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Letters/Discussion Forums

We are all Jews



Mordechai Zlotnick, Johannesburg

We Jews are, of course, a people born and bred in argument and debate. Obviously, this piece is a thinly veiled attack on the person and position of the Orthodox Chief Rabbi and what he represents. In Alexander’s words: “He is not my ‘chief’.”

As a ba’al teshuva who has searched deeply for spiritual meaning for more than 25 years, I have been able to find something in what Alexander would label “Orthodoxy”, but ultimately, it’s simply “Judaism”.

You don’t have to be a big Talmud chochum to know that at the basis of all Jewish learning are excruciating debates about every facet that affects our lives, trying to consider every angle. These debates and arguments ultimately result in halochas.

There was a Beis Shamai and a Beis Hillel. They debated and argued and brought diametrically opposed views and philosophies, but ultimately, there was a halocha. It wasn’t as if the guys on the side that the halocha went against were like Alexander and thereafter turned around, saying: “That doesn’t represent my belief or practices.”Beis Hillel accepted the halocha if it went with Beis Shamai, and vice versa.

I’m pretty sure Alexander has learnt a bit, so he knows this, or else the Judaism he has learnt is just idealistic dogma, deserving of another label.

We are all “Jews”, given the Torah on Har Sinai, and a part of Hakodesh Baruch Hu Himself. To debase the debate of who has the so-called “religious right” to represent us by appearing at some political rally only shows where our religious head is at.



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