More than 30 leading Jewish thinkers and activists from around the world are convening in Jerusalem today to launch Our Common Destiny, a ground-breaking initiative created to strengthen the bonds among Jews worldwide. The project is a joint initiative of Genesis Philanthropy Group and the State of Israel, under the auspices of Israel’s President. Our Common Destiny strives to connect Jews to each other and to Israel across diverse religious and cultural identities through a shared set of ethics and values. This Forum runs Monday, September 9 through Wednesday, September 11, with scholars from six continents.
During the Forum, the assembled group of thought leaders will meet with and present the initial draft of the Declaration of Our Common Destiny to the President of Israel, Hon. Reuven Rivlin. Following that meeting, President Rivlin will encourage Jews of all ages, affiliations and nationalities to engage in a year-long discussion and debate of its contents and purpose. The goal of that global conversation will be the creation of a new spiritual and intellectual document which, with input from Jews worldwide, will outline the shared values and principles by which world Jewry will treat, support and engage one another.
Ilia Salita, president and CEO of Genesis Philanthropy Group, said, “We are inviting Jews living in Israel and elsewhere to join in the crafting and completion of a document as ambitious as the Declaration of Our Common Destiny because we believe doing so has the potential to excite and engage Jews of all backgrounds and worldviews. We know the initial draft of the Declaration will be vastly improved by the input it receives from the world Jewish community. This is Jewish crowdsourcing on a whole new level.”
Our Common Destiny Scholars and Advisory Board represent the full range of diversity of Israeli and Diaspora communities. Among the thought leaders affiliated with the project are Lord Jacob Rothschild, Bat Galim Sha’ar, Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Judith Tanenbaum, Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Amos Yadlin, Rabbi Pinchas Goldshmidt, Rabbi Silvina Chemen, Rabbi Yaacov Meidan, Éliette Abécassis, Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove, Professor Jonathan Sarna, and Rabbi Sharon Brous. The full list of scholars and advisory board members is on the Our Common Destiny website.
“The Declaration of Our Common Destiny has the potential to become a generation-defining event in modern Judaism that can strengthen Israel-Diaspora relations and world Jewry as a whole,” said Sanford R. Cardin, chair of Our Common Destiny’s Advisory Board. “We envision that this Declaration will help shape how future generations of Jews, within Israel and worldwide, learn to listen to each other and work together to ensure a bright future for our people and the world at large.”