September 21, 2018

BDS AS SPIRITUAL PRACTICE: Stop Trying To #StopBDS & Start Doing Something Positive.

“>http://www.jewishjournal.com/david_suissa/article/fight_bds_with_a_pro_palestinian_narrative). Although David’s intention is positive, this approach still gives more attention to Hate, mentioning it in the title. If this campaign took off, with flyers and t-shirts and swag created in true campaign-style, it would involve reprinting the word ‘hate’ thousands of times! Again, we are focusing on that which we don’t want.

Question Two: What Do We Want?
This is a time to get very specific and give our attention to the details and key messaging of our campaigns. At this moment I certainly do not claim to have complete solutions, but as we were taught in yeshiva, “it is better to have a good question than a weak answer”. Perhaps we can bring our heads together to find positive messaging, to laser in on what we truly desire, and find messaging to support that intention. This might look like “Israel wants a stable Palestine”, “Israel wants two states living in peace”, “Israel believes in Palestinians”. Rather than #stopBDS it could be #startPeace or #ShalomMiddleEast. These slogans and hashtags are not yet refined, not yet print-ready slogans, but sketches/drafts/prototypes to steer us in a positive direction. As Steve Jobs taught, it can take tremendous time and effort to get to the most elegant and simple solutions (e.g. we take for granted the one-button Iphone, but remember the complexly-keypadded Blackberries and PDAs that preceded Apple’s glorious smartphone).

Question Three: Can We Believe In The Palestinians?
There is a tremendous power when we believe in another person’s ability. The Jewish people are in tremendous pain, especially of most recent attacks in Israel. There are however many Palestinian people who are also living in painful conditions: this may well be the fault a corrupt leadership but the point I am making is to acknowledge pain on both sides, regardless of cause. Intellectual arguments are redunant at this stage as BDS is an emotional campaign (see my recent article for the Jewish Journal: “>The Kabbalah Sutras – 49 Steps to Enlightenment”. He was recently appointed a member of the Jewish Diplomatic Corps, part of the World Jewish Congress.