Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

From Gay marriage to Joy (Jew-Goy) marriage?

Please, first read the article to which the below is a commentary: Maverick Rabbi Breaks Ranks Over Intermarriage.

Disclaimer: I’m an Orthodox Ba’al Teshuva (returner to Judaism) and know very little about Conservative Judaism. However, I still appreciate people leading where everyone else seems stuck. That halachac Jews generally are stuck on intermarriage is clear.

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach did embrace also non-Jews at his Oxford Student Jews Club (whatever its name) but that’s not the same as officiating at an intermarriage.

What made me reflect deeper is that Rabbi Lau here wants to be nice to the Gentile partner and call them Joyim – Jews who are also Goyim. How about going the other way?

The motive not to reject such a couple is not to lose them altogether. But the naughty troublesome one is the Jew, not the Gentile. At least the latter loves a Jew! The problem does not lie with them!

Maybe we should only call someone marrying out a Joy – a Jew who’s also (behaving ) like a Goy.

Many of the Jews who fall in love with a non-Jew did not seek that – it seemingly just happened.

But, I think that many Jews marry only Jews for the wrong reason. They appear to marry Jews only, because they would not dare to trust a non-Jew. Now, this might cause intermarriage. How so?

If one, openly or subliminally, gives one’s children the message that Gentiles are less than wonderful, and such a child finds out that sometimes a non-Jew is magnificent, the best thing that ever happened to them, then they may tend to prove such parents wrong.

Only when we raise our children with the solid knowledge that Gentiles can be fantastic, they won’t be so surprised that they’ll have to marry them. And only then they can truly choose a Jewish spouse, instead of just going with the flow, or, awarely or subconsciously, rowing against this as rebellion.

I know there is a lot of Goyophobia among us. But the real problematic one here is the Jew who wants to marry out – not the non-Jew who wants to marry into our Tribe.

A trend with more and more intermarriage is a current given. Instead of trying to transform the non-Jewish partner, perhaps we should put emphasis on the out-marrying one, trying to get them to become more classically Jewish. Once s/he wants a committed-Jewish partner – not for rejection of Gentiles but rather for embracing full-blown Judaism to transmit to the next generation – the latter will follow their Jewish spouse’s wishes and convert – love conquers all. After all, love was the whole reason for them wanting to marry a Jew in the first place.

Let’s not give up on anyone, but put the emphasis of our concern where it should be.

An intermarriage ceremony could be just performed Jewish-style as a welcoming ceremony to the non-Jewish partner and that’s it.

Once the Jewish partner is ready to have a more Jewish life, there can be a wedding ceremony to celebrate the post-intermarried couple: a Jewish wedding ceremony for two Jewish partners.

After I wrote this, I found some similar thought: here.

Getting unstuck by reading Rabbi Lau’s thinking, I wanted to share what’s coming up in me. Not as my last word on the issue. Rather, my first thoughts on the subject. Let’s keep thinking!

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. He doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 1400 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe, here: https://mmvanzuiden.wordpress.com/ or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (https://diethylstilbestrol.co.uk/studies/des-and-psychological-health/), born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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