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H.M. Murad: Sons of Abraham as Peace Leaders

When we talk about peace and the situation in the Middle East, remember that the Lord, or God, or Allah created man to be really brothers, to live in this world under real peace, to be under very sensitive and good manners, as brothers and sisters. The first home for a human being was paradise. Allah created us to live a happy, peaceful and gentle life. When he sent father and mother from Paradise to the world here, he continued sending angels to them.

Jesus (peace be upon him) and Mohammad (peace be upon him) were sent to the Middle East generally. This Holy Land, this peace land, was, is, and will continue to be famous for its holy places. We agree that we respect other believers and their holy places.

The Middle East became a deep problem, but we have many wishes for the future. The Qur’an, Mohammad's sayings, and the rules of Islam focus on peace in society in general and also in brotherly relations. We know this is the same in the Jewish religion and the Christian religion.

What happened? It came under political meanings and processes. We hope that all brothers in the Middle East can return, under the holy meanings, under Allah and the Lord, and under their books, because I am sure they are sons of Abraham, the prophet (peace be upon him). Abraham was the world-peace leader during his period, so the sons of Abraham must lead the peace in their period.

What is happening in Palestine? I’m sure our spirits and hearts also know what is happening in Israel. Our feeling and hearts refuse this struggle and this suffering. The Israeli people are living under a suffering situation, and the Palestinian people are also living under a suffering situation. What can we do, as spiritual men and women, thinkers and researchers, about the Middle East?

First we can affect the culture of our families—it is very important to let our children know that we are one family in the Middle East—and throughout the world.

Second, we can arrange our curriculums in schools and universities to change the many bad ideas that were produced during the last century, which caused bad thoughts and feelings between the two peoples in the Middle East. NGOs have a duty as well as the media. Research centers must do something different from the tanks, airplanes and explosives which attack children and women, who are in need of peace in that area.

in Islam means to keep yourself safe from the other when he decides to attack or destroy you. You can use your strength to defend yourself, your land, your women, and your children, but not to attack by force. You must first search for peaceful means. You can only attack when there is equality of force, because it is forbidden to attack families, children, and women and destroy the economic life in any land.

Our hope is to return to one society and one state, Israel and Palestine together. I am sure it is possible to be true brothers, if we decide to make a true culture from our hearts in the Middle East. We wish to build one society, Israeli and Palestinian, and one state—or possibly two states—to live as two people having one origin, one grandfather, which is Abraham. There are Christians in the same area.

Together, all the believers in that area can live under true peace. It is not impossible if we arrange our cultures between us. Our God is one, and our prophets and brothers: Moses, Jesus, and Mohammad.

How can we really respect from our hearts all of our beliefs? How can we challenge all of the difficulties in the Middle East not only for peace in the Middle East but also for peace in the entire world? Jerusalem, the historic town of the prophets, can become the holy town of peace.

If we lose true peace in the Middle East, we will lose peace in most of the world, and if we keep peace in the Middle East, we will keep peace in the entire world.

[Source: Islamic Perspectives on Peace. Tarrytown, NY: Universal Peace Federation, 2006.]