An Ancient Region at the Center of Religious Divides
Finds a Mutual Road to Happiness
In the welter of conflict and divided Palestinian-Israeli control, the turbulent West Bank has lost its Golden Rule. This birthplace of three major religions, none of which teaches a person to kill, is yet a site of seemingly unending violence.
Said a former U.S. Ambassador: “Among Jews and Muslims in Israel and Palestine the Golden Rule has been largely forgotten. The principle that one should not do to others what one would not wish done to oneself had been integral to both faiths.... Ethical voices on both sides exist but they are less and less audible.”
When Palestinian Muslim F.A. Halabi discovered The Way to Happiness and its 21 precepts, he knew that precept 20, “Try to treat others as you would want them to treat you,” was the key to restoring values to his people. Secular in nature, it was the perfect booklet to offer moral guidance to people of any religion.
“The Way to Happiness is a beautiful thing,” said Halabi. “It is providing a better life: teaching people how to be very optimistic and positive about life.... It’s not what the media all over the world are telling you about. The reality is that these people have a hope and they have a future, and hopefully through The Way to Happiness we will guide these people to go into the right places. That’s a major goal for us.”
Halabi first gave booklets in Arabic to close friends and associates, who applied the precepts in their own lives. He then enlisted volunteers to hand out the booklet in the streets, to university students, businesses, stores, restaurants and even to Palestinian Security Service members looking for a means to address corruption within their ranks.
To expand, Halabi needed official recognition as a charitable organization by the Palestinian Authority, an arduous procedure that few attain. He opened an office in the West Bank and set up an after-school program of lectures and the popular The Way to Happiness book-on-film.
Halabi and his team have distributed 50,000 booklets in the West Bank in both Hebrew and Arabic, and the 21 precepts have been read on the local radio station—one precept a day for 21 days.
The results were so dramatic in terms of individuals and the community, Halabi and his team received full approval from the Palestinian Authority as a nonprofit public benefit organization. This greatly enhances their ability to help the people of Palestine and Israel—from any religious or ethnic background—to lead happier lives and thus build peace in the region.
A COMMON SENSE GUIDE FOR BETTER LIVING
The Way to Happiness booklet of 21 precepts (rules or directions for conduct) is the centerpiece of comprehensive educational programs for school and community educators, business trainers and correctional professionals—complete with lesson plans and audiovisual teaching aids.
HELPING OTHERS FIND THE WAY TO HAPPINESS
The Way to Happiness Foundation International works to reverse the moral decay of society by restoring trust and honesty through widespread distribution of the 21 precepts. Donations support production and distribution of The Way to Happiness booklet and curriculum material.
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