The new assimilated Jews
Yael Mishali
Published: 06.10.09, 01:03
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1. agreed!
Dov Bigio ,   São Paulo, Brazil   (10.06.09)
Totally agreed! Being Israeli does not necessarily means being Jewish. Although a "good Jew" necessarily has to have a Zionist/Israeli component in his character!
2. The ass.imilated Jews Anything goes
Miguel   (10.06.09)
Israeli 2   (10.06.09)
According to the Torat Hanistar (Kabbalah) no conversions are possible anymore until the coming of the meshiach. Conversions should have been stopped at least 500 years ago.., but the typical smart rabbis who do not know this keep on converting. There is no way of knowing today who is a Jew and who is not because it all depends whether or not the person obtains neshama or not.
4. A Jew is A Jew
Shimon ,   Poleg   (10.06.09)
A Jew is a Jew whether he serves his country, pays taxes and works or whether he is a burden on society, doesn't serve his country, riots against it, doesn't pay tax and doesn't work and insults other Jews all day. No-One can judge the other in terms of how 'Jewish' they are and certainly not the author of this nonsense article. Only HaShem in the sky is our judge in this regard. I am shocked how soon after Yom Kippur a so-called religiousauthor can write an article so full of offensive crap to one's fellow Jews!
5. The new assimilated Jews
Jim Edwards ,   London, Canada   (10.06.09)
" ... an assimilated Jew is a type of gentile. Perhaps even worse." It's interesting finding about who the real racists are.
6. To #5
M. Hartley ,   Atlanta, US   (10.06.09)
The irony of your tb would be delicious, if it weren't so sad, and I bet you're not even aware of exactly what you said.
7. article
Dave ,   TLV   (10.06.09)
This article seems to be written by a 5th grader - very low standards. Given the topic it could have been much better. Also, there are many Orthodox out there that don't know 'Jewish concepts' (whatever that vague term means) and have no clue about Jewish history. Lastly, is intermarriage really a big problem in Israel? It is a major problem in Europe and the US - and this article does not even mention those places.
8. Identity crisis
Nick Sporek ,   Jerusalem, Israel   (10.06.09)
No wonder we're disappearing at such drastic rate. We can't come to a consensus as to what makes a Jew. If the anti-Semites were smart they'd leave us alone and we would just disappear (assimilate) all on our own. What other culture or nation has something like a Jewish Agency and spends billions in order to preserve what's left of Jewish identity? ...
9. To be a Jew and to be an Israeli
Izik   (10.06.09)
are two different guys (goyes?). One guy(goy) is assimilated. Another one is educated. One more funny articles on "to be or not to be a Jew". Author, write more.
10. Oh, I know who they are,
Moshe ,   Kiryat-Malahi   (10.06.09)
those mysterious assimilated Jews. They have come from Russia, haven't they? Ms. Mishali, are you writing about Russians who dream to leave the land of Mediterranean? Please, do not count on them. They are temporarily residents. Leave them along and do not bother yourself making up articles like this one.
11. Jewish survival
RW ,   USA   (10.06.09)
These two words say it all: Jewish survival. If a Jewish family in the Galut is assimilated, then after a very few generations, they are no longer Jewish. I know loads of non-Jews who had a Jewish grandparent or great-grandparent, or even further back. When our town decided to trace the families of the first known Jewish settlers, they found that ALL of the descendants were not Jewish and that most didn't even know that they had Jewish blood in them. This is probably true all over the world. The only answer to Jewish survival is Jewish education and observance.
12. The JA ad
Miri ,   Israel   (10.06.09)
The ad referred to Jews in the Diaspora. Sadly however many secular Jews in Israel aren't any better off. Many kids in secular Israeli schools know almost nothing about Judaism. Many of them later leave the country because without Torah there is no reason to be attached to the Land of Israel. Just look at how many of the second generation of non-religious kibbutzniks live in Los Angeles and other places.
13. To be a Jew
Manny ,   Jerusalem   (10.06.09)
I once saw a TV documentary where a young boy on a non-religious kibbutz said: "I don't know what it is to be a Jew". In the Galut, of course, things are even worse. Without Jewish education, the future is not bright.
14. the new assimilated Jew
J Strydom ,   Tel Aviv Israel   (10.06.09)
racist is an understatement here - perhaps even worse!
15. To no. 3
Debbie ,   Rome   (10.06.09)
With all due respect, I don't think you have the knowledge to determine WHEN conversions should have stopped. You can't determine timelines! Besides, when someone converts, the additional soul can be seen through their eyes. 500 years ago, we had the Spanish Inquisition. People were forced to convert to Christianity. According to prophecies, G-d will gather the Jews from the 4 corners of the Earth. Don't these people have a chance to return? It's not for nothing that suddenly there's a rise in the number of people discovering their Jewish background. Should conversion be no longer allowed, then there would be no chance for these people to ever return. Thanks G-d, He is the Judge that brings His people back and not somebody as narrow-minded as yourself...
16. Haredim in NY (To Miri)
Observant Jew   (10.06.09)
Just look at all the Haredi Jews in NY; I guess they don't know what it means to be a Jew either.
17. Somebody save us all from ourselves..
M. Hartley ,   Atlanta, US   (10.06.09)
Maybe, just maybe, behaving like a decent human being, who treats his/her fellow men with respect and kindness is a lot more important in the grand scheme of things than being a Jew, Christian, European, Oriental, Hindu, Arab, Muslim, South Sea Islander, or whatever else. If you live and act like trash, it doesn't matter what you call yourself, where you came from, or which cultural traditions you claim as your own. Trash needs no adjectives.
18. 16 Satmar Haredim in NY!!! Nuff said!!!
19. Jewish survival?
Ariel Ben Yochanan ,   Kfar Tapuah, Efraim,   (10.06.09)
B"H Only Torah gives us Jewish survival.
20. oh no,
I   (10.06.09)
I want to be an assimilated jew too
21. To 15: You said it!!
Israeli 2   (10.06.09)
This is precisely my point. Only Hashem can determine today who is Jewish and who is not - no one else. To tell someone you are Jew now does not make him Jewish unless he has a neshama....and if he is Jewish because he has a neshama eventhough he is born into a Goy then there is no point for conversion either. Or is this too difficult for you to Kapish?
22. 21 So you imply it's not important for a Jew by choice
--to be able to pray in a minyan --to marry --to raise children in a Torah environment --to educate children in Torah --for children to attend dati schools --to have the right to live in a Torah community --to keep Torah (e.g. Succot, without being subjected to jeering goyim neighbors There are countless other reasons as well.
23. A Jew will be always a Jew in his heart
cas reader   (10.06.09)
All this talk about who is a Jew or not is nonsense. We live in a global world where assimilation among different cultures / ethnicities are unavoidable. Who is to decide whether one is Jewish or not ? Don't depend on the Ultraorthodox definition - it is crooked and racist. I know many assimilated Jews and even Gentiles who are more Jewish in their beliefs and actions than certain ' real ' Jews like the ultraorthodox, who are racists and anti-zionists.
24. You all talk about religion
Krzysztof ,   Heidelberg, Germany   (10.06.09)
while im most places on the earth people identify themselves according to the ethnicity. My father is Jewish, atheist. My mother is Polish. My religion is catholic, after my mother. And no matter how close my emotions would be with the Jews, no matter how I'd support Israel, learn Hebrew, and Jewish history, I will n-o-t be taken as a Jew. Why? Because the Jew is mostly not understood according to ethnicity, but to the religion. Halacha is also within religious sphere. So since my mother is not Jewish, I cannot be defined as 'a half-Pole half-Jew'. Not Polish enough to be the Pole. Not Jewish enough to be the Jew. I am sure that there are many thousands like me around. Just apropos the Jewish survival...
25. Jewish education
Batya ,   Israel   (10.06.09)
People who care about Jewish survival give their children a religious education - both in Israel and abroad.
26. This is new?
shadoil ,   Jerusalem   (10.06.09)
This is how we all grew up in the US. In the 50's 60's 70's 80's 90's and so on. NOW you realize this. Ha! The only thing which is has the possiblity to perpetuate Jewishness is that item which gves being Jewish its authenticity. The Torah. It not only gives us our Jewishness but its what allows us to re-establish ourselves in the Land of Israel. Any other historical claim can be challenged but the fact that the land was promised to us by G-d cannot be challenged unless you base your arguments solely on secular existence, and we all see from this article what happens when that is the precedent.
27. Great article!, lets break the orthodox taboo
Secularist ,   Israel   (10.06.09)
Judaism is not only religion, but well-substantial culture. Religion is a main branch of the tree called: Judaism. Notwithstanding, Judaism concludes all types of chronicles, accomplishments, tragedies etc. In Israel, As long as religion and state are binding, conversions will keep being a slow, exhausting process. Orthodox conversion is a fraud, many "new" Jews have clearly verified it. Nowadays, religion should allow pluralism for all its sects, especially at the conversion process. Apart from that, the main idea of Religion is employing and consolidating the status of the clergy. It might as well be considering, as a cult that strives ruling everyone's life by nonesense propaganda.
28. You are free!
Joyce ,   Israel   (10.06.09)
The Torah specifically says: "CHOOSE LIFE" The way I understand this is as follows: The Creator of the Universe has in all His Kindness given us LIFE and free choice. However, He recommends that we choose life ( i.e follow His commandments) because He is our Creator and he knows what is best for us. When our actions will be counter His Will, -which is what assimilation is about (lo tatourou acharei levavchem ve acharei nafchechem) it is the equivalent of going towards the death of our Jewish soul. And this is certainly derived from our own choice. He is telling us, you are free but choose to do what I re-commend you to do because TORAH IS LIFE. The three pillars on which the World stands are: Torah, Avodah (service of Prayer) and Gemilut Hasadim (acts of goodness). If we unphold these, we are "LIVING BEINGS" so to speak, that is our soul is alive. I believe all Jews have a spark of kedusha "sanctity" in him/her whether they are considered assimilated or religious. I believe that once that spark is alighted by "learning and understanding" the Torah or by an encounter of an event that impacts their Jewish soul, this soul will be brought back to its natural source which is the proximity and the longing for closeness to the word of the living G-d.
29. Errata
Joyce ,   Israel   (10.06.09)
#28. Sorry! My mistake. The quote of the Torah is: Lo Tatourou acharei levavecheim ve acharei yeineichem acher atem zonim achareihem! I have got a lot to learn!
30. #23 Agree with you!
John ,   Poland   (10.06.09)
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