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On the Horns of Moses

On the Horns of Moses

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Published by davidwalters
The Old Testament features a convenient scapegoat for our natural ambivalence, bigotry and materialism: our spiritual ancestors, the stereotypical Jews. The perennial Jewish Question, “How should we treat the Jews,” should be asked not only of the self-styled Jews but of our thoroughly Judaized Western culture.

The Old Testament features a convenient scapegoat for our natural ambivalence, bigotry and materialism: our spiritual ancestors, the stereotypical Jews. The perennial Jewish Question, “How should we treat the Jews,” should be asked not only of the self-styled Jews but of our thoroughly Judaized Western culture.

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: davidwalters on Oct 27, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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01/28/2013

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ON THE HORNS OF MOSES
BYDAVID ARTHUR WALTERSThe Old Testament features a convenient scapegoat for our naturalambivalence, bigotry and materialism: our spiritual ancestors, thestereotypical Jews. The perennial Jewish Question,
How should we treatthe Jews,
should be asked not only of the self-styled Jews but of ourthoroughly Judaized Western culture. Josephus might better say of the lot of 
 
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us today what he said centuries ago of the early Western philosophers: “Our 
earliest imitators were the Greek philosophers, who, though ostensiblyobserving the laws of their own countries, yet in their conduct and
 philosophy were Moses‟ disciples.” If we would know ourselves, we should
first of all know the Jews, and to know them we have to know their history.The Jewish poets and scribes did a wonderful job of recording oursame old story. In their eloquent books we find the best and worst of humannature in the portrayal of the progress of the naturally ambiguous religion of ambivalence, of human cruelty and loving kindness projected onto a singlenational deity. Now each man would be god almighty, or at least a wild bullto his domesticated cattle, but that just cannot be. Although he cannot be allthat he would be, he can cling to clan and tribe and kith and kin; he canattribute his fatal flaw to outlandish enemies, outlaws who do not participate
in his group‟s sacred rituals. And there are always enemies
, within besideshis own self, to accuse him of hypocrisy and found their own cults: Judaism,for instance, s
 pawned two world religions on the principle of “ThouHypocrite!” i.e., on the demand that the deed match the ideal.
Indeed, hypocrisy is the underlying crisis; an actor on this spinningball cannot be the person he pretends to be; that person in turn is a maskedactor or hypocrite in his won right. Out of self-contempt for his lack of 
 
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omnipotent identity, man resorts to bigotry, the hate-others-based group-loveof mass seclusion and corporate narcissism. Yet the attempt at self-aggrandizement through identification with the higher power of the herd isbound to fall short of the self-contempt gestalt of its individual cattle; self-destructive or groundle
ss hatred for one‟s own
rabble eventually atomizesthe metaphysical superstructure into rubble.The foregoing may appear to be misanthropic raillery, yet who is notangry at self or humankind at one time or another for our faults? And what islovingly stamped on the other side of the coin, but the image of the ideal orhead person who would be free of faults?Man would be free but is circumscribed by restraints. The Greekscounseled him to know his limits, but the flip side of knowledge isignorance, wherefore he exceeds his limits, reaches for the stars, and sufferspainful consequences from time to time; but he does not give up even thoughhis sacrifices may not be worthwhile. And the life-saving fear of beingtrampled and crushed and annihilated as a consequence of the exercise of thenative will to stampede from fear to absolute freedom so that the existentbeing might persist forever without impediment, gives each and every onewho is blessed and cursed with conscience due cause for guilt for thedamage they have done in the process. We have good cause to love even our

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