RA­MADAN RABBI’S FAST PROGRESS

The Jewish Chronicle - - COMMENT -

ORTHO­DOX Rabbi Natan Levy’s de­ci­sion to fast for Ra­madan as a ges­ture of un­der­stand­ing to­wards Mus­lims at­tracted TV at­ten­tion as it came to an end this week.

Brav­ing de­trac­tors who said he was naïve and the odd call for his ex­com­mu­ni­ca­tion, the Board of Deputies’ in­ter­faith con­sul­tant reck­oned that ap­proval out­weighed crit­i­cism by 70:30.

While the shadow of the Gaza con­flict hung over his ini­tia­tive, peo­ple were all the more deeply moved by it as a re­sult, he felt.

“It gave me a lot of hope in the power of Jews and Mus­lims to sit and speak to­gether,” he said. “I was in­vited into peo­ple’s homes in a way I had never been be­fore. It showed Mus­lims that we thought of them through their re­li­gious prac­tices and not just what we see in the me­dia.” He admits to “miss­ing the rigour” of the daily fast. But he need not ex­pe­ri­ence with­drawal al­to­gether — be­cause it’s Tishah b’Av next

week.

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