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Old 06-28-2013, 12:08 PM   #11
Davka
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I do not know of any national or ethnic group that has not had some sort of myth about being chosen by god or the fates.
USA and conservative Christians.
American Exceptionalism, "city on a hill," freedom's light to the world, blah blah blah.
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:13 PM   #12
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There are many misunderstandings among Jews and non-Jews about what the whole role of Jews is supposed to be among mankind according to traditional Judaism.

1) Mankind was created by God, and the descendants of Adam and Eve failed in their covenant with God.

2) This resulted in the Flood, and from all of mankind God found Noah and his family pious among the wickedness of mankind. However, it wasn't as if all of mankind was equally evil. In many cases the sin was standing by in silence when others were committing sins. Therefore God saved Noah and his family with a new covenant to repopulate the world under the Noahide laws.

3) When mankind fell into idolatry God identified one man, Abraham, and established a covenant with him and his descendants to lead the way with a subset of mankind as a priesthood. As is known, priests are always required to comply with more laws than the larger public, and are to provide leadership. This had significant implications for both descendants of Abraham's family and for non-Jews/Israelites.

Anyone familiar with Jewish history and the Tanakh knows the effects of sin on the Jewish People. God never played favorites. If Jews violated his covenant, they were punished for it, one of the greatest punishments being the exiles (i.e. destruction of the Temples and dispersal of the Jews), not to mention other forms of punishment.

Anyone, whether Jewish or not (i.e. maniacal evangelists), or believes a Jew acquires some kind of blank check to do whatever the hell he wants as an individual or a group, and require the rest of the world to bow down to him is sorely mistaken.
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:18 PM   #13
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In reality Jews never left Palestine. Palestinian Jews armed themselves when it looked like the proposed two state solution by the UN was faltering and the Brits were pulling out.

And gave birth to modern style Middle Eastern terrorism by blowing up the King David Hotel.
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:20 PM   #14
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Why do the Jewish people so strongly believe that they were chosen by God, and that their laws came from God, and why have THEY survived while other countries that also may have felt 'chosen' have not?

Have requested mod action to correct spelling in title. Sorry.
If I remember my Thompson correctly, the destruction of the northern kingdom by the Assyrians led to the rise of Jerusalem and the Judean temple state.

As to why some Jews still feel that way, if Christianity weren't dominant in western civilization I suspect few of us would know or care.
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:23 PM   #15
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I do not know of any national or ethnic group that has not had some sort of myth about being chosen by god or the fates.
It's a matter of degree. It appears to me that Jews feel much more ethnocentric about their relationship with God than nearly every other country. They were scattered 2000 years ago. Yet, somehow that identity remained enough to re-unite in their homeland to form their own country. IF that is not unique or surprising, then I am ignorant, and would like to be corrected.
What ethnic groups are you familiar with?

White Protestant Americans invaded North America and decided that this was their land by Divine Providence. When the Native Americans started dying off from the microbes that they brought with them, they decided that god was clearing the land for them, and this was proof.
It hasn't lasted long here. Americans do not feel chosen by God anymore, by and large. I think the Torah is worth noting also -- God's Law, according to Jews. We don't have the equivalent, unless you call it the 'Constitution'. I think that is a stretch though.



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As far as their identity remaining enough to reunite them . . . check out the history of nationalism in the 19th and 20th centuries. People who had mixed ethic backgrounds adopted national and ethnic identities that were manufactured from legends and tribal mythology. Then they went to war over them. Look at the breakup of Yugoslavia.

The modern nation of Israel was created ultimately out of the breakup of the Ottoman Empire, aided by Christians who thought that when the Jews returned to their homeland, the end times would be here.
Do we have a comparable example of what we saw in 1948 among any of those other cases of nationalism which you reference, involving a massive migration over thousands of miles? Was that primarily because of the Holocaust? I understand that there may be good explanations, I just am asking what they are, and for greater perspective as to how unique and/or surprising even the Jewish nation's history has been.
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:27 PM   #16
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Why do the Jewish people so strongly believe that they were chosen by God, and that their laws came from God, and why have THEY survived while other countries that also may have felt 'chosen' have not?

Have requested mod action to correct spelling in title. Sorry.
If I remember my Thompson correctly, the destruction of the northern kingdom by the Assyrians led to the rise of Jerusalem and the Judean temple state.

As to why some Jews still feel that way, if Christianity weren't dominant in western civilization I suspect few of us would know or care.
Can you explain this further? Are you saying the Jews have held on to their sense of being chosen moreso because of Christianity than anything else? If so, in what way? Because Christians agree that Jews were chosen? Because of persecution by Christians? Both of these have reinforced their chosen status over the centuries (in Jewish minds, that is)? Or something else?
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Old 06-28-2013, 12:58 PM   #17
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...

It hasn't lasted long here. Americans do not feel chosen by God anymore, by and large.
Oh really? Look at what the religious right has to say about "American exceptionalism."

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I think the Torah is worth noting also -- God's Law, according to Jews. We don't have the equivalent, unless you call it the 'Constitution'. I think that is a stretch though.
It's only a difference of degree. Most modern Israeli citizens do not follow the Torah exactly.

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...

Do we have a comparable example of what we saw in 1948 among any of those other cases of nationalism which you reference, involving a massive migration over thousands of miles? Was that primarily because of the Holocaust? I understand that there may be good explanations, I just am asking what they are, and for greater perspective as to how unique and/or surprising even the Jewish nation's history has been.
There were some massive population shifts. After World War I, there was a big population exchange between Greece and Turkey, based on religio-political differences. There is former Yugoslavia.

A quick google search turns this up:

Population Resettlement in International Conflicts: A Comparative Study (or via: amazon.co.uk) edited by Arie Marcelo Kacowicz, Pawel Lutomski

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The timely Population Resettlement in International Conflicts is an edited collection of essays studying forced migration, refugees, and relocation of populations within the context of international conflicts, taking as its immediate background Israel's unilateral disengagement from the Gaza Strip and Northern Samaria in 2005. This volume offers a comprehensive study comparing past cases of forced migration from Europe within the twentieth century with the convoluted situation involving Israelis and Palestinians. ...
You can preview it on google books. It mentions the Greeks and former Yugoslavia, but somehow skips over the Armenians.

Israel is not unique.
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Old 06-28-2013, 01:02 PM   #18
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If I remember my Thompson correctly, the destruction of the northern kingdom by the Assyrians led to the rise of Jerusalem and the Judean temple state.

As to why some Jews still feel that way, if Christianity weren't dominant in western civilization I suspect few of us would know or care.
Can you explain this further? Are you saying the Jews have held on to their sense of being chosen moreso because of Christianity than anything else? If so, in what way? Because Christians agree that Jews were chosen? Because of persecution by Christians? Both of these have reinforced their chosen status over the centuries (in Jewish minds, that is)? Or something else?
There are fewer Jews than eg Sikhs, Jainists or Taoists. But are our awareness of these other religions is very limited. If Europeans still worshipped Wotan, and we inherited those traditions as opposed to the Roman, our awareness of Judaism would be significantly less(which probably would've benefitted the Jews of Europe).

I think your point about Christians agreeing with the Jews chosen status is a interesting one. A dynamic must result from that, but more I can't say.
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Old 06-28-2013, 01:26 PM   #19
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Thanks Horatio and Toto. I'd like to clarify my thought regarding persecution as a reinforcement of chosen status. The persecution of the Jews would encourage two things.

1. a gathering together of the persecuted. People with things in common come together when threatened

2. the need to find purpose in their suffering. "We can't be wrong or all of this suffering would be in vain." We MUST be the chosen ones.
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Old 06-28-2013, 01:29 PM   #20
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In reality Jews never left Palestine. Palestinian Jews armed themselves when it looked like the proposed two state solution by the UN was faltering and the Brits were pulling out.

And gave birth to modern style Middle Eastern terrorism by blowing up the King David Hotel.
A bit if a derail, but....

Both sides perpetrated acts of terrorism an brutality, who was terrorist and who was freedom fighter depends on your point of view.

The Jews were better motivated and disciplined than the Arab coalition and won. Who was the bad guy/instigator is open to debate, pre war both sides had valid issues.

Some British officers fought on the side of the Arabs. An American Jewish officer Colonel David Marcus fought with the Jews and is credited with turning them from partisan irregulars into an army. killed by friendly fire a few hours before the cease fire.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mickey_Marcus

It is far more complex than simply labeling one side or the other terrorists.

Arabs were and are still slaughtering each other wholesale without any need of Jews or Israel, in the bug picture of the region Israel is not even the main issue.

Saudi Arabia wasformed out of triable and sedterin warfare, and would have taken Syria but for the Briots, predating the arb isreli war.

Ataturk and his overthrow of the Ottomans.

Iran Iraq war.

Iran Kuwait rape nd plunder.

The Muslim sectarian strife In Syria.

Meanwhile tiny evil Israel chugged along building a stable country and an economy.

With few exceptions the Jews pulled together. IMO something to be admired.

And every few days Muslims blow up Muslims in Iraq.

If its a derail go ahead and remove.
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