Munich, Germany—UPF hosted a first presentation of a newly published book, Honorable Peace: 100 Years of Middle East Conflict.
Robert Bentele of UPF, who moderated the May 24, 2019, event, introduced the author, Gottfried Hutter, a Roman Catholic theologian and trauma therapist, and praised his longtime efforts toward peace in the Middle East. As UPF also has invested in many activities in this area, “Honorable Peace” was the perfect topic for the evening.
Dr. Alfons Wellenhofer of UPF began by reading the preface, written by one of Mahatma Gandhi’s grandchildren. He followed this with a further passage referring to the contributions to the Middle East conflict of the three world religions Judaism, Christianity and Islam, in the past as well as currently. The very knowledgeable author in his book brought up several important points which tend to be overlooked by the media.
Over the course of the evening, special mention was made of the vast potential for peace to be found in the basic virtues of mercy and compassion—which are exalted by all three Middle East religions. It is imperative to give these virtues more attention, the author said.
In closing, the author brought up the biblical story of the reconciliation between the two brothers Jacob and Esau. The nation of Israel—whose name comes from this story—is called upon today to remember Jacob’s generous gesture to his brother, because it was in this way that he could win the heart of his deadly enemy.
In the final chapter of his striking book, Mr. Hutter portrays a scenario in which there is reconciliation between Jews and Muslims, in line with the motto “I have a dream.”
An animated discussion ensued, which the moderator brought to a close with the words of Dr. Hak Ja Han Moon, co-founder of UPF: Peace activities cannot be successful without God. He then offered a prayer for peace and for the success of this very valuable book. He prayed that many people may access it, especially those who hold positions of responsibility in religion and politics.
The lively discussion continued as the participants shared the lovingly prepared refreshments.
More about the book can be read at the following links:
(Translated from German by Catriona Valenta.)