Thursday, February 23, 2012

Interprenting Israeli Religious Beliefs

Dr. Samuel Lebens starts his op-ed right:

Two statistics, culled from the same recent survey, made quite a mark upon the comment pages of Ha’artez: 80% of Israelis believe in God and 70% believe that Jews are the chosen people. According to Uri Misgav, the first statistic indicates that Israelis are pretty stupid. After all, no enlightened and educated figure could believe in God in this day and age), and according to Gideon Levy, the second indicates that the average Israeli is a neo-fascist racist.
However the rest of his op-ed seems to be little more than stating that no two jews could ever really agree on what "God" is - and hence the concept can be filled with every progressive meaning you could possible wish for. This argument, is both true, and highly useless. Much as Israeli Justice Michael Heshin once said of pornography - "I can't define it, but if you show it to me, I'll recognize it" the same is true of the Jewish God. I can't offer a good definition, but I'm fairly sure 99% will recognize him when we see him/debate him with others.

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