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

Several concepts of Jewish Law need to be taught to other monotheists urgently

It must be stressed, before anything else, that almost all followers of almost all religions use their perception of religious morality to move themselves, others, their communities, and the whole world to more-ethical behavior. Any eye-catching trouble is mainly caused by small minorities. Especially, when we compare the numbers to hate groups.

However, it should be an important goal of all religious communities to control and stop violent exceptions by lone wolves in their congregations.

This is especially important when the temperature and emotions in young people flare-up. What starts as a fight against boredom can turn deadly.

Although many monotheistic religions could show more love and humility toward Jews, now, I want to focus not on that or large chronic problems of centuries but on less fundamental hitches, things that are less important than the injunction to arrogance or murder, that cause much harm.

But before listing three of them, let me stress that Islam and Christianity have done such an excellent job telling the whole world that there is one G^d, that Redemption is coming, led by a Redeemer, that the terrestrial and the extra-terrestrial are from the same Maker (and therefore answer to the same laws and are made of the same stuff), and that all people have one Heavenly Father Who loves us all. This was our task but you did most of it. We only need to cross a few Ts and dot a few Is. As for instance in:

Desecration of G^d’s Name

Jews learn that we must be most careful not to do anything that makes Jews look bad and as a result, diminishes any respect for G^d.

We learn that, even when we did nothing wrong, we still sinned big-time, when others see our (in)action and, as a result, like Jews or G^d less.

I want Muslims and Christians to learn this too. You could see certain things as great. But, you should not act like that if that would make people outside of your religion think less of you or G^d. Even if they are (in your view) wrong or ignorant.

I would like to make it even a positive commandment. That one should behave in such a way that it makes others respect you and G^d for it.

This latter point is important since the way making proselytes works today is: by making a good impression.

We Are All Responsible for Each Other

We Jews can’t just wash our hands of anything another Jew does. We are responsible to stop him, if we can, from doing evil.

Although Jewish collectivity goes very deep, I would like other religious groups to adopt this principle too. Silence is complicity.

When a coreligionist does something hurtful to others, we often can understand him. However, we cannot approve of it. We must speak out and condemn such behavior. That is not a betrayal of our fellow. Rather, it is a correction from which all of our congregation will profit.

Think in People, Not in Groups

Judaism doesn’t know collective guilt. Any innocent person is … innocent.

I want all Monotheists to treat well every person they meet. Not to find favor with that person but to find favor with their Heavenly Father. How can we hope to please Him when we trash His children?

I want everyone to go even further. When someone belongs to a group that is systematically discriminated against, I want us all to treat its members even better than average. This is clearly what G^d wants.

How do I know? Because the best under us think and act so.

Good Luck!

Presently, Muslims celebrate Ramadan. That doesn’t just mean restricting eating and drinking and intensifying prayer. It also means, examining your deeds and be milder, friendlier, more patient, less angry, etc.

For the Muslim readers: Ramadan kareem! (Happy Ramadan!)

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (https://diethylstilbestrol.co.uk/studies/des-and-psychological-health/), 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 strict vegan since 2008. 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, lehavdil 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 (statistics), 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, LGBTQIA, 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 quite 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 500th blog post with the ToI. 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 a peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To find his earlier blog posts on a certain subject XXX, among his over 1200 ones, go to the right-top corner of the Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". His second daily active less tame blog, to which one may subscribe, one may find here: https://mmvanzuiden.wordpress.com/ or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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