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The On Being Project

Rami Nashashibi and Lucas Johnson

Getting Proximate to Pain, and Holding to the Power of Love

We were introduced to Lucas Johnson by the great civil rights elder Vincent Harding. He said that this young man embodies the genius of nonviolence for our century — nonviolence not as a withholding of violence, but as a way of being present. And it was a great pleasure to bring him together with Rami Nashashibi, a rising visionary and kindred force in the Muslim world. Lucas is based in Amsterdam. Rami’s center of gravity is the South Side of Chicago. They have much to teach us all about the lived practicalities and tensions of the “strong, demanding love” to which Martin Luther King, Jr. called the world of his time — a call that is echoing again in ours.

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  • Rami Nashashibi

    Rami Nashashibi

    is founder and executive director of the Inner-City Muslim Action Network (IMAN) in Chicago. He is a 2017 MacArthur Fellow and a former visiting assistant professor of sociology of religion and Muslim studies at Chicago Theological Seminary.

  • Lucas Johnson

    Lucas Johnson

    is the executive director of the Civil Conversations Project (CCP), and he believes deeply in the need for healing and reconciliation in the world. Lucas is a community organizer, writer, and minister in the American Baptist Churches.