2013 Quote About the Rabbi from the Retired Archbishop of Canterbury
Lord Rowan Williams is the retired Archbishop of Canterbury (before His Grace’s retirement, it was he who married second-in-line-to-the-British-throne Prince William to Catherine Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge and Princess of the United Kingdom). In 2013, Lord Williams wrote the following to Rabbi Gruber:
Thank you for the posters [about peace]—full of sustenance for the mind and soul. I very much warmed especially to the idea of peace as “toward and from”[*], and . . . I shall be using this (with acknowledgement!).
My prayers and warm good wishes as ever.
* The following is a close quote from the mentioned, educational art-poster, created by Rabbi Gruber, which explained a linguistic basis of Hebrew’s word for peace: “Hebrew is read from the right and every Hebrew letter has a meaning. Ancient teachings reveal that these letters reflect Creation; that is, the letters are the building blocks by which a Hebrew word achieves an intuitive meaning . . . ‘Peace,’ in Hebrew, spelled by four letters (שלום), is pronounced shalom. Shalom’s first letter (ש) means ‘which is’; its second (ל), ‘toward’; its third (ו), ‘and’; and its last (ם), ‘from.’ Analyzed by these letters, ‘peace’ equals, ‘which is – toward – and – from.’ This describes one of peace’s fundamentals, which is a free allowance of backs and forths. In contrast, when at war, one only ventures out with a risk. After all, if so daring, one might not return!”