I am working on a book (“In intellectual search for spiritual Torah-based union between Jews and Christians”) and I am discussing various ideas I am exploring in the book with my friends and colleagues.
Many my friends and colleagues have expressed their uneasiness with one of the ideas of the book that we can fight successfully anti-Semitism only if we reestablish the spiritual closeness of Jews and Christians. Many of my friends and colleagues are uncomfortable with this idea because of historic Jewish dislike of Christianity as a source of anti-Semitism.
That is true – many Jews consider Christianity as the chief source of anti-Semitism, and I am writing this book precisely to address this dislike.
Every day we the Jews hear something about anti-Semitism in its “normal” everyday actions and its abnormal Holocaust explosion.
We are complaining and we are demanding from the government the laws that punish anti-Semites and Holocaust deniers.
However, these laws are making things worse – they are, in the minds of anti-Semites, the confirmation of the anti-Semites’ belief that the almighty Jews own the governments and the world and through the governments suppress – spiritually and economically – the others.
And we complaining, complaining and complaining … I have complained as well for long time, and, after I had become tired of complaining, I decided to look into the true historic roots of anti-Semitism – beyond believed to be “Christ killers”, “deceivers”, etc. I went back to the Torah, Bible, historic and contemporary Rabbinic and Priestly (Christian) teachings where I found the following.
• The Torah was given by the Almighty Power (whatever it might be) at Mount Sinai to everybody, let me say it again – to everybody, through the Jewish People, with the chief assignment for the Jewish people (the Chosen) to assist the non-Jewish people in transforming their lives from the pagan morals to the Torah-guided morals.
• The Torah guidance implies the transformation path is the spiritual and social competition among various human tribes each of them tailoring the Torah prescripts to their unique life conditions and randomly God-assigned genetic structure. There is no human uniformity in the Torah! Following the Torah guidance, the Jews created Talmud, numerous rabbinic rulings and various spiritual streams (Essenes, Sadducees, Pharisees, Zealots, Nazarenes and other in the biblical past and Orthodox, Reform and Conservative with different sub-streams now). Then, the Jews laid out spiritual foundation for other non-Jewish tribes (Rabbi Joshua who after his death became Jesus Christ), and those non-Jewish tribes created their own Torah interpretations in the New Testaments with their own priestly rulings and spiritual streams (many-many dozens of them).
• At the beginning, the spiritual and social competition was mostly peaceful since people were trying to receive the guidance directly from God with little concern for the actions of the others. At that time, there was no basis for anti-Semitism, and anti-Semitism did not exist in the form as we define it now. Then step-by-step the authoritative humans (rabbis, priests) got into the spiritual picture – since the life was getting more sophisticated and complex. Those authoritative humans were needed for Torah-guidance tailoring and interpretation. And with the authoritative humans as Torah-guidance tailors and interpreters, the foundation for anti-Semitism was developed.
• The authoritative rabbis and priests in their administrative power (this power has nothing to do with the true spiritual power) began solidifying and strengthening their own administrative power, and they did it by following the ancient technique of “divide and conquer”. Those rabbis and the priests for the last two millenniums constructed an image of mortal enemy of each other betraying the God’s unifying Torah/Bible guidance.
• For the last three centuries with the formation, slowly step-by-step, the Western Judeo-Christian civilization, Jewish-Christian hostility has been reduced, and reduced sharply, in both Jewish and Christian camps, and the opportunity for finding the spiritual Torah-based unity between Jews and Christians, and therefore for reducing the anti-Semitism, has been created.
That is why I believe the reestablishing of Torah/Bible-guided spiritual unity between the Jews and the Christians is the key in fighting the anti-Semitism.
From the news media:
The Canadian House of Commons has passed motion M103, which singles out the criticism of Islam as a form of “Islamophobia”. Iqra Khalid, a Muslim member of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party, tabled motion M103. It states the government must “condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination”.
So what is religion of Islam in the contemporary Judeo-Christian civilization – religion of peace we should joyfully coexist with, or religion of violence that should be feared and restricted in our own “Judeo-Christian home”?
Any religion has two critical components.
One of them is the belief in the existence of Almighty Super Power called God who created us the humans (and of course, everything else), guides us in our lives, rewards us if we obey and discipline us if we misbehave. Our religious institutions (synagogues and churches) are the deliverers of God’s guidance.
This critical religious component – the belief in the existence of Almighty Super Power called God – does not require any test for Muslim immigration into the Judeo-Christian America since our nation was created as a nation blessed by God. Indeed, the second paragraph of the Declaration of Independence says: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness”. Our Constitution had been written with necessary provisions for forcing our political institutions to secure those God-given unalienable Rights.
However, the other critical component of any religion affects, and affects intensely, the functioning of a nation, and this is a religious ideology. Like a secular ideology, this ideology defines what is Good and what is Bad in human behavior, and how to support Good and suppress Bad through the government legislative work. Although the religious leaders declare what is Good and what id Bad in the name of God, their declarations are not the word of God – their declarations are their human interpretation of what may or may not be the true God’s guidance.
That is why in the area of religious ideology various religions are differing significantly. Some of them are comparable with our founding Judeo-Christian religious ideology while some are adversarial.
If the founding national ideology is infected by an adversarial ideology, a nation is on the way to very destructive disturbances. That is why the religious immigration test for this religious component is not just necessary but is the matter of national destiny.
The ideological religious test should be based on the Judeo-Christian founding ideological ideas something like the following.
· Do you believe the government should provide you with comfortable level of living, or you believe you have to provide a comfortable level of living for yourself and your family through your own work?
· Do you believe you have to resolve your disputes with the others in the nation’s legal institutions, or you believe your traditional courts (sharia courts for example) are the way for you?
· Do you believe all religions are equally important, or you believe in the superiority of your religion?
· Are you familiar with the ideological Judeo-Christian foundation of our country and do believe you can follow it, or you believe you should preserve your old traditions in the new country?
· If the reality proves, you cannot do all in the above, would you agree to return to your native country?
We have to apply the religious ideological test to all immigrants to prevent our ideological adversaries from becoming citizens of our country – to prevent people with dangerous ideologies to come to our country and harm our way of life
From the news media:
A former Labour Party foreign minister has implied the government of Tony Blair was wrong to ignore the religious roots of Islamist terror, urging authorities to ‘take on’ the ideology to defeat terror. Kim Howells, who oversaw the work of MI5 and MI6 during the Blair and Brown years, said Islamist violence is distinct from other forms of terror and Western values such as democracy must be defended.
Yes, it is true. The Islamic religious ideology is indeed looks as incompatible with the American and Western religious Judeo-Christian ideology and therefore has to be subjected to an immigration-related “religious test”.
God, Religion, Jews and Christians – what is common in all that from Jewish intellectual perspective? Part 3 – The world of Religion
Thus after about two and a half millennium of building a better world, God decided to enhance the process of defining the Good and the Evil in the course of building a better world. God decided to enhance this process by selecting a small group of humans and assign to them a special mission of being the Chosen with a sole task of the Chosen to help the others in learning the God’s guidance on building a better world for everybody.
And that was the beginning of the world of Religion – a human world with Judaism as religion for the Jewish people and Christianity as the religion for the Gentiles with all love-hate relationships. (Although there are many other religions in the world of Religion the topic of this article is the Judeo-Christian relationship only.)
Here is what happened after this God’s decision.
- In the course of about 400 years – From Abraham through the Egypt slavery and the Sinai desert to the Mount Sinai – God prepared one, selected by Him, human tribe for the mission of the Chosen. This tribe is known in the history as the Jewish people.
- On the Mount Sinai through Moses God delivered His instructions on how to build a better world for all His humans. Those instructions were codified in the Torah and were intended for all His humans – to be delivered to all the humans through the Jewish people. It didn’t mean only through the Jewish people. If somebody among the non-Jews is able to get the instructions directly from God, God would appreciate it. If somebody needs help in understanding the God’s instructions, the Jewish people have to provide the help.
- At this point in history the world of Religion had begun to shape – to shape by the humans, not by God. And the HUMAN world of Religion has to deal with the following fundamental challenge imposed on us the humans in the Torah:
We the humans think and speak not the God’s way – how to translate the guidance of the Torah into an understandable human language? Read the rest of this entry
That’s true – the economic decline of the USA is rooted in our spiritual decline. And our spiritual decline is evident from the facts described in my paper “How One Must Understand the Separation of the Church from the State – both According to the U.S. Constitution and According to the Torah” at https://intellectual0judaism0really.wordpress.com/2013/01/02/how-one-must-understand-the-separation-of-the-church-from-the-state-both-according-to-the-u-s-constitution-and-according-to-the-torah/
The paper describes how the separation should be understood and how this question is deliberately twisted by political and religious leaders. The follow-up discussion of the paper clearly showed an undeniable connection between the distorted understanding of the separation issue with the spiritual decline and a strong bond between the spiritual and economic deterioration.
Here are most interesting parts of the follow-up discussion. The thoughts of my opponents who, in my opinion, defended the twisted interpretation of the constitutional state-church separation are labeled by ‘X’ and presented in italics; my thoughts in defense of the correct, again in my opinion, constitutional state-church separation are labeled by ‘VM’. Read the rest of this entry
The principle difference between traditional and intellectual interpretations of the Torah consists of the following.
The traditional interpretation of the Torah proceeds from the assumption that the Most High created our world unchanging in principle – either nothing changes in our world or something changes in a certain way beforehand. And if that is so, then there must be some kind of unambiguous interpretation of the Torah explaining everything that occurs in our world unambiguously. One needs to seek out and obey this interpretation. The adherents of the traditional interpretation of the Torah think that such an interpretation of the Torah has been found. And all attempts to look for something else are anathema and an avoidance of Judaism. Though the adherents of the traditional interpretation of the Torah don’t even concur with this statement, but think essentially that the Most High is fully knowable and they have experienced him in their own interpretation of the Torah.
The intellectual interpretation of the Torah thinks that the Most High created our world as changing constantly and that the Most High Himself is fully unknowable. Therefore, the Torah cannot have an unambiguous interpretation. One can know the Most High and the Torah only through multiple interpretations of the Torah and the test of these interpretations against the facts of real life. Read the rest of this entry