Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

My assorted feelings about different Christians

The below might hold some pretty confrontational stuff. Yet, I hope that Christians may not take offense but profit and learn from this frank expose.

I feel differently about someone who stole something of value from me and never repented and never returned it and his brother who never even would try to rob me. As I see it, trying to convert a Jew to Christianity is an act of theft. It’s depriving the Jewish People of yet another person.

(Please reject this fallacy that Jews could function as a Jew and a Christian at the same time. There’s not a bona fide Orthodox rabbi who’d agree. They can, as much as one can be a meat eater and a vegetarian simultaneously.)

I also feel differently about someone who walks around my house constantly, praying and hoping that one day I’ll leave open a window so he could snatch something of value and someone who wouldn’t. A Christian who hopes and prays that any or all Jews would become Christian is a would-be thief whom I would not feel so sweet about.

I have enough Christian friends to know that Christianity is a wonderful religion for many very fine people. It has helped many to live righteous lives, just as Islam helps many to seek and maintain a life of humility, virtue, prayer, etc. But for a Jew to assimilate, marry out or convert is a total disaster, often making them self-serving, dishonest and even anti-Semitic. Jews, the only People with a universal Mission, must persist. Notice that many people hate exceptions and get highly irritated by not everyone being “the same.” Know that Chosen means: to a higher calling. Only if Jews live up to that Calling are we equal to Gentiles, who have much less obligation.

I have little trouble with Christian Arabs, especially when they understand that Jews are their best allies against Muslim extremists. How different from Christians coming to Israel trying or even “just” dreaming to convert Jews away from our Tradition — the sole reason for us to exist. Ancestors of any such converts often preferred death over conversion and now, after all miraculous survival, their memory must be soiled by total defeat?

Maybe you’re crazy about sweets but would you give them to diabetic children knowing they’d cripple and kill them? (Giving Christianity to Jews is like giving spoons full of sugar instead of a good meal.) Believe whatever you like but don’t bother the Jews with it. Praying to others than G^d, like to Angels, Maria, Jesus, for Gentiles is allowed but for Jews is idol worship.

Jesus may have become your symbol of Salvation, but know that for Jews he’s become synonymous with Destruction. And don’t blame us for that.

While Jews must stay Jews to teach all of Mankind, for a Gentile there is nothing inferior about being a Gentile. Only for a Jew, it’s unbecoming.

The Vatican is reportedly still struggling with the concept that Jews could go to Heaven without becoming Christians. Well, a little more humility could teach them that they should rather wonder and ask the Rabbis how Christians also could attain eternal life like the Jews. They’d teach them the Seven Laws of Noach. And not try to make Jews out of them. Though some Rabbis say that for Gentiles, Heaven only comes from supporting Jews.

Do you want to be a real friend to the Jews? Return to us the stolen Jews. Talk to baptized Jews and tell them lovingly to go home. In virtue of such actions, may your loved ones be talked out of suicide and addictions.

And don’t just do it for us or G^d’s Glory. Parading stolen merchandise (Jews) frankly doesn’t look good or fitting on you. It is shameful. IMHO.

Don’t boast to Jews that you pray for us. It’s such chutzpah. As if you’re closer to G^d than us. Ask for our blessings instead. You don’t need to love Jews. (Love is a funny thing. People say: “I love fish” and then proceed eating fish.) Rather, make sure you respect and honor us — and our Teachings. Jews must be humble but Gentiles must hold them high.

Good for so many Christians who want to be close to Jews. However, don’t equate us. We’re not like your “elder brother.” We are like parents. There is a risk of false equality in groups of Jews and Christians meeting on getting closer, becoming friends, “learning from each other.” The real relationship must be unequal, a gathering of teachers (Jews) and students (Gentiles) or you’d insult Jews. (Though most Jews, used to living in Western supremacist culture, would be flattered — but shouldn’t.) Although Jews will learn from Christians. Teachers are bound to and must learn from their students.

Just like you know that sexism and racism exist, admit the existence of Jew-hatred. Understand that many myths and lies about Jews and the Jewish State are still vividly around and learn to interrupt their spread.

Learn, see and acknowledge how Gentile monotheists have victimized and decimated the Jewish People. See it as your special responsibility as a monotheist to make the world a safe place for all Jews. Shed all timidity and hesitation when it comes to standing with the Jews and Israel. For your own good. Learn to say “That’s a lie” and “I like Jews.” “You’re mistaken.”

Don’t blame the victim (women for being insecure, Jews for being wary; most of the time, however, Jews are dangerously naive and too sweet). Rather, work for a better world where they don’t need to fear anymore. Christians should gather periodically to plot exterminating anti-Semitism.

Israel and Jews should be role models to the world but certainly, have no obligation to be the Universe’s sole flawless entities. When told that we have been monsters, you might investigate but can safely assume it’s a lie.

Jews are largely progressive, humanistic and blue-collar. Still, we often see no alternative but to support reactionary powers because the left and the working class have rejected us (based on anti-Jewish prejudices). This enables the right to hold us hostage. Don’t blame the victims (us).

Judaism has both general humanist messages and specific Jewish ones. (The humanist part is not a secular aspect of Jewish culture but an integral part of its sacred worldview.) It directs Jews on how to relate to G^d and people. (The latter part is not a mundane aspect but part of the holy Calling.) Jews do not need “to believe” to be good Jews. More importantly, they should learn and obey the Divine Commandments — believing can come later.

Judaism is the traditional Mission of Jews and not merely a weltanschauung, faith, belief system, religion. Jews are a People, a Nation, not a race because anyone able and willing to join the Jews’ Commitment is welcome to join.

Christians and Muslims have taught important Jewish principles to billions of people, including Monotheism, Heaven, Hell, Redemption, etc. But at no moment assume that you’ve nothing to learn from us anymore.

Judaism not only lies at the basis of the great monotheistic faiths but also founded science and democracy. So, almost all people are Jews’ students.

The Holocaust does not stand out because more Jews than Gentiles died in WW II — far more non-Jews died (though percentage-wise Jews and Gypsies were at the top). Also not because it’s the only genocide — unfortunately, there are many. Also not because it was exceptionally cruel — every genocide is. Rather, the Holocaust is unique because it was an attempt by the monotheistic world-power centers to go beyond denying that Jews founded their civilization and maligning them, trying to exterminate them; and because that threat is not over yet. Millions of Gentiles were killed like flies but not systematically to wipe iconic Peoples off the face of the earth.

It is despicable to dodge responsibility for uprooting anti-Semitism by claiming that you are from a Christian background or culture but not religious or by claiming that Western Christians who hated Jews (from Crusaders to Nazis) were not real Christians so not your concern.

In the course of almost 2000 years, other monotheisms than Judaism have grown a little out of whack — high time for a refreshment course.

A condensed overview:

  • Rather than that G^d needs us to serve Him, we need to serve.
  • G^d created the world to bestow His Goodness upon everyone. Any unavoidable suffering is only to enhance our rewards.
  • G^d wants us to enjoy life on earth, not just earn the best afterlife. Within limits and settings, satisfying ourselves is within His plan.
  • Hell for almost everyone is a temporary station, Heaven the last stop.
  • Satan is not an evil twin of G^d. (There’s only One — remember?) Rather, Satan is an Enticer, the Angel of Death and the Heavenly Prosecutor rolled into one, sent and under absolute direction of G^d.
  • There are almost no good or evil people. Almost all of us are a combination. The prime struggle against evil is within ourselves.
  • Judaism only tries to help babies, who must receive, to develop into grownups who want to give. We must persist to execute our key job, to perfect all our character traits.
  • Most people don’t commit evil in the name of Evil. Rather, they add Evil only because they’re misinformed, hurting or in a silly mood.
  • Evil exists for us to fight and protest it (in prayer too), not to resign to or deny it.
  • Each human being is conceived and born innocent and stays that way until the age of 20. Grownups must lovingly model, inspire, expect and train young people to come out responsible and ethical.
  • Guilt must never be stronger than a small sense of being wrong. Rather than be guilt-ridden, act responsibly about the future.
  • G^d only holds children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren responsible for the sins of their parents if they continue them.
  • Free Will is for real. It is the assignment to free ourselves from the moral level on which we were until now and to keep getting more ethical. In almost everything, we should aspire to live by the golden mean and choose what gives us life in this world and the next. Religious coercion should be a contradiction in terms.
  • G^d is all-powerful but is committed to following our leadership.
  • Ethical learning takes precedence over moral acting. But deeds speak louder than words. Until a sin, bad intentions are fleeting. After a sin, repentance erases Heavenly guilt (after compensating victims and securing their forgiveness). Doubling down makes one guilty. Until a good deed, good intentions are inferior to it. After a good deed, good reflections on it are crucial. Regret erases the Heavenly reward.
  • Most of the time, we must modify our love by some strictness and our strictness by some love or we’d end up too loving (supporting even evil, exploding in hatred because most people can’t only love forever) or too judgmental — hurting ourselves and others. G^d is 1000 times more loving than strict. Fear of Heaven should only prevent us from quickly doing something we’ll regret soon. It should not prevent us from a happy grateful subservient life.
  • The Hebrew Bible is G^d’s Basics to Mankind. But many details and nuances are held by the Mishnah, furthered in the Talmuds and by the rest of the vast corpus of Jewish Oral Law. Constantly ask details and seek advice from religiously knowledgeable Jews.
  • Positive Prophecies must come true down to the smallest detail. But repentance can turn negative Prophecies into mere warnings. Therefore, we should never promote or look forward to the disasters of the End of Time but rather help prevent them — especially wars.
  • Most Miracles are not supernatural; G^d runs the Universe by Laws of Nature, from Gravity to Evolution Theory. Reality and Judaism never contradict. G^d Himself is beyond Only His (so to speak) footsteps and fingerprints can be found here.
  • All of life should consist of religious acts, from honesty in business to smiling at a stranger. Religiosity is not only for prayer time.
  • Those who are more powerful or capable should show more responsibility and take fewer privileges to come out equal to all.
  • Like the Jews, give great priority to learning deeply and teaching “Thou shan’t murder” (it says “murder,” not “kill”). Understand that the worst aspects of the hateful propaganda that lies that Jews or Israelis are monstrous murderers are that they neutralize our stand against cheapening life and reduce the atrocity of the Holocaust.
  • Stop antagonizing and disrespecting Muslims. In several ways, they understand religion better and are closer to Jews than Christians.

Replacement theology, the idea that the Jews had their day and  Christians are now the new Jews, got a double whammy. Just three years after the Holocaust, Jews were able to resurrect an independent State, recognized by the United Nations. That the latter expected Holocaust II, that the surrounding Arab countries would finish off the surviving Jews is immaterial.

Today 52 years ago, Israel reunited Jerusalem. G^d’s Hand at the miraculous Six Day War was visible to all, religious and secular alike. The Vatican and most of the Western and Muslim world still don’t want to recognize that but the Jews are back, heralding the final Redemption. Happy Jerusalem Day!

About the Author
To subscribe to his daily blog posts, enable an "RSS Feed Reader" for your device. Then click on the circle next to the ToI blogger's picture, containing a dot with two quarter circles around it (the Feed Computer icon). * The author is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (DES - Diethylstilbestrol), born in 1953 to two Dutch survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a vegan for 8 years now. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * 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 lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff and Rav Meir Lubin. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science, Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Sometimes he's misunderstood because he has such a wide vision that never fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what many love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * 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. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. * He likes doing age-appropriate and age-inappropriate things and looks forward to getting to know his timeless mature out-of-the-box soul mate. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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