Over three millenniums ago, we the Jews began celebrating the holiday of Passover on the first anniversary of our freedom from Egypt. The spiritual essence of this celebration is clear – the victory of Freedom over Slavery.
We did not left Egypt because we were starving and were homeless – we had all that enough for physical survival. What we were lacking was our own spiritual destiny. Moses had helped us recognize this and help us organize the Exodus – from the spiritual slavery imposed on us in Egypt by the Egyptian “Big Government” (the Pharaoh and his ministers) to the opportunity to shape up our own spiritual destiny in the yet undefined Promised Land under the guidance of the yet undefined Spiritual Supreme Power.
Two crucial things were needed to make all that happened – the urge to have your own spiritual life and the leader to convince us it could be done and how it could be done. The urge we had since about three hundred years ago we had our own spiritual life as the descendants of Abraham until we entered the Egypt to avoid the hunger. This story is detailed in the Torah and – for people who do not study the Torah – in “Joseph and his brothers”. And the leader was God-guided Moses.
That is what happened about three millenniums ago and why we the Jews celebrate Passover every year since then – to be on guard against all who may want to spiritually enslave us again.
This year we the Jews should celebrate two Passovers – one is our own timeless Passover and the other one is our first American Passover.
The history of the American Passover is still being written but the essence of it is clear.
We the Americans left Europe about four hundred years ago, then left the England Kingdom over two hundred years ago, and then again were leaving Europe about one hundred years ago (mostly the Christians and Jews) not because we were starving and were homeless – we had all that enough for physical survival. What we were lacking was our own spiritual destiny. Our spiritual leaders – all with the Judeo-Christian morality – had helped us recognize this and helped us organize an Exodus – from the spiritual slavery imposed on us by various “Big Governments” of Europe to the opportunity to shape up our own spiritual destiny in the New World under the guidance of the already well-known Spiritual Supreme Power called God.
By the time of our Exodus from Europe, we had the true urge for spiritual freedoms since we already knew we were created in the image and likeness of God the Creator and the Unique Individual. We wanted to follow His Image but the Big Governments of Europe were forcing us to be in the image of the Big Government commands. Fortunately, we had our true spiritual leaders – at the beginning the Protestants and then the Founding Fathers – who led us out of a European Egypt of the time.
However for the last about fifty years, a new US Big Government has been created, slowly step-by-step, that again forces us to be not in the Image of God that is to be unique shapers of our individual lives. A US Big Government forces us to be in the image of this Big Government commands (in the contemporary language, to be politically correct and live along the lines of the government-created human rights and social justice concepts).
We have been searching for a spiritual leader who understands how we have turned up again in spiritual slavery of the Big Government and is able to lead us in our contemporary Exodus from the spiritual slavery to spiritual freedom. This leader is Donald Trump.
We do not know whether we can succeed under his leadership. However, we have a historic chance to become again a spiritually free Judeo-Christian nation that is guided by the Torah/Bible. Let us try, and try hard.
This year, my friends and I are going to celebrate two Passovers – our own Jewish and our own American.
The very essence of any religion is to define moral principles of human existence – what is Good and what is Bad in the human life, and what are acceptable means to strengthen Good and suppress Bad. Judaism defines all that for the Jews as Christianity does it for the Christian and Islam for the Muslims. That is true even if you do not belong to a religious organization and do not have a priest. The same moral principles are binding for ordinary people and for priests in a religion.
Many years ago at the beginning of my spiritual awakening, I believed there was One Judaism for the spiritual Jewish authorities and for the spiritual ordinary Jews, who were trying to live Jewishly that is to strengthen Good and suppress Bad – both defined by Judaism – in all real life situations. I do not believe it anymore.
Nowadays that is not the case anymore. Now we live in a complex non-Jewish world where what is Good and what is Bad is defined not only by the traditional rabbinical cannons, which were created during the times when the Jews were spiritually isolated from the others, but by the non-Jews in a mainly Judeo-Christian environment. It should not be considered bad for the Jews since the Jewish mission of building a better world (Tikkun Olam) for everybody with everybody, Jews and non-Jews, requires mutually accepted definitions of Good and Bad.
This Torah-guided better world is a multi-dimensional one with science and technology, arts and religions, individual freedoms and collective constrains, Jews and Gentiles, rich and poor, peace and war, more and less able, etc. And this better world is being created by individuals who are making their own decisions on what is Good and what is Bad in their individual creative areas.
I am among those individuals and I have developed my own understanding of what is spiritually Good and Bad in the areas of my life involvements – based on my studies of the Torah. I approached the rabbis (in the US and Israel) asking them for the critique. My encounters with the rabbis confirmed the unhealthy existence of two Jewish spiritual realms.
In the course of my encounters with the rabbis, I discovered that we do not have One Judaism – we have Judaism by spiritual authorities and Judaism by spiritual people. Here is how I have discovered it.
The essence of a typical response of an Orthodox rabbi:
- You cannot study the Torah on your own – the Torah is too complicated for a simple person – only the rabbis can understand the hidden God’s messages in the Torah – you have to obey the rabbi’s instructions since he knows the God’s word – it is not kosher for a rabbi to have a spiritual discussion with the non-ordained.
The essence of a typical response of a Reform rabbi was different:
- We have to follow our Jewish tradition which is helping the disadvantaged – a government is a political tool for helping – therefore, we have to support a liberal/”democratic” government which reflects our Jewish inspirations and fight against any conservative/”republican” government which is against our Jewish inspirations.
The responses of both “typical” orthodox and Reform rabbis confirmed my unhappy conclusion that we do not have One Judaism. We have Judaism by spiritual authorities whose goal is to defend the ordination institution interpretation of the Torah’s guidance. And we have Judaism by spiritual people who are trying to figure out what is Good and Bad in their everyday life challenges in the Gentile spiritual environment.
The Pew poll findings:
Among those who define themselves as Jews by religion, just over half consider Jewish identity a matter of ancestry and culture, with a majority considering belief in God to be unnecessary to be considered a Jew.
Despite changing attitudes toward Jewish identity seen in the shift towards a non- religious Jewish self-definition.
Sixty- nine percent cited living ethically, and over half say that working for justice and equality is essential to what being Jewish means to them.
Despite the fact that the majority of American Jews frame their Jewish identity in religious terms, only 19% of the Jewish adults surveyed say observing Jewish law (Halacha) is essential to what being Jewish means to them.
The Pew poll findings are the best proof of the existence of Judaism by spiritual people, which is different from Judaism by spiritual authorities – the Jews are defining their Jewishness in a non-rabbinical way. The Jews are spiritually responding to their real life challenges – the Torah-defined challenges in building a better world for everybody with everybody in the Judeo-Christian world.
We the Jews as a people may greatly benefit spiritually if our rabbis connect with us.
It sounds completely weird that electing Trump and allying with Vatican would help fight anti-Semitism better than everything else does. However, Trump’s decision to move the US embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem and Pope Francis’ confirmation that God gave the Promised Land to the Jews are the key to fight the contemporary anti-Semites.
The anti-Semites are eternal people – they were born about the same time when the Jews began delivering to the non-Jews the Torah-based One-God’s message on how to advance and organize human life. Those pagans who wanted to preserve their pre-Torah-era traditions resisted and were becoming anti-Semites, and their spiritual descendants are very much alive and active nowadays.
The true Torah/Bible-guided Christians and Jews continue advancing the Judeo-Christian Western civilization while the anti-Semites (who may call themselves Christian, or even Jewish) continue to denigrate the Jews using all public means available.
These days the anti-Semites are trying to advance their hate spiritually – by denying the Jewish nature of both Jerusalem and the Promised Land. The anti-Semites have realized that their attempts to denigrate the State of Israel politically at many international organizations failed – the State of Israel is getting politically stronger. Therefore, the anti-Semites have decided to fight the Jews and the State of Israel spiritually by denying the Jewish nature of both Jerusalem and the Promised Land.
From the US news media:
Jerusalem’s Temple Mount is so named for the two Jewish temples that stood on the site for almost nine centuries – the first built by King Solomon nearly 3,000 years ago, the second destroyed by the Roman legions under Titus in 70 CE. One needn’t be a Bible scholar or a historian to know that the cultural, religious, and emotional bonds that link the Jews to Jerusalem are unparalleled. For millennia, Jerusalem and the Temple Mount have been central to Jewish self-awareness – and thus to Christianity as well, since the Temple figures prominently in the Gospels’ account of the life of Jesus. UNESCO’s tendentious semantics play into an ongoing propaganda campaign by the Palestinian Authority to “de-Judaize” the identity of Jerusalem, the foremost Jewish city on earth. Jerusalem’s holy sites have never been safer, or open to more people, than in the 49 years since it was reunified under Israeli administration.
Thus, the anti-Semitic message of the UNESCO resolution is clear – there were no Jewish Jerusalem and there were no First and Second Jewish Holy Temples. In other words, there is no spiritual connection of the Jews to Jerusalem – by fabricating this spiritual connection, the resolution implies, the Jews are trying to justify their occupation of Arab lands.
From the Arab news media:
In 2015, Tobias Ellwood, Britain’s foreign and commonwealth affairs minister for the Middle East and Africa, said that the United Kingdom was going to mark 100 years since the Balfour Declaration. But what does it mean to mark such an event if the U.K. is unwilling to repair the damage it caused to the national and human rights of the Palestinian people?
The Balfour Declaration was a letter sent by a British lord, on behalf of the U.K., to a British banker and politician representing the Zionist movement in 1917. It promised the establishment in Palestine, a land that did not belong to them, of a national home for the Jewish people. When Palestine came under British administration a few years later, London made sure to include this letter as part of the British Mandate.
Thus, the anti-Semitic view on the Promised Land, which is the same as the Arab’s view, is clear – the Promised Land is a contemporary myth created by the Balfour Declaration.
If it is so, we have to fight the contemporary anti-Semites by restoring in the USA and the EU the spiritual truth about the Jewish essence of Jerusalem and the Promised Land. And in this fight, US President Donald Trump and Pope Frances are of essential help.
From the Jewish news media:
Ivanka Trump assured Jewish voters in Florida that Donald Trump would “100 percent” move the US embassy to Jerusalem if he is elected president.
The GOP nominee’s daughter, who converted to Judaism in 2010 and is married to a Jewish man, called her father an “unbelievable champion” for the State of Israel and for the Jewish people, during a talk at The Shul of Bal Harbour in Surfside, the Jewish Insider reported. “You won’t be disappointed,” she told the audience during the talk, which was filmed in part.
In addition to saying Donald Trump will move the embassy to Jerusalem, which she called “the eternal capital,” she also said he supported her conversion to Judaism before her marriage to Jared Kushner.
A decision has been made among the rabbis of all sorts of streams in the Haredi public in Israel that Trump is the one who will defend Jerusalem, the Land of Israel and the Jewish people.
A mekubal, or sage steeped in the Jewish mystical tradition of Kabbalah, had informed … that according to the tradition’s seminal text, the Zohar, Trump will be the next president of the United States.
Thus, Donald Trump as a US President will recognize Jerusalem as an eternal spiritual place of the Jews and, following this recognition, will move the US embassy from Tel-Aviv to Jerusalem. The anti-Semitic myth of spiritual Islamic ownership of Jerusalem is debunked.
From the Jewish news media:
God promised the Holy Land to the people of Israel, Pope Francis said during a speech at the Vatican. The people of Israel, who from Egypt, where they were enslaved, walked through the desert for forty years until they reached the land promised by God, he said in his address about migration.
This statement by Pope Frances is a reminder to all people of Western Judeo-Christian civilization that the spiritual fundamentals of this civilization are based on the Torah/Bible guidance, which includes the recognition of the Promised Land, where the so-called Palestinian territories are located, given by God to the Jewish nation. The anti-Semitic myth of spiritual Islamic ownership of the so-called Palestine is debunked.
The acknowledgement that the Promised Land spiritually belongs to the Jews does not mean that the non-Jews cannot live here. The Christians and Muslims whose holy places are in the Promised Land as well may live happily here, assuming they follow the Torah/Bible-guided civil laws of Israel government.
The origin of Judeo-Christian spirituality can be described in the following spiritually Jewish way.
- The great majority of Jews support the Rambam’s 13 principles of faith with the statement that the Torah is immutable and of divine origin.
- The Torah states that God created the humans in His image and likeness – all of them, Jews and non-Jews.
- The Torah defines the image of God as the Creator. If it is so, all the humans have to be creators in their individual (and collective) spheres of human endeavor.
- The Torah defines the way of God’s, and therefore humans, creative work – evaluating the results of a creation: if it is GOOD, it remains alive and continue developing; if it is BAD, it is demolished and replaced by something else.
- The Torah provides the Rules (spirituality, morality, rituals …) for defining GOOD and BAD to be tailored and applied to individual life circumstances.
- The Torah defines one group of the humans, the Jews, as the Chosen to be a sort of testing ground for the Rules and a helper to the others in learning and applying the Rules to their God-guided creative efforts.
- After receiving the Torah at Mount Sinai, the Jews – for over a millennium – had accumulated enough experience in applying the Rules in their own realm, and had begun – about two millenniums ago – helping the non-Jews in changing their heathen rules to the Rules of One God.
- At that time, there were no religions of Judaism or Christianity – just the Rules of One God for all the humans created by God in His own image and likeness.
- After the God’s Torah-based Rules began to be followed by all Jews and many non-Jews, some of them began to play the role of interpreters and enforcers of the Rules in their own interpretation with the goal of becoming a sort of human gods for their own peoples – that is the beginning of religions Judaism and Christianity.
- Judeo-Christian spirituality that we are discussing these days is the all-human spirituality based on the Rules of One God specified in the Torah without distortions introduced by some power-grabbing human leaders (in both Christianity and Judaism) without neglecting the unique role of the Jews as the Chosen.
Now, why some people may hate the concept of Judeo-Christian spirituality if, as is seen from the above description, this concept
- has nothing to do with the unique role of the Jews as the Chosen,
- has nothing to do with the unique distinguishing characteristics of Judaism and Christianity as different religions made for two different peoples – Jews and non-Jews,
- makes everybody spiritually equal in their individual pursue of happiness through creative work under one set of guiding rules for all, and
- what most important, spiritually arms us for defending our Judeo-Christian world from its chief spiritual enemy, the militarist Islam, bent on eliminating the Judeo-Christian world?
It looks like the answer is obvious. The haters of the concept of Judeo-Christian spirituality do not appreciate our great civilization, with two spiritual hubs in USA and Israel, and want to change it for something else. They do not understand the mission of the Jews as the Chosen and want do denigrate this mission. The Jewish haters do not believe in the Jewish spiritual strength and therefore think the concept of Judeo-Christian spirituality may encourage the Jews to leaving their faith. All of them are wrong!
It is without doubt for those who have studied the Torah/Bible intellectually:
God created the human individuals with the code of GOOD human behavior – in the Bible and most probably genetically;
God did not create the government, which is allowed to impose on the human individuals its own anti-Bible code of behavior;
the human individuals themselves created the government to defend and protect their God’s given right to live their lives as individuals under the Bible’s code of GOOD human behavior.
Something else is obvious for those who have studied the Torah/Bible intellectually:
the Bible reminds us God created the human individuals in His Creator’s image and likeness to continue His creative work in any area of human endeavor – in family and children rearing, in business and arts, in … everywhere;
the creative work requires financial support, and the Bible guides the more fortunate human individuals to provide the financial support to the less fortunate human individuals as Mitzvah/Charity.
The Bible does not guide the human individuals to expand the role of the government – from defending and protecting the God’s given right to live their lives as individuals under the Bible guidance to the confiscating the wealth of the more fortunate and redistributing it to the less fortunate.
However, that is what the multiple governments have done. Why? Because the government’s forced wealth redistribution allows the government redistributing the other’s wealth to itself in much greater quantities than to the others. In order to justify such redistribution, the government has to dethrone God with His Judeo-Christian code of GOOD behavior and substitute it with its own code, and the government has done it so far successfully using its legislative powers.
However, when the Bible-guided human individuals decide to compete with the government they win and the two narratives below prove it. These narratives are about an Israeli private company HIPPY, which enable the parents find out what unique educational program is best for their own kids, and the Big Government, which imposes its own unified educational program on all kids.
A private company HIPPY that gets their money from Mitzvah/Charity and private sales that are affordable for the less fortunate families
HIPPY helps parents empower themselves as their children’s first teacher by giving them the tools, skills and confidence they need to work with their children in the home. The program was designed to bring families, organizations and communities together and remove any barriers to participation that may include limited financial resources or lack of education.
HIPPY is an international program that started in Israel in 1969 as a research and demonstration project. It has since spread to other countries. Germany, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, and Canada along with Israel and the United States now comprise HIPPY International. The HIPPY program came to the United States in 1984.
HIPPY USA was established as an independent non-profit organization in 1988 to promote and guide the development of the HIPPY program in the United States. Currently, there are 139 HIPPY program sites in 23 states and the District of Columbia.
The Big Government with the big forcefully redistributed money
In 2002, with bipartisan support, Congress reauthorized ESEA and President George W. Bush signed the law, giving it a new name: No Child Left Behind (NCLB).
NCLB gave the government the leading role in children education and the government has done, what it is doing in all areas of government involvement – dividing society further, this time creating the groups of traditionally underserved and vulnerable students and providing them with more redistributed money – with no or little success.
HIPPYUSA – much better education results, see at http://www.hippyusa.org/memanage/pdf/2014%20Annual%20Report.pdf
The Big Government – much greater expenses and much greater appetite for redistribution funds, see at http://www.ed.gov/news/speeches/statement-us-secretary-education-arne-duncan%E2%80%94fy-2014-budget-request