July 15th, the 17th of Tammuz, typically stands as a Jewish fast day and the beginning of a three-week mourning period for the two Jerusalem Temples’ destruction.
What makes this year’s observance particularly interesting however, lies in its coinciding with the Muslim observation of Ramadan, during which Muslims fast every day for a month during the daylight hours. At this intensely holy time, these two faiths are expressing in holy sacrifice and solidarity a strong message against the conflict and violence that is defiling the entire Middle East.
In an effort to unite Jews, Muslims, and all others behind the effort to end the bloodshed in Israel and Gaza, Yachad, a U.K. based group, organized a day-long fast on July 15th.
Beginning in Israel, the cause picked up momentum across England and among temples, mosques, and churches in the United States. At this critical and tragic time of tension and loss, we commend Yachad and all like minded organizations that seek to bring interfaith harmony to bear on bringing healing and balm to world affairs. Spiritual and interfaith investment such as this sets a good example for conflict resolution experts to find a common ground in the quest for enduring peace.