A group of Jewish and Muslim students, attending Bar Ilan University, gathered on Monday evening for an interfaith event to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, known also as the Festival of Lights.
The meeting was held in the context of Dr. Ben Mollov's Jewish-Arab Interreligious Dialogue course, which focuses on establishing a cross-cultural dialogue with members of different religions using practices recommended by the Interfaith Encounter Association.
Discussion topics introduced during the class range from religious dietary restrictions to the status of women, modesty, and marriages.
At the event, the students discussed the history of Hanukkah, which commemorates the rededication of Jewish worship at the Second Temple, around holiday donuts, known as sufganiyot.
“It is a unique experience. I learned a lot of things about the Jewish religion and also about my religion, Islam,” a Muslim student attending the event, Diana Mahajni, said, according to a press release from the university.
“My understanding has expanded and my knowledge of the surrounding religions increased. I am learning how to adapt and accept others, regardless of the differences and beliefs, because the bottom line is there are a lot of common things between us.”
The previous year, Mollov and his students attended an Iftar feast as part of commemorations celebrating the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.