The Old City of Jerusalem
A New Interfaith Solution
The Year 2000 has ended in failure of the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians,
proving that the Old City of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount are the ultimate issues.
The Israelis cannot yield the Old City to the Palestinians, and the Palestinians
cannot yield it to the Israelis - whereas the Old City, including the Temple Mount,
cannot be divided.
Since the times of Abraham and the binding of Isaac, the Abrahamic peoples are bound
to the blessed but tortured City of Jerusalem and this binding prevents an agreement
or compromise among them. The city that could have become the spiritual center for
all of humankind, remains divided and neglected, and the peoples of the Middle
East are sinking in a morass of hatred and wars.
The Interfaith Solution: The Bible that designated this sacred Place also hints at
the solution: the sacrificing of the natural, tribal-national, and desire for ownership
over Jerusalem - offering and consecrating it for the One God. The Old City of Jerusalem
should, once again, be declared as the City of God, a place dedicated to creating
peace in our land and the whole world - and as such to be elevated out of the political
negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. The Old City within the Walls,
with its Mosques (including those on the Temple Mount), Churches (including the Church
of thee Holy Sepulchre) and Synagogues (including the Western Wall), should revert
to its prophetic role, and become "A House of Prayer for all the Peoples"
(Isaiah 56:7). Its academies should be utilized for the Teaching of Wholeness (literally
The Political Arrangement: The Israelis and Palestinians would agree to hand over
the city between the walls to a new entity, a supra-national and multi-religious
body, to be composed of Lovers of Jerusalem from all over the world. This New Jerusalem
entity would be charged with caring for the peace and welfare of the Old City of
Jerusalem, and will operate in close partnership with the Old City residents and
all the people of Jerusalem. This way, the main stumbling block will be removed from
the political process.
The Assembly of the New Jerusalem: The New Jerusalem entity will be assembled through
systematic, holy-holistic processes from among all of the different reference groups
that have an affiliation with Jerusalem. These include at least the representatives
of all the monotheistic religions - where the main divisions of every religion will
be represented (Shiite-Sunni; different Christian denominations; orthodox conservative
and reform Jews) - as well as members of any other religion that feels identified
with Jerusalem and cares for its destiny. For symbolic and procedural reasons alike,
it is best to assemble a representative body modeled on the dozen or its multiples.
This will be a reminder of the Twelve Princes of Ishmael (Gen. 17:20: 25:16), the
Twelve Tribes of Israel (Gen. 35:22) and the 12 apostles of Jesus and the Twelve
Gates of the New Jerusalem (Matt. 10, Rev. 21:12-14).
Please send your responses and participation proposals to the Hayut Foundation, POB
8115, Jerusalem 91080, or <mailto:email@example.com>firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Hayut Foundation, a registered non-profit organization dedicated to renewing
the Vision of Zion, is seeking in this context assistance for building an Internet
system that will facilitate locating all the varieties of Lovers of Jerusalem and
their assembly into such an entity. This New Jerusalem System will facilitate the
collection of love and commitment to Jerusalem from the whole world and will operate
a pilgrimage program geared to assemble communities committed for the service of
the City of God. Within this context there will be developed and operated a virtual
educational-ritualistic facility of spiritual pilgrimage to "The New/Heavenly
Jerusalem", which will adumbrate the operation of the entire Old City as a Universal
Temple of Reconciliation. More elaborations and examples would be found at www.thehope.org