habit zero #059

“You may give your children your love but not your thoughts, for they have their own thoughts.” Jubran Khalil Jubran

I would like to tell you about an experience from this weekend. I don’t have an experience card for it, and it wasn’t inspired by any Seed. But it was so powerful that I know I will use it as raw material for future work.

So, here it is…

It’s holiday season here in Israel, as it is on other parts of the world. But as you might know, nothing is simple in this spot on the globe. Or is it…?

Jews are celebrating Hanukkah this week and Christians are about to celebrate Christmas. In any normal day, the chances of these two events to be mentioned in the same space around here is are not high.

Israel has two official languages: Hebrew and Arabic. At least that was the case until earlier this year. I have to admit that while many Arabs are exposed to Hebrew on a daily basis, the opposite is not true. I for one don’t know Arabic except for a few simple words, and I don’t think I listened to a dialogue in Arabic in the past 20 years, except for a random conversation on the bus.

Until today.

Today I went to a children’s play by the Elmina Multicultural Theater for Children. Walking into the small theater hall felt like visiting a parallel universe. Christmas and Hanukkah symbols were decorating the hall side by side. Hanukkah songs were playing in the background in the same playlist as Christmas songs. And of course, dozens of children and parents were playing, talking, and sharing this unique space without caring about politics or history — just enjoying the present and hoping for a future in the same spirit.

It was the first time I saw a bilingual play. Before the play began, Norman Issa, one of the founders of the theater, asked the parents not to translate or explain anything to the children — just to trust them they will understand.

And you know what? They did. I did. I understood all I there is to understand: that regardless of politicians, the news, the agendas, and prejudice, this is possible. No, it’s not just possible — it is essential.

And it is small events like this one that can make a real change, simply because they put children at the center. They break barriers and build bridges. And nothing in the world can be stronger than that.



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