Ornery.org
  Front Page   |   About Ornery.org   |   World Watch   |   Guest Essays   |   Contact Us

The Ornery American Forum Post New Topic  Post A Reply
my profile login | register | search | faq | forum home

  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» The Ornery American Forum » Ornery U » Ornery U - History of Judaism (Page 1)

 - UBBFriend: Email this page to someone!   This topic comprises 5 pages: 1  2  3  4  5   
Author Topic: Ornery U - History of Judaism
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
As Ev and Paladine have started theirs, I hereby welcome all to post questions on Judaism (Judaism proper. I'll start a new thread on Zionism and modern Jewish *history* later.)

The Judaism court is now in session, the honorable(?) Ricky B. presiding.

[ February 24, 2008, 05:36 PM: Message edited by: OrneryMod ]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
canadian
Member
Member # 1809

 - posted      Profile for canadian   Email canadian       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
What is the correct terminology for describing a person of...Hebraic?? descent?

[ February 21, 2008, 05:17 AM: Message edited by: canadian ]

Posts: 5362 | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Depends, as always, on whom you ask [Smile]
Ok, ground rule for this thread - I'm gonna (try to always) mark the traditional orthodox Jewish narrative or version for things thus:(Mstc) for Masoretic, Masoret being the Hebrew for tradition, and Masoretic being the accepted academic term for the Jewish version of the old testament which can be found in any synagogue.

As for your question, it really does depend on whom your asking and what axe they have to grind. "Jewish " would seem to currently be the simplest and most effective term for any such persons currently living (Mstc). Now, there are various groups around the world who claim descent from the ancient Hebrews, mot often from the ten tribes of the kingdom of Israel (the Northern splinter of David and Solomon's unified great Israel). There are such groups in Japan, China, India and Africa. Whether or not one credits their claims is one's own business. This humble student of history is somewhat skeptical.

Some people use various forms of "Hebrew", and "Hebe" was once a prevalent mild derogatory for Jews.

But really, Jews is the most convenient one, although something is gonna have to be found eventually to distinguish folks like me, who reject Judaism as a religion but are Jews culturally [Smile]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
philnotfil
Member
Member # 1881

 - posted      Profile for philnotfil     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
What is the Jewish afterlife like?
Posts: 3719 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Paladine
Moderator
Member # 1932

 - posted      Profile for Paladine   Email Paladine   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Awesome, Ricky! [Smile]

I'm a bit interested in how Jewish law and morality intersect, or how the one is derived from the other. For example, it seems that while many Jews would consider it wrong for them to eat pork, they would see nothing wrong in me doing so. This is, as I understand it, because of an agreement they've made with God. That agreement seems to be at the center of the religion, but I don't really have much of an understanding of it. Care to explain a little?

Posts: 3235 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
MattP
Member
Member # 2763

 - posted      Profile for MattP   Email MattP   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I just wanted to say thank for putting "Ornery U" in the title of the thread.
Posts: 3481 | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Jesse
Member
Member # 1860

 - posted      Profile for Jesse   Email Jesse   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ricky?

My understanding was that the Jewish Communities of China and Japan got there with the Portugese in the late 15th century AD, and do not claim to be of the Lost Tribes.

Also, I remember a special on tube a couple years ago about those folks on the southern coast of East Africa that showed a very high rate of that "Cohen Gene". All bit sketchy in recollection, it was 2-4 years ago.

[ February 21, 2008, 03:50 PM: Message edited by: Jesse ]

Posts: 11410 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by canadian:
What is the correct terminology for describing a person of...Hebraic?? descent?

A Jew. Some people use the roundabout "Jewish person" because they've been told that "Jew" is derogatory, but it isn't true.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Paladine:
Awesome, Ricky! [Smile]

I'm a bit interested in how Jewish law and morality intersect, or how the one is derived from the other. For example, it seems that while many Jews would consider it wrong for them to eat pork, they would see nothing wrong in me doing so. This is, as I understand it, because of an agreement they've made with God. That agreement seems to be at the center of the religion, but I don't really have much of an understanding of it. Care to explain a little?

In Judaism, there are various types of laws. In Hebrew, they're called hoq (plural huqqim), mishpat and eidut. There are other terms as well, but those are the main ones. Essentially, an eidut is a commemorative law, such as the laws of Passover, in which we commemorate leaving Egypt. A mishpat is what you might call a moral or ethical law, such as "thou shalt not murder" and "thou shalt not steal". And a hoq is a ritual law that may have no apparent purpose that we can glean other than the fact that God commanded it. That's not to say that it doesn't have a purpose other than that, but it may not, and it doesn't matter whether it does or not.

Ultimately, all of these laws are huqqim, in the sense that we're commanded to do them whether we agree with them morally or not, but it's understood that mishpatim are the fundamental basis of Jewish society.

We believe that God gave a set of commandments to all humanity, actually, most of which are mishpatim themselves. These are called the Seven Noachide commandments, though they are really seven categories, rather than seven discrete commandments. Jews were given a great deal more in the way of commandments at Mount Sinai.

We hold that all of God's commandments are inherently moral. Because God is, by definition, good. When we see something that God has commanded which seems morally problematic to us, the classic Jewish response has been to investigate and see whether that's truly what God is commanding, and then to accept it, and work on modifying our own personal morality to match that of God.

Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by philnotfil:
What is the Jewish afterlife like?

There's no cut and dried answer to that. We don't have a really clear picture of it, because it's not really something considered all that important in Judaism. That there is an afterlife is integral to Judaism. That there are consequences (both positive and negative) in that afterlife for actions taken and not taken in this life is equally integral. But the details... well, we'll all find out eventually.

We don't have any concept of Heaven and Hell, if that's what you're asking. No angels with harps on clouds, and no eternal damnation, either. When we die, we can take up to 12 months maximum to come to terms with the sudden knowledge of everything we did and the implications of that knowledge. You can think of it as a kind of puragatory, or limbo, to borrow terms from another religion. But it's temporary.

Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jesse:
Also, I remember a special on tube a couple years ago about those folks on the southern coast of East Africa that showed a very high rate of that "Cohen Gene". All bit sketchy in recollection, it was 2-4 years ago.

You're absolutely correct. Apparently, a kohen must have gotten to that region in Africa and married out. And apparently, he was also extremely fertile. <grin>

But Judaism isn't a racial thing. Yes, someone born to a Jewish mother is automatically Jewish, but all that matters is the matrilineal line, and the "Cohen gene" is patrilineal. If someone has 7 Jewish great-grandparents and one non-Jewish one who happens to be in the direct maternal line, then barring conversion along the way, that person isn't Jewish. And the converse is true as well.

Scarlett Johansson is Jewish, but Winona Ryder (Horowitz) is not. David Arquette is Jewish, but Adam Goldberg is not. Jennifer Connelly and Cardinal Lustiger and Lisa Bonet are Jewish, but Lenny Kravitz is not.

Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Jesse
Member
Member # 1860

 - posted      Profile for Jesse   Email Jesse   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Or, much more likely, a whole bunch of Kohens and their spouses, and children, got into that area and have been there for a very long time.

It would be fascinating to see Mitochondrial DNA research on that population, but I've seen no evidence that it's been done.

Posts: 11410 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Um, hasn't Lustiger done enough to be cast out? Seriously, I know that "Israel, though he has sinned, is Israel still", but there are also rules specifying when someone has gone too far. I think being nominated for Pope qualifies [Smile]

BTW, despite my...disagreements with her entire world-view, Lisa is at least as good a source as I am on the strict halachic version of things. If I ever find I disagree with her on such, I'll say so [Smile]

Lisa is partly correct on the afterlife. However, there are quite a few traditions, legends and midrashim (a good definition thereof, Lisa?) about the afterlife. The most famous layman's image about Jewish heaven is is about the righteous eating of the wild ox and the whale. We're Jews, bliss is a good meal. You know the quickest way to sum up the rationale behind a Jewish holiday? "They tried to kill us, they failed, let's eat."

Seriously, there is also some thought extant in Jewish sources about the nature of hell, what we call Geihinom (derived from the valley of hinom in Jerusalem, where the scapegoat would be released). We also have a concept called Kaf HaKela, which translates literally into "the hollow of the sling", and is basically a special section of hell for the truly wicked, from whence there is no delivery even after the messiah comes.

According to strict orthodox nonsense, that's where Chaim Nachman Biyalik, Israel's national poet, and Theodore Herzl, founder of the Zionist Congress, are now languishing...

It's also not true that we have no concept of heaven, as in the heavenly host, because there is a rather graphic description thereof in Isaiah 6, with god sitting on his chair and the angels standing on both sides saying "holy holy holy is the lord of hosts, his glory filleth all the land". (free translation)

However, and this is where Lisa is correct, it is very important to understand that Judaism is a religion for life and for the living. For instance, nothing whatsoever happens to you or your soul if you don't get buried properly. All funerary and commemorative dictums are the province and the burden of the living. Unlike Christianity, Judaism does not view death as "joining god (or jesus)". The point of life is to live well, not to go to heaven. Life in Judaism is not a prelude.

Jesse - I'm not talking about the Jews of Harbin. There's a Chinese cult that claims descent from the ten tribes. Also an Indian one, a Japanese one, and one in the Amazon, among others.

I read about the East Africa thing. It's not at all inconceivable, what with theories that the ark was (and is) hidden in Axum, Ethiopia.

Paladine - it's simple, really. There are laws that apply to you as a gentile, which are called the 7 laws of the sons of Noah. These are:

Multiply (the "get in on" commandment)
Fill the earth
Dominate the animals
You may eat any living thing (this was a concession, as prior to this it was considered wicked to eat meat, and this was one of the reasons for the flood. After the flood, god lowered the standard and said fine, be a carnivore... BUT:
No eating blood
No eating flesh from a still living creature. (later addition by the sages)
Also, no murder (of humans).

Other than that, you are not immoral for not following kashrut laws, since they are not your obligation. However, you are impure and unclean for digging on pork, shellfish and other uncleran foods. You are also in contempt for having aforeskin [Big Grin] [Smile] but that pretty much goes with the territory of your being a gentile (although the Muslim is cleaner than you (or me, for that matter) since he also diggeth not on the swine, and verily doth mutilate his willy. (Also, Maimonides, for instance, regards Islam as a monotheistic religion, whereas Xianity he calls idolatry)

BTW, just refraining from pork, for instance, would not make your table permissible for an observant Jew. A moderate might agree to drink water and eat things that are neither meat nor dairy in your house, but an ultra-orthodox would not if he could help it, and no orthodox Jew would eat dairy or meat prepared or served in a non-observant setting. (especially meat. though if the product had a kosher seal the Jew accepted, he might.

Lisa? Would you let Paladine make you a sandwich with Hebrew National salami at his home? (I know you're vegetarian. if you ate meat).

[ February 22, 2008, 02:10 AM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Jesse
Member
Member # 1860

 - posted      Profile for Jesse   Email Jesse   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
One of the sadder examples of that...

A muslim girl my wife went to school with decided to try to make friends with an orthodox jewish girl who was working on the same film.

They had to shoot on thanksgiving.

The muslim girl - who keeps halal, wears a headscarf, is pretty observant of her own stuff...buys a kosher ready-to-go thanksgiving dinner for two the night before and brings it to the set, so that the two of them can have a thanksgiving dinner that is "clean" for both of them, while everyone else eats the thanksgiving dinner from craft services.

When they break for dinner, the muslim girl heats it up in the microwave, and trots over to the jewish girl all happy with the nice thing she's done.

[Frown]

I'd heard of the Indian one and the one in the Amazon, both sounded pretty unlikely to me too.

I'd only heard of Jews of known provenance from China, though.

[ February 22, 2008, 02:45 AM: Message edited by: Jesse ]

Posts: 11410 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Paladine
Moderator
Member # 1932

 - posted      Profile for Paladine   Email Paladine   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
One of my Jewish friends told me that the origin of this law was a prohibition against cooking a calf in its mother's milk. Is that true, or is it BS? If it's true, then how can it apply so broadly as to include any kind of meat?

What's the rationale behind the "if-your-mother's-a-Jew-you-are-too" bit? My guess was that it had a lot to do with Jewish women being raped while they were enslaved and wanting to allow the bastard children to be accepted fully into the community. Am I way off there?

What benefit do Jews derive from following all of these laws? Or is living that type of life supposed to be its own reward?

Posts: 3235 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Absolutely true. Leviticus, somewhere. Not only is it "kid in its mother's milk", the prohibition appears with a bunch of other ASPCA-type prohibitions, not dietary ones. And this is where Lisa and I diverge sharply. She will tell you that all the prohibitions added on in the Oral Torah (called oral despite being written down in the form if Mishnah, Gemarah and other works to distinguish it from the torah, the five books of the Pentateuch) - that all these prohibitions were always there, and were handed down along with the ten commandments and the rest of Exodus through Deuteronomy, and were observed by the Hebrews during the 1st temple era.

I of course reject that, and imagine that maybe 1st temple era Hebrew didn't actually cook in milk/yogurt the way everyone else does in the region, but I majorly doubt they had anything beyond that like the elaborate separation of current kosher laws. That type of thinking is decidedly later in character.

Now, as to how do you get from a to b - that was the whole work of the Oral Torah. Expounding. Taking a kernel and fluffing it up through reasoning to a multi-faceted popcorn that had an inner logic consistent with the greater scheme. A sort of fractal, if you will.

as for lineage - you're way off. It goes back to matrilineal heritage in the ancient near east. It's why David insisted on getting Michal back.

Finally, as for benefit - pretty much its own reward. Now, some Jewish laws were of ginormous benefit throughout the ages, before the advent of modern science, hygiene and so on. Jews died a LOT less in the plague because of their religious rule about washing your hands before and after you eat and after you relieve yourself. Jews suffered less (as in: none) from trichinosis. Halachic slaughtering has some pre-technological sanitation benefit.

One of the ideas behind all the mundane everyday rules is kinda like boot camp - get in you the habit of obeying the law. [Smile]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Jesse
Member
Member # 1860

 - posted      Profile for Jesse   Email Jesse   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
"Jews died a LOT less in the plague because of their religious rule about washing your hands before and after you eat and after you relieve yourself."

Not really, Ricky, that's why ya'll died a lot less of dysentary and hepatitis and lots of other stuff, though.

Plague had swept through your home turf a couple times at least before the Diaspora, breeding the same sort of resistance northern europeans later aquired. Plague being predominately a flea thing, the handwashing effect was minimal.

Of course, I'm sure that not suffering from the delusion that cats were agents of Satan didn't hurt any, and neither did sticking together to get through it instead of wandering around flaying the flesh from your own backs.

Posts: 11410 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
hobsen
Member
Member # 2923

 - posted      Profile for hobsen   Email hobsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
What is the reasoning behind the mildly annoying custom of some Jews of writing the English word "God" as "G-d," and what groups do that? I mean, I understand the general idea is to avoid accidentally saying or writing the largely forgotten name of God; but the English word "God" seems no more likely to be that than the English word "mousetrap," so it seems to make no more sense to avoid one than the other?
Posts: 4387 | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Um, hasn't Lustiger done enough to be cast out? Seriously, I know that "Israel, though he has sinned, is Israel still", but there are also rules specifying when someone has gone too far. I think being nominated for Pope qualifies [Smile]

I would love to be able to write him off. Unfortunately, it's like Hotel California: You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
BTW, despite my...disagreements with her entire world-view, Lisa is at least as good a source as I am on the strict halachic version of things. If I ever find I disagree with her on such, I'll say so [Smile]

<grin>

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Lisa is partly correct on the afterlife. However, there are quite a few traditions, legends and midrashim (a good definition thereof, Lisa?)

Lore. Non-legal material. Narrative stuff. Fables (that one makes me cringe, but in the sense of stories that teach a lesson but aren't necessarily to be taken literally, it does fit).

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
According to strict orthodox nonsense, that's where Chaim Nachman Biyalik, Israel's national poet, and Theodore Herzl, founder of the Zionist Congress, are now languishing...

Oh, come on. That's not true at all. Maybe to the Neturei Karta, but you aren't honestly going to paint them as representative of Orthodox Jews. And "strict orthodox nonsense" is offensive. I'm sure you don't want me going on about sectarian and heterodox garbage, do you? Try and keep it civil (if that's permitted on Ornery).

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
It's also not true that we have no concept of heaven, as in the heavenly host, because there is a rather graphic description thereof in Isaiah 6, with god sitting on his chair and the angels standing on both sides saying "holy holy holy is the lord of hosts, his glory filleth all the land". (free translation)

But there's no indication that that's where we go when we die.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
However, and this is where Lisa is correct, it is very important to understand that Judaism is a religion for life and for the living. For instance, nothing whatsoever happens to you or your soul if you don't get buried properly. All funerary and commemorative dictums are the province and the burden of the living. Unlike Christianity, Judaism does not view death as "joining god (or jesus)". The point of life is to live well, not to go to heaven. Life in Judaism is not a prelude.

That said, we don't say kaddish for a person who has themselves cremated. Kaddish is a consolation to the deceased (most Jewish mourning rituals are for the bereaved, but kaddish is an exception), so how your body is disposed of can make a difference.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Paladine - it's simple, really. There are laws that apply to you as a gentile, which are called the 7 laws of the sons of Noah. These are:

Multiply (the "get in on" commandment)
Fill the earth
Dominate the animals
You may eat any living thing (this was a concession, as prior to this it was considered wicked to eat meat, and this was one of the reasons for the flood. After the flood, god lowered the standard and said fine, be a carnivore... BUT:
No eating blood
No eating flesh from a still living creature. (later addition by the sages)
Also, no murder (of humans).

Actually, the seven Noachide laws are these:
  • Don't murder
  • Don't steal
  • Don't commit a set of sexual prohibitions that includes (mainly) adultery, bestiality, incest and anal sex between men
  • Don't commit idolatry
  • Don't eat meat from an animal that's still living (Rocky Mountain Oysters, for example)
  • Don't curse God
  • And the one that's not a prohibition but a mandate: Establish courts to enforce the other 6
I'm not sure where you got your list from, or the idea that eiver min he-chai is a later rabbinic extension.

Why pru urvu isn't considered one of the seven is an interesting question, and one I hadn't thought of before, but it definitely is not.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
Other than that, you are not immoral for not following kashrut laws, since they are not your obligation. However, you are impure and unclean for digging on pork, shellfish and other uncleran foods..

I don't agree.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
You are also in contempt for having aforeskin [Big Grin] [Smile]

Again, I don't agree. Note that Ricky isn't an observant Jew, and I am. I know for a fact that what he's claiming isn't a common belief among other Orthodox Jews. Maybe in Ricky's community they feel that way. If so, I'm glad I'm not a part of that community.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
BTW, just refraining from pork, for instance, would not make your table permissible for an observant Jew. A moderate might agree to drink water and eat things that are neither meat nor dairy in your house, but an ultra-orthodox would not if he could help it, and no orthodox Jew would eat dairy or meat prepared or served in a non-observant setting. (especially meat. though if the product had a kosher seal the Jew accepted, he might.

Lisa? Would you let Paladine make you a sandwich with Hebrew National salami at his home? (I know you're vegetarian. if you ate meat).

I'm not a vegetarian. If he used pre-sliced bread with a hechsher and cut the salami with a disposable knife, sure. My parents don't keep kosher, and I'll eat at their house, within limits. My Mom brings in a deli tray from a local kosher deli when we come.

[ February 22, 2008, 11:33 AM: Message edited by: starLisa ]

Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Jesse:
When they break for dinner, the muslim girl heats it up in the microwave, and trots over to the jewish girl all happy with the nice thing she's done.

[Frown]

Oops. What a shame. But microwaves are easy to kasher, and even without that, you can double wrap things and not have a problem. I used to use the microwave at work when I was working in the Loop. I just put things in a bag and put that in a bag, and nuked away.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Paladine:
One of my Jewish friends told me that the origin of this law was a prohibition against cooking a calf in its mother's milk. Is that true, or is it BS? If it's true, then how can it apply so broadly as to include any kind of meat?

Ricky is right in that I'm going to disagree with him here.

Understand... God gave us an enormous corpus of law and lore called the Torah. A very small part of that corpus was given to us in written form. That's the five books you know as the Pentateuch. Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. The rest was handed down.

When it comes to Jewish law, the written part serves largely as a mnemonic device. It is not the source of Jewish law. It never was.

The verse "Thou shalt not boil a kid in its mother's milk" is repeated three times in the Torah. The reason was as an aid to recalling the three prohibitions involved. One is cooking meat from a beheima (a category of land animal that includes cows, sheep and goats) in beheima milk. One is eating such a cooked combination. And one is deriving benefit from such a cooked combination (such as feeding it to your pets or selling it to a non-Jew).

The rabbis added extensions to these laws for the purpose of adding a margin of error. So we don't eat any meat with any milk, even if it's not cooked together. And the meat of other land animals (like venison and fowl) were added into the prohibition. And since most utensils absorb some of the food that's cooked in them, they required us to have separate utensils for milk products and meat.

quote:
Originally posted by Paladine:
What's the rationale behind the "if-your-mother's-a-Jew-you-are-too" bit? My guess was that it had a lot to do with Jewish women being raped while they were enslaved and wanting to allow the bastard children to be accepted fully into the community. Am I way off there?

For us, the rationale is that that's how God defined it for us. There may be other reasons on a practical level, but those are always subject to argument. It's just the way it is.

quote:
Originally posted by Paladine:
What benefit do Jews derive from following all of these laws? Or is living that type of life supposed to be its own reward?

Well, we think that God had good reasons for commanding them. A master plan, so to speak. So we do them. Yes, it's its own reward as well, usually, but not always. Not in this life, at least. Bad things sometimes happen to good people, and vice versa. We don't do it for the benefits, though. We do it because it's right.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by hobsen:
What is the reasoning behind the mildly annoying custom of some Jews of writing the English word "God" as "G-d," and what groups do that? I mean, I understand the general idea is to avoid accidentally saying or writing the largely forgotten name of God; but the English word "God" seems no more likely to be that than the English word "mousetrap," so it seems to make no more sense to avoid one than the other?

There was a famous Orthodox rabbi named Rabbi Joseph Ber Soloveitchik who once shocked his class by going to the chalkboard, writing "GOD" in big letters, and then erasing it.

No, of course you're right. God is just an Anglicization of the German "Gott". It has no religious meaning. But it's what we call in Hebrew a kinui (nickname, more or less), and there are people who get itchy-scratchy even about such nicknames. I've seen books where Almighty is written as A-mighty (a friend of a friend used to read that as "the atomic mighty).

Personally, I think it's silly.

Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Here's a link to a Torah 101 thread I had over on Hatrack for a little while. FWIW.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
"I would love to be able to write him off. Unfortunately, it's like Hotel California: You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave."

I don't have the relative databases at my fingertip, but I'm pretty sure there's an exception. I think maybe it's "meshumad le-hach'is?" I mean, take Elisha Ben Avuya.

"Lore. Non-legal material. Narrative stuff. Fables (that one makes me cringe, but in the sense of stories that teach a lesson but aren't necessarily to be taken literally, it does fit)."

True, as far as it goes, but *very* deeply ingrained. Every Jew from the most ignorant to the most learned is likely to use the wild ox/whale metaphor. JUdaism doesn't really have doctrine regarding the metaphysical. There's no discussion about how many angels fit on a pin etc. It's a religion of commandments. Not to say that there's no such thing as heresy, but it's a lot tougher to breach.

"Oh, come on. That's not true at all. Maybe to the Neturei Karta, but you aren't honestly going to paint them as representative of Orthodox Jews. And "strict orthodox nonsense" is offensive. I'm sure you don't want me going on about sectarian and heterodox garbage, do you? Try and keep it civil (if that's permitted on Ornery)."

Agreed, I didn't mean to lump you and yet my wording did so. However, it's not just naturei karta eejits. Many shasniks believe it too. Anyway, it's just an aside.

"But there's no indication that that's where we go when we die."

True. In fact, there are indications it's not. We go to the Garden of Eden, and again that's lore, but universal one.

"That said, we don't say kaddish for a person who has themselves cremated. Kaddish is a consolation to the deceased (most Jewish mourning rituals are for the bereaved, but kaddish is an exception), so how your body is disposed of can make a difference."

True that. It's complicated. What if someone was a "standup Jew", and his apostate kids cremated him out of spite, and one son was left who was observant but couldn't stop the cremation. Can he say Kadish?

"Actually, the seven Noachide laws are these:"

That'll learn me to trust Wiki... <smacks self in forehead>. However, your list isn't 100% either according to what I'm finding.
No murder
No stealing
No incest (doesn't say homosexuality, though giluy arayot may cover that actually),
No idolatry
No cursing god
No eating live flesh
and setting up courts to adjudicate between peeps.

However, living up to all of these isn't *incumbent* upon you, as much as it makes you a "good goy" ("chasid umot olam" righteous one among the nations of the world). Jews could hardly expect the vast majority of humanity up to the dark ages at least to refrain from idolatry... and as I pointed out, Maimonides saw even Christianity as idolatrous (reasons: the trinity and the toleration of icons).

"I don't agree.(^2)"

Yeah, but a very large part of orthodox do. I think you're trying to be the best possible advocate for your side, but the feelings of physical revulsion towards the uncircumcised and the eaters of unclean things runs *very*, very deep. When Rabbi Shach wanted to say something offensive about kibbutznikim, he called them "eaters of swine and hare". (They found it mostly funny, especially since he used the wrong word). I grew up orthodox, so while I'm not an insider now, I got enough inside dope. I also lived in Israel's largest orthodox town (other than Jerusalem) for much of my life, as a secular person. [Big Grin]

As for the big "did the oral torah always exist" debate - we've had a go at it before and we're gonna have to do it again here. However, if not its own thread, it's gonna require separate posts. Lisa probably won't be able to post much till sundown tomorrow, central time I believe. We'll pick this particular issue up on Sunday. On all other issues, class is still in session [Smile]

BTW - the Christian custom of writing GOD in scripture is also jarring as hell. Don't you agree, Lisa? [Smile]

[ February 22, 2008, 12:38 PM: Message edited by: RickyB ]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"I would love to be able to write him off. Unfortunately, it's like Hotel California: You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave."

I don't have the relative databases at my fingertip, but I'm pretty sure there's an exception. I think maybe it's "meshumad le-hach'is?" I mean, take Elisha Ben Avuya.

True. But even he was still a Jew. Excommunication doesn't make one a non-Jew.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"Lore. Non-legal material. Narrative stuff. Fables (that one makes me cringe, but in the sense of stories that teach a lesson but aren't necessarily to be taken literally, it does fit)."

True, as far as it goes, but *very* deeply ingrained. Every Jew from the most ignorant to the most learned is likely to use the wild ox/whale metaphor.

Maybe in Israel. Here in the US, the vast majority of non-Orthodox Jews have never even heard of it. Honestly.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
JUdaism doesn't really have doctrine regarding the metaphysical. There's no discussion about how many angels fit on a pin etc.

I never really understood that. Take the area of the head of a pin. Divide it by the cross sectional area of an dancing angel. Presto, you have the number of angels who can dance on the head of a pin. Not exactly rocket surgery.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"That said, we don't say kaddish for a person who has themselves cremated. Kaddish is a consolation to the deceased (most Jewish mourning rituals are for the bereaved, but kaddish is an exception), so how your body is disposed of can make a difference."

True that. It's complicated. What if someone was a "standup Jew", and his apostate kids cremated him out of spite, and one son was left who was observant but couldn't stop the cremation. Can he say Kadish?

Definitely. It's only if it was done by his direction.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"Actually, the seven Noachide laws are these:"

That'll learn me to trust Wiki... <smacks self in forehead>. However, your list isn't 100% either according to what I'm finding.
No murder
No stealing
No incest (doesn't say homosexuality, though giluy arayot may cover that actually),
No idolatry
No cursing god
No eating live flesh
and setting up courts to adjudicate between peeps.

How is that different?

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
However, living up to all of these isn't *incumbent* upon you, as much as it makes you a "good goy" ("chasid umot olam" righteous one among the nations of the world). Jews could hardly expect the vast majority of humanity up to the dark ages at least to refrain from idolatry... and as I pointed out, Maimonides saw even Christianity as idolatrous (reasons: the trinity and the toleration of icons).

Actually, Judaism holds that it is incumbant upon all non-Jews to abide by the Noachide laws.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"I don't agree.(^2)"

Yeah, but a very large part of orthodox do. I think you're trying to be the best possible advocate for your side, but the feelings of physical revulsion towards the uncircumcised and the eaters of unclean things runs *very*, very deep.

Again, maybe in Israel. I only lived there for 12 years, and I hung mostly with fellow Anglos, so I don't know.

I'm not saying there isn't any bigotry. But it's not of that stripe. At least not here.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
As for the big "did the oral torah always exist" debate - we've had a go at it before and we're gonna have to do it again here. However, if not its own thread, it's gonna require separate posts. Lisa probably won't be able to post much till sundown tomorrow, central time I believe. We'll pick this particular issue up on Sunday. On all other issues, class is still in session [Smile]

<grin>

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
BTW - the Christian custom of writing GOD in scripture is also jarring as hell. Don't you agree, Lisa? [Smile]

Do they do that? Oh, right. I've seen LORD in some books. Sometimes with small caps so that it's all capitalized, but the first letter is larger than the remaining ones. Yeah, that's a bit annoying as well.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Carlotta
Member
Member # 3117

 - posted      Profile for Carlotta   Email Carlotta   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Could one or both of you explain the Jewish concept of a Messiah?

Edit: Sorry, that was a very broad question. I had to go answer the phone. What I'm asking here is that I was taught (in my Christian religion classes) that the Jews expected the Messiah to be a political leader who would free them from the Roman occupation. So my questions are, was that true? Is it still true? Do Jews still wait for a Messiah? If so, what will his role be/how will you recognize him? If not, why not? Do you believe he has already come? If so, what did he accomplish? If not, but he's not coming anymore, why not?

Also, further questions: I've heard orthodox Jews consider it a duty to reproduce at least one boy and one girl per couple. Does this mean if a couple has 10 daughters, they have to keep trying to have a son?

And finally, I was wondering if you'd like to talk a little bit about some traditions, customs, or religious views unique to Judaism that you find particularly enlightening, inspiring, or otherwise valuable to you in your personal faith.

[ February 22, 2008, 01:46 PM: Message edited by: Carlotta ]

Posts: 1318 | Registered: Oct 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
"True. But even he was still a Jew. Excommunication doesn't make one a non-Jew."

It kinda does. How s that person effectively a Jew anymore? In what sense?

"Maybe in Israel. Here in the US, the vast majority of non-Orthodox Jews have never even heard of it. Honestly."

The vast majority of non-orthodox Jews in the US (or Israel, for that matter) know about Judaism about what the average Christmas only if that churchgoer knows about Christianity. Maybe less. [Smile]

"How is that different?"
The homosexuality issue.

"Again, maybe in Israel. I only lived there for 12 years, and I hung mostly with fellow Anglos, so I don't know.

I'm not saying there isn't any bigotry. But it's not of that stripe. At least not here."

Ok, I should probably find a modified term, because when I say Orthodox I mean not modern Orthodox... Traditional Orthodox. Add it to the lexicon. All Chassidics and many hardcore Litvaks [Smile] . Soloveichik was basically the father of Modern Orthodox, yes? I don't mean folks like him, or that annoying kid who sued Yale. [Smile]

Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
RickyB
Member
Member # 1464

 - posted      Profile for RickyB   Email RickyB   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Carlotta - great question. I'm wondering if I should translate an article I wrote on the subject. Cause any decent answer is gonna be just as long. Lemme see.
Posts: 19145 | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
DaveS
unregistered


 - posted            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
This is fascinating, and as is typical with Jews, when they get together to explain things to a non-Jew they end up arguing among themselves and never notice that the person who asked the question has left the room [Smile] . They say it about Liberals, but it originated with Jews: Two Jews, three opinions.
IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"True. But even he was still a Jew. Excommunication doesn't make one a non-Jew."

It kinda does. How s that person effectively a Jew anymore? In what sense?

The simplest one. If the person in question wants to be a Jew again, he doesn't have to convert. If it's a woman and she has a child, the child doesn't have to convert to be a Jew.

And of course there's the national level, where the misdeeds of any Jew harm the Jews as a whole, spiritually. Probably not your cup of tea, but there you go.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"Maybe in Israel. Here in the US, the vast majority of non-Orthodox Jews have never even heard of it. Honestly."

The vast majority of non-orthodox Jews in the US (or Israel, for that matter) know about Judaism about what the average Christmas only if that churchgoer knows about Christianity. Maybe less. [Smile]

Sad but true.

quote:
Originally posted by RickyB:
"How is that different?"
The homosexuality issue.

Ah. Well, unfortunately, that's part of the category of gilui arayot.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by DaveS:
This is fascinating, and as is typical with Jews, when they get together to explain things to a non-Jew they end up arguing among themselves and never notice that the person who asked the question has left the room [Smile] . They say it about Liberals, but it originated with Jews: Two Jews, three opinions.

<nod> They say that if a Jew gets stranded on a desert island, the first thing he'll do is build two synagogues. One to pray in and one that he'd never set foot in in a million years. <grin>
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Carlotta:
Could one or both of you explain the Jewish concept of a Messiah?

Sure.

quote:
Originally posted by Carlotta:
Edit: Sorry, that was a very broad question. I had to go answer the phone. What I'm asking here is that I was taught (in my Christian religion classes) that the Jews expected the Messiah to be a political leader who would free them from the Roman occupation.

Not exactly. And yes.

The Messiah is the heir to the Davidic dynasty. A direct patrilineal descendent of King David. His job is to lead the Jews, which means getting all Jews to return to keeping Jewish law, as well as being a political head of state. It means fighting the enemies of the Jews and bringing the world to a place where such fighting won't be necessary any more.

So yes, he's supposed to be a political leader, but not only a political leader.

quote:
Originally posted by Carlotta:
So my questions are, was that true? Is it still true? Do Jews still wait for a Messiah?

Depends on the Jews. Orthodox Jews, yes. Even many less observant Jews who still identify with Judaism. Here in the US, the Conservative Movement (the name is a bit of an oxymoron, but there are historical reasons for it) mostly holds that there'll be a messianic era without any actual person identified as the Messiah. The even more liberal movements have gotten rid of even that much.

quote:
Originally posted by Carlotta:
If so, what will his role be/how will you recognize him? If not, why not? Do you believe he has already come? If so, what did he accomplish? If not, but he's not coming anymore, why not?

Here's a rather lengthy quote from Rabbi Moses Maimonides, who wrote on the subject. His view is the Orthodox Jewish view:
quote:
"The anointed King is destined to stand up and restore the Davidic Kingdom to its antiquity, to the first sovereignty. He will build the Temple in Jerusalem and gather the strayed ones of Israel together. All laws will return in his days as they were before: Sacrificial offerings are offered and the Sabbatical years and Jubilees are kept, according to all its precepts that are mentioned in the Torah. Whoever does not believe in him, or whoever does not wait for his coming, not only does he defy the other prophets, but also the Torah and Moses our teacher. For the Torah testifies about him, thus: "And the Lord Your God will return your returned ones and will show you mercy and will return and gather you... If your strayed one shall be at the edge of Heaven... And He shall bring you" etc.(Deuteronomy 30:3-5)."

"These words that are explicitly stated in the Torah, encompass and include all the words spoken by all the prophets. In the section of Torah referring to Bala'am, too, it is stated, and there he prophesied about the two anointed ones: The first anointed one is David, who saved Israel from all their oppressors; and the last anointed one will stand up from among his descendants and saves Israel in the end. This is what he says (Numbers 24:17-18): "I see him but not now" - this is David; "I behold him but not near" - this is the Anointed King. "A star has shot forth from Jacob" - this is David; "And a brand will rise up from Israel" - this is the Anointed King. "And he will smash the edges of Moab" - This is David, as it states: "...And he struck Moab and measured them by rope" (II Samuel 8:2); "And he will uproot all Children of Seth" - this is the Anointed King, of whom it is stated: "And his reign shall be from sea to sea" (Zechariah 9:10). "And Edom shall be possessed" - this is David, thus: "And Edom became David's as slaves etc." (II Samuel 8:6); "And Se'ir shall be possessed by its enemy" - this is the Anointed King, thus: "And saviors shall go up Mount Zion to judge Mount Esau, and the Kingdom shall be the Lord's" (Obadiah 1:21)."

"And by the Towns of Refuge it states: "And if the Lord your God will widen up your territory... you shall add on for you another three towns" etc. (Deuteronomy 19:8-9). Now this thing never happened; and the Holy One does not command in vain. But as for the words of the prophets, this matter needs no proof, as all their books are full with this issue."

"Do not imagine that the anointed King must perform miracles and signs and create new things in the world or resurrect the dead and so on. The matter is not so: For Rabbi Akiva was a great scholar of the sages of the Mishnah, and he was the assistant-warrior of the king Bar Kokhba, and claimed that he was the anointed king. He and all the Sages of his generation deemed him the anointed king, until he was killed by sins; only since he was killed, they knew that he was not. The Sages asked him neither a miracle nor a sign..."

"And if a king shall stand up from among the House of David, studying Torah and indulging in commandments like his father David, according to the written and oral Torah, and he will coerce all Israel to follow it and to strengthen its weak points, and will fight Hashem's [God's] wars, this one is to be treated as if he were the anointed one. If he succeeded and built a Holy Temple in its proper place and gathered the strayed ones of Israel together, this is indeed the anointed one for certain, and he will mend the entire world to worship the Lord together, as it is stated: "For then I shall turn for the nations a clear tongue, to call all in the Name of the Lord and to worship Him with one shoulder (Zephaniah 3:9)."

"But if he did not succeed until now, or if he was killed, it becomes known that he is not this one of whom the Torah had promised us, and he is indeed like all proper and wholesome kings of the House of David who died. The Holy One, Blessed Be He, only set him up to try the public by him, thus: "Some of the wise men will stumble in clarifying these words, and in elucidating and interpreting when the time of the end will be, for it is not yet the designated time." (Daniel 11:35)."

(Being lazy, I copied that from Wikipedia, rather than typing it in myself).

quote:
Originally posted by Carlotta:
Also, further questions: I've heard orthodox Jews consider it a duty to reproduce at least one boy and one girl per couple. Does this mean if a couple has 10 daughters, they have to keep trying to have a son?

No. I mean... well, it's a cultural thing. Some Orthodox Jews who are more towards what is commonly called "ultra-Orthodox" won't use birth control at all. So they'll just keep having babies until they can't any more. But the idea of being fruitful and multiplying meaning having two children at least doesn't require that one be a boy and one be a girl. Two kids of any type will do.

quote:
Originally posted by Carlotta:
And finally, I was wondering if you'd like to talk a little bit about some traditions, customs, or religious views unique to Judaism that you find particularly enlightening, inspiring, or otherwise valuable to you in your personal faith.

I don't have much truck with faith, as such. I'm not into spirituality and such, really. I mean, I know a lot of Orthodox Jews who are, and probably I'm an exception, but I take a more cerebral approach. I'm Orthodox because I think it's true. I wasn't raised Orthodox, and I became Orthodox because I became convinced of it. Personally, I'd rather be able to watch TV on Shabbat, eat ribs and sausage pizza, and so on. But that's life.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
hobsen
Member
Member # 2923

 - posted      Profile for hobsen   Email hobsen   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks for the explanation, starLisa.

My wife's Bible features a similarly annoying practice of printing words attributed to Jesus in red. This appears to be the choice of the publisher, and it makes the longer speeches in the Gospel of John hard to read. It may also be intended to obscure the fact that most of what is attributed to Jesus in the Gospel of John differs so radically in style from what is quoted in the other Gospels that most commentators for the last two thousand years have concluded the latter are at best recollections of what Jesus said as written down some sixty years later, rather than word for word quotations.

Posts: 4387 | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Kent
Member
Member # 832

 - posted      Profile for Kent   Email Kent   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ricky, you still presiding?
Posts: 1434 | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
There's a guy named Joshua Persky who wrote a book called "The Sayings of God". I was working in a used bookstore in Jerusalem when he brought in a consignment of self-published copies.

The book consisted, I kid you not, of every place in the Hebrew Bible where it says, "And God said", abstracted into a book. That's it.

And while part of me was thinking, "Damn, now why didn't I think of that?" part of me was just totally appalled when I saw it get picked up a few years later by a real publisher.

Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
starLisa
Member
Member # 2543

 - posted      Profile for starLisa   Email starLisa   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Ricky is presiding (though it's the middle of the night where he is). I'm just volunteering.
Posts: 2066 | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Paladine
Moderator
Member # 1932

 - posted      Profile for Paladine   Email Paladine   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks. Good to see you again, Lisa. [Smile]
Posts: 3235 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Pete at Home
Member
Member # 429

 - posted      Profile for Pete at Home   Email Pete at Home   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Actually, the seven Noachide laws are these:
Don't murder
Don't steal
Don't commit a set of sexual prohibitions that includes (mainly) adultery, bestiality, incest and anal sex between men
Don't commit idolatry
Don't eat meat from an animal that's still living (Rocky Mountain Oysters, for example)
Don't curse God
And the one that's not a prohibition but a mandate: Establish courts to enforce the other 6

Ah. So we can establish our own courts? The way I last heard it, the unspoken mandate from the Torah was that the Noachide gentile had to submit to a Chabad court. [Smile]
Posts: 44193 | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Jesse
Member
Member # 1860

 - posted      Profile for Jesse   Email Jesse   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Only on turf "given by god" to Jews, and only in a conflict involving a Jew, neh?
Posts: 11410 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Pete at Home
Member
Member # 429

 - posted      Profile for Pete at Home   Email Pete at Home   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
My guess was that it had a lot to do with Jewish women being raped while they were enslaved and wanting to allow the bastard children to be accepted fully into the community.
There's a much broader purpose than that.

You know who your mother is. Pre-DNA testing, you literally could not know who your father is. All hell breaks loose if have a situation like the King Charles of France whose mother declared him not her husband's son, *after* he was the heir apparent. Matriliniality simply offers the only system where you know who is a Jew, and who is not a Jew.

Since women got stuck raising the kids, generally, it makes sense socially as well. Someone who is a Jew should have a chance to be raised in the faith, and that's more likely to happen if Jewishness is matrilinial.

Islam uses the opposite system, patriliniality, and that's a different strategy. Essentially the difference between r competitors or k competitors. Do you want to maximize your numbers or do you want to maximize the care given to each?

Posts: 44193 | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
  This topic comprises 5 pages: 1  2  3  4  5   

Quick Reply
Message:

HTML is not enabled.
UBB Code™ is enabled.

Instant Graemlins
   


Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:


Contact Us | Ornery.org Front Page

Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classic™ 6.7.1