March 9, 2023 9:30 pm at 9:30 pm #2172406
A young woman said to me:
“I have had the most horrible experiences with furriers;
they robbed me, they burned the fur I entrusted to them.
Well, they were all Jews.”
But why did she choose to hate Jews rather than furriers?
Why Jews or furriers rather than such-and-such a Jew or such-and-such a furrier?
Because she had in her a predisposition toward anti-Semitism.
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 1, page 11) by Jean-Paul Sartre, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
NOTE: Jean-Paul Sartre was a very famous French playwright, novelist, screenwriter, activist, biographer, literary critic, and philosopher who lived from year 1905 to 1980 of the Common Era.March 9, 2023 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm #2172491
Sartre had a Jewish/Egyptian assistant, interacted w/ R Steinsaltz and probably other Jews alsoMarch 9, 2023 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm #2172492Zaphod BeeblebroxParticipant
Yeah, yeah, very nice. Sartre was also one of the founding fathers of existentialism, which is one of the primary philosophies of wokeness. Our world is going to pieces, and he has a lot to do with it. So excuse me for not caring to much that he once said something smart.March 10, 2023 6:12 am at 6:12 am #2172511LostsparkParticipant
Sartre was also one of the founding fathers of existentialism, which is one of the primary philosophies of wokeness.
Nope you can thank the post modernists for this mess. The existentialist would laugh at these authoritarian hypocrites, I could possibly even see Sartre call them fascists.March 10, 2023 8:00 am at 8:00 am #2172537Zaphod BeeblebroxParticipant
I wasn’t saying that Sartre and Kierkegaard were solely responsible for wokeness. But existentialism is very into the subjectivity of everything, which gave rise to moral relativism, in which there are no absolute moral wrongs, which is a defining characteristic of woke philosophy. If you’d like you can check out “Subjectivity is Truth”, by Søren Kierkegaard, and Essays in Existentialism, by Jean-Paul Sartre, to see what I mean.
However, I would agree with you that the present philosophy of the left is probably not what they had in mind, as the left is straying more toward moral absolutism, in which there are objective truths, albeit quite a twisted version of it (for more information on this, you can check out a research article done by people from the University of Toronto, entitled College and the “Culture War”, in which they bring proofs that this is now the case). I merely meant that their work laid some of the philosophical foundations for the advent of modern wokeness, as without first saying that everything is subjective, thus eliminating the commonly held perceptions of what defines a moral wrong, it would be impossible to get to the current twisted absolutism practiced by the left, where they now have created their own definitions of what constitutes objective morality.
ChatGPT was not consulted in any way in the writing of this post.March 10, 2023 10:41 am at 10:41 am #2172570
Jean-Paul Sartre said this, in defense of Jews:
“There are too many Jewish lawyers, someone says.
But is there any complaint that there are too many Norman lawyers?”
EXPLANATION: The Normans were descendants of Vikings who came to France and lived in a place called The Duchy of Normandy. Their language was called Norman.
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 1, page 16) by Jean-Paul Sartre, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474March 10, 2023 2:07 pm at 2:07 pm #2172616
Jean-Paul Sartre described anti-Semitism as:
“…a regressive social force and a conception deriving from the prelogical world.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 4, page 143) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944 CE, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
In other words, Jean-Paul Sartre stated that anti-Semitism is NOT based on logic!
This conclusion is valuable because it comes from a highly-respected non-Jew (see Mishlei, chapter 27, verse 2: “Let a stranger praise you, but not your own mouth”).March 10, 2023 4:23 pm at 4:23 pm #2172629ubiquitinParticipant
“In other words, Jean-Paul Sartre stated that anti-Semitism is NOT based on logic!”
I dont understand the point of this thread.
did you think there was some logic to anti-semitism?
Do you think an Anti-semite will say “Oh wait I didnt realize a “highly-respected” philosphper said my views were illogical; I guess Jews are ok after all”
I dont really get itMarch 11, 2023 8:06 pm at 8:06 pm #2172730
Jean-Paul Sartre said as:
“He [the Jew] has passionate enemies, and defenders lacking in passion.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 3, page 72) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
He also said:
“The cause of Jews would be half won, if only their friends brought to their defense a little of the passion and the perseverance their enemies use to bring them down.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 4, page 153) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474March 12, 2023 11:59 am at 11:59 am #2172854maskildoreshParticipant
Sartre, Kierkegaard , Camus, and the others created a a value system and life philosophy which has helped create the cesspool we encounter today. “being true to your whole self”, “living fully”, etc etc ad nauseam. Defining living and value in terms of one’s own existence and experiences , this perspective is completely antithetical to Torah on every level.
(I don’t think it would be an oversimplification to summarize “The Myth of Sisyphus” as אכול ושתה כי מחר נמות. )
Yet so much of this philosophy has made its way into the underpinnings of todays worldview that, sadly, these points are perceived as basic “truths” even within our own Machane.
It’s not worth touting the smart things Sartre may have said. Yiddin should avoid the philosophers. They have nothing worthwhile to add to and very much to detract from the perspective in life that we receive wholly from our Heilige Torah
It would be worthwhile to read the beginning of 19 Letters, where Rav Hirsch described the need to understand and appreciate the Torah’s life-perspective from within, not from without.March 12, 2023 5:31 pm at 5:31 pm #2172941
Naïve and full of good will, it is inevitably the democrat who makes all the concessions; the anti-Semite does not make any.
He [the Jew-hater] has the advantage of his anger.
People say, “Don’t irritate him.” They speak softly in his presence.
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 3, page 70) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
This quote is a great description of negotiations between Leftist Israeli Jews and so-called “Palestinians”. Leftist Israeli Jews may be described as “Naïve and full of good will” and they “make all the concessions”.
The so-called “Palestinians” are described by “the anti-Semite does not make any [concessions]” and with “Don’t irritate him [because of their murderous violence].”March 12, 2023 8:26 pm at 8:26 pm #2172975
Philosophy doesn’t impact the street. Even philosophers like Marx and Nietzsche didn’t impact public opinion with their theories.March 12, 2023 9:28 pm at 9:28 pm #2173006
n0, you don’t think that these two people contributed to the communist and nazi plagues?March 12, 2023 10:40 pm at 10:40 pm #2173030
They did. Through personality cults and populist movements. Don’t use the philosophy to criminalize the philosopher and exonerate the criminal.March 13, 2023 8:39 am at 8:39 am #2173061
So, the cult personae are not responsible for the followers?
Pirkei Avos mentions differences between students of Avraham and Bilaam, from which you learn that you can see whether the teacher was kosher by the students. And Marx was no tzadik to begin with. He, apparently, came to his hate of business owners via hate of Jews, whom he considered guilty of propagating business values. He argued with some reverend suggesting that instead of emancipating Jews, we should emancipate world from the Jews.March 13, 2023 10:37 am at 10:37 am #2173134
“So, the cult personae are not responsible for the followers?”
No.March 13, 2023 1:49 pm at 1:49 pm #2173190
Marx did not come to hate business owners through hatred of Jews. The essay you are referring to is “On the Jewish Question” and yes there is an anti-Semitic element in it but he is arguing for the emancipation of Jews not against it.March 13, 2023 3:26 pm at 3:26 pm #2173238maskildoreshParticipant
“ A fish stinks from its head”.
Of course the the actions of the followers flow from the vision established by those who espouse a philosophy that leads to action, and the leaders are also responsible for the inevitable dilution and distortions of the original philosophy
See also Ramban in P Achrei who refers to Plato as a Rasha, and his explanation for that appellation…March 13, 2023 3:26 pm at 3:26 pm #2173241
“The Jew has a marked inclination to believe that the worst difficulties may be resolved by reason…”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 3, page 125) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474March 13, 2023 7:59 pm at 7:59 pm #2173376
Marxist > but he is arguing for the emancipation of Jews not against it.
It was some decades I opened a Marx sefer, but if I remember correctly, he argues with someone (Rev Bauer?) and he turns the question around and suggest emancipating the world from the Jewish capitalism. The reason I remember this kuntros better than what I had for breakfast yesterday – because it dawned on me tha the origin of this plague is hate of Jews.March 13, 2023 9:39 pm at 9:39 pm #2173401
I don’t deny the anti-Semitic aspect to some of Marx’s thought. However, he does actually believe that Jews should be emancipated despite the fact he has some unsavory things to say about Judaism. His writings on the topic are a bit complicated.
I recommend the following academic article:
Avineri, Shlomo. “Marx and Jewish Emancipation.” Journal of the History of Ideas, vol. 25, no. 3, 1964, pp. 445–50. Available on JSTORMarch 14, 2023 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm #2173549
Marxist: you seem to be equating emancipation of Jews as not an anti-Semitic idea. The concept of ’emancipation’ comes from the Enlightenment, and is a very much against religion as a whole. Arguably the foremost Enlightenment philosopher, Emanuel Kant greatly admired Mendelssohn but disparaged Solomon Maimon, not for lack of knowledge, but rather because he viewed Maimon as a backwards Jew.
By suggesting that Jews need to be emancipated, they are implying that Jews as Jews are not tolerable. That is antisemitism.March 14, 2023 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm #2173544
“I noted earlier that anti-Semitism is a passion.
Everyone understands that emotions of and anger are involved.
But ordinarily hate and anger have a provocation:
I hate someone who has made me suffer, someone who contemns or insults me.
We have just seen that anti-Semitic passion could not have such a character.
It [anti-Semitism] precedes* the facts that are supposed to call it forth; it seeks to nourish itself upon them; it must even interpret them in a special way so that they may become truly offensive.
Indeed, if you so much as mention a Jew to an anti-Semite, he will show all the signs of a lively irritation.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 1, page 17) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
* PERSONAL COMMENT: Since anti-Semitism “precedes the facts that are supposed to call it forth”, this indicates that anti-Semitism is not based on truth or logic.March 14, 2023 3:26 pm at 3:26 pm #2173653
Emancipation of Jews is rooted in Enlightenment thought. This does not mean that it is anti-Semitic in nature. It is the argument for equal political rights for Jews and and the removal of restrictions from them. Some did justify the need for emancipation because Jews were backward and they needed to be brought into civil society to progress. However, the actual concept is not anti-Semitic.
It would be like if today there were government restrictions on what occupations Jews could enter. People fighting to remove them would not be considered anti-Semitic. So too, fighting restrictions on Jews during the 18th and 19th century is not anti-Semitic.March 14, 2023 3:26 pm at 3:26 pm #2173652
Absolutely false. Circular reasoning. It’s the old ‘Moshe Rabbeinu was still Moshe Rabbeinu even though didn’t have (insert any innovation of the last 3K+ years)’ rhetorical point. Emancipation is not anti-religion. Unless you insist that religion did not come from God. And to prove it, at that point Mendelssohn was totally observant and Maimon was almost completely unobservant. And a drunk.March 14, 2023 9:02 pm at 9:02 pm #2173822
“Never believe that anti-Semites are completely unaware of the absurdity of their replies. They know that their remarks are frivolous, open to challenge.
But they are amusing themselves, for it is their adversary who is obligated to use words responsibly, since he believes in words. The anti-Semites have the right to play.
They even like to play with discourse for, by giving ridiculous reasons, they discredit the seriousness of their interlocutors.
They [anti-Semites] delight in acting in bad faith, since they seek not to persuade by sound argument but to intimidate and disconcert.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 1, page 20) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
PERSONAL COMMENT: May G*D reward the person who said this, and all those who defended the Jewish people, even though they themselves were not Jewish.March 14, 2023 9:50 pm at 9:50 pm #2173826
Marxist > I don’t deny the anti-Semitic aspect to some of Marx’s thought.
TheFakeMaven answered already. I just would like to add that this _early_ work shows where his hate of capitalism came – from hating Jewish influence on the world in the form of our business activities, and his interest in “emancipation” included the desire to stop us being successful business people. I may not convince you, but for others – interesting to see that such a plague on the world started as a narrow hate of Jewish practices and then expanded to all other businesses.March 14, 2023 9:52 pm at 9:52 pm #2173827
Emancipation went hand-in-hand with assimilation. See Napoleon’s questions to the “Sanhedrin” he forced to assemble – do you consider Frenchmen your brothers? Would you marry them?
On the other hand, we can’t blame solely “emancipators” for the damage to the community. German reformers felt a need to bring modern education, medicine, jobs to their Eastern brothers…If our communities were able – at the time – to absorb the new knowledge without compromising Yiddishkeit, then – maybe – the Yidden would be less prone to assimilate. This is a simplistic statement, of course, given the novelty of the situation and oppressive regimes we lived under, but still worth pondering.March 15, 2023 12:20 am at 12:20 am #2173845
You make huge claims and yet provide no evidence or textual support. You admit not having read Marxist literature in “some decades” yet you provide new historical interpretations that I’m not aware any serious scholar of Marx puts forward.
It’s true that emancipation typically led to assimilation. That does not make emancipation an anti-Semitic idea. It’s like saying that fighting against discrimination of Jews in the workforce is anti-Semitic because it may lead to some Jews joining jobs that will cause them to assimilate.March 15, 2023 11:25 am at 11:25 am #2173941
my interpretations are from the time I read it (thanks, professor who referred me to the volume so that I was able to see this paper!) and I shared them with many budding marxists. Sad that they only reached you now. I provided enough of the argument that you can open the paper and see if my interpretation fits. Maybe we can publish in some Pravda International – polemic about polemic w/ Bauer. Somehow, I even remember the name of the reverend, even as I do not remember the mishnah I learnt yesterday …
Practical lesson: read early work of famous people to see what they really think – before they polished their oratory skills. I heard a similar advice from a Rav – listen to what children say as parents already say what is accepted in polite society, not what they really think.March 15, 2023 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm #2173963
Emancipation led to assimilation because before the Reformation, any Jews or Christians that socialized were risking their lives. The only way for a Jew to assimilate, was to Convert. In non religious countries assimilation is higher. And in non religious, non enlightened countries, assimilation is the highest. It’s like of course I’m a Jew, but why can’t I intermarry?
In sum, without gradual enlightenment, assimilation would be a wholesale movement. Just the force of the coming future alone is enough to cause a large amount of assimilation into it(the future). The Enlightenment was like an out of control release valve. You could point that it was a release of centuries of pressure. Or you can argue that it was out of control for decades.
Enjoy the debate.March 15, 2023 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm #2174024
“For Jews are often uneasy.
An Israelite is never sure of his position or of his possessions.
He cannot say that tomorrow he will still be in the country he inhabits today, for his situation, his power, and even his right to live may be placed in jeopardy from one moment to the next.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 3, page 132) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
PERSONAL COMMENT: This helps to explain why Jews need their own state.
The anti-Zionists do not understand this, and they never will understand this, because they do not want to understand this.
The anti-Zionists do not understand that their hatred of the Zionists does not accomplish any good, and only makes things worse. And they never will understand that, because they do not listen.March 15, 2023 1:27 pm at 1:27 pm #2174040
I’m a bit confused as to what you are getting at. The article “On the Jewish Question” is not some obscure work of Marx. It’s the starting point for anybody wanting to better understand Marx’s relationship with Judaism. It’s also not the earliest writing of Marx either. You make it sound like this is the starting point for all of Marx’s later thought which it isn’t. There are earlier works of Marx. Why not start with “Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right” or the “Economic and Philosophical Manuscripts”?
You make a claim that Marx’s “hatred” of businessmen stemmed from his hatred of Judaism. Can you provide evidence for that claim? I don’t see it in “On the Jewish Question”. It’s interesting that you basically want to sum up Marx’s philosophy by just petty hatred of business people and not actually get into the weeds of the influences on Marx. There were primarily three, as Lenin said:
“Marx was the genius who continued and consummated the three main ideological currents of the 19th century, as represented by the three most advanced countries of mankind: classical German philosophy, classical English political economy, and French socialism combined with French revolutionary doctrines in general.”
Reading one work of Marx and then deciding that this is how he developed his ideas is silly. Maybe pull out a decent biography of Marx and get a better understanding of his life, influences and ideas.March 15, 2023 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm #2174187
Marxist, my claim stems from the fact that his later criticism of capitalism is a carbon copy of his criticism of Jewish business influence on the world. Your further quotes from someone who actually was in charge of killing people shows that you see this a purely theoretical debate of ideas. Maybe your family came to US on Mayflower and nobody was ever touched by the Marxist murderers in Europe.March 16, 2023 9:34 am at 9:34 am #2174307
“my claim stems from the fact that his later criticism of capitalism is a carbon copy of his criticism of Jewish business influence on the world. ”
It actually isn’t. Maybe take a look at Capital I.
I am no fan of Lenin but that quote does a good job at summarizing the main influences on Marx.March 16, 2023 3:27 pm at 3:27 pm #2174337
@Marxist @nomesorah: The term ’emancipation of Jews’ as was used by the philosophers of the nineteenth centuries are anti-Semitic in essence. There is a marked difference in the goal of the Jewish ‘enlighteners’ vis-a-vis the broader enlightenment project. Where for Mendelsohn and the Berliner group Enlightenment ideology was a form of separation of Church and State, for the secular enlighteners it was quite different.
Mendelsohn was more or less an observant Jew, and was espousing a form of integration, he was however a firm believer in making a religion a private affair as he famously puts in Jerusalem. The Jewish enlighteners were very much for rationalizing religion.
However, for the secular world, the culmination of the Enlightenment was a revolution of religion as a whole, and in which there was no place for Judaism. Let me contextualize this. It is telling that the early Jewish Enlighteners were more aligned with the Wollfian school of classical metaphysics, and not with the ‘Copernican revolution’ proposed by Kant. (Maimon being a noted exception, although he was not a typical Jewish Enlightener). [And the later Jewish Enlightener were at the most Neo-Kantians, think Herman Cohen]. The reason why this is of note is because it is precisely the insistence of Kant’s Transcendental Metaphysics, which relegates religion to nothing but the adherence to “Categorical Imperative” which is a frontal attack against Judaism and all that it stands for. A ‘Clerical Religion” vs. an “Ideal Religion”. The infamous Jacobian Controversy would be a historical case study.
As for the comments on Sartre being a founder of Existentialism, even if one were to grant him this dubious title the criticism is way off mark; especially the critique of Kierkegaard. If anything this would be a critique of Phenomenalism which is a system of epistemology not existentialism. As Kierkegaard, who is actually considered to have laid the groundwork for existentialism, puts it an objective truth can also be experienced and become a subjective truth. In other words, Kierkegaard never denied objective truths, nor is there any room in any of his arguments to interpertate this. Rather all he does is add another layer to truths, through experience. This does not in any way negate objectivity in any way.
If one wants to blame postmodernisms subjectivity blame it, however absurd, on Cartesian in its’ radical forms such as Berkeleyan Idealism. Or perhaps on the critique of Kant’s ‘Thing in Itself’….March 16, 2023 4:27 pm at 4:27 pm #2174415
In other words, The Enlightenment did not need religious validation for their goals. Being superfluous is not the same as eradicating. It’s the same as claiming that online sites and chatrooms have no need for religion. And therefore TYW is TCR is against Judaism.
The point you are supposed to be explaining why an emancipated Jew, is not as Jewish as a traditional Jew. Go ahead and join the two hundred year old competition of who can describe Mendelssohn’s lack of faith. You probably can’t bumble your answer less than most.March 17, 2023 7:17 am at 7:17 am #2174476
@n0mesorah: that is incorrect. Judaism as understood by the secular Aufklarung was antithetical to what religion was according to them. A ‘clerical’ religion is a political system, and one which is not in line with any form of political philosophy espoused by any of the enlightenments, be it the German, French or British. It is as if saying Hobbean political theory is commensurate with a Lockean view of the world. As a general rule political philosophy is subservient to ones’ metaphysical view, of which Judaism and the Enlightenment were at odds.
The Jewish enlightenments goal, however, was simply to rationalize Judaism, and in that sense was not innovative. This was a project which had been undertaken for a least two millennia, as is evident by the descriptions given by Philo of the various Judaic views of the first century. Most interesting the ones prone to allegorize the Torah. Hence the united and vicious attack by the Maskilim against Kabbalah. One can consult Graetzs’ history for a Maskilic understanding of the development of Judaism almost like one can consult Hegel’s for an idealists interpretation of history.
Does that make one an apostate? That is besides the point. The discussion is not so much if a jew such as Mendelsohn ‘yano yain nesach’, the question is rather if the outcome of the Maskilic movement would lead to apostasy, which seems to have been the case.
[To answer your barb however, first off I have never stated that Mendelssohn himself would not be considered a religious Jew, the Yavat’z seems to have considered him as one. Secondly it all depends on ones definition of religious. If one denies Kabbalah is he an apostate? Shadal obviously did not believe nor the much more esteemed R’ Aryeh de Leon before him. We do believe this. If one denies the concept of Gilgul does that make him an apostate? Again depends on whom we ask.
The problem is that Judaism did not articulate exactly what beliefs make one a believer. But again, all this is besides the point.]March 17, 2023 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm #2174541
A parallel question is where the assimilation rate would be without any Enlightenment alongside the Industrial Revolution.March 17, 2023 3:06 pm at 3:06 pm #2174560
Although obviously not possible to say definitively, probably on par with what it was before the enlightenment. The main catalyst for assimilation was not technological progress per se but was rather the emancipation which was solely an enlightenment idea. Modern scholarship has shown that before emancipation it was close to impossible for a Jew to be able to be integrated into the general population, I point you for instance to Endelmen, Leaving the Jewish Fold, Princeton University Press among others.
From your lack of criticism of anything I surmise that you concur with my previous post?March 19, 2023 8:25 pm at 8:25 pm #2174860
There isn’t what to criticize. Your giving a position to The Enlightenment that it doesn’t care for. (It’s effect on Judaism.) And then blaming what followed on your cause. The truth is, that pre-enlightenment, assimilation was only possible through conversion to Christianity. From the side of the fence alone, assimilation would have been a major factor. Who is to say that it would have been worse without any Enlightenment?
In sum, I think your completely wrong.March 20, 2023 4:13 pm at 4:13 pm #2175163
“Since the Jew is dependent upon opinion for his profession, his rights, and his life, his situation is completely unstable. Legally not open to attack, he is at the mercy of the whims and passions of the ‘real’ society.
He [the Jew] carefully watches the progress of anti-Semitism; he tries to foresee crises and gauge trends in the same way that the peasant keeps watch on the weather and predicts storms.
He ceaselessly calculates the effects that external events will have on his own position. He may accumulate legal guarantees, riches, honors; he is only the more vulnerable on that account, and he knows it.
Thus it seems to him that at one and the same time that his efforts are always crowned with success — for he knows the astonishing successes of his race — and that a curse has made them empty, for he will never acquire the security enjoyed by the most humble Christian.”
SOURCE: Anti-Semite and Jew (chapter 3, page 87) by Jean-Paul Sartre in year 1944, translated from French to English by George J. Becker, published by Schocken Books in NYC in year 1995, distributed by Pantheon Books, ISBN 0805210474
This helps to explain why Jews need their own state.
The anti-Zionists do not understand that their hatred of the Zionists does not accomplish any good, and only makes things worse, by increasing hate among Jews.March 21, 2023 12:37 am at 12:37 am #2175285
@n0mesorah: Two points: If I read you correctly you are trying to say that the German Aufklarung never had Judaism in its crosshairs. That is factually incorrect. There is a reason why the enlightenment first dawned in Germany, and only after the protestant revolution. Furthermore, the ‘enlighteners’ attacked every religion that relied on revelation. Again I refer you to the Jacobian affair.March 21, 2023 3:20 pm at 3:20 pm #2175504
1) The Aufklarung didn’t have anything in it’s crosshairs, because it didn’t have any crosshairs. It wasn’t publicly realized until Spinoza’s philosophy was being openly debated. At that point, all the early philosophers were dead. Maybe you mean the age of Goethe and Schiller. But still, Judaism was very much in the background. If you meant Nietzsche, that is already after Marx. Germany was historically anti-Semitic. Is that your point?
2) The Dawn of the Enlightenment, could refer to many different periods. Whatever you are referring to probably had multiple reasons. I’m not being snarky. I’m just not following.
3) The enlighteners attacked every religion that relied on revelation. I don’t get your strawman here. so Leibniz, Mendelssohn, Herder, and so on, were not enlightened?
We could throw around accusations endlessly. Some would forcefully say that anyone that even thinks (You and I?) about Idealism vs. Materialism is attacking Judaism. You’ve totally lost me. Is your point about Marx himself, or his philosophical association? Either way, you have to start from something concrete. Because there are too many dissenting approaches.March 22, 2023 1:40 am at 1:40 am #2175682
@n0mesorah: 1) “It wasn’t publicly realized until Spinoza’s philosophy was being openly debated. At that point, all the early philosophers were dead.”
This is demonstrably false. Spinoza’s Ethics was translated into German in the year 1677 and came under constant and unrelenting attack ever since. Virtually every professor of theology or philosophy wrote an attack against him and he was known as Satan himself. For an overview of this see Grunwald, Spinoza in Deutschland specifically pgs. 45-48. Thus, the debate on Spinoza actually predates the enlightenment. Furthermore the first generation (or at the minimum early) of Enlighteners, Kant, Mendelsohn, Herder, Jacobi (and thus Lessing) and many more directly attacked/interoperated Spinoza. In short, Spinoza was always actively engaged in Germany.
2) I am referring to the fact that it originated in Germany, the birthplace of Protestantism.
3) a) Leibniz was not strictly an enlightener, furthermore which Leibniz are we referring to, published or unpublished works. One can scarcely consider an adherent to the Monadic theory a strict empiricist.
b) Mendelsohn. As mentioned above, first of all he was a Wolffian, and his Morgenstudatten is not exactly a piece of enlightenment philosophy. Furthermore Mendelsohn’s opinion on reason on faith and Judaism was not accepted in the secular establishment. His above referenced Morgenstunden is perhaps the last Wolffian philosophical work written. This just further highlights my point made above, that Mendelssohn’s view of the ideal of the enlightenment were not congruent with the secular ones.
c) Herder. Kant’s broadside on Herder was exactly that. Herder was reverting to pre-enlightenment ideas of reason and postulating ‘Vitalistic’ ideas which were not empirical. So, in sum, yes, these philosophers were not enlightened in secular understanding.March 22, 2023 1:41 am at 1:41 am #2175683
@n0mesorah: One more point as to Herder. He himself acknowledged that his ideas of religion, greatly influenced by Spinoza, were not orthodox in any sense of the word. And he would be considered by any religious authority as an apostate. See his ‘Letters’ v, 29, 90-91.March 22, 2023 3:01 pm at 3:01 pm #2175913
I don’t see the merit of debating all these points. If you want to see The Enlightenment as one road toward materialist atheism, that is your opinion. It’s not mine. And it’s not an easy argument to make. But one thing is certain. It was not the perspective of Karl Marx. And it had no bearing on his view of history.March 23, 2023 2:07 pm at 2:07 pm #2176423
In short Herder added two ideas to religious philosophy.
1) He reimagined Spinoza’s godhead from a noun to a verb.
2) And he insisted that even the holy scriptures should be read as literature.
Neither of these is philosophical apostasy.
And if Spinoza can be tolerated by some religious authorities, surely there are many more that would tolerate Herder.
PS I’m not making any recommendations. My only focus is if one can read future cultural outcomes into the founding philosopher’s thinking. Of course there were historical conclusions from the work of Herder and Marx. Herder definitely would not be pleased by how it played out. Marx even more so.March 27, 2023 3:00 am at 3:00 am #2177217
n0mesorah: As I am unsure of which article/book you recently perused in regards to Herder, but the term noun and verb in this context is wholly unhelpful. Where for Spinoza God had two attributes, and both were static (hence the ‘noun’), for Herder God had one attribute in an infinite expression. This attribute was in line with the ‘vitalistic’ mode of being, similar to Leibniz’ Monads, (hence the ‘verb’). However, by necessity, this God too is impersonal, and although unlike Spinoza it did not preclude a teleological cause there was still no freedom of choice.
Hence, a personal God and free will was denied by default through Herders philosophy. Clearly ‘philosophical apostasy’.
Furthermore, by reading holy scripture as literature there is a denial of metaphysical truths inherent in scripture, for it is naught but a creation tied to the time and place of its inception.March 27, 2023 10:33 am at 10:33 am #2177318
Personal god or free will does not on it’s own a heretic make. These are debates. Was Crescras guilty of philosophical apostasy?
Metaphysical truths <en>inherent</en> in scripture is an extreme position. Even secular scripture is only bound by time and place, if man assigns himself the position of the all knowing reader.
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