This article is short; not profound, nor very deep. To stretch it will not add to the point it intends on making. It simply magnifies a very obvious phenomenon, which the world chooses to ignore.
This Thursday, as I do every week, I went shopping for Shabbos. As I walked up and down the aisles picking items here and there, a group of tiny little boys - a class of 3-4-year-old children - entered the store. Led and carefully watched by three or four teachers, the group of boys marched along two abreast in a long line. They paid careful attention as the leading morah pointed out or picked up different products from the shelves.
"What is this?" asked the teacher.
Our children are taught to love life, to do the best they can to make the world a better place.
"Soup lokshen ('noodles')," came the enthusiastic answer.
"And what brocho ('blessing') do we make on it?" asked the morah.
The little ones blurted out responses as the teacher smiled.
"We make mezoinos," she said; and the little ones smiled.
This went on for quite awhile, as item after item was raised aloft for the children to see and comment on.
"Who made these?" asked the teacher. And she quickly went on to explain that everything comes from HaShem, with factories creating different products for people.
The children were neatly dressed, clean and polite. A splash of chein (charm) covered their tiny faces and the smiles melted your heart.
And I commented to another shopper who was smilingly watching too. "Imagine," I said, "Muslim children of the same age are learning the intricacies of murder and the art of blood-letting. While these children are learning that everything G-d created was to give humans the sustenance they need and therefore one must always praise HaShem - by making brochos - the other children are being indoctrinated that all G-d wants is another liter of blood."
We stood there for a few more minutes, watching the class and teachers disappear around an aisle.
What a difference, I thought to myself. Our children are taught to love life, to do the best they can to make the world a better place than the one they came into. The little ones are taught that G-d wants them to live long and safe lives, and create and build and invent.
And the others are taught that death and destruction is their ultimate goal. From the time they are born, they are brainwashed that only by taking others' lives will they gain life. Only by stabbing and shooting and beheading and blowing themselves up will they be rewarded by their Allah.
And I thought of how these Jewish children will grow up and become ba'alei chessed ("examples of kindness"), emulating the G-d of their forefathers.
I thought of generations of Arab children.
And how the other children will only know anger and hate, because all their god wants is to be served with another pound of flesh, with another murder of innocents. What a shame, I thought. Generations upon generations of once-upon-a-time children grown up to hate and destroy, instead of loving and creating.
I thought of generations of Arab children who haven't brought any invention, any creation, any discovery to this world.
The difference between the ultimate goals for which these two sets of children will strive is as deep and as far from one another as East is from West.
What a shame!