The people of the ‘center’

Danny Johananoff
Jerusalem from a roof
Danny Johananoff Jerusalem from a roof

You can be on the right, you can be on the left, or anywhere between these two poles on a line… But suddenly, in the middle of our daily dose of horrors, something comes into my mind: what about if the “centre” is defined by a point within a 360 degree pairs of shoes? How about we can introduce a more accurate picture of the three dimensional reality we live in?

There are at least two very strong tensions in this circle, which revolve around the need for peace and the need for power. They do not always work together. Indeed there is an urge to unify these two. This is the best function, a leader in the Middle East should have.

So, how do we achieve this? We get out of “tunnel vision” which always operates when we are in “survival mode”. When we are threatened, we rush to protect and attack, we cannot afford for a second, to think, what does the “other” want and why. These are thoughts we can afford in quiet times… but now, at this moment, has to be the time.

In order to move into peace, we first have to produce unity -which does not mean “homogenous”. Unity not by an external threat, but considering our internal ones. Secular and religious, cannot feel each other as a threat, but as an oiled machinery, working for a communal goal: to make Israel strong and healthy, in every aspect, never forgetting that the map that made Israel possible by International Law was a map of the Holy Land. Not a secular map. But who pushed and drained the swamps were not religious. Two faces of a reality call Israel.

Negotiating, based in our different interests that are embedded in our community: secular, religious, Arab, Ethiopian… The 21% and the 79% which are divided into fractions. Thinking of ourselves like a body, each one with its unique function, not overtaking the rest, giving space, recognition, inclusion… because most of all we depend on each other. Our differences should be our strength.

Think about how we can  now  bring ourselves to imagine a broader circle, where the Palestinians are standing, and also those for whom to live in Judea and the whole of Israel, is indeed a mitzvah, and how we can conciliate the fact that even though under international law, this territories are not “occupied”, still have people living on them, many, from ancient times, whose origins or “name”does not really matter,   because they have a unity under a common narrative, that grows even deeper each time, and they count. They count simply because “they are not going anywhere”.

Photo by Danny Johananoff
“The Roof”
About the Author
Alex is a Clinical Psychologist, a peace worker, a writer, a music composer and artist. She has lived in New York, England, Argentina, Italy, Amsterdam and the Middle East.
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