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The story of peace activist women, working towards global healing
An Interview from Dialoge Together website.


Why did you decide to use cards?

The diaries and letters are long and full of hidden gems. When you pick a card you may find it easier to connect to a number of sentences and take them as inspiration for the rest of the day. The message in the cards could be a part of your meditation or prayer. To begin with, we created the cards for our Holocaust Memorial Day ceremonies, each participant was asked to pick an Etty Hillesum quote and describe its meaning for her/him. Some of these people are still carrying around their quotes from a ceremony many years ago.

Zen Peacemakers Retreat in Weberbork – A Reflection.

An Article from the Zen Peacemakers International website.


Dina: "The experience of standing on the podium together; as a Jewish Israeli and a Palestinian Christian, to listen to others reading the names and saying the relation they have to those names; and then later to personally stand there together and reading the names was shaky and powerful. In the time Trump announced “his peace plan” and for us reading the names as a Palestinian and an Israeli was a message by itself that Emma and I carry through simply being there. I understood that before speaking about plans or agreements, we need to speak about the past from our hearts, and heal our traumas as both nations Palestinians and Israelis together with internationals. The real question is: how can we heal the trauma? What is needed for nations who carry traumas to heal it and to become able to move forward and create a new future that is not based upon the past?"

Palestinian and Israeli Peace Activists Translate the Wisdom of Etty Hillesum / By Hila Ratzabi.

An article in Ritual Well website


Hila Ratzabi: "When my friend Rabbi Haviva Ner-David mentioned she was reading the diaries of Etty Hillesum, I admitted I had never heard of her. Hillesum, who perished in Auschwitz, is much less well known than Anne Frank, but her diaries and letters are an extraordinary treasure trove of spiritual wisdom. When Rabbi Haviva told me about the Etty Hillesum Cards, produced in partnership between two women, Dina Awwad-Srour and Emma Sham-ba Ayalon, a Palestinian and Israeli, I was deeply moved."


An interview conducted by Rami Efal, executive director of ZPI, with Dina and Emma. In it, they tell about their friendship and their work to produce the series. 

Emma Sham-Ba Ayalon: "One of the main difficulties in the process of creating those cards was choosing the best quotes. The diaries include 700 pages so full of wise and deep sentences, and it was not easy to sort through for the best quotes for the cards. We sorted the quotes by topics to help us decide which quotes to choose, and this gave us the idea to publish the booklet together with the cards, to give more information about how Etty Hillesum approached each topic. We chose the quotes that both of us thought to be the strongest ones. It was amazing how we became one minded through
the process."

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