Muslims and Jews prayed together side-by-side in public spaces across Los Angeles, in an effort to show that peace is possible. Despite growing Islamophobia and Anti-Semitism in America and abroad, the two religions have more in common than meets the eye, including praying to the same G-d.
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NewGround fellows from the 2015 cohort planned the day of shared prayer and filmed their experience. To learn more about their project and how you can get involved, visit www.twofaithsoneprayer.com and www.mjnewground.org
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Twitter: @2faiths1prayer & @MJNewGround
I'm a Muslim I was born a Muslim I'm Jewish grew up in Israel where I came from there's hardly any Jews my father's a Holocaust survivor but my parents are Palestinian we're trying to show the world that Jews and Muslims are friends if you were to ask me like a couple months ago give me ten ways that Jews and Muslims could come together and coexist what we're doing today would not have been on my list I would have never expected to do this before I have never had a Jewish friend I was always reluctant to be their friend just because I didn't know how they felt about me but I feel like I've made some of the closest friends in my life today we are traveling around Los Angeles and praying Jews and Muslims side-by-side that was first time I prayed on the beach hearing them praying in Hebrew and we are praying in Arabic and hearing the ocean the last nest of ocean around us that's a very different feeling and was yeah the first time that people prayed together the first time I heard somebody say Allahu Akbar I had like a physical reaction we're like hardcore pro-israel anti-arab in the past so it's been a huge change for me Allahu Akbar of course right it was this moment of just joy and realization of praising God together we were just so surprised that we could do this together and it's very similar and it was kind of like an aha moment that we're praying to the same God why aren't we doing this all the time together it's been incredible how meaningful my prayer has become when it's more inclusive one of the special things about Muslims and Jews bringing side-by-side in my experience is that I feel connected there are many times when I'm praying among Jews only and I don't feel that today there's a wholeness in my life that I don't generally feel the most significant piece of what we're doing today to me is that we're praying in public we've planned a whole day around this idea of two faiths one prayer we have five different stops throughout LA the secon and then you start with Shiva after got it we're illustrating to the world that Jews and Muslims can pray in a meaningful way side by side people around us will see that and if nothing else they'll wonder and it just plants the seed of hope and the seed of possibility of peace as a nice camera honey – hi-yaah Dominica you're not a zombie I really love fun it felt like we made it when we hit city hall going from the beach going through the park and then ending up in this space in this official space and saying look at us we unrolled that rug and we've made space for everyone yeah City Hall was the only prayer that we had opened up to the public where anyone who wanted to could come and I think everyone was a little nervous we didn't know what to expect we didn't know how many people would come we didn't know who those people would be and I think we pulled it off that prayer just exceeded any expectations that I would ever have turning around and seeing so many people behind us instead of five to ten people it was like he said like six years so maybe great all around this yeah it is so many people Sami Allahu Liman Hamidah law walk but how great would it be if we could come together in prayer and it wouldn't have to be because people are killing each other Lowell look what and yet people are killing each other your honor we started praying the ground on the sand to help your boot off in La that it kind of like completes the cycle it was lovely just a great day we're like really show me people that we made friends across a lot of divides near here Malachy oh yeah kinda Buddha Iook honest I grant us courage to walk grant us courage to walk its righteous tough she's right that praying side by side side by side and yearning together and here in together for peace I don't know I don't know I Oh again Oh