Reactions to the “Inter-Religious Vision of Peace”
Daniel Libeskind (architect, Jewish Museum
"I deeply appreciate your letter to me and share with you your desire for Peace in the middle east - as a matter of fact I am to receive the HiroshimaCity Peace Prize 2002. I only hope that your idea gets momentum."
Frank O. Gehry (architect, Museum Bilbao), June 4th and 8th 2002:
concept is certainly very interesting. I think your proposal for a
“Thanks for your good work.
We shall mention your work to others
interested in the
The Bill & Melinda Gates
“We appreciate the value of your request.”
Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker (physicist and philosopher), June 12th 2002:
“Unfortunately, because of my age, I cannot become active any more for your plan.”
Paul Allen (co-founder of Microsoft),
“We appreciate your fine intent and your creativity”
“The project ‘
Foster and Partners (architects, Reichstag, the new parliament in
“We wish you every success with your timely vision.”
Gershon Baskin (Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information [IPCRI]),
“I am sorry but I cannot support this concept at all.” Gershon Baskin
“May I ask you why?” Gottfried Hutter
“Simply put I think that making any changes
on the temple mount is too explosive – just leave it alone.” G
“What would you say if Muslims would support the project?” GH
“Go for it!”
Wolfgang Thierse (president of the German
“Mr. Thierse wants to
emphasize, that he expressly welcomes your reflections about the construction
of a temple of all religions in
Tadao Ando (Pritzker Architecture Prize 1995),
“Your concept is very interesting. Physically we are
far from the
The German Christian-Democratic Party (official statement),
“Even if your vision would not be realized
on a 1:1 basis, it will stimulate further thoughts and proposals, promoting the
dialogue of religions, cultures, and peoples in the
Alex Chance, Speaker of the Archbishop of
“Your vision for the Tempel Projekt sounds most interesting”
“We will certainly keep it in mind if and when discussions reach an appropriate stage”
Prof. Douglas Rushkoff, Professor of
Asher Ochana, then Israeli Minister for
Amram Mitzna, former Mayor of
Haifa and head of the Labor Party of Israel,
He feels reassured in his policy of tolerance and mutual respect for all
Archbishop Michael L. Fitzgerald, Head of the
The proposal can be „useful to create opinion“ among the three religions
Rabbi David Rosen, President of the ICCJ, international organisation
for dialogue between Jews and Christians,
„a wonderful, wonderful idea“
Arab Educational Institute,
“Your vision for peace in the Middle East and worldwide seems to the AEI very good and encouraging step for a better future.”
“Thank you for your cordial and illuminating message, which I hope all of us Moslems Christians and Jews should ponder.”
“Abrahamspost” – Notes for the “Friends of Abraham - Freunde Abrahams e.V.” Spring/Summer 2003
Reference to the peace proposal at http://www.kaththeol.uni-muenchen.de/biblisch/at1/AP2.html
Vinay K. Bhargava, Vice
President of The World Bank, Director,
“…presents some intriguing possibilities for interfaith dialogue... We wish you every success in all of your important endeavors.”
Dr. Odilo Lechner
Abbot of St. Bonifaz
„It is a fascinating idea, to make this unity visible
symbolically in the torn and contested city of
Prof. Dr. Dr. Karl-Josef Kuschel, Vice President of
the Global Ethic Foundation,
“With pleasure I confirm that I find your initiative for an agreement between the three Abrahamic religions, expressed in the symbol of the dome of the rock, to be necessary, even imperative, in view of the situation of the world …, your ideas – especially concerning the dome of the rock – are identical with my own.”
Dr. Anselm Grün OSB, Münsterschwarzach, May 27, 2003
“… it is an annoyance to see exactly the religions that deduce themselves from Abraham fighting against each other, instead of engaging themselves together for peace in the world. In so far I wish your vision good success. A vision can change the way of thinking and from thinking comes a new way to act.”
Charlotte Knobloch, Vice President of the
Central Council of the Jews in
[thanks fort his]
„outstanding proposal for peace for the
Friedrich Ebert Foundation, division for the Near
and Middle East, Hajo Lanz,
“Your proposal shows a deep understanding
of the historical, complex, and today not least religiously founded causes for
the continuing conflict situations in the
Prof. Dr. W. Michael Blumenthal, Director of the Jewish Museum,
“Many thanks for sending your concept for a spiritual symbol of the common heritage of the three great religions. If realized, it would certainly be a powerful factor to promote understanding and peace.”
Prof. Bob Wright, visiting scholar at the University of
“I do believe that in the long run some
such conceptual reconciliation of the Abrahamic faiths could play a
constructive role in the
Prof. Dr. Manfred Görg, Chair of Old
“The temple-vision of the
David Bornstein, Author of “How to Change the
World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas”,
“Thanks for telling me about your work in the middle east. Good luck with your work.”
PROF. M. S. SWAMINATHAN, UNESCO Cousteau Chair in Ecotechnology & Chairman, M S Swaminathan Research Foundation, INDIA, December 27, 2003
“Thank you for your Vision for Peace in the
[Prof. M S Swaminathan has been acclaimed by TIME magazine as one of the twenty most influential Asians of the 20th century and one of the only three from India, the other two being Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore.]
Karen Armstrong [Author of books on many of the world's religions] January 13, 2004
“I had not heard of the initiative but am delighted to know about it. All good wishes. Karen Armstrong”
Dr. C. Werntgen, Secretary of the Udo Keller Foundation “Forum Humanum”,
We fully admire the courage and the creativity, by which you complement the range of the pragmatic approaches to peace by a spiritual dimension. The space you open up with your systematic anamnesis of the Abrahamitic origin of the parties involved in the conflict is inspiring in a literal sense. So isn’t it a salutary sign already that such a process of reflection today not only is possible, but finds such worldwide resonance encroaching all parties?
May the spiritual ecumenism of this idea grow with care and find a good way to blend into the complex mosaic of pragmatic politics.
Prof. Dr. h.c. Horst Teltschik, Host of the
Your peace proposal for the
Kabbani, Islamic Supreme Council of
We pray for your continued success.
Alan SEATTER, EUROPEAN COMMISSION, Near East Head of
Pursuing the idea in a spiritual sense has the potential of contributing to the search for peace which is common to all three monotheistic religions
Dr. Rainer Gepperth, Hanns
Your proposal to make
peace in the
Gisela Lehnhof for the German Minister of
the Interior, Otto Schily,
I have read your letter with great attention and want
to thank you for your remarkable proposal and state the assent, that the
religious core-statement of your paper as approach to a solution of the
Nonie Darwish - board member of the Mid East Education Team,
What a beautiful symbol of the unity of the three
Prof. Dr Nasr Abû Zayd, Ibn Rushd Chair of Humanism and Islam,
Your vision, theologically speaking, is based on Qur'anic recognition of the legacy of Abraham as the founder of "ISLAM" as a categorical concept integrating all that came after him. Thus, your project is precisely illustrating this theological Muslim's proposition.
Ephraim Kishon, 24. June 2004
Your beautiful Temple-Project hopefully will be realized some day still in the time of the coming generation.
Professor Marc H. Ellis,
thank you very much for sending me your vision for peace proposal. as a jew, i am always glad to hear of those who seek to construct peace based on political and religious justice with christians and muslims.
Professor Dr. Dov Shinar, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, 11. July 2004
I must express my admiration for initiatives like yours … I wish that all of us could embark together in an effort to transform the conflict into some manageable phenomenon.
Dr. J. Harold Ellens, Editor of the
recent four-volume handbook on “The Destructive Power of Religion.
Violence in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam”, Praeger
There can be no doubt about the fact that the central source of international conflict today is the unresolved violence between the Israeli and Palestinians, which has become the cause celebre for the violent rise of Islamic Fundamentalism world wide. Unless this matter is resolved the worldwide conflict will not be resolved because responsible Islam will not be able to win its ideological battle against Islamic Fundamentalists, the only way resolution of the matter will finally come about. Thus your proposal is enormously important. Your project can become the essential symbol and symbolic act necessary (1) to strengthen the hand of responsible Islam in its civil war with its Fundamentalists, (2) to corral the preemptive violence of the hard-line Israeli and thus strengthen the forces for peace and accommodation within Israel by focusing their energy on this constructive effort toward comity, and (3) to undercut American Christian Fundamentalism in its support of bellicose Israeli in an attempt to precipitate the battle of Armageddon and their anticipated return of Christ as Judge. If your project can succeed it will, therefore, enhance the spiritual and material wholesomeness of grace-filled forms of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity, for which we shall all rejoice.
Hans Harald Willberg,
Finally, a vision of a real solution and not only complaining about the unsolvable – or only violently solvable – solution. Will it be taken up by the responsible people? I would hope it will.
Edward M. Kennedy, United States Senator,
... I wish you luck in your endeavors. As I
continue to closely monitor the situation in the
The Most Reverend Desmond M Tutu, Anglican Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, November 11, 2004:
Thank you for writing to me to
share your vision for peace in
Prof. Dr. Eugen
Drewermann, theologian, psychotherapist, author,
Your idea is excellent
Daniel Libeskind (architect, Jewish Museum
Once again, allow me to share with you my
profound admiration both for your vision of peace and your proposal for a
Zaha Hadid (Iraqi Architect,
first female Pritzker Prize Laureate),
I would like to wish you every success for a stimulating and interesting session
Felicia Langer Jur.,
The initiative of tolerance and understanding between religions as developed by you appeals to me very much.
Moshe Safdie, architect of the
I am completely sympathetic to your objectives and indeed, in reading through your text, one has a feeling of the Messiah's coming
George Khleifi, director of Al Quds
Educational TV, Al Quds University, East-Jerusalem/Ramallah,
Thank you for sending your proposal. It is an original and interesting way to see the solution.
Yehuda Stolov, The Interfaith Encounter
I appreciate very much your work. I do hope
all of us together will make a significant contribution to a peaceful solution
and to coexistence in the
Richard Rohr, O.F.M., author,
Thank you for sharing your brilliant proposal with me. It is so well written and so faithfully conceived. … Your explanation of enlightenment and the secular mind and separation of religion and state is especially clear and true, I think. … The central symbol … could be in that sense a "sacrament" …
Francis Cardinal Arinze, Prefect of the
I pray that God may bless this project if it is his will
Dr. Reuven Moskovitz, Historian, Co-Founder of the
... Your project is too beautiful and sublime to reach this world, which is going cold, serving the Mammon and not the God of the Abrahamite religions ... I wish you much success, because the world dearly is in need of such a message.
Professor Abdullahi Ahmed an-Na'im, Emory Law School, Atlanta, Ga, originally from Sudan, specialist in Human Rights, Comparative and Islamic Law, June 3rd, 2008:
I am personally convinced that this is an excellent solution to this dimension of the conflict … Resolution of the Temple Mount issue is the key to facilitating workable resolution of other issues [e.g. settlements, allocation of water and economic resources, return of refugees and Jewish immigration]. … It is therefore important to explain this point in the proposal itself. Otherwise, people may dismiss this proposal as too narrow and unrealistic. … I will keep thinking about how to promote this wonderful vision.
Dr. Juergen Todenhoefer, second chairman of Burda Media, Munich, June 4th, 2008:
Herr Dr. Todenhöfer dankt Ihnen herzlich für Ihren Brief … Er findet Ihre Idee super.
Mr. Todenhöfer wishes to thank you cordially for your letter … Your idea he sees as superb.
Dr. Martin Schneller, former German Ambassador to Jordan, December 19th, 2009:
In my view, your conceptional approach is wonderful, from a political, a legal, an economic and also from a religious perspective. … the existing traumatisms in both societies can be overcome only by looking ahead. … Also, the idea of a New Temple next to the existing Islamic and Christian sanctuaries, which would reinstall Jerusalem into its proper assignment of being the symbolic capital of the three Abrahamitic religions, can only be agreed upon.
Bishop Riah Abu El-Assal, Nazareth, Israel, February 11th, 2010
I believe that your vision for peace is not only worthy but also timely
Michael Verhoeven, Film Director, May 10, 2010:
… it is about fundamentalist positions; they cannot be suspended by the mere will to peace …
The „pan-Abrahamic“ Temple idea can take place as a result of the establishment of peace, not as a precondition. Your thoughts deserve recognition and can be important as part of the inter-cultural dialogue.
Dr Ibrahim Negm, Special Advisor of the Grand Mufti of Egypt, April 16th, 2011:
Please accept our highest consideration for your great work. Many thanks.
Joachim Gauck, President of the Federal Republic of Germany, July 24th, 2012:
Der interreligiösen Friedensvision für das Heilige Land und Ihrem Projekt wünscht der Bundespräsident alles Gute.
The President of the Federal Republic wishes the very best for your inter-religious vision of peace for the Holy Land and for your project.