It’s time we embraced anti-Semitism as part of our reality as Jews.
Anti-Semitism has been part of the Jewish life for the last 3,500 years, the Talmud (Shabbat 89b) tells us, pretty much since Jews existed. Definitely before the word anti-Semitism was even invented.
Look around you in this enlightened, modern age, and you can see it all around you. In fancy countries that eat fancy food and drink fancy wine like France, England, and even the United States; you’ll still find hate crimes, hate speeches and hate rallies.
Certainly self-declared enemies like Iran, Syria, and more recently Turkey, make no attempt at hiding their hate for the Jewish state, their anti-Zionism just the latest iteration of the tried-and-true anti-Semitism we all know and love.
Indeed, the only surprising thing about anti-Semitism is the Jewish response: we never cease to be shocked by it.
“They called us what?”
“They condemned us again?”
“How dare they, don’t they know: how hard we try? / how nice we are? / how much we contribute to civilization?”
It’s time to wake up and smell the swastikas.
This is not about logic.
After all, there is nothing logical about anti-Semitism, about the Jews being singled out as being too rich, too smart, too successful and not moral enough by a world that could normally care less about such things.
All these acts of condemnation, of pressure, of higher expectations, are (at best) but thinly veiled instances of anti-Semitism. And this includes the United States, the United Nations and any other group that has the word “united” in it to which we cling in hopes of salvation or at least recognition.
Have no doubt – leave it up to our enemies, and the holocaust could happen again in a second. Nobody is learning any long term lessons here. The guilt of the holocaust has all but evaporated from the average anti-Semite’s cold and clammy heart.
In fact, the irony is that Jews are regularly accused of being Nazis, which we can assume the accusers think is a bad thing despite the fact that they simultaneously spray paint swastikas on Jewish property.
And yet we delude ourselves. “If only we explained things better”, we lament. “If only they understood what’s really going on”. Newsflash: they understand what is really going on. And because they hate you, it really doesn’t matter.
Why do we delude ourselves? Why do we try so hard to explain, to rationalize, to compartmentalize? Because it makes no sense on a logical level. Why the Jews? What did we ever do to anyone? Look at our short stature, our innovation, our curly hair! We would never hurt a fly! And did we mention we invented the polio vaccine?
It is time we recognized the supernatural nature of anti-Semitism. How it rears its head no matter what we do, in countless ways and with innumerable excuses, regardless of how well-executed our social media campaigns are. This hate is so strong, so constant, and so illogical, that it must come from a higher power.
And with the recognition of this supernatural hate, automatically comes the recognition of our supernatural status. We are different from everyone else. We have a unique purpose in the world. And try as we might to blend in, it is anti-Semitism itself that has, and will, continue to out us.
So instead of acting shocked, dismayed, and offended every time another world leader condemns us, calls us a pig, or calls for our annihilation, let’s accept this reality outright and with it, our divine purpose and spiritual mission.
This is a far better way to combat anti-Semitism – with pride, with recognition of our uniqueness and with a steadfast commitment to our values no matter who stands in our way. And one thing is certain: there are millions of people out there who want to do just that.
Recognizing the divine source of anti-Semitism will result in a greater appreciation for the divine status and purpose of the Jewish people. If we embrace our status, we will be ideally poised to counter the constant anti-Semitic attacks that are thrown our way; but if we choose to ignore the divine element of these attacks, we will just continue to sink deeper into our confused, apologetic and bewildered defensive state, with little hope of actually overcoming these attacks.