UN Chanukah Menorah

Dec 6 2018 UN HQ

The evening will began with a Grand Menorah Lighting Ceremony with Rabbi Elie Abadie remembering the 11 victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue and lit the candles out side by the Isaiah wall Menorah. Diplomats , Rabbis and UN staff gathered for a grand Hanukkah ball in UN HQ with Kosher wine and food .The Advocates Corner Clark Pena receiving the Ambassador of Peace award, attending, Latino Pastor Bishop David Maldonado jr, District Leader of the Conservative Party in the Bronx Denis Oswald , Lt Angie Ozuna NYPD finest woman, Chief Lou Telano Sheriffs Office , Chief Manuel Delarosa NYPD, Luis Paniagua Alianza Int., and people from every part of the world. After the blessings were recited by Michael Fisher and the 5 candles were lit in UN HQ for the first time in history , we all sang Maoz Tzur and danced together, really nice bonding experience. Rabbi Yakov David Cohen share some Chanukah remarks and blessings for Universal Peace Over 100 people were there, as well from the Mountain Jewish community from the former USSR

The origin of lighting a Menorah stems from the moment when just a few people were able to confront a huge and well-trained army that wanted to do away with religious freedom, and be victorious over that army. It is also a symbol of freedom, of the yearning of people to exercise their religious beliefs without any external imposition. And finally, the Menorah also incorporates the notion that there should ever be more light in the world, as one candle is added each night to be lit at the darkest period of the year. In all countries of the world, leaders have been seen lighting the Menorah at their Jewish communities.

Rabbi Yakov David Cohen Director of the Institute of the Noahide Code, the UN NGO that organized the evening , said “I am heartened coming into the United Nations Headquarters with the Isaiah Wall right across the UN in which the day is mentioned that no nation will wage war against another nation, and the swords will be transformed into plowshares. The Seven Universal Laws of Noah are means by which humanity strives to live in unity and peace. These laws for peace and unity encompass respect for G-d, for human life, respect for the Family, for other people’s property, the creation and respect of a judicial system, and respect for all creatures and environment.

The United Nations acknowledges human rights as well as humanity’s right to freedom, including that of religion. This Menorah lighting ceremony was open to all, including visitors to the United Nations of all races, religions and ethnicities. It was a celebration of all that unites us as human family that we are: our yearning for ever more light at a time that humanity hopefully emerges victorious with light over darkness, the forces of human rights and freedom successful over intolerance, and the ideals of the Noahide code prevailing throughout the world.

The New York State assembly, The Council of NYC issues a Proclamations on the Universal Noahide Code as foundation for peace and law and order and in a statement from city officials spoke on working with communities on universal peace and prevention, thereby all living in peace and harmony in this great city of NY.




Thank you!

Thank you @NikkiHaley for your work on behalf of the American people.Your efforts to bring peace to all nations at the UN and Universal Noahide for Peace for all people. As a leader for the Rule of Law are just a fraction of your @USUN legacy. You will be sorely missed!




Culture of Peace in UN

Culture of Peace in UN

THE INTER-PARLIAMENTARY COALITION FOR GLOBAL ETHICS
SEPTEMBER 4, 2018/ UN Headquarters, New York
SUMMIT OF PARLIAMENTARIANS AT THE UNITED NATIONS
The Role of Parliaments for Promoting the Culture of Peace and Implementing the SDG’s
Co-sponsors: UNESCO, Missions of Sri Lanka, Benin, 
Civil Society Representatives:
Imam Agha Jafri/ Sec. Gen. -American Muslim Congress
Rabbi Yakov David Cohen, Pres. Institute of Noahide Code
Rev. Tomas de Valle, St. Colomba
Mark Weizman, Director of Government Affairs/ Simon Weisenthal Center
Sergio Kopeliovich, Founder/Director, New York City Peace Museum




Kosher and Halal Food in Schools

 

No child should leave Lunchroom or enter a classroom hungry:

Political, civic, and religious leaders from across the spectrum have united in a groundbreaking effort to secure school lunches that meet the religious requirements of the diverse population in New York City’s public schools.

September 6th, 2016 at 12 noon at the steps of Manhatten’s City Hall will host a dynamic gathering of top leaders to push proposed Senate bill S1032 to ensure the availability of Halal and Kosher lunches for every school that hosts twenty-five percent or more students from a faith community that has dietary restrictions.

Senator Tony Avella (D-QUEENS) is credited with pioneering this effort. He shares, “The population of residents in cities like New York City who practice a religious faith with specific dietary restrictions is rising….Offering students these types of food options during lunch not only accommodates their dietary restriction but also enhances students’ awareness and respect for diversity in cultures, religions, and ethnicities.” Another active contributor is Assemblyman William Colton (Brooklyn), “as a former teacher, I understand the importance of ensuring the proper and healthy nourishment of children to educational progress. I have cosponsored two legislative bills (A8474, Ortiz & A 4328 Sepulveda) to provide for such needs.” Hailing these efforts as basic to American democracy, Assembly member Jaime R. Williams (District 59 Brooklyn)states, “To be without such food due to governmental agencies not considering important religious ideals is contrary to all our great beliefs of our City, State and Nation. Diversity of our religions has always been a cornerstone of our democratic system and that is why I support and urge others to support the mandate that no child should leave a
lunchroom or classroom hungry.”

Awareness for this pressing need was galvanized by Mazeda Uddin, Muslim woman activist and humanitarian,founder of the S.A.F.E.S.T. advocacy organization and leader in meeting the needs of immigrant populations from
all over the world.

Mazeda Uddin reflects, “Often these children go to bed hungry because they did not eat a good diet during the day.The parents of many of these children are on minimum wage trying to make ends meet and struggling to give their
children a proper diet on a daily basis.”

This proposed bill is hailed as a testimony to the tolerance and diversity of New York City; at the forefront of world leadership in finance and culture, now the city is trailblaizing efforts at true coexistence. State Senator Jose Peralta (D-Queens) remarked, “I want to thank the South Asian Fund for Education, Scholarship and Training in its efforts to bring Halal and Kosher menus school cafeterias.” Adding his support, State Senator Jesse Hamilton said, “Our public schools must be sensitive to the needs of every student, so providing kosher and halal meal options to students is imperative. I urge the Department of Education to act promptly to ensure that no student goes hungry.” because of their religious background.”




Universal Peace

Universal Peace

UN HQ Oct 8, 2018 reclaiming intellectual primacy & promoting PEACE in ECOSOC UN HQ by OIC, ARSH, HOLY SHRINE and Imam Agha Shaukat Jaffri and myself on Universal Noahide UN and Rav Moses Maimonides as a role model for a bridge between religious and academic … as he was Rabbi , Dr , philosophy and Peace maker




Universal Noahide Code at UN HQ

Universal Noahide Code at UN HQ

10 30 2018

Universal Noahide Laws at the UN

One man had a dream once, that his children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character. This dream was born out of the ashes of a crumbling belief that one man was worth more than another. This misguided idea, that a free man was still subject to the will of his former masters, was and still is a microcosm of a problem that is facing the world today.

The prejudice, bigotry, violence and wickedness that infects every nation is the result of a lawlessness born out of our tendency to forget our past. The nations of our planet face daily battles between people whose only real fault is ignorance of the laws given to mankind since the time of Adam. These forgotten laws are known as the Universal Noahide Laws and are ostensibly a paragon of ethical behavior meant to guide mankind to perfection through good deeds and to propagate knowledge and understanding of the Divine.

It should be the dream of all people that our children should not only live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, religion or social status, but that they should live in a nation that adopts these Universal Laws as the foundation of the existence of that nation.

In 1945, the United Nations was established to promote international co-operation as well as to create and maintain international order. The original 51 member states began with a vision that all nations, great and small, would benefit from a conglomerate of working together in their efforts to foster social and economic development, provide humanitarian aid, promote human rights and maintain peace between all nations. Today, over 190 countries have joined this international body in hopes that the infrastructure of peace lies within.

One of the principal organs of the UN is the Economic and Social Council, or ECOSOC. This 54 member council serves as a forum for discussing international economic and social concerns, as well as delivering recommendations regarding policy to be addressed to the entire UN body. ECOSOC deliberates with many non-governmental organizations , or NGO’s, that participate in the day to day activities of the UN. The Institute of Noahide Code-UN is an accredited NGO with consultative status promoting peace through the values set in place by the seven Universal Laws. These laws are the Key to opening up a dialog between people of all nations, regardless of creed, religion or social class. They represent the common bond of all people across the globe, the backbone of peace. These laws are the framework for building a bright future for our children.

The foundation for establishing these Universal Laws at the UN is already in place due to the tireless efforts of Rav Yakov D. Cohen, executive director of the Institute of Noahide Law. As our generation witnesses the moral decay of the society around us, like what the world recently witnessed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, it becomes a moral issue whether or not to become proactive in stopping this burning hate that is festering in regions all over the world. We are beginning to forget the lessons that we learned from the Holocaust, which included the greatest lesson, that even discrimination against one group of people will result in the unraveling of the fabric of our entire society.

If we forget those lessons, if we forget our past, if we forget the Universal Laws, then our dreams of a utopia world for our children will fade away and be forgotten. These lessons, laws and future go hand in hand. In order to make peace between all nations, then all nations must realize that it is time to stop dreaming and embrace our reality. All of our lives depend on the choices we make from moment to moment. Each new moment provides us opportunities to change who we are. Now is the time to make the Universal Noahide Laws a priority.

When enough people recognize the importance of the Universal Laws, people and nations can truly begin the healing process all over the world with a common goal of providing our children with their own moments and chances to build a future for their children, our grandchildren. If we lose sight of our responsibility to pass on the knowledge of these laws to the next generation, we forfeit our future.

By: Craig R. Lodice




13 Principles of the Jewish Faith

The Thirteen Principles of the Jewish Faith

by Rav Moshe Ben Maimon, the Rambam – Rabbi Moses Maimonides

שלשה עשר עקרים של אמונת היהודי

The RAMBAM, in his commentary on the Mishnah (Sanhedrin, chap. 10), refers to these ‘Shloshah-Asar Ikkarim’ or thirteen principles of faith as “the fundamental truths of our religion and its very foundations.”

  • Belief in the existence of a Creator and of providence
  • Belief in His unity
  • Belief in His incorporeality
  • Belief in His eternity
  • Belief that worship is due to Him alone
  • Belief that G-d communicates with man through prophecy
  • Belief that Moses was the greatest of all the prophets
  • Belief in the revelation of the Torah to Moses at Sinai
  • Belief in the unchangeable nature of the revealed Law
  • Belief that G-d is omniscient
  • Belief in divine reward & retribution in this world and in the hereafter
  • Belief in the coming of the Messiah
  • Belief in the resurrection of the dead

Yud Gimmel Ikrim – יג עקרים

From The Siddur (prayer book)

  1. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, is the Creator and Guide of everything that has been created, and that He alone has made, does make, and will make all things.
  2. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, is One, and that there is no oneness like His in any way; and that He alone is our G-d, who was, is, and ever will be.
  3. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, is not a physical body, and no physical phenomena can apply to Him, and that He has no form whatsoever.
  4. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, is the first and is the last.
  5. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, is the only one to whom it is proper to pray, and that it is not proper to pray to anyone else.
  6. I believe with perfect faith that all the words of the prophets are true.
  7. I believe with perfect faith that the prophecy of Moses our teacher, peace be to him, was true, and that he was the father of all the prophets, both of those who preceded him and of those who followed him.
  8. I believe with perfect faith that the entire Torah which we now possess is the same that was given to Moses our teacher, peace be to him.
  9. I believe with perfect faith that this Torah will not be changed, nor will there be any other Torah from the Creator, blessed be His name.
  10. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, knows all the actions and thoughts of human beings, as it is said, It is He who fashions the hearts of them all, who discerns all their actions. (Psalms 33:15)
  11. I believe with perfect faith that the Creator, blessed be His name, rewards those who keep His commandments, and punishes those who transgress His commandments.
  12. I believe with perfect faith in the coming of the Messiah, and, though he tarry, I wait daily for his coming.
  13. I believe with perfect faith that there will be a resurrection of the dead at the time when it will please the Creator, blessed be His name and exalted be His mention for ever and ever.

In what has become one of his most celebrated and well‑known works, Maimonides, in his commentary on the Mishnah, com­piles what he refers to as the Shloshah‑Asar Ikkarim, the Thirteen Articles of Faith, compiled from Judaism’s 613 com­mandments found in the Torah. The Thirteen Articles of Jewish faith are as follows:

  1. Belief in the existence of the Creator, be He blessed, who is perfect in every manner of existence and is the Primary Cause of all that exists.
  2. The belief in God’s absolute and unparalleled unity.
  3. The belief in God’s non-corporeality, nor that He will be affected by any physical occurrences, such as movement, or rest, or dwelling.
  4. The belief in God’s eternity.
  5. The imperative to worship Him exclusively and no foreign false gods.
  6. The belief that God communicates with man through prophecy.
  7. The belief that the prophecy of Moses our teacher has priority.
  8. The belief in the divine origin of the Torah(Bible).
  9. The belief in the immutability of the Torah(Bible).
  10. The belief in divine omniscience and providence.
  11. The belief in divine reward and retribution.
  12. The belief in the arrival of the Messiah and the messianic era.
  13. The belief in the resurrection of the dead.

It is the custom of many congregations to recite the Thirteen Articles, in a slightly more poetic form, beginning with the words Ani Maamin‑”I believe‑‑every day after the morning prayers. In his commentary on the Mishnah (Sanhedrin, chap. 10), Maimonides refers to these thirteen principles of faith as “the fundamental truths of our religion and its very foundations.”




Biblical source of Noahide laws

Biblical source of the seven Noahide laws

By Rabbi YD Cohen

What’s the Biblical source of the seven noahide laws?

  1. “Va’Ytzav” – this refers to Dinim, as it says “Asher Yetzaveh Es Banav (…La’asos Tzedakah u’Mishpat)”
  2. “Hash-m” refers to blasphemy – “V’Nokev Shem Hash-m…”
  3. “Elokim” refers to idolatry – “Lo Yihyeh Lecha Elokim Acherim”
  4. “Leimor” refers to Arayos – “Leimor Hen Yeshalach Ish Es Ishto…v’Haysah l’Ish Acher”
  5. “Al ha’Adam” refers to murder – “Shofech Dam ha’Adam”
  6. “Mi’Kol Etz ha’Gan” – not from theft
  7. “Achol Tochal” – not a limb of a living animal

Bereshit 2:16

Va’Ytzav Hash-m Elokim Al ha’Adam Leimor Mi’Kol Etz ha’Gan Achol Tochal

Genesis 2:16 And the LORD God commanded the man, saying: ‘Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat’

From The Kuzari (3:73)

“God, the Almighty commanded Adam saying, ‘From all the trees of the garden you may eat'” (Bereishis, 2:16) is an allusion to the seven Noachide commandments.

The interpretation of this verse is as follows:

“commanded” refers to laws (concerning monetary matters),

“God” refers to blasphemy,

“Almighty” refers to idolatry,

“Adam” refers to murder,

“saying” refers to adultery,

“from all the trees of the garden” refers to thievery,

“you may eat” refers to eating the flesh of a live animal.

{It is quite obvious} that the verse has little connection with the above laws. However, the Sages intended {their references} as a hint which helps one remember something which the entire nation knows—the seven Noachide commandments.

From Talmud Bavli Sanhedrin 56b

(English translation by Soncino)

Whence do we know this? — R. Johanan answered: The Writ saith: And the Lord God commanded the man saying, of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat. 1  And [He] commanded, refers to [the observance of] social laws, and thus it is written, For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the Lord, to do justice and judgment. 2  The Lord — is [a prohibition against] blasphemy, and thus it is written, and he that blasphemeth the name of the Lord, he shall surely be put to death. 3   God — is [an injunction against] idolatry, and thus it is written, Thou shalt have no other gods before Me. 4 The man — refers to bloodshed [murder], and thus it is written, Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed. 5   Saying — refers to adultery, and thus it is written, They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and became another man’s. 6  Of every tree of the garden — but not of robbery. 7  Thou mayest freely eat — but not flesh cut from a living animal. 8

notes

Gen. 2:16

Gen. 18:19. Thus ‘command’ relates to justice and judgment.

Lev. 24:16 — ‘The Lord’ being used in connection with blasphemy.

Ex. 20:3.

Gen. 9: 6.

Jer. 3:1. Thus ‘saying’ is used in connection with adultery.

Since it was necessary to authorize Adam to eat of the trees of the garden, it follows that without such authorisation — i.e., when something belongs to another — it is forbidden.

By interpreting thus: Thou mayest eat that which is now ready for eating, but not whilst the animal is alive. It is perhaps remarkable that a verse, the literal meaning of which is obviously permission to enjoy, should be interpreted as a series of prohibitions. Yet it is quite in keeping with the character of the Talmud: freedom to enjoy must be limited by moral and social considerations, and indeed only attains its highest value when so limited. Cf. Ab. VI, 2: No man is free but he who labours in the Torah.




Noahide Conference 2017

9 20 2017

Welcome to the Summit Conference. Today we will be addressing the The Role of Religious leaders for Building Peaceful and Inclusive Societies and Combating Violent Extremism with Universal Noahide – UN

First, I want to thank our my fellow speakers for their outstanding leadership in this historic event: Mr  Mark Donfiled  and ICD Academy for Cultural Diplomacy

I also wish to thank all of you the future Ambassadors, Delegates, and distinguished guests who have taken the time out of their busy schedule to join us for this important program.

My name is Rabbi Yakov David Cohen and I serve as a Rabbi and an ECOSOC NGO Special Envoy to the UN for The Institute of Noahide Code. In my capacity as Special Envoy for the INC, my responsibilities include human rights issues in the Middle East including defending the rights of Jewish, Christian and Muslim Men, women and children.

I like to open with a story that took place with the former New York Mayor David Dinkins and the Chabad Rebbe Menachem Schneerson in 1991.. …Mayor Dinkins went, both as the Mayor and as the representative of the black community to the Rebbe in Brooklyn, New York, and said, “We pray for the peace of our two communities”. The Rebbe replied, “It is one community, under one G-d, under one administration.”

One people One World under G-D

Some people wonder, can’t we just get along – but everything in life that will function – and certainly function long-term must have both a foundation and a logical premise.

The only way societites – as emperically through thousands of years of human civilization proves – live together, is, if there is a higher ideal.

What can possibly be the higher ideal which unites all of mankind?

What we all have in common is three things – 1. Each and every one of us is a creation of our heavenly father G-D 2. Each and every one of us (including all species, plants, even minerals) have a cosmic goal in the tapestry and symphony that produces the beauty and melody called humanity – 3. The Creator has specifically taught the Jewish people, passed down from Moses, a universal Noahide ethical code and by us all humbly accepting, we introduce this higher ideal.

I read a personal ad in the paper: Homeless!  (JOKE)

Seeking home, will pay rent, utilities, looking to make the world a better place, will provide good company – G-D.

Each and every one of us makes a home for G-d by keeping the Universal Noahide code!

The Universal Noahide Code is one for peace.. Jewish Sages explain that a wonder of G-d’s creation is that, although the face of every human being is essentially the same, no two people are identical.  As facial features differ, so too, the workings of no two minds are alike.  Since differences are an inherent dimension of G-d’s Creation, no society should try to stifle these differences.  They should not only be tolerated, but encouraged as a  springboard for growth. Humankind is created in the Divine Image.  Given that this House is one of peace, we must within the framework of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, attempt to promote these values not only globally, but specially, immediately in our surroundings.

The Torah message is Universal.  Torah was ultimately given for peace.  Peace between man and G-d, and peace between man and man.  The first Five Commandments are the relationship between man and G-d, whereas the last five deal with man’s relation to his fellow human being.  These values are eternal, and are encompassed in the Universal Noahide Code. The truth of the matter is that before there was any formal religion there was only Noah, a man who withstood the tides/norms of his day and went against all of the trends of his time, for he considered these to be unethical, indecent Noah took it upon himself to serve and obey the One G-d.   His example was as valid today as it was then.   It is critical for all of us, that we, the representatives of many different people affirm and commit publicly to the basic premise, that people respect the very core fabric of life given by the Creator.  These are contained within the Seven Universal Codes of Noah, a way of life that expresses and makes the human being commit, to honoring first of all, the Creator, and ultimately, His Creation.

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals envision zero hunger, no poverty, decent work and economic growth.  May I propose that in the Universal Noahide Codes, the belief in one G-d, promotes equal treatment for all human beings.  Humankind’s unity reflects G-d’s indivisibility.  The respect for human life envisioned in the Noahide Codes, also promotes respect that no human being is to be deprived of food as we are seeing regrettably in Syria, in North Korea, as a means of social control, of beating people into deprivation as a means of subjugation.  The respect for decent work and economic growth requires us to take into account, the right of all human beings to be remunerated properly for their work that local practices be taken into account by any multinational wishing to invest in a particular area.  It is a way of balancing profit with the needs and culture and livelihoods of those either employed or impacted by business.

The UN Sustainable Development Goals also promote partnering for all the goals we wish for humanity, as well as the promotion of peace, justice and strong institutions.

May I further propose, that the Universal Noahide Codes also envision this.  There is no greater partnership than the nucleus of society which is the family, the respect for human life within the family, the respect for the most vulnerable, which are the young, the weak and the infirm and the old.  And although not politically popular, may I suggest that the respect for the unborn is also a component of the first partnering of humans.  A future partner of society should be respected.  Everyone here present today, is here, because your right to be born was respected.  May I ultimately suggest as well, is that the Universal Noahide Codes also strengthen the notion of promoting justice, because in its core, the concept of the creation of a judicial system is paramount.  As is often said, there is no peace, without justice.

We have all and are all created by G-d – in fact in this sense we have something in common not only with all humans, but also with animals, vegetation and even rocks and non-living creations, with the Universe itself.  We need a vigorous proactive campaign which is what I am proud my organization Institute of Noahide Code stands for, in which all people, all people, are elevated through the deep appreciation that their lives are a choice – God chose them, as He loves to see each human being bring light, love, unity and harmony to his or her surroundings, to the world at large.  When we all realize we are His ambassadors, each and everyone of us, not only do we do good, but this gives us an inner feeling of worth and as we add respect to ourselves, love to the core, to reflect this to the rest of the world, by extending that to each and every person.

For us to have UNITY we need ONE AND ONLY G-D and for G-d to have UNITY HE needs us!

We had a giant in the United States, may his memory be a blessing.

Dr. Martin Luther King queried those around him:  “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is:  What are you doing for others?”

The Rebbe Menachem Schneerson also taught us that a “Little light can dispel a lot of darkness”.   Not far from this concept, and in terms of love, which is the underlying theme that humanity craves for, Dr. King added:  Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that”.

But what is love based on?    Love, as Jewish mysticism teaches us, is realizing that we are but one heart in many bodies, one universal mission, affirming that each one of us has been made in the image of our Maker, challenged to rise above instinctual selfish instincts and invite a Divine purpose, mission and meaning in our life.  We can only achieve this objective, in the manner of respect, of establishing court systems, by creating partnerships that include the basic core of society which is the family unit, the respect for human life, through food, equitable respect for the rights, needs of others.  We include in this, the environment, as well as our fellow animal creatures, His entire Creation.

Practically, by each of us dedicating our lives individually to this recognition that “I am not a biological being, born one day, to die another”, rather “I am an ambassador of our Creator to add in the goodness and kindness of this world, I take upon myself the responsibility to share this message – the message of truth, the message of empathy, the message of love”.  Then and only then, can truly the vision of the U.N. be realized and speedily fulfilled, as the great prophet Isaiah expressed  ‘that they will beat their swords into plowshares and no nation will make war ever again’.

Sweet New Year!!!

THANK YOU.

IDC – Chabad UES NY NY USA on 9 20, 2017 [email protected]




Noahide conference 2015

Noahide conference 2015

Nov 9 2015 UN HQ

On the week of the worst terrorist attacks in recent history in Europe, news that has shaken the international community to its core, a group of men and women, diplomats, journalists and Rabbis, Imams, and Reverends, met at the United Nations for the November 9th Summit mobilizing Cultural and Religious Ethics for Agenda 2030.

It is notable that it was the Permanent Mission of Panama to the United Nations that hosted this event, given that this small and prominent Latin American country, decades earlier, had been one of the visionaries to promote the Jewish lawyer, Raphael Lemkin and his 1948 Convention on Genocide, which was ultimately, the cornerstone for the International Criminal Court now based in The Hague.

Co-sponsored by the Insitute of Noahide Code/IPCGE, the platform for this event on 9th November, was the Universal Noahide Code “UNC”, setting forth to the international diplomatic and religious community what philosopher Hugo Grotius cited as the basis for the 1945 United Nations Charter and thus, the cornerstone of all international law.  Grotius further pointed out that the “UNC” is the practical means, by which humanity may strive to live in unity and in peace and can thus fulfill its potential to see all the families of the earth blessed.  These laws of peace and unity encompass respect for G-d, for human life, respect for the family, for other people’s property, for the creation, respect for judicial systems plus respect for all creatures and the environment.

Among those participating, Her Excellency, the Ambassador Laura Flores of Panama, who was the keynote speaker and opened the event welcoming everyone.  Ambassador Flores highlighted the efforts to be made now, so that future generations inherit and can enjoy a culture of peace built on respect and understanding.  Peace which indeed in thought, and also in the Wall in front of the United Nations Headquarters, is prominently displayed not far from where Ambassador Flores spoke.  There on the famed 1948 Isaiah Wall, we read, “They shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”

Another notable speaker among many prominent participants as The Honorable H. Lincoln Douglas, Minister from Trinidad and Tobago, was Mr. Gianni Picco, former Under Secretary General of the United Nations.  On the 9th November, Mr. Picco who was instrumental and actively involved in releasing numerous Western hostages in the Middle East, notably Beirut, spoke about his mediation among terrorists and then some regional tyrants, to save lives, reunite families, spare the world of more bloodshed.  Moderating the events, was the Mayor of Lawrence, Long Island, Mr. Martin Oliner, where the Druze leader, Coronel (Ret.) Munib Bader spoke about how the Druze have no aspirations of becoming a country or converting anyone to their monotheistic religion or tradition, and are loyal to the people where they reside.  Because 2,000,000 Druzim live in Syria, in Lebanon, and in Israel, the Druze are uniquely positioned to bring peace among these people in the region, according to Coronel Bader.

Among other prominent speakers at the United Nations, Rabbi Elie Abadie, of Yale University Center for Faith and Culture, and Chief Rabbi of Safra Synagogue in Manhattan, and Imam Shamsi Ali, spiritual leader of Jamaica Muslim Center of New York.  Whereas Rabbi Abadie spoke about how religious leaders have to find a means to transmit religious values in a manner that is both positive and conducive to non violence, Imam Ali said that he has been actively pursuing the building of bridges between the different religions that stem from Abraham.

Rabbi Yakov David Cohen, founder of the Institute of the Noahide Code and accredited to the Economic and Social Council at the United Nations, opened the panel of religious and cultural values.  He first thanked among others, Shoshana Bekerman, without whose expert involvement, the event would have been very difficult to organize.  Furthermore, Dr. Leonard Grunstein spoke about finances and development as a means of empowering people.  Rabbi Cohen also mentioned, Mrs. Judy Schaffer, who moderated a panel on development.  But it was Rabbi Yakov Cohen, who reminded those present in this first UNC Summit at the UN, that the basis of the gathering were the 7 Laws of Noah, with the common thread of the memory of the destruction and despair, upon which the UN was established.  The Rav reminded those present that the event was being held on the 77th anniversary of Krystallnacht, a time of darkness and desperation, which memory placed on those participants, and their constituents and congregants, the unique responsibility which humankind carries to be messengers of goodness, kindness and global change.