Thursday, October 15, 2015



There is only one God
and He has chosen the Jews
As His special people, to proclaim His views.
God and the Jews have made a deal;
To them His laws He will reveal:

What He expects in human behavior,
And if they obey He will be their savior.
If they stray, then He will punish
Or send prophets to teach and admonish.

For all our evil we eventually pay;
Justice will come on Judgement Day.
God wants the Jews to enlighten the world,
To give humanity a priceless pearl:

The truth of His oneness, His will and intent,
And it’s all written down in the Old Testament.
And God gave them land to serve as a base;
Palestine, as home for the Jewish race.

He will send a Messiah in the fullness of time
Who will rid the world of fear and crime.
The ruler the earth has long been needin,’
He will make the world a peaceful Eden.

RANDY PHILOSOPHIZES:  This too is nonsense---and no respectable mind on earth believes this. The notion of being God's chosen people has brought enormous persecution down on their heads for centuries.
That being said---there is an aspect of Judaism that the whole world should pay attention to,  They are smarter and more successful than other cultures---and they have contributed to humanity far out of proportion to their numbers.  21% of Nobel Laureats have been Jewish-- despite the fact that they constitute only two tenths of one percent of world population.  THEY ARE DOING SOMETHING RIGHT.  I decided to find out what that is.

Turns out the work has been done for me in this book. If you don't have time to read it, I will tell you the conclusion:  In AD70 Jewish survivors of the Roman destruction made a decision that set in motion a CULTURAL IMPERATIVE that every Jew should be taught to read the Torah--so that they would not forget their heritage.  This one thing---this leg up-- being able to read-- created a FEEDBACK LOOP that is operative to this day.  (a feedback loop is an action that results in more of that action--the accellerated squalk of a microprone in front of a speaker is a feedback loop)
How this "leg up" has worked its way through history is an interesting read.

So what has been learned:
1. Jewish success is not genetic--it is cultural.
2. Only some Jews take the above story seriously,  If you're curious what modern Jews believe click here
3. And while we're appreciating disproportionately contributing cultures--consider the Scots and the debt civilization owes them.

Next up:  Islam


Rob said...

Reading the Torah? The Scots & the modern world? I watched the Discovery Channel special "How Beer Saved The World", sounded good to me too!

It's the small things.... I'm looking forward to your next installment.

Michael said...

Once again, Randy, those are fine and entertaining lines of verse. Thanks for sharing them.

On significant achievements of peoples: Because claims and disavowals on this subject can be sourced in, and can generate, all kinds of unholy sentiments and passions--pride, shame, envy, fear, hate, etc.--not to mention the lack of clear, honest thinking such unbalanced states encourage--I'll limit my comments, on this potentially sensitive issue, to calling positive attention to one other people whose achievements and contributions to the advance of human civilization seem to me to be of the first rank: The Greeks, at least those of ancient days.

As early developers (perhaps founders) of philosophy, experiments with democracy, science, some forms of literature (tragedy, etc.)...and their overall systematic pursuit of logic and knowledge, thus striking so many blows for reason and civility (the power of which the modern world drew upon so many centuries later to finally drag itself slowly and painfully away from superstition and its oppressions)...they need fear comparison to no nation. (Of course, even Socrates spoke of his gods, but they played a rather minor and cultural role in the larger picture of his passionate dedication to honest, reasoned thought.)

One could say a lot for the uniqueness of various other peoples, too, and their contributions...though I do not mean to take the easy and dishonest position of claiming that every people can point to objectively equal contributions to the advancement of human knowledge or ethical progress.

I look forward to your next installment.

Michael in OK

weston said...

"The notion of being God's chosen people has brought enormous persecution down on their heads for centuries."

What makes you say this Randy? I agree that the Jews have suffered enormous persecution for centuries, but have never seen the slightest indication that those persecutors acted due to the "chosen people" notion.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget the religion of Communism where worshiping God is outlawed and worshiping The State is required. Stalin and Mao killed millions to further their beliefs, but where did that get them? I think Gods and the fiction surrounding them was invented to give people something bigger than petty Kings and Dictators to believe in.