled. Still other times were under the 'Hyksos' - Semites closely related to Hebrews.

    "The people of Israel - - have not separated themselves from the peoples of the lands with their abominations, from the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Jebusites, the Ammonites, the Moabites, the Egyptians and the Amorites. For they have taken of their daughters to be wives for themselves and for their sons; so that the holy race has mixed itself with the peoples of the lands."
        - Ezra 9.12

I have Jewish friends with adopted children - children growing up as Korean Jews, as Mexican Jews. So, if we really can't tell a Jew from an Arab, or a Hittite from a Horite, or a Pashtun from a Hazzara, without a declaration of intent, what are we really fighting about? How do we separate the good guys from the bad guys? (A tip: if they claim they got their license to kill or claim real estate from God or Allah; or to have priviledged racial status, or to be among the 'saved', that's the bad guys.)

Another friend, not Jewish, recently moved to Israel. On the night of the October full moon, she and her Jewish boy friend took an apartment in Jerusalem. That night he dreamed he was walking down a path, somewhere in Israel. To the west there was a "blood red sunset". By the side of the road were four books. One was a book about Islam, the second writings of a prominent rabbi. The third and the fourth were a book of history and one of science. As he picked up the books, three women appeared: a maiden, a mother and an old woman. Their countenance was "almost one of mourning, with some anger." They told him to put down the books, that the books belonged to them. Replacing the books, he continued down the road. As he looked back, the women were preparing to throw the books over a cliff.

The Triple Goddess, the Feminine, is talking to Israel. To Islam and Christianity, the religions that have disavowed her. She isn't threatening to destroy us. But perhaps telling us that if we keep listening to 'his story', the distorted rantings of her estranged husband ('Hast thou an arm like God? and can'st thou thunder with a voice like his?' - Job 40.90), we're going to destroy ourselves. Unfortunately, we're clever kids, and we have figured out for ourselves, with 'bunker busters, napalm, nukes, genetics, how to 'thunder with a voice like His'. The Bible, like the Quran and the Ramayana and Mahabharata and other religious texts, presents 'God' in a variety of guises. It's up to us to choose the texts we want to honor, the dreams and voices we want to listen to:

    "They shall hear no idle talk, no sinful speech, but only the greeting 'Peace! Peace!'"
        - Quran, Sura 56.

This weekend our focus groups will be working through our 'covert operative' in Jerusalem, dreaming a saner future. How do we do the work? Recall that human alignment is universal at the center of the earth. By our intention in prayer or meditation we envision ourselves - here in Chicago, or wherever we sit - as dropping through our own alignment down to earth center, pulling Jerusalem and the entire mid-east, and ourselves, into the lap of the Mother. We do not 'send peace, or love or white light'. Rather, we take the feminine direction of power; we call the world into us, become intimate with it. Those who resist the meeting, resist accepting the equality of all races, all relgions, all sexes, all humans and all life, will suffer in the journey down and in. And we ourselves may suffer also, to the extent we cling to our separation. But we will be changed by the journey, and in doing so, learn to change our world. Our capacity to make of life a hell for ourselves or others will be taken from us. In the center, the Source, the womb of the Mother there is life and love for all of us. When we have done our work, Jerusalem can become the 'holy city', the 'center of the world', 'middle of the earth' in the best sense of the vision:

    "In that day there will be a hiway for Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian will come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptian will worship with the Assyrian. In that day Israel will be the third with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing in the middle of the Earth whom the Lord of Hosts has blessed, saying 'Blessed by Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel my heritage."
        - Isaiah 19.23,24

We may not expect an immediate outbreak of peace, but spiritual intentions set this weekend, on a Sagittarius New Moon leading into the solstice alignment to galactic center, will have great force and support, and help to 'hold the line' against the 'exploders and exploiters', the crazies, fanatics and fundamentalists.


Copyright 2007 - 2017 by John Sacelli. All Rights Reserved.