Text: Solveig Hansen
As the first woman, Ada Aharoni was invited to speak in the Ahmedim Mosque in Haifa.
“A wonderful thing happened to me last Saturday. On June 30, I was invited to speak in the Ahmedim Mosque in Kababir in Haifa, at their annual Conference. It was the first time that a woman was invited to speak and address the audience in their beautiful Mosque.
The Ahmedim are a Moslem sect that started in India, and they believe in peace and in Bringing Hearts Together. They invited me because my book: Kiruv Levavot bears the same name as their Conference, and they love our IFLAC ideals, values and goals.
It was an extraordinary morning, the speeches by the All Men Panel were full of peace values, and very meaningful. After I was called to address the audience, and I spoke abut IFLAC and about my book, many of the Ahmedim women told me: we are so proud of you, you have made history today!
I wish all Moslems would follow the path of the Ahmedim whose motto is: love to all – and hatred to none!”
* * *
Ada’s historical novel Kiruv Levavot is about the uprooting of the Jews from Arab countries in the mid 20th century. Ada says, “My research for this novel clearly showed me that one of the ways to deeply reconcile the Palestinians and Israelis is by pointing out their mutual history and their mutual uprooting in the Middle East, as well as their shared values and humanism.”
In Ahmedim, our Poem of the Month for July, Ada sums up the event at the Conference:
By Ada Aharoni
The day I was invited
to greet the Ahmedim community
in their Kababir Mosque in Haifa –
I was sure it was a joke!
Me, a woman, to address these respectable Imams
in their beautiful Islamic Mosque! No way!
Impossible! Me, a Jewish woman!
I was doubly sure it was a joke.
But they called and reminded me
I was invited to address the
audience at their yearly Conference
on “Bringing Hearts Together”, in their Mosque.
On our tingling way to Kababir
I told my friends I was sure they would
tell me to speak in their backyard
but no way it could be inside the Mosque!
The Ahmedim talked about “Love to All – and Hatred to None,”
And suddenly, I was called to the Podium,
I couldn’t believe it, and yet there I was,
And I told them they are the hope of our region.
In the pictures of this unforgettable event,
I see the Imams at their table smiling behind me
while I quoted with excitement from my book bearing the
same title as their Conference – Kiruv Levavot.
I felt a fathomless joy, I was in heaven,
when the Ahmedim woman I didn’t know
came and hugged me and said –
You made history today!