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

Jews and Double

We live in a dualistic world, with opposites, while its Creat^r is One. Many examples.

We could be extremist but we are commended to seek the middle way. (Ambivalence and synthesis are better because that’s harder than extremism.)

It’s not good to be alone but, like Him, we’re each unique.

To be close to someone, we need to enjoy our similarities and our differences.

When we look for Him we see His footprints and fingerprints everywhere but when we think we don’t need Him, there’s no trace of Him to be seen.

G^d wanted to give Moses Ten Commandments written in stone. How much will such a slab cost us? It’s for free? Can we have two? The first five describe our relationship with Up-High, the second five our relationship with our fellow human beings. (There is no inscription along the edge that says “In G^d we trust.” Rather, invisibly it reads: “Be good to yourself too.”)

Sometimes, we must strive, create and perfect and sometimes, we must just enjoy what is.

We must dare to think freely and boldly but restrict our actions.

We must make due, trusting that G^d gives us all we need but give to the needy as if there is no G^d.

We must ensure that people we wronged forgive us before G^d may.

There are earthly and Heavenly justice (punishment and reward) and obedience and sin and they don’t cancel out.

Better to live by obligation than by rights.

G^d wants us to follow most of His Precepts unquestionably but reject and protest some of His other Rulings with the greatest audacity.

One may obey G^d to do good because one should, as a slave (with reward and no punishment as incentives) but alternatively, one may do so because one wants to, loves to, team UP with Him (whereby living well is the best reward).

We must at the same time trust in G^d and consider our collective effort indispensable.

For me alone the Universe was created and I’m worth nothing.

It’s great to be Jewish (what honor, inheritance and great instructions and inspiration!) and terrible to be Jewish (being intimidated by antisemitism).

We may be virtuous by doing absolute good or virtuous by doing better than before.

Jews have their typically Jewish properties but they are also just like all people.

Judaism is a culture and a religion, Jews are a People and a religious congregation.

The Jewish religion instructs how to live a good life here and promises as a reward a good afterlife too.

Judaism demands Jews to stick together but also to teach all Gentiles.

Judaism demands our unique fresh thoughts and actions but builds also on the collective time-tested fundamentals of our rich Tradition.

Jews should be stubborn and convinced of our fundamentals and at the same time, curious and open to new secondary ideas from anyone.

We are advised to hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

Our inclinations and temptations are double too: good ones to be moderated and “bad” ones that need to be sublimated.

There is the mundane scientific world and there is the ethical realm (and some aspects of either are good and some are bad).

We may repent about the past (regret) and for the future (from now on).

When people (Jews) answer our higher calling, we’re the zenith of the Cosmos, but when we fail to do so, we’re lower than a louse.

There are many fake opposites like holy and mundane, light and darkness, Jew and Gentile, night and day, asleep and awake, cold and hot, good and bad, health and sickness, life and death, war and peace, kill and be killed, to laugh and to cry, to rupture and to repair, to unite and to distance, to speak and to listen, to love and to be indifferent, to give and to receive. Their deeper properties are not just opposites.

But our free will is certainly just one-directional: To choose life and make the effort to show that we do. (Not making the effort is not really an alternative. The absence of something is not its opposite.)

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, an almost daily blog contributor to the Times of Israel, and previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is (partly) generated by AI. * 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 about what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and education contribute to his visions. * If you don't know the Dutch, get an American peek behind the scenes here: * To find less-recent posts on subject XXX among his 2000 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: * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. Yet, 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 who don't deserve that. 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), 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. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) 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. * One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * 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. 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, anti-elitism, anti-bigotry and supremacy, for Zionism, Intersectionality, and 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. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to 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. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. * 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, empowering therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids non-violently. 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 being a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. He lives with his library in Jerusalem. Feel free to contact him. * His writing has been made possible by a (second-generation) Holocaust survivors' allowance 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. * His newest books you may find here:
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