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Re: Cancel the order! and Jews vs. Jesus

Jun 05, 1998 08:53 AM
by Bart Lidofsky

K. Paul Johnson wrote:
> Alan, I think that Jewish argument you talk about is very
> disingenuous.  "Not need an intermediary?"  What about the Mosaic
> law?

	That is not an intermediary.

> What about being the chosen people?

	As much as the Theosophists are the "chosen people". Chosen to bring
certain parts of the Ageless Wisdom to the rest of humanity, Jews are
asked to follow a much stricter discipline than the rest of humanity, as
well. This is why Judaism discourages conversion; if one is a non-Jew,
then one is considered to be following the law if they only obey a few
simple laws, like using courts rather than blood oaths, kindness to
animals, no incest, no stealing, no using false testimony against
someone else, and the like.

> Sure, Reform Jews are about like Unitarians,

	Many Jews calling themselves "Reform" are merely trying to assimilate
Judaism into something more like their Christian neighbors, but the
point of the Reform movement is to take the community out of moral
decisions, and have each person study the law and make their own
interpretations. The problem is that too many so-called "Reform" Jews
make their own interpretations without studying first. Note that H. P.
B. stated that meditation and an altruistic life are not sufficient;
study is also necessary.

> and mystical Judaism has some wonderful insights.

	Note that mystical Judaism is part of the mainstream, and not a
forbidden cult.

> But you only have to look at the Orthodox in Israel today to see how
> much the focus is on manmade observances as opposed to direct
> communion with the divine.

	Those are fundamentalists calling themselves Orthodox. They have the
opposite problem of the Reform Jews; they study the Law, but take
others' interpretations as the final say, and refuse to make any of
their own. This, of course, is the attitude that Jesus rejected, and is
rampant in much of Christianity today.

> The basic ideas that God is a lawgiver and we have to obey a set a
> laws to get on his good side,

	Or our own. Note that there is nothing in the Jewish religion about an
afterlife, except for an indeterminate time in the future when the
Messiah reunites all of humanity. There is speculation, including many
Kabbalist scholars who believe in reincarnation.

> and that some ethnic groups or social categories are holier than
< others and we should shun the unholy, are fundamentally evil and what
> Jesus rejected most emphatically IMO.

	So do most Jews. Jewish law specifically prohibits that attitude. Of
course, so do the E.S. rules, and we see how much THOSE are followed...

	Bart Lidofsky

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