A Polish graphic designer, Piotr Mlodozeniec, designed the first coexist image. He created the design to participate in an art contest hosted by the Museum on the Seam for Dialogue, Understanding, and Coexistence in Israel to promote religious tolerance.I had opportunity to visit the museum while I was in Jersusalem. Their print information notes:
The Museum on the Seam is a socio-political contemporary art museum located in Jerusalem. The Museum in its unique way, presents art as a language with no boundaries in order to raise controversial social issues for public discussion. At the center of the changing exhibitions in the Museum stand the national, ethnic and economic seam lines in their local and universal contexts.
The Museum is committed to examining the social reality within our regional conflict, to advancing dialogue in the face of discord and to encouraging social responsibility that is based on what we all have in common rather than what keeps us apart.
I recently replied to several questions from a long-time friend about a T.V. episode he had viewed involving a Television Political Talk-Show Media Figure - who was predicting future events based on both Christian and Islamic traditions. (Personally, I do not tend to watch political-characters in the news - and try to read news from across media sources from the interent, where the nuance of bias can be less flavored - though it always carries a bias.) The conversation with my friend and his anxiety and emotion invested in "the news" he heard - caused me to be reminded of several things - only one of which I will share here.While I am a person of Christian faith and Christian identity who believes deeply in the claims of my faith, I can live in charitable and favorable ways with persons of other religions and I do not have to - and perhaps am not even permitted to(!) demean, belittle, harass or act against other faith claims as I embody and reflect the claims of my faith. No doubt, the world would be a better place if, instead of promoting religious intolerance and religious violence, we promoted the best peacemaking traditions of our faith as we attempt to coexist toward a better world. Toward eupan.
~ marty alan michelson, ph.d.