Wednesday, July 23, 2014

This Deep Anti-Semitism: Remembering the Fall of Our First Temple Tisha b'Av and Judaism

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                     

I've been thinking about this for some time.  Christians think our religion, Judaism, is old.  They even call our Tanakh (bible) which contains the 5 Books of Moses and all the prophet's writings  the Old Testament.  Their religion comes from the teachings of Jesus, who was supposed to be the son of Mary and Joseph of Bethlehem.  They call their collection of writings the New Testament.

I  don't think they have a clue as to what has transpired throughout the centuries since 70 CE when Jerusalem fell to the Romans and our Temple, rebuilt from destruction in 586 BCE was destroyed  and the majority of the Jews had to scatter or were taken as slaves to the 7 winds.

  Judaism didn't freeze. It isn't old.   From this change of addresses came the development of synagogues and rabbis (teachers) who were also writers and deep thinkers.  These rabbis kept the religion fresh and they developed a type of debating and understanding the messages found in our writings and added more to it with their writings.  We have more than just a Tanakh (Old Testament, Bible) , which is really in itself a lot of very heavy material.  From this type of education and debate and knowing who said what and why came our lawyers.  We have a history of discussion about the pros and cons of each dotted letter in our scriptures and the meanings thereof.  The rabbis developed a method of PhD of Judaism before most thought of such deep thinking about a subject.  It can still be viewed in Yeshivas of today.  Sadly, this is where the 3 teenagers studied in Israel when they were kidnapped and killed recently.

We also have a Talmud, which is the collection that had been oral statements that went along with the writings found in the Torah.  So our writings have continued.  Then we have the Midrash which is the findings of new meanings in our material.  It established our laws or found scriptural support for laws already accepted.
I just discovered I carry a few small segments from the dna of a famous Rabbi Samson Wertheimer or his brother, born in Worms, Germany in 1658 and died in Vienna at the age of 66.  He was the descendant of the Rabbi of Worms (Eleazar ben Judah of Worms, whose full name was Eleazar Ben Judah Ben Kalonymos or Eleazar Rokea) , who was born in Mainz, Germany in 1160 CE and died in Worms in 1238 CE. This rabbi's wife was the businesswoman in the family so that he could devote himself to his studies of the bible.  In 1196,  2 Christian crusaders broke into his house and murdered his wife and 2 daughters right in front of him.  In spite of this horror, he continued to teach a doctrine of love of humanity.
  He in turn was the descendant of the famous Rashi (Rabbi Solomon ben Isaac) , a commentator of the Bible  born in France in 1040 and died in 1105.  The connection to Rashi was through Itzhak Tzarfarti who died about 1060 in Worms.  He had married Kalonymos's sister of Rabbi Simeon the Great of Mainz who was the daughter of Itzhak Kalonymos who died in 960 in Mainz.  He was the son of Rabbi Abun Kalonymos.  Rashi was born in 1040 in Troyes, France and died in 1105 there. He had married Batisaak, daughter of Isaak Ben Abun.  They lived in France and had 3 daughters.    Rashi was supposed to be a descendant of King David (1010 BCE-970 BCE). 

 All these rabbis and others throughout the world, those in the Middle East and those in Europe, continued to study and learn and add their thoughts in essays and dissertations of our religion as it was handed to us through Moses and the prophets.

Notice that often families just produce daughters.  These daughters marry men who may be of a different haplogroup other than J1.  They often become well known in their own right and are leaders of their family groups.  It's best to mix blood anyway to keep from getting genetic diseases and produce sharp minds.

This was done through times of expulsions, riots, attacks that killed their families, and yet their minds were steadfast on their goals of understanding and expanding their minds to take in all the ramifications of their religion.  This produced dynasties of families doing the same thing; producing rabbis who continued with their father's works.

I'm sometimes attacked about our rights of being in Israel as every Jew does not carry the Cohen gene of J1c3d, but I keep saying that this was only for the Cohens who had to remain quite pure in their ascendancy.  40 % of the Sephardim Jews belong to haplogroup J1, the Cohen gene.   We can also say that 35-43% of all Jewish men belong to the J haplogroup and its sub haplogroups.  They had strict rules of who they could and couldn't marry and their responsibilities were dutifully handed down each generation as to their obligations in the synagogue services.  Throughout all the attacks Jews have endured, it was going to happen that intermarriage would happen bringing in other men from other haplogroups of the Middle East.  E is one that has produced Einstein.  Q produced my father.  G, I and R are some of the other repetitive haplogroups I see in the Jewish family haplogroups.

I believe that Ha Shem (G-d) planned our life this way.  We couldn't rely on one line of thinking.  Others came into the fold just like spices are needed to make a good stew.  A cook doesn't rely on just salt, but other spices add taste to the food as well.  So we have Jews now with such creative minds, each line adding something wonderful to the benefit of all of us.  Moses had us divided in the Cohens, the Levite and the rest of us all are the Israelites.  We see all of us as members of the tribe, the tribe of Israelites.  It's a miracle to me that our Cohens in the synagogue are being tested and do have the Cohen gene.  They've had to keep track of their family line since Abraham who was born in the 2nd millennium BCE who had to have been a J.  We see many Arabs that also carry J1c3d (P58- (L147.1-L858/L859) with a few markers showing they are from the line of Ishmael and not Isaac, but it shows that what is written in our Torah is telling the truth.  We are very distant cousins.
It must have been tragic when When King Solomon died in 920 BCE,    Solomon  was a peaceful king and built the Temple but was asking for more and more taxes and the people didn't like that. To keep the peace he took on 1,000 wives and concubines.  He was also a great writer; the psalms of David and Solomon were written.   Israel was becoming more like the rest of the nations, as well and forgetting their special character. Solomon had building programs going on that impoverished the country.  Revolts started.   This caused a split when he died where the largest tribe, Judah, who lived in the southern section, split and created Judah.  Israel went on as a kingdom until 721 with the last king being Hoshea.     Israel was attacked in 721 BCE and the best and brightest Israelites were taken as captives by the Assyrians.  They came from the North and took away so many.  Then the Babylonians did the same thing in 597 and 586 BCE.  This is when this first Temple fell and we remember its fall with the 9th of Av remembrance called Tisha b'Av.   At the same time, Judah, who also took in the tribe of Benjamin and absorbed the tribe of Simeon as well,  was able to keep Jerusalem as their capital and their kings ended with Zedekiah who died in 586 BCE. they kept Judaism in a purer form of monotheism.   We figure that the last known entity left were the tribe of Judah, so we are all called Jews.

Though the kingdoms of Israel and Judah lost their family line of Kings when the Assyrians and the Babylonians attacked, there were people who remained and continued on with other non-family kings through other empires who had taken over.  The Romans chose leaders and used them as proxies until 70 CE when Jerusalem and the Temple fell.  The religion continued for those 500 years.

One thing, we never cover up the faults of our leaders.  Everyone is exposed for their humanity.  Moses had a temper and this was written about.  We are all human. Though Moses was the receiver of G-d's plan, he was not to ever be worshipped.  We didn't learn where he died on purpose so that there would be no worshippers.

Now we see a sign in Belgium; Dogs allowed, but not Zionists.  Anti Semitism just like in 1939.  Repeats of Kristalnacht are happening in Europe.  Is it because we are of the Old Testament that you do not allow us to defend ourselves or buy back our old homeland?  First the Christians and now the Muslims and.....others.  How did my ancestor, the Rabbi of Worms,  believe in the love of humanity 1,000 years ago?  What would he say today about it?  Is there hope that one day people will not be imbued with hatred for Jews?  

The New Standard Jewish Enyclopedia

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