What is “shalom” to you?
In his book, Building a People of Power (2005), Robert C. Linthicum, writes of shalom, “In order to capture the nuance of the Hebrew word [shalom] as it is used in specific contexts, translators have had to use the following English words: weal, welfare, completeness, to cause to be at peace, to make peace, peace offering, at rest, at ease, secure, safe, to finish well, to prosper, to be whole, to be perfect, to be victorious. In other words, in any given context, shalom can mean any of the above English words…Shalom is the theology of hope of Israel and of the early church, its vision of what the world would some day be”.
Communties of Shalom (www.communitiesofshalom.org) envision completeness and equity in the physical, social, economic, and spiritual spheres: http://www.communitiesofshalom.org/principles.html.
Finally, take a look at Isaiah 65:19-25 for a glimpse of a shalom community in which housing, jobs, health care, mutual support, environment, wealth and peace are inextricably woven ino a fabric of common destiny. Mutuality and shared power (power among) – not power over — are essential.
And so, what is shalom to you?